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  • Putting looking at the hole not the ball

    Hi

    I was on the practice green yesterday and after missing several short putts and failing to lag the long putts well I made a chage I was in a golf magazine recently.

    Basically setting up to the ball as usual then focusing and looking at the hole during the stroke. After a couple of putts I was holing everything within 6 foot without any trouble and lagging every long putt within an easy two putt distance.

    I am quite traditional in my approach to the golf swing etc and have not seen anybig names use this method. So I am interest to hear any pros and cons people think there are in this approach.

    Whilst my putting has not been on top form recently I do not wish to use a quick fix that may impact me improving my putting long term. So is this a proven formula backed by any top coaches or players?

  • #2
    Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

    JCBDB,

    This is not a method I have tried but I was watching the golf channel a few months ago and there was a guy on there (an ex-pro who now plays on the seniors tour - can't remember his name) who uses this method on long putts.

    It certainly seemed to work for him - he said that by looking at the hole it helped him judge the distance much better.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

      You might want to have a look at Tommy Armour's "How to play your best golf..." - I picked up an old original copy for 20p in a 2nd hand shop but I believe its been re-issued.

      Anyway its an interesting read generally but has a great (and amusing) chapter on putting and why it can drive even the best nuts.
      His conclusion? Almost anything - including looking at the hole - will work for a while before it lets you down - more seriously he only gives one piece of advice, and I'd bet that 9 out 10 on here could have a good guess at what it is.

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      • #4
        Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

        Hi JCB,

        I too have read that article on putting and I now have adjusted my putting to this. My problem wasn't with short puts but with the long ones. I was either over hitting and shooting passed the hole or putting too weak and only going half the distance i needed. I use to have an average putt of 4.21 now with the changes from this article i am at 2.02

        Cheers
        Mark

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        • #5
          Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

          What I've found to help my distance is to check my line. Setup to the ball and make my stroke. I've found that if I'm having distance problems, making practice strokes only makes my difference worse. As I think how hard do I need to hit this. If I just get up there and hit it, I naturally know how hard I need to hit it.

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          • #6
            Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

            I can definitely vouch on hitting putts in while looking at the hole... If I am setup on my line, I can almost nail every putt looking at the hole it's pretty crazy but it's been working here lately consistently which is the scary part. I mean the ball is literally falling in the hole and not rimming out like you think it should.... I think basically what is going on is the brain is the telling the rest of the body how hard to hit the ball and therefore the speed is right on for that stroke at that moment

            I have definitely tried this out and it's proven to work for some people

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            • #7
              Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

              Thanks all for the feedback. It defintely worked on the course yesterday, it was just the rest of my game that fell to bits!

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              • #8
                Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                I tried this out for a little while and it worked pretty well. I'm not sure why I veered away from it considering now my putting style has changed back and forth from lead-hand low to traditional. Looks like I'm headed to the greens

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                  Hey when i am putting i have several little things that help me and may help you...I am from Ireland and i play alot in the wind 15mph+ and our greens tend to be very fast and some tend to be slopey....i notice that when i hit a downhill putt i tend to use the toe of the putter this gives the ball a more dead conection and will go to far depending on how hard it is hit.....

                  A method that i use to read the break on greens is plumbobbing....i stand back and look at the hole through the shaft of the butter after staring for a while another shaft becomes visible, this is the shaft that is invisible to your naked eye. So now that you see to shaft put the ball at the bottom of the shaft and look up and how ever far off the hole the "invisible" shaft is then thats how far it is going to break to that side....

                  Try it and let me no wat you think!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                    I tried putting while looking at the hole for a couple of hours on the practice green last night, it was uncanny how close I was leaving it from long range. You think you'll mishit one or two, but I didn't.
                    I will putt like this for long ones when I play "for real" tomorrow, but I couldn't bring myself to try it with 6 footers where line is more important than distance, unlike long putts where distance is much more important.
                    I suppose it may work with short putts too though as at least you won't be moving your head to watch where it goes.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                      Man, I did this today in my 9-hole round and on 2-putted the majority of the holes. I was so pleased with these results, which set me up for a nice 43/35. Not too bad in this 100 degree weather we had in Kansas today. Something I found useful, as a preshot to the new way of putting, was after aligning myself to the target I would incorporate a specific move that made me completely focused. Once over the ball, I straighten myself out and put the putter over the ball (hovering over it) and make my practice swing and make sure to always always always finish the clubhead to my intended target..and hold it there. Since I'm not going to be looking at the ball (if not for a second to put the putter head behind it once more before the putt) I only want it to get my target, and that's exactly where I aim my clubhead to. Did wonders to my putting today, saved par from 20ft and was quite pleased with myself that I held the putterhead aimed at my target. My only problem was a little quick on the short putts as I tried to look at the hole, but for some reason that messed up a bit - I need to focus on a spot in between the ball and the hole next time for the shorter ones.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                        Originally posted by kieran_harko
                        Hey when i am putting i have several little things that help me and may help you...I am from Ireland and i play alot in the wind 15mph+ and our greens tend to be very fast and some tend to be slopey....i notice that when i hit a downhill putt i tend to use the toe of the putter this gives the ball a more dead conection and will go to far depending on how hard it is hit.....

                        A method that i use to read the break on greens is plumbobbing....i stand back and look at the hole through the shaft of the butter after staring for a while another shaft becomes visible, this is the shaft that is invisible to your naked eye. So now that you see to shaft put the ball at the bottom of the shaft and look up and how ever far off the hole the "invisible" shaft is then thats how far it is going to break to that side....

                        Try it and let me no wat you think!!!
                        You have to be very careful using the plumb bob system. The only way this is really accurate is if your putter is perfectly level when bobbing it. A lot of putters have the weight dispursed in different places so a lot of times it's not hanging straight down. I have the odyesy 2 ball and that hangs off line about 1 1/2 inches. Hold your putter up against something that you know for a fact is level, just to see if it is hanging straight or not. If it's not, most times you can just turn the shaft a bit in your hands until you find the spot where it hangs straight.

                        I just like to look at the putt from all sides. Right now I'm averaging 1.64 putts per hole, so I'd say that it's working pretty good. OH YEAH...don't forget to practice!!!!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                          I take 3 practice swings looking at the hole and then look at the ball and swing with minimum delay.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                            hi all
                            try puting impact tape on your putter and putt 10 balls looking at ball and then change tape and putt another 10 but this time looking at hole then check tape for impact on sweet spot, i was so suprised that looking at hole showed a much better cluster on the sweet spot and i use a broomhandle putter so have a good pendulum swing to start with. i find it works great looking at hole for long putts best, not much diffrent from 6 foot in but i look at hole now for all puts rather that use two setups for my putts.
                            bill
                            Last edited by bill reed; 07-27-2006, 10:31 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Putting looking at the hole not the ball

                              Originally posted by bill reed
                              hi all
                              try puting impact tape on your putter and putt 10 balls looking at ball and then change tape and putt another 10 but this time looking at hole then check tape for impact on sweet spot, i was so suprised that looking at hole showed a much better cluster on the sweet spot and i use a broomhandle putter so have a good pendulum swing to start with. i find it works great looking at hole for long putts best, not much diffrent from 6 foot in but i look at hole now for all puts rather that use two setups for my putts.
                              bill
                              Hi Bill / All

                              I tried this method of putting a while back and it worked.......up to a point. It worked best for me on the long putts, and I still went through my usual pre-shot routine for putts. You have to really trust your stroke! The idea works well because you shouldn't really expect it to go in, just get it close for a tap-in. However, like you, I don't use it for any closer than say 6ft, as I fully expect these to go in, and I think you have to be more precise with these.

                              Now if only it would work for the rest of my game!

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