Get Putting Help From The Experts In Game Improvement

By Ryan Gager

You’ve heard drive for show, putt for dough. So, how’s your putting when the dough is on the line? In this edition of Data Driven, GOLFTEC’s Nick Clearwater takes professional golfer Hailey Ostrom through our Putting Assessment. During this process we utilize several putting drills to gather key data points which are used to determine which parts of your putting stroke need attention.

Putting Assessment Test #1 – Putting Sword

The first assessment we take you through is the putting sword. During this test you will putt the ball, trying to roll it off the end of the sword without it falling off either side before it reaches the end.

The goal of this assessment is to have 8 or more out of 10 roll off the end. If you have several that are falling off the sword on either side, we will probably suggest taking a suggest taking some lessons that are focused on you putter face angle.

Hailey did pretty well, getting 7 to roll off the end. Even for someone as good as Hailey, getting a lesson on this drill and practicing can greatly improve your putter face angle and have you starting more putts on your intended line.

The first test shows us your start direction and getting the ball rolling along your intended line.

Putting Assessment Test #2 – Speed Control

The next putting assessment is all about speed control. Take an alignment stick or club and place it 18 inches behind the cup. Note – you do not need to putt at the hole, simply putt to side of a hole so you only focus on speed, not trying to make putts.

The goal is to have your putts stop between the front edge of the hole and the stick. This drill will help you determine if you tend to leave putts short of the hole, or hit putts too hard and they hit the stick.

Again, Hailey did well with this drill and found that her tendency was to hit putts a little long as she hit the stick a few times. None of her putts were left short. Knowing this, she can work on her speed and not hitting putts quite so firm.

The Speed Control drill will have you leaving all the putts you don’t make within tap-in range.

Putting Assessment Test #3 – Sight Line

Next, we test your set up and sight as you get ready to hit a putt. For this we use the EyeLine Sight Line System. There is a green line on the board on the ground and a white line at the end on a mirror.

The goal is to have the green line vanish into the white line when you look down your intended putting line.

If you see the green line on either side of the white line, you will need to adjust your stance and/or head position to get to the point where you are looking straight down the line.

Note – this is not about having your eyes directly over the ball. Instead, it helps gets your eyes into a position that they are actually looking down the line.

The EyeLine Sight Line will show where you are looking and help you look down your intended putting line.

Putting Assessment Test #4 – Aim Test

The final assessment tests your aim. We place a small mirror on your putter and have a laser pointing at your putter from 6 feet away. This will allow us to see exactly where you are aimed when you step up to hit a putt.

We place a ball in front of the laser then have you step into your putt when you feel like you are aimed right at the laser. We then remove the ball to see where you are aimed. You can see from the example, Hailey is aimed to the left of the laser.

The goal for this test is to have the laser dot on the wall to be within a cup-width of the laser and about a foot above the laser. Having your putter aimed above the laser will ensure you have correct loft on your putter to get the most accurate roll on the ball.

The laser bouncing off your putter face will show where you are aimed when setting up to the ball.

Taking into account all four assessment aspects, GOLFTEC will be able to find the flaws in your putting stroke. Then the work begins. Working with a local GOLFTEC Coach, who takes you though a series of putting lessons, we will correct each flaw and have you rolling the ball better! We also will test your current putter and make sure it’s right for you. GOLFTEC has both Edel and Odyssey Putter Fitting Systems in our Centers, making it easy to combine a new putter with your improved putting stroke. We’ll help you make more putts when the dough is on the line!

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