To make the purest possible putting stroke, it’s important to set up to the ball properly. The primary factors influencing ball position are your distance from the ball and where the ball lies in relation to the feet.
First, distance from the ball. Why is this so critical? Because the eyes must be directly above or slightly inside the ball at address. If the eyes are outside the ball, the stroke will follow an outside-to-inside path and cause pulled putts. Eyes too far inside the line will have the opposite effect.
For most golfers, standing 8-10 inches from the golf ball will put their eyes over it. Here’s a simple way to check:
• With an extra ball in your pocket, assume your normal putting address.
• Take one hand off the putter, get the ball from your pocket and hold it between your eyes.
• Drop the ball. Where it lands tells you where your eyes are positioned. Ideally, it will land on the ball being putted. If not, adjust accordingly.
An even easier way to get this fundamental right is to use a putter with a built-in alignment guide. For example, Thomas Golf (www.thomasgolf.com) offers putters specially designed to center eyes over ball.
As for where the golf ball should be played in the putting stance? Most teachers say right in the middle, or perhaps a touch forward, to ensure a true roll.
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