Stop: Don't Practice Missing Putts (Video)
Stop: Don't Practice Missing Putts (Video)

For over 20 years of playing golf and over 11, 12 years of teaching golf, the one thing I often see actually when I go out on the golf course with people to play is that pre-round sort of routine, their pre-round warm-up if you like. Now, a lot of people straight from the car, straight to the first tee and off to go.

We know that's not the ideal thing but time pressure and that sort of thing sometimes mean that's all you can manage. Well, the people arrive there nice and early, go out into the putting green and spend a bit of time putting, and it's for those people that I want to make sure that you're spending that precious, quality time on the putting green before your round that you're doing the right thing in that time.

The one thing I see the most often and it kills me when I see it is people practice missing putts. They go out into the putting green, they miss 20 putts. Someone shouts, "Hey Pete, you're ready to go?" "Yeah, yeah, I'm ready to go." You get to the first green and all you can remember is missing a load of putts on the putting green. Stop doing it. Don't do it.

When you arrive at the putting green, the worst thing to do would be just to throw three balls down across a downslope from about a 15-foot putt which is a very tough putt. You don't line it up, you just go, "dink, dink, dink," they all miss. You pick them up, you go to somewhere else, "dink, dink, dink," they all miss and then you go and tee off. That's no good.

Two things you need to work on when you get to a putting green, confidence and pace. Confidence would actually encourage you to go out on the golf course with the right confident mindset to hold some putts and pace is going to be the thing that will allow you to be a good putter out on the golf course. So, the first thing is, don't necessarily practice to a hole. Just practice to an area. The area could be 35 feet away and I practice hitting putts to the area to give me a feeling of the right speed. But I don't have that negativity, that negative mindset that every putt I hit missed the whole.

I pick myself a nice sort of three feet deep end zone and try and get the ball to stop in that end zone and hopefully from a decent putter, I get the confidence that yes, I'm hitting the ball into the end zone.

I then go ahead and make a series of short putts, maybe two footers, a series of short putts, get the confidence of holding those and then go to the golf course and tee off and I don't stand there over these 15 footer tricky ones down the hill across the slope, missing them, missing them, missing them. Go to the first tee and all I can think about is missing putts.

So, make sure you use that precious five or ten minutes on the putting green, use it efficiently, use it effectively. Work on pace, work on confidence and go to the first tee with a different mindset.

2013-01-23

For over 20 years of playing golf and over 11, 12 years of teaching golf, the one thing I often see actually when I go out on the golf course with people to play is that pre-round sort of routine, their pre-round warm-up if you like. Now, a lot of people straight from the car, straight to the first tee and off to go.

We know that's not the ideal thing but time pressure and that sort of thing sometimes mean that's all you can manage. Well, the people arrive there nice and early, go out into the putting green and spend a bit of time putting, and it's for those people that I want to make sure that you're spending that precious, quality time on the putting green before your round that you're doing the right thing in that time.

The one thing I see the most often and it kills me when I see it is people practice missing putts. They go out into the putting green, they miss 20 putts. Someone shouts, "Hey Pete, you're ready to go?" "Yeah, yeah, I'm ready to go." You get to the first green and all you can remember is missing a load of putts on the putting green. Stop doing it. Don't do it.

When you arrive at the putting green, the worst thing to do would be just to throw three balls down across a downslope from about a 15-foot putt which is a very tough putt. You don't line it up, you just go, "dink, dink, dink," they all miss. You pick them up, you go to somewhere else, "dink, dink, dink," they all miss and then you go and tee off. That's no good.

Two things you need to work on when you get to a putting green, confidence and pace. Confidence would actually encourage you to go out on the golf course with the right confident mindset to hold some putts and pace is going to be the thing that will allow you to be a good putter out on the golf course. So, the first thing is, don't necessarily practice to a hole. Just practice to an area. The area could be 35 feet away and I practice hitting putts to the area to give me a feeling of the right speed. But I don't have that negativity, that negative mindset that every putt I hit missed the whole.

I pick myself a nice sort of three feet deep end zone and try and get the ball to stop in that end zone and hopefully from a decent putter, I get the confidence that yes, I'm hitting the ball into the end zone.

I then go ahead and make a series of short putts, maybe two footers, a series of short putts, get the confidence of holding those and then go to the golf course and tee off and I don't stand there over these 15 footer tricky ones down the hill across the slope, missing them, missing them, missing them. Go to the first tee and all I can think about is missing putts.

So, make sure you use that precious five or ten minutes on the putting green, use it efficiently, use it effectively. Work on pace, work on confidence and go to the first tee with a different mindset.