The Cause of Short Putt Yips and How Senior Golfers can Cure this Problem (Video)
The Cause of Short Putt Yips and How Senior Golfers can Cure this Problem (Video)

I'm going to talk about the dreaded yips. The yips is basically a condition which is associated with putting. It's a subconscious condition, a sort of response, but I would like to put a bit more of plain English in that. It’s really all about sort of nerves; I mean you are faced with a very short putt. I am not talking about a putt this long, but a short putt and it gets over that ball and all of a sudden, you can't swing. The muscles are tightening up in your arms, it's almost like the feel, I can rub it in the head like scenario. Everything is going, your heart is racing faster and faster and you just, you can just conjure up, it’s like swing that putter, you can't. And it's just one of those things that creeps up on you, Bernhard Langer was a great person as an example of how he went through those yips.

I had it personally, I have had those for like three or four years, 20 odd years ago, not anymore thank God. So if you have got those yips and you think, yeah I can associate myself with that, freezing over a putt, heartbeat racing along and really it's like a jerky jabby action, you know from here, like that, almost sometimes no backswing. It's incredible to just see somebody do it and it's so embarrassing, but you feel so much for that person, that's how much it hurts, a bit like a golf shame basically, you know as far as playing on the mind. So what do we get to do, to get rid of the yips, what we are going to do first of all is try and set you right, we got to have a positive attitude. We can't go to that putt thinking, oh what if or I can't do it, so we are going to think about positive attitude, that's number one. Secondly if you think about it, we all talked about tension and jabby and jerky. So let's think about something which is more positive, let's think about a pendulum that swings backwards and forwards. So we are not thinking about the stroke or how far we are going to hit the ball, we are now thinking about a pendulum. So if I get over this ball and now you think right, tick tock, tick tock, so simple. So all of a sudden, I've got a positive attitude. I have lined myself, well just the same as what you would have done before. So I am going to give myself the best opportunity to hold the putt and now I'm over it, rather than thinking about what I have got to achieve, I am thinking about what I have got to do. So from here I am just thinking about the pendulum, tick tock, that's all I am thinking about is that pendulum backwards and forwards. And all of sudden, my arms are more relaxed, I'm breathing a little bit more easy, so that panic has gone. So if you have got the yips, take a leaf out of my book, having personally had them for many years, is get yourself on the putting green, surround the hole with say three or four balls from about 1 meter away, if not closer. Take the flag out, set yourself up, line yourself up and just think right, pendulum, positive thinking, nice rhythm tick tock and work on that aspect. And from that, you will build your confidence up, build your stroke up and build a good rollup. That's what I want you to do, go away and put it into practice. I'm not saying it's going to be easy if you have got the yips, because it takes time, but at least you are on the right road to recovery.
2013-10-29

I'm going to talk about the dreaded yips. The yips is basically a condition which is associated with putting. It's a subconscious condition, a sort of response, but I would like to put a bit more of plain English in that. It’s really all about sort of nerves; I mean you are faced with a very short putt. I am not talking about a putt this long, but a short putt and it gets over that ball and all of a sudden, you can't swing. The muscles are tightening up in your arms, it's almost like the feel, I can rub it in the head like scenario. Everything is going, your heart is racing faster and faster and you just, you can just conjure up, it’s like swing that putter, you can't. And it's just one of those things that creeps up on you, Bernhard Langer was a great person as an example of how he went through those yips.

I had it personally, I have had those for like three or four years, 20 odd years ago, not anymore thank God. So if you have got those yips and you think, yeah I can associate myself with that, freezing over a putt, heartbeat racing along and really it's like a jerky jabby action, you know from here, like that, almost sometimes no backswing. It's incredible to just see somebody do it and it's so embarrassing, but you feel so much for that person, that's how much it hurts, a bit like a golf shame basically, you know as far as playing on the mind.

So what do we get to do, to get rid of the yips, what we are going to do first of all is try and set you right, we got to have a positive attitude. We can't go to that putt thinking, oh what if or I can't do it, so we are going to think about positive attitude, that's number one. Secondly if you think about it, we all talked about tension and jabby and jerky. So let's think about something which is more positive, let's think about a pendulum that swings backwards and forwards. So we are not thinking about the stroke or how far we are going to hit the ball, we are now thinking about a pendulum.

So if I get over this ball and now you think right, tick tock, tick tock, so simple. So all of a sudden, I've got a positive attitude. I have lined myself, well just the same as what you would have done before. So I am going to give myself the best opportunity to hold the putt and now I'm over it, rather than thinking about what I have got to achieve, I am thinking about what I have got to do. So from here I am just thinking about the pendulum, tick tock, that's all I am thinking about is that pendulum backwards and forwards. And all of sudden, my arms are more relaxed, I'm breathing a little bit more easy, so that panic has gone.

So if you have got the yips, take a leaf out of my book, having personally had them for many years, is get yourself on the putting green, surround the hole with say three or four balls from about 1 meter away, if not closer. Take the flag out, set yourself up, line yourself up and just think right, pendulum, positive thinking, nice rhythm tick tock and work on that aspect. And from that, you will build your confidence up, build your stroke up and build a good rollup. That's what I want you to do, go away and put it into practice. I'm not saying it's going to be easy if you have got the yips, because it takes time, but at least you are on the right road to recovery.