Use Your Feet to Read Putts

From Mark Blackburn On March 30, 2022
Every stroke counts the same on the scorecard, but there's something particularly infuriating about missing a short putt. Nothing can derail a round like lipping out a gimmee.... Sometimes we over-think and put too much pressure on ourselves on these three and four-footers, but as Titleist staff member Mark Blackburn suggests, the most common cause of missed putts inside the leather is usually lack of proper preparation.

As Mark shares in this video, there are a few keys to performing like the pros on short putts. First, you don't have as much time during the stroke to course-correct, so it's very important to swing the putter head on the correct path and get the ball started on the correct line. Pace is less important.

You also have to give short putts the same respect and attention as any other putt you face. On the greens, go through the same green-reading process and routine no matter the length of putt.

And lastly, Mark believes that you should not trust your eyes on short putts. Instead, trust your feet. Straddle the line of your putt, and focus on how your weight is distributed. If one foot feels like it has more weight on it than the other, that foot is on the downhill side of the putt and the putt will break in that direction. If you feel like your weight is evenly distributed between your two feet, you're probably looking at a straight putt.

Give Mark's tips a try the next time you play and remember – they all count the same, so don't take any shots lightly. Even the gimmees.
Every stroke counts the same on the scorecard, but there's ... something particularly infuriating about missing a short putt. Nothing can derail a round like lipping out a gimmee. Sometimes we over-think and put too much pressure on ourselves on these three and four-footers, but as Titleist staff member Mark Blackburn suggests, the most common cause of missed putts inside the leather is usually lack of proper preparation.

As Mark shares in this video, there are a few keys to performing like the pros on short putts. First, you don't have as much time during the stroke to course-correct, so it's very important to swing the putter head on the correct path and get the ball started on the correct line. Pace is less important.

You also have to give short putts the same respect and attention as any other putt you face. On the greens, go through the same green-reading process and routine no matter the length of putt.

And lastly, Mark believes that you should not trust your eyes on short putts. Instead, trust your feet. Straddle the line of your putt, and focus on how your weight is distributed. If one foot feels like it has more weight on it than the other, that foot is on the downhill side of the putt and the putt will break in that direction. If you feel like your weight is evenly distributed between your two feet, you're probably looking at a straight putt.

Give Mark's tips a try the next time you play and remember – they all count the same, so don't take any shots lightly. Even the gimmees.
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