As golf season looms, we get plenty of requests from people asking what they can do to help their golf game. Putting is always an easy skill to address at home or at your golf course.
A key component of putting is the ability of a golfer to get the ball rolling on the chosen start line. For many, the major factor in achieving this will be the application of the club face to the ball in a “square” manner, or perpendicular to their target line. If you can do this then you have a better chance of having the ball start where you need it to – a first step in increasing your opportunity to make more putts.
To practice your start line we need to really put your putting stroke under pressure – to make the target small. And real. Outdoors, the best way to do this is to use a putting “gate”. This “gate” defines the start line and you can make it out of just about anything. On a putting green, two tees work well for this. Inside your house you can use anything from two sleeves of golf balls, to coffee cups, or even portable battery banks. Basically, whatever you have handy.
Set the pair of items about a foot in front of your golf ball, no more than two ball widths apart (start them further apart if you like, then eventually make them closer) and practice putting the ball through the “gate” and to an ultimate target.
Enjoy and keep working on your game.
Scott MacLeod is the Associate Publisher/Editorial Director at Flagstick Golf Magazine/Flagstick.com and a PGA of Canada Class A Professional.