Nearly 2 months into the season, and for the 9 years I have been here at RedTail Landing, never have I heard so many of our members and guests struggle to find their putting stroke…actually we can’t leave out ourselves either. Fortunately though we all know it has nothing to do with our greens as Brad Eshpeter, Chris Watson and their entire Maintenance’ crew have done an amazing job with the greens this year, rolling as true as true can be!! Kudos to them!!
As the cliché goes, “If only I had putted better, I would have shot a good score!” We’ve all been guilty of saying that! So my tip for this month is “How to Warm up Your Putter” so we can stop excusing our rounds due to too many putts.
How to warm up your Putter when preparing to play (PRACTICE GREEN)
- Save Trick Shots for Pool – It might be fun to slide a 60-foot putt through a slalom course of tees, but on the course you’re more likely to miss the straight 3-footers.
- Play for Keeps – Have a nine-hole putting contest with a friend. This is the best way to prepare for a match or round. You’ll be forced to make putts under competitive pressure, just as you will on the course. Many drinks have been won and lost playing this game amongst our Golf Operation staff…surely a fun way to improve your putting.
- Never give an Inch – As our Men’s League members involved in our Match Play know, so much pressure is put on the putter to make those key putts to win a match…Ever laugh at a person practicing 1-foot putts and then lose to them? Practice some short ones. You’ll win more matches by assuming you’ll never be conceded a putt. When playing a round, be sure to putt everything out, even the very short tap-ins. The visual of seeing a ball fall into the cup is very important to the psyche of putting with confidence.
- Don’t be a Drone – Don’t repeatedly drain the same well-trodden putt, as if every one you face will be a 6-footer with the same break. Practice putts that vary in length and slope to more accurately match the putts in a typical round.
- Talk is Cheap – Don’t look at the practice green only as a place to unload a new batch of jokes. If you take putting practice seriously, your results will speak for themselves.
- Set Goals – Try to make 10 3-footers in a row along a tee- or coin-marked wheel around the cup. If you miss on No. 9, start over. Then try three in a row from 10 feet. Goal setting breeds discipline and confidence.