Do you ever stop to think HOW your putting is so INCONSISTENT? Have you ever taken the time to understand what CAUSES great putting? Well, when it comes to putting, whatever is giving the “appearance” to poor putting; golfers of all levels immediately gravitate towards the mechanical aspect for a quick fix. In my professional experience with tour professionals to amateur players, there are no quick fixes. Quick fixes only revert back to old residual patterns of performance.
There has to be a FUND-A-MENTAL change!
Now, any golfer can change their game, especially on the greens and with the putter in your hands. You can effectively drop 3 to 5 stokes off your round just be applying the proper processes to what I call PURE PUTTINGZONE. However, high percentage of golfers (including pro’s) allows the TWO nemeses of putting to be a guiding factor without even realizing it.
Here is where the breakdown is:
- Guessing on the break and read of greens
- Your eye’s are deceiving to you
- Incorrect AIM
- Mental rehearsal of “what you don’t want” thinking it is what you want – OUCH!
- Don’t know HOW to AIM
- Inconsistent stroke
- Result – missed putt
- Frustration and questioning why
So, in realizing the breakdown now, do you think that it is a mechanical issue or a fundamental issue? It is not about the WHY (my stroke is off today), but it’s about the HOW (where to aim and focus).
How do you begin to make the FUND-A-MENTAL shift?
Here are some brief fundamental how’s:
- Solve the guessing game on the greens! Attend an AimPoint Green Reading Clinic to understand how the ball reacts to the greens behavior. As an AimPoint Certified Instructor, you will learn that putting is PREDICTABLE and discover the most EFFECTIVE and reliable ways to determine the direction and precise amount of break for any putt. Therefore eliminating one nemesis to putting: WHERE TO AIM.
- Now, your EYE’S can become your GREATEST tool. After all, your eyes are to lenses to the video camera of your mind. Once you know WHERE TO AIM, you can establish what I call: VISUAL CONTROLLED FOCUS.
- Allow for proficient mental rehearsal from behind your ball. No longer will you have to walk all around the hole to view different angles of your putt. Doing that leads to verbal overshadowing and multiple mental images of what you “think” your putt should do on the green. Create ONE MENTAL PICTURE in mind and putt to that picture.
- Knowing exactly WHERE TO AIM can allow for proper ALIGNMENT at address. Aimpoint Green Reading will tell you exactly where that is. After that, here is what I would like you to do:
- From behind the ball, clear mental rehearsal of your putt rolling down your line to your AIMpoint (rarely the hole).
- If you do a practice stoke (I do not) I would suggested it being behind the ball while you focus on your AIMpoint. Just like Aaron Baddeley.
- Then – Stand tall and strong right behind your ball – Rehearse mentally one more time.
- Take a slow deep breath in from your lower abdominal area and slowly exhale fully while your EYES are focused on your AIMpoint (about dime size).
- AS you come into address, approach with a smooth pace – having your eyes FIXED on your AIMpoint.
- Then trace your eyes from your AIMpoint, down your line, and to the ball. Set your club in then set feet into position/alignment while looking down are your ball. (Solving number two nemesis to putting) – HOW TO AIM
- Now, with your eyes, trace your line (deliberately) back to your AIMpoint
- Set your INTENTION on your AIMpoint longer than usual – trace down your line with your eyes to your ball
- Stroke the putt – head down – listen for the ball to go in the hole!
When you follow these steps, the stroke will take care if itself. No need to thinking about body movement, face angle or mechanical positions. The BODY will follow what the MIND envisions. See the pattern? Guessing – improper AIM – improper VISUAL – improper ALIGNMENT – improper STROKE – improper response – leads to inconsistent putting.
So what PATTERN do you want your PERFORMANCE to follow after?
Visualization is the masterful ability and skill of creating a mental reproduction of an event or situation. In the golfer’s case, a tournament event or situation that is controlled, directed, and purposeful! Peak performers visualize more and better than do others. They have learned to spontaneously visualize events in vivid detail.
Studies are now claiming that one hour of visualization for golf is worth more than seven hours of physical effort. Your subconscious mind cannot tell the difference between a physical experience and a vividly imagined experience. It can’t differentiate between your remembering, creating, imagining, or actually experiencing an event. Through various visualization techniques you can fully experience any situation as though it is really happening to your desire outcome and success. This provides for calmness and confidence!
You can create emotional and physiological response to the situation you are visualizing. Your subconscious mind will internalize this information and store it as memory. Therefore your performance will be based on remembrance, less forced effort and will improve. Using aimpoint green reading techniques will give you more confidence in your reads so it will be easier to visualize and make more putts!