Why am I using a new putter? Because the old one didn’t float too well. ~ Craig Stadler
Most amateurs will spend time and money getting fitted for their drivers every year but won’t come out of pocket for a new putter. I get it, we all want to hit it farther and getting on a launch monitor testing new drivers is fun. I enjoy it too! But trust me when I say hitting it 5 yards farther will not help you get better. However, getting properly fitted for your putter is vitally important to helping you improve your scoring and handicap.
The good news is a new putter shouldn’t set you back as much as a new driver. The bad news is most off-the-rack putters won’t fit you right. They will need to be modified slightly. Length and lie angle are the most important factors to optimizing your putter for set up and stroke. And both can be easily adjusted with the help of a reputable club maker. It is important to spend time getting personally set up so you can eliminate variables and focus solely on making more putts.
Some basic fitting fundamentals to think about:
- Eyes over the ball or just inside the ball to help you see the correct line
- Putter head should be relatively flat on the ground
- Arms hanging comfortably with hands 3-4″ from the body
A putter too long will force your hands out of position and get the putter/ball position outside your eye line with the toe of the putter up in the air. This causes mishits on the heel and usually causes the path to come inside.
A putter too short with force you to bend over too much with your eye line outside the ball causing the opposite; heel up in the air with mishits on the toe and the path starting outside the line.
In either situation a mishit occurs and the path of the putter is not correct making it impossible to consistently start the ball on the correct line. You may make some putts like that but over time it will be very difficult to putt consistently well.
There is no perfect method to putting, but the key is consistency and knowing you’ll get the ball started on the correct target line. A properly fit putter will help you eliminate variables and make more putts.
Have you ever been fitted for a putter?
photo credit: Nicki’s Pix