Tackling the Challenge of a Super-Long Putt
Generally speaking, I love putting. There is always the chance to save a stroke by making a great putt, and putting is something that you can continually improve at round after round (with a little bit of work, of course). It is much more difficult to improve a full golf swing than it is to improve putting, which is why practicing with the flat stick is always time well-spent.
With that said, I don’t have such positive feelings about super-long putts. Recently, we saw Jon Rahm secure his first PGA Tour victory with a stunning putt from off the back of the 18th green at Torrey Pines. That putt was more than 60 feet in length, yet Rahm was able to get the speed and line just right. Such a putt is an impressive feat under any circumstances, but it was even more impressive given what was on the line.
I can admit that may long range putts are rarely as successful as the one that Rahm hit on the last hole at Torrey. Like most other amateur golfers, I am usually hoping to simply get the ball somewhere close to the hole after the first putt. If I can walk off with a two putt most of the time, I am very happy with the outcome. Recently, I have been working on this part of my game, and it has shown some progress.
I would like to share with you three tips that have helped me improve my putting performance from long range. If you have any tips that you would like to share, stop by Cape and Islands Golf Shop in Hyannis, MA to talk putting!
#1 – It’s All About Speed
When preparing to hit a long putt, I believe that speed should be the only thing on your mind. Sure, you want to get the line right as well, but it is really the speed that you use which will determine whether or not the putt is successful. Even if you miss on the line by a couple of feet, you can still come away with a good putt if you nail the speed perfectly. Think speed first and foremost and you will be off to a great start.
#2 – Keep Your Head Steady
You always want to hit the ball solidly when playing any kind of golf shot, but the need for solid contact is amplified when you are putting from long range. Even a minor miss-hit on a long putt can throw your distance control off dramatically, usually causing your putt to come up well short of the target. By keeping your head steady throughout the stroke, you will increase your chances of finding the center of the putter face at impact.
#3 – Practice!
How often do you see someone on the putting green practicing from long range? Not often. Most amateur golfers overlook the need to practice this kind of putt. Of course, that is a mistake. Add long putts to your list of practice to-do’s and your short game will quickly improve. Good luck!