Having a case of the putting yips is one of the worst things in golf and much of it is mental. Here are 4 easy putting drills to help erase those 3-putts:
- Take six balls and alternate around cup 3 and 4 feet. Make sure the balls have the alignment marking. As you approach each putt, go through your routine of placing the ball exact on your assessed line. Continue through the six balls for three rounds until your have made them all. That is 18 putts in a row. Completing the drill gives you the confidence you can make a putt on every hole. Stop after 20 minutes if you don’t make all 18 putts until your next practice session.
- You need three balls and two tees for this drill. Pick a hole and place a tee about 20 feet on opposite sides. The goal is to putt 10 balls that either go in the hole, or go past the hole, but not farther than a putter length. They need to go past the hole because you can’t make a putt that is short. According to Dave Pelz, the perfect speed of a putt is about 18 inches passed the hole. At this speed, more putts catch the edge and fall in. You start with three balls at one tee and putt them to the hole. If any miss your goal, you switch sides and start the count over. If you did get all three in the goal zone, go to the other tee to putt balls 4, 5, and 6. If you are successful with these three, go to the other tee again and putt balls 7,8 and 9. Then, if you have been successful, you go to the other tee again for one last ball. At any point you miss your goal on a putt, the count starts over. This drill creates tension and importance as you approach your goal so you can practice with emotion like it’s created on the course. Again, practice for 20 minutes or until drill completed, whichever is sooner.
- This drill helps with getting the feel of lag putts. It’s good to use before going out for your round to get a feel for the speed of the green. Take three balls and go to an area of the green that the fringe is about 25-30 feet wide. Without a specific target in mind, just putt the three balls from side of the green to the fringe of the other side. The goal is to get the ball as close to the fringe line as possible without touching the fringe. Go back and forth until you your feel of the green speed.
- This is another feel drill for speed of the greens. Place about a 3 foot piece of string at 10, 20, 30 and 40 feet. Putt a ball to each string trying to land the ball on the string. You can go back and forth if you have enough room. It’s important to use string because it takes a target out of your putt and allows you to fully focus on feel/speed. You’ll find most will go right near the center of your string from your subconscious mind.