NCGA Golf

Spring 2018

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NCGA.ORG | SPRING 2018 57 TIGER'S PUTTING DRILL Prior to joining The Olympic Club, I spent 13 y ears as lead instructor at The Butch Harmon School of Golf, and during that time I got to witness how Tiger Woods practiced. One of the drills he made famous is simple to repli- cate. First, locate a straight putt, usually in the 6-8 foot range. We use a carpenter's tool to mark a chalk line. Stick two tees a putter-length apart (just outside the heel and toe) in the ground to create a gate for the putter to swing through. About 2-3 feet in front of the ball, make a second gate the width of a ball apart with two tees. The object of the drill is to swing the putter without hitting the tees and roll the ball through the second gate without touching the tees. If the putter veers off line even a tiny bit during the stroke, it'll crash into one of the tees. You don't even need to aim at a hole for this drill. The emphasis is on getting the ball rolling on the intended line and the key to doing so is keeping the face square. Tiger had to make 100 putts in a row. Good luck doing that! PUTT TO THE CIRCLE At The Olympic Club, I've assembled a team that is able to assist golfers of all levels and playing ability. Here, Willie shows a drill we often use with our junior camps and begin- ners. We start by placing a small, plastic circle around the hole and tell our students to try to stop the ball inside the hoop. Visually, it helps to practice to a larger target. We give 1 point for being inside the circle, 2 if it goes in the hole; first to 10 wins. This is another way of keeping score during practice. For our better players, we use the hoop from longer distances. This drill helps calibrate the speed of the green and helps create a mental Rolodex for distance control. If you can get your first putt from 50 feet inside a five-foot circle, you'll be in "one-stepper" range. Speed. Line. Confidence. That is the key to sinking more putts. All it takes is practice. Try these drills and you'll make more putts than ever before .

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