Practice Like A Pro
Learn how to practice effectively and start seeing results
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One of the keys to being a good putter on greens that have a lot of break is knowing how to become a good spot putter. Because of the break, you're not going to aim at the home anyway, so it's important you develop confidence in hitting your putts to the apex of the break. To commit to doing that, I recommend practicing your putts to go through a gate at the apex, and again, another gate near the hole. It will take some trial and error to get it set up, but when you do, you'll learn how to better hit to a particular spot on the green that isn't the hole, but in the end, it will help you make more putts.
Practice your directional control as well as your distance control. A great drill is to stand in the middle of the putting green and try putting to the fringe. Get the ball to stop as close as you can to the edge of the longer grass. By not having a specific target to aim at, you'll enhance your feel for better distance control.
If you've spent a few hours practicing, whether it's a couple of days before you play or on the day of your round, it's important that you mentally shift from a training to a trusting mind-set.
The course is where you actively play golf; it's not where you practice making perfect swings, putting strokes and so on. No, it's where you're thinking about hitting whatever shot lies before you. You're factoring in the elements, the lie, the break and the slope. You're hitting shots you know you can make because you've practiced them and you know what to expect. Trusting your abilities is essential, especially in the heat of the moment, when you need to pull off a good shot to make a birdie or even save par.
Rick Sessinghaus, PGA, is a Top-25 Golf Instructor and founder of MZ Coach, the ultimate mental game learning site for the game of golf. For more information, visit mzcoach.com and ricksessinghaus.com.
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