golf golfer putt puttingI’ve been out with some back issues, but while I’ve been resting, mentally, my connection with my emerging more solid, smooth putting stroke is getting even more grounded. In fact, I was “feeling it” during my last round a week ago Saturday where I putted like a pro and scored only 2 over “real” par on the first eight holes before losing my focus. I ended up shooting my “personal” par again, which ain’t bad (a 90 at Adobe Creek). But, the most important take-away from that “putting out of my mind” experience is what I want to share with you briefly here.

In earlier posts, I’ve mentioned the exercise I learned from Dr. Joe Parent called “putting to nowhere.” It’s helping me to connect to the feeling and idea of a free and easy putting stroke. Like I said, I’m starting to really feel that; and I’m also learning to be more conscious or aware of the opposite… of when I’m holding on with more tension in my stroke.

This feeling and approach was reinforced last night with two back-to-back, but seemingly unrelated short excerpts, on The Golf Channel. The first was Scott Cameron in a playing lesson show. Scott had his student do a drill hitting three putts in a row, in quick succession. He placed three golf balls side-by-side with enough space between them that the student could just go “boom, boom, boom” and let the putts go without thinking. The result was a freer stroke that presumably that guy now needs to practice and get more connected to, in much the same way that I am learning that free flowing putting feeling.

The second excerpt was a program segment on The Turn with Dave Stockton who is reputed to be one of the greatest putters of all time. Stockton re-emphasized for me the importance of focusing on what I’ve heard called “just putting a good roll on it.” In other words, my focus is becoming more just hitting the putt without being so concerned about whether it goes in the hole. I know that this is easier said than done, but I can tell that’s where I’m going. Basically, I am becoming more aware of my smooth, easy, putting-to-nowhere stroke and as a result, more often, I am just letting it go. By practicing this and becoming more aware of “just putting a good roll on it,” I’m confident that the results will take care of themselves. They certainly did a week ago last Saturday (before I starting thinking too much about my score.)

I’m intending more birdies and pars for us all. I hope this helps you (as well as me.) 🙂