January 20, 2018

GOLF SWING TIPS: PUTT TO 18 INCHES PAST THE CUP IF NOT INTO IT

One of the best swing tips ever uttered is that of Dave Pelz: putt to 18 inches past the cup if not into it.

The obvious reason why this is one of the best golf swing tips ever given is the ball cannot go into the cup if it never gets to it.

Tom Watson was a very good putter during his earlier career, not that he necessarily putted all that well in terms of accuracy, but he rarely left a putt short of the cup. Had he not putted in this manner he would not have won as many majors.

However,  I think there is one exception to Dave Pelz’s golf putting tips.

It is this.

If putting extremely uphill, it may not be wise to putt too far beyond the hole in the event the putt misses the cup.

It is much easier to hit a putt uphill when left short of the cup rather than above the hole because, as Arnold Palmer would advise, the cup can be used as a back stop for uphill putts but not very well for downhill putts.

Ben Hogan, who had the “yips” later in his career, once remarked when he missed a very short downhill putt, that he never intended to leave himself a downhill putt when he hit his approach shot to the green.

Nowadays, many instructors teach golfers intentionally to “lag putt,” meaning to leave a putt short of the cup, especially a long putt.

Lag putting may be beneficial in saving a par or bogie but it does not portend too well for making birdies.

All in all, Dave Pelz’s advice on this issue is still one of the best golf swing tips ever given.

Copyright © 2011 by Gordon Jackson –All Rights Reserved