SWEENEY’S PRO­GRAMME CHANGES PUTTING

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Disruptors Innovators & Risk-Takers -

Golfers have it all wrong, says Mark Sweeney. In­stead of try­ing to read greens with their eyes, they should be us­ing their feet. “Once you train your feet to feel vari­a­tions in slope, it’s easy to con­vert that to a putting line – and it’s highly ac­cu­rate,” says the soft­ware de­vel­oper with a back­ground in fi­nance.

Sweeney, 46, built the com­puter pro­gramme that showed putting lines on tour­na­ment cov­er­age. Last year Sweeney launched AimPoint Ex­press. Now you see tour pros read­ing putts by clos­ing one eye and hold­ing up one or more fin­gers as they look down the line. To teach the rest of us, Sweeney has cer­ti­fied 187 in­struc­tors in 28 coun­tries, in­clud­ing South Africa (San­dra van den Bergh at Royal Jo­han­nes­burg & Kens­ing­ton).

AimPoint Ex­press has two steps. First, golfers feel the de­gree of side slope with their feet and as­sign it a value (one is slight; four is se­vere). Then, they pick an aim­ing point by stand­ing be­hind the ball and hold­ing up the cor­re­spond­ing num­ber of fin­gers off the high side of the cup. That shows them how far out to play the ball. “One fin­ger-width on a 10-footer puts you about five cen­time­tres out­side the hole; four fin­gers is about 60 out,” Sweeney says. “Read­ing greens is not some mys­ti­cal thing. Break is 95 per­cent pre­dictable.”

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