SWEENEY’S PROGRAMME CHANGES PUTTING
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.”