ROLL IT LIKE RICKIE

MY 3-STEP ROU­TINE TO GET­TING EV­ERY PUTT ON LINE

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Contents - BY RICKIE FOWLER

My three-step rou­tine for get­ting ev­ery putt on line. By Rickie Fowler.

1

The rst thing I do when I step up to a putt is make sure my body is square to the line I want to start the ball on. That sounds ob­vi­ous, but get­ting out of whack here is my big­gest pit­fall. If my hips nudge open, my shoul­ders shut and my head shifts too far be­hind the ball. Then I’m not aim­ing where I think I am. To set up square, I check that my toes, hips, then shoul­ders – in that or­der – are par­al­lel to my start­ing line. Only when these look and feel right do I grip the put­ter and set­tle in to aim the face.

2

A trick that’s work­ing for me lately is to lift the put­ter­head slightly o the green – I’m talk­ing about a mil­lime­tre or two – be­fore I pull the trig­ger. Hov­er­ing the head re­ally helps my stroke start free. A lot of golfers don’t re­alise how easy it is to in­ad­ver­tently rest some body weight on the put­ter at ad­dress. That pres­sure can make the put­ter­head snag a bit on the grass as you start it back. Not good.

3

Most great put­ters I know xate on a spot. It keeps the body nice and still. Gary Player fo­cuses on the back of the ball. Jor­dan Spieth looks at the cup on short, straight putts. Me, I stare at the area di­rectly be­hind the ball. At ad­dress, this is the sight­line on my put­ter­head. Then, as soon as I start the stroke, it be­comes a spot on the grass. I stay look­ing at this spot well af­ter the ball leaves. A good drill is to place a coin be­hind the ball.Your put­ter will con­ceal it at ad­dress, then dur­ing the stroke you’ve got some shini­ness to fo­cus on. From there, just lis­ten for the sound of the ball go­ing in.

Don’t fi­nalise your grip un­til your feet, hips and shoul­ders are in line.

Sub­tly li ing the put­ter off the grass frees your stroke from the start.

Pick one point of fo­cus and keep your eyes on it dur­ing the stroke.

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