Have you ever been taught to read a green?
It’s all physics really. If the ball went in a direction that you were not expecting then you read the putt incorrectly. But is there anything you can do about it?
I chatted to the guys at Aimpoint Golf recently who are one of the few instructors in the world who are teaching golfers how to read putts.
Jaimie Donaldson from Aimpoint told me that the course is done in a very quantifiable way, with golfers coming away from the sessions making 20 foot putts. The course gives you a series of instructions which determine how the ball will roll according to the physics of the conditions including slope, distance and speed of the golf ball.
“In the two and a half hour session golfers will learn 20 feet and in, which is 70% of all putts. We will work out the three factors that create break, then teach distance estimation, speed control skills, we then introduce the charts and have everyone making putts”, Donaldson said.
“Then we will teach certain skills such as estimating distances visually and pacing it out to test if the distance estimation is correct”.
The sessions will also help dispel a few myths about how many putts you should be making from long distances.
“For instance, around 20 feet is about 15% make average on the PGA Tour. the perception on TV is that the professionals make everything but the truth is it’s in the low teens from this distance”, Donaldson said.
I chatted to a few golfers who had just finished the session and all were very enthusiastic about the new technique they’d learned but were adamant they needed to practise it like any other new skill.
If your putting is poor, these Aimpoint instruction courses may well be worth investing in. It may just be that your putting is fine, it’s your green reading that needs work. Session times and more information available on the AimPoint golf website.