Placing a golf ball between your wrist and the grip can help distance control

Are you the type of golfer who really struggles controlling the distance of your putts?

In this issue we are going to show you a simple drill that you can do either at home, the office or on the putting green at your golf course which will improve your ability to control the speed of your putts and in return reduce the number of three putts or improve your chances of making more putts.

Next time you’ve got a spare five minutes before a round, hit three or four putts excessively using your wrists in both the back swing and follow through and notice how difficult it is to consistently hit the putts the same distance one after the other. Now I want you to place a spare golf ball between the butt of the putter grip and your right forearm (for a right-hander) as shown in the picture. This will ensure that your shoulders and chest move the putter and your hands move minimally.

Whenever I use this drill at The Sydney putting Studio I watch to see how many times the golfer putts before the ball falls onto the green.

I am often asked “but why did players like Arnold Palmer putt so well?” The answer is in the surface of the putting greens they were putting on back then. The technology, research, equipment, water, etc has all improved so much which in turn means that the surface and quality of the greens we putt on these days is much better. If you have ever had to putt on a temporary green on the fairway, you may have noticed that as soon as the surface gets rough we are forced to cock our wrists and use a bit more of a jab rather than a smooth flowing stroke.

The other side benefit of this drill is it encourages you to get your right forearm (once again for a right-hander) in line with the putter shaft which will help you swing the putter on the correct path (plane).

I encourage you to try this drill and you will be surprised just how much feedback you get and how much your awareness for the correct technique improves.

If you need help with your putting, please come and visit me at The Sydney Putting Studio at the Ridge Golf Course in Sydney and I can guarantee I will lower your handicap and get you putting more consistently.

About Glenn Whittle

Glenn Whittle is an AAA PGA Member and Head Coach of the NSW Institute of Sport, Golf Program. He was also the 2008 NSW PGA Teacher of the year. To book a putting session personally with Glenn, phone The Ridge Golf Course and Driving Range Pro Shop on (02) 9541 4960 or visit


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