Amateur golfers on the greens are like a failing student.
They need to study more.
“A lot of times what I see with my members or my students is they don’t’ take enough time to look at their putt from different angles and really study their putt to get the most information they can get,” said Ridgemont CC head pro Andy Smith.
“I think one of the best things to do before you’re going to hit a putt is to look at it from two different angles. I want to look at a putt from both sides of the hole. You learn a lot about a putt when you look at it from both sides of the hole.”
Smith also says the low side of the putt, or the side of the green where the ball will break towards, can provide more information than the other side.
“Walk the green and look at where the low part of the green is. So a good example, someone told me a while ago, if you were to take a bottle of water and pour out some water on the putting surface, where is that water going to flow? Where is it going to run to?” Smith said. “Chances are if you find that low part of the green the ball should tend to break that direction.”
No one wants to be that guy on the course, but Smith says there are ways to study more and still slow play less.
“Many players come to me and they’re concerned with pace of play. I tell people, ‘listen, if you’re in the fairway hitting your second shot, don’t take three or four practice swings, but I think if there’s one part of the game or one point during a hole that you do wanna take a little bit more time, it’s on the putting green.”
Smith says to examine a putt from a few different angles. You won’t one putt every green, but you will save plenty of strokes.