How to Make More Birdie Putts
This will be one of the most important golf articles you can read to improve your putting to make more birdie putts. The biggest difference between most amateur golfers and PGA Tour Professionals is that they make more 10 to 20 footers for birdie. So how and why is this the case? We’ll talk about this more and use some insight from Jordan Spieth and how his thought process works when he’s putting.
If you regularly watch the PGA Tour golf tournaments you’ll notice that the players at the top of the leaderboard are making 20 footers left and right for birdie. It’s important to take advantage of the 10 to 20 foot birdie putts when you can and make as many as putts as possible. We all make bogies, including the best golfers in the world, but the difference is that when they have birdie opportunities they take advantage of them.
The first tip is to not leave it short. With this distance you should strive to putt the golf ball 18 inches past the hole. Distance control is very important and if you always train your mind to think about the correct distance after setting up to the ball you should be able to easily master this technique. There is nothing worse than hitting a birdie putt and leaving it an inch or two short of the hole and on the perfect line.
The next tip is to do your best to read the putt correctly and line up perfectly to give yourself the best chance to make the putt. There are many different routines to read a putt but it’s highly suggested to create your own personal routine so that you read these putts the same way each time. Take a look at the putt from behind the ball, behind the cup, and even setup halfway between the hole and golf ball to see how the putt may break from the halfway point to the hole.
When you step up to the ball you should feel comfortable with your setup and alignment. If you don’t feel comfortable and feel like you’re aligned perfectly then step back from the ball and start your routine over again. You need to have confidence over the golf ball that your alignment is correct otherwise you may subconsciously adjust your putting stroke to compensate for your incorrect alignment. One easy tip is to line the ball up to your target with a line on the golf ball. Step behind it and make sure it’s correctly lined up and then you can take your stance and only focus on the speed of the putt.
Jordan Spieth has made mention of the fact that once he steps up to the putt he is in “blackout” mode. This means once he steps up to his putt he has zero thoughts at all and he lets his body take over and just makes the putting stroke. He is mentally visualizing the putt and how it rolls off his putter and into the hole. He just reacts to create the perfect putt and more often than not, he ends up hitting his own perfect putt whether it goes in or not.
This technique takes a lot of practice. It is even a great tip to use for your full swing but that’s an entire new subject. If you try this technique and it doesn’t work, the best thing for you to do is create the perfect setup and alignment. These are the things you can control and take your time doing before you step up to a putt. Then after that once you step up to the putt the only thing you have to focus on is the speed of the putt. You can use Jordan Spieth’s advice to an extent with this approach. You’ll now step over the ball feeling confident in your setup and alignment. From there all you need to focus on is hitting the putt with the correct speed and if you read the putt correctly you’ll be able to hear the golf ball hit the bottom of the cup.
As mentioned before it’s crucial to have the correct mindset, alignment, and mentally visualize the speed and the break of the putt before you step up to the ball to take your putting stroke. If you’re not 100% confident when you take your stroke this can cause a lot of issues and missed putts. Practice your pre-shot routine for your putts the same way you would for your full swing. This helps to calm your mind so that you’re only focused on each step of your routine and not the end result. Take these steps and make sure you not only use them on the course but every time you are on the practice putting green. If you can use this advice and apply them correctly you’ll soon notice that you’re making a lot more birdie putts than you used to, thus creating more birdies, more fun, and lower scores. Who doesn’t love to make more birdies!