Showing posts with label Reading Greens. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reading Greens. Show all posts

Aiming For Success - Reading Greens Like The Pros by Andrew Waple

When it comes to new golfing technologies, whether it is new training aids or coaching philosophies I always try to understand before either getting involved in the hype or dismissing it as just another fad. 

However, there has been so much positive publicity about AimPoint®, the success many tour players are having with it, and the fact that the R&A are even trying to ban it, it inevitably caught my attention. Reading greens has always been a little bit of a mystery, more of an art than an exact science.  Reading a green takes experience and practice but neither of these guarantees that you will get it right each and every time. AimPoint® takes the art out of putting, removing the unknown factor.  For some it will be seen as technology taking over the game just like the changes to drivers and the golf ball, for others a chance to use technology to improve their putting.

My thinking is could this be the system that complements the Gravity short game drills?  In my experience beginners can often become technically competent in a short amount of time on the greens, yet reading the slope and actually holing putts can take years. So could this system not only help established players hole more putts, but also allow total beginners with little experience on greens make perfect reads each and every time?  I decided to put Aimpoint® to the test myself… The AimPoint® session started with our instructor Jamie explaining that you only need to know 3 pieces of information to find the perfect line for a putt…

1) the length of the putt
2) the slope of the putt and slope direction
3) the speed of the greens…..and armed with your AimPoint® chart you cannot miss.

Here is how it went from there:

1) We set about learning how to judge the length of our putts the AimPoint® way, this was very simple to pick up and it was amazing how accurate you could be after just a few minutes.

2) The next piece to the puzzle was judging the slope - rather than standing behind the ball, we were taught to stand in the middle of the putt and calculate the slope with our feet in 1, 2 3 or 4% gradients.  This was not as easy as judging the distance but something over time that would become second nature.

3) Now with the slope measurement sorted, as well as the length of the putt and the speed of the greens (stimp 8 at Woburn), using the AimPoint® chart was a doddle. 

This gives you a reading of how many inches to aim to the right or left of the hole.  The next step is to simply aim at that point and hit your ball 9 inches past the hole.  If you do this correctly the ball will roll in.

I would recommend the AimPoint® system to any golfer who is looking to improve.  I have used the system whilst playing this year and I can honestly say I have never holed out as well.  Judging the slope is by far the most difficult part of the process, however compared to hitting a golf shot long and straight with little effort its not really that tough.

As with anything to do with putting the line is just half of the story.  Hit the ball at the hole with more than 9 inches of pace and it will miss high, less than 9 inches and it will miss low.  Its crucial that you are able to control the speed of your ball on the green, therefore I think the AimPoint® system and the Gravity short game drills are the best way to hole more putts.

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