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Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Bobby Jones Putting Stroke (Video)

A few days ago I posted a quote from the book Bobby Jones on Golf, from an article called Importance of a Smooth Short Game. Dana left a comment about how helpful a section from my book Ruthless Putting, where I explained Jones's putting stroke, had been.

So here's a segment from the Jones video series from the 1930's, How I Play Golf, that focuses on the basics of his putting stroke.



Jones was very left-sided -- that is, he focused on how his lead hand affected the stroke -- but the stroke works the same if you control it with your trailing hand. If you want to see how it works, just try to create the same smooth hand and wrist action you see in the clip.

The big thing I'd like you all to pick up from this short segment (just a bit over 3 minutes long) is how relaxed and fluid Jones's stroke was. His stroke is so unlike most modern players! He doesn't lock his lower body in place, but he doesn't force it to move either. It's easy to understand why he was such a good putter -- being so relaxed made it easier for him to get his speed correct.

It's interesting to note how Jones "waggles" the club. He touches the ground in front of the ball, then in back of the ball, and then he strokes the ball. That particular motion doesn't work for me, but the principle is sound. Find a way to relax your hands and arms before you putt, and you should make a smoother stroke.

And remember his advice: "The whole idea, it seems to me, is to do the thing in the simplest and most natural way." As long as you don't get sloppy about it, the more natural your stroke feels, the easier it should be to repeat the results.

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