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Friday, June 1, 2018

Rickie Fowler on Long Distance Putting (Video)

Okay, Butch Harmon's in it too. In this video Rickie tells how he makes those long ones. I'll focus on just one thing he says.

Rickie says that setup is the key to making long putts because your contact and putting speed are all you can really control. This is a good point, and I want to focus on where Rickie is looking during his long putt.

According to Rickie, picking one spot to look at during your putting stroke stabilizes your stance over the ball. And while different players choose to look at different spots, such as a dimple on the ball, Rickie makes the unusual choice to look at the ground behind the ball.

Is there some special advantage to Rickie's choice? After all, Rickie has one of the smoothest strokes on tour.

Perhaps there is. If you look at a point in front of the ball -- which I do -- your setup tends to tilt your shoulders slightly. (Remember, Rickie says you want roughly level shoulders at setup, and he gets those level shoulders despite using a traditional trailing hand low putting grip. Just saying.)

And if you look at a dimple on the ball, you might turn your head slightly toward the hole as you putt. (After all, the dimple moves when the ball rolls.)

But if you look at the ground behind the ball, nothing changes during your stroke and you should keep your head -- and therefore your spine, around which your shoulders are turning -- steady in one position. And that should lead to more consistent contact.

It's a small thing, but sometimes small things can have a huge impact on your game. If you're having trouble with your putting, it's something to consider.

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