"Andy, The magazine looks great - you've done a good job. Concise and to the point... Regards, Mel"

Mel Sole has 30 years experience teaching golf and is co-founder of Ritson-Sole Golf Schools, USA



Golf Tip

How to Develop the Feel of the Pros
by Mel Sole

Usually, when we 3-putt, it's because we have left the first putt either too long or too short; rarely do we leave our first putt too wide left or right of the hole. The reason for this is...

Lack of feel
What is this thing called "feel"? Is it something that exists in our hands? No - feel exists in your subconscious! Take a ball and throw it to a target; you'll find that not only do you not think of your target distance in feet and inches, you don't consider how far back to take your hand to achieve this distance. This is because we grew up as kids throwing a ball and our subconscious knows exactly how hard to throw the ball to reach the target. So if you want to develop good feel as a golfer, you have to train your subconscious to know exactly how hard to hit your long putts.


The Method

As in picture #1, set up about 20 balls and aim for a target about 35 feet away Once you have lined up, I want you to putt the ball at the target looking at the hole and not at the ball. (See picture #2.)

Picture #1

Picture #2

Now this may feel a little weird at first, but you'll soon get used to it. Remember, do not look at the ball when you putt - look at the hole.
If you hit your first putt too hard, then hit your next putt a little softer, still looking at the hole. If you hit that putt too soft, then hit the next one a little harder. Continue this with each ball until you get the feel for exactly how hard to hit the putt. (See photo #3.)

Picture #3


Once you have hit all the balls to your target, pick a new target and start all over again. Remember, though, this is a practice drill for the putting green only. When you are on the course. take your practice swings looking at the target, but once you line up look at the ball to make sure contact with the center of face.

This practice drill, plus the lesson on short putts in Issue #13 of Golfing Weekly will all but eliminate 3-putting from your golf game.


Next Week: Putting In-Depth - Part 1: Alignment


Mel Sole is a former South African Tour player with about 30 years of teaching experience. He is the co-founder of Ritson-Sole Golf Schools, which is rated one of the 25 best golf schools in the U.S. Mel's home course is Pawleys Plantation in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Other Ritson-Sole Golf Schools are located in Wilmington, N.C., Atlanta, Blue Springs, Mo., Harrisburg, Pa., and San Sebastián de Amola, México. You can visit the Ritson-Sole Website at www.ritson-sole.com.



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