Take the time to get a putter that's fitted for you
- By George Connor, SwingFix instructor
- Feb 13, 2013 10:00 AM ET
Golf has gotten highly technical, hasn’t it?
We have GPS or lasers to measure our distance to targets. Anyone buying a new driver will optimize their head type and shaft on a radar machine. Irons are custom fit to the player and wedges are often “gap fitted” using launch monitors.
But once it comes to putting, technology gets pushed aside by many.
Golfers buy their putter, the club used more than any other in the bag, based on looks or popularity. Being fitted for a putter, however, is every bit as important as any other club in your bag.
There’s no question that you will use your putter more than any other club in your bag, so take the time to get a putter that’s fit for you.• George Connor
Here are the checkpoints I go through to custom fit a putter:
• Head Style: For any golfer there will be head styles (mallet, blade, alignment markings, no markings, rounded back, straight back, offset, etc.) that will help or hinder your ability to aim the putter most accurately.
• Length: For standard putters, the length of the shaft, if proper, will encourage you to get into good posture. Proper posture allows for a lack of tension in your neck, back, shoulders and arms.
• Lie Angle: The angle at which the shaft comes out of the head is often tweaked to promote a variety of things, including stroke shape and eye position relative to the line of the putt. Because there is loft on a putter, if the lie angle is wrong, the face will actually be facing left or right of target, even when the leading edge of the putter is perpendicular to the line.
• Loft: Standard, off-the-rack putters will have anywhere from two to four degrees of loft. This will need to be looked at based on an individual’s putting stroke and the loft is often tweaked some.
• Head Weight: It’s common for a putter head to weigh anywhere from 300 to 350 grams. Moving from one end of the range to the other can often help a player to develop good distance control, which is so important when it comes to being a good putter.
• Grip Size: There are a few ways to help a player control unwanted motion in their wrists during a putting stroke. While I prefer to do that with the way the hands are positioned on the club, it is not uncommon to increase the size of the grip to help the wrists and hands remain neutral during the stroke.
There’s no question that you will use your putter more than any other club in your bag, so take the time to get a putter that’s fit for you.
It will help you make more putts and enjoy the game more.
George Connor: SwingFix instructor George Connor was selected as the PGA's Connecticut Teacher of the Year for 2011.
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