SAN DIEGO – The armlock putting method isn’t the only change for Xander Schauffele on the greens.
He’s also getting lower – much lower – to read the greens.
A couple of days ago, Schauffele decided to change up his putting routine by getting into a pushup position to read the break. It was a move first popularized by Camilo Villegas; Patrick Reed’s caddie, Kessler Karain, also drops down on occasion to get a better angle on the line.
“I think I’m a real good green-reader,” Schauffele said, “and sometimes when I get even lower, I may pick up something that I missed just kind of hunched over or crouched over. Just like the arm lock” – which he first began using two weeks ago, at the Memorial – “I’m trying to find any way to get myself an advantage.”
Schauffele said he started practicing that technique in practice rounds and liked the results. In his opening 69 at the U.S. Open, he took 29 putts but said he’s feeling increasingly comfortable over the ball.
Schauffele joked that there may have been another reason for the switch in technique.
“I figured I could just fill out my shirts a little more,” he said, “so if I could throw in a few pushups on every hole, it would be good for me.”