Patrick Reed:”Putt aggressively to hole more than your fair share”
Be aggressive on the greens
I want to hole everything. Trying to make each and every putt I look at may be my biggest scoring key. The green is the best place to make up strokes, so an aggressive attitude is a must if you want to convert more than your fair share. The trick is to be aggressive without being reckless – a complete loss of speed and distance control.
Rolling it five or six feet past the hole on every attempt will hurt you. When I say ‘be aggressive’, I mean pick your line and speed, then eliminate all thoughts other than the ball going in. If your mind is worried about three-putting, you’ll focus on what you don’t want to happen rather than what you do want.
Always try to hole from long range
You have to get comfortable with longer putts. You’re probably happy to just cozy those 30 to 40-footers up to three feet. To me, that’s still a miss. The problem with lagging to a three-foot circle is that you can easily end up six or seven feet from the hole if you’re just a little off.
On the practice green, roll some 30 and 40-footers with the intention of dying the ball into the hole every time. This way, if you miss, you’ll likely leave yourself a makeable second putt. Three-putts are a common mistake, so getting good at this drill will improve your scores fast.
Control the putter with your left hand
The two most popular techniques are using the right hand to power the forward- stroke or rocking the shoulders to move the putter head back and through. In my opinion, these moves can cause you to jerk the putter head off line. I prefer to focus only on swinging my left hand. My left hand is weaker than my right and less powerful than my shoulders, so it’s easier to control.
When I’m rolling it well, I feel like I’m striking the ball using a backhanded stroke. To copy my motion, simply think about moving the back of your left hand straight down the target line without exing your wrists.
Try my backhand practice drill
Place your left hand on the grip as normal, then wrap your right thumb and fore finger around your left wrist. Press the knuckles of your right hand against the outside of your left thumb to lock in your hold. This grip removes any influence from your right hand, and the idea is to feel like your left hand is doing all of the work.
As you practice with this grip, notice how easy it is to keep the putter face square and to stop the clubhead from passing your hands too early. Make about a dozen strokes, then switch to your normal grip. If you can mimic the same feel, you’re on the money.