As a higher handicap or even skilled golfer, you will very often find yourself on the green but a long way (50+ feet) from the hole. This is when it’s important to have a good technique for lagging your putts to the hole and therefore give yourself the best chance to avoid a three-putt. Here are some lag putting drills that can help you become a better long putter.
The ’40-50-60′ Lag Drill (Practiced by Phil Mickelson)
Who this drill will help: Golfers who struggle with their touch (distance control, etc.) on long putts.
What this drill is: Hit 10 putts in a row 40, 50 and 60 feet from the hole — three from each distance and once more from 50 feet. The goal is to make constant one of two variables: either how far you take the putter back in your swing, or how quickly you move the putter through the ball. Once you make constant one of these variables, you only have to adjust one variable based on your distance from the hole.
What this drill tries to accomplish: This drill helps you simplify the process of adjusting your putting stroke for each distance to the hole; you are creating a reference point that you can base all of your putts off of. This also helps you develop a consistent putting stroke. Try to leave your putts below the hole as around 4 out of every 5 three-putts are downhill.
See Phil Mickelson explain this drill:
The “Look at the Hole” Drill
Who this drill will help: Golfers who struggle with their distance control or alignment on long putts.
What this drill is: Pick a spot far from the hole (around 50 feet or so). This simple drill just requires you to set up over your putt and look at the hole during your stroke rather than the ball. Observe where your ball goes and adjust your next stroke — for example, if your putt is short and left, use your feel of the putter to hit the ball a bit harder and more to the right.
What this drill tries to accomplish: This drill helps improve your feel — your awareness of the direction and distance of your putts. You’d be surprised at how effective this drill really
Check out the video on this page in which PGA Professional Charlie King talks about this drill as well as a couple of other drills that may be helpful to you.
Give these drills a try — they might help you more than you think! See the product review section of the site for information on quality putters that will allow you to get the most out of these drills.