Some Great Short Putting Drills and Tips

Short Putting Drills and Tips

Every golfer — whether an amateur or professional — will find themselves faced with 3-7 foot putts on almost every hole.  It’s one of the most common putts you will have out on the course, which is why it’s so important to have a solid and consistent technique for striking the ball.  If you feel that you’re missing too many of these putts and leaving shots out there, here are some short putt drills and tips that will hopefully help you.

The “No Backswing” Drill (Practiced by Annika Sörenstam)

Who this drill will help:  Golfers who struggle with hitting their putts square to their putting line.

What this drill is:  Take a few balls and drop them about a putter’s length (or a bit farther) from the hole.  Rest your putter right up against a ball and push it towards the hole (or along your line) instead of swinging at it.

What this drill tries to accomplish:  A square putter face at impact is essential, and this is exactly what this drill helps you to do:  keep the putter face low and square to your putting line.  Do this drill enough and you will start to ingrain a tendency to hit square.

See this drill in action below:

Phil Mickelson’s Short Putt Drill

Who this drill will help:  Golfers who regularly miss short putts from around 3-5 feet.

What this drill is:  Put 10 balls around the hole at about 3-5 feet out (or longer if that’s what you want) and try to sink all 10 putts.  If you miss one or more, repeat the drill until you make all 10 putts.

What this drill tries to accomplish:  This drill will help you develop your touch for short putts.  You will improve your ability to keep the clubface square and hit the ball the correct distance.

A couple more tips for short putts…

Commit to the stroke.  When you’re preparing to hit a putt, decide on a line, trust it and commit to it without any doubt.  Try focusing on staying committed rather than on your technique.

Keep your eye on the ball and don’t look up until well after you’ve hit it.  Payne Stewart, a 3-time major winner, once had this problem and it crept up during the 1999 U.S. Open.  Before the final round, he practiced keeping his head steady during the stroke — he went on to win the tournament.

Accelerate through impact.  Most golfers who don’t do well with short putts tend to decelerate the putter head through impact.  To help you accelerate, make your through-swing at least twice as long as your backswing.

If you’re still having a hard time with short putts, try this…

Look at the hole instead of the ball when making your stroke.  This method is employed by Jordan Spieth and he says that it helps free up his stroke.  It may work for you!

See the product reviews page for information on quality putters and golf balls that will help you become a more consistent putter.

Image attributed to:  Ian Dick


  1. Sonny September 20, 2015
    • Paul September 20, 2015
  2. Maurice January 17, 2016
    • Paul January 19, 2016

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