Most golfers around the world find it difficult to slice the putt (left to right breaking putt). So why do we all struggle with these putts? Day to day in playing, and during lessons, I found 3 main reasons.
Most golfers around the world find it difficult to slice the putt (left to right breaking putt). So why do we all struggle with these putts? Day to day in playing, and during lessons, I found 3 main reasons. By understanding these, and then identifying your mistake, you can start making a few more of these tricky putts.
1 – Balance
The first mistake I see is in setup. Because the green is sloping away from you, subconsciously, you will lean back towards your heels, fighting the slope of the green. This does 2 things. First it raises the toe of the putter off the ground, resulting in a weak strike, with the ball coming off the putter face slower than expected, taking more break, and missing on the low side. The second is it will bring your eye line inside the ball. This can cause the putter to travel back on the inside, creating a push; again, low sides miss.
On a slice putt, you should feel more weight on your toes than in a normal putt, making sure your eyes are over the ball and the putter is sitting flat on the ground. This will help you make your normal stroke strike the ball solid and start the ball on your intended target line.
2 – Target
The second mistake I see is in what target players look at. After going through your green reading process, and selecting your starting point of the putt, you will take your address, aiming your putter face at your selected aimpoint. The problem is you might now look at the hole, rather than your aimpoint, and instinctively we all tend to start the ball to where we are looking. This creates a push, missing on the low side once again.
Address the ball aiming on the starting line. When you look up, do not look at the hole, only look at your start line and aimpoint. Imagine the hole is there; imagine the putt is straight.
3 – Green Reading
The last, and the most common mistake I see is in the way players read the green. This will apply to slice putts, and certainly be a reason why you keep missing on the low side, but you can also apply this to every putt you hit. When reading the line of your putt, you might be aiming at the apex of the hole. Many players think you should aim at the apex, and the ball will break from that point, but they fail to understand the ball will start breaking before the apex, guaranteeing a low side miss.
To make any putt, your starting line must be on the high side of the apex. It is a simple rule to follow, but one that will help you stop under reading putts and missing on the low side.