Stop Three Putting

If there is one thing I hat more that anything is three putting. I am confident that all of you feel the same way. I work on my short game all the time in order to reduce my scores. I believe that the most strokes saved during any round is on the green, so it only makes sense to eliminate extra strokes in needless three putts. I have talked about three putting and lag putting in previous posts, however I found I can never stop looking to ways to improve this area of my game. Well, you are in luck because I found another drill that just might help us eliminate three putting from our game forever.

I generally try to lag putt to within a three foot circle. I feel that I can sink 95% of putts from this distance. I have tried many different drills to improve my long distance putting and parts of them have worked. It allowed me to develop my own style and techniques. Of course I believe that there is always room for improvement and this drill by Phil Mickelson will definitely help.

Before you I go further in this discussion. I found one piece of information about three putting I did not know; hence I will have to keep it in mind when playing. After listening to Mickelson, explain that downhill putts garner the most three putts! If this is the case, which I have not doubt it is, then heeding this information will help me manage my aggressive nature when putting.

Another aspect of this drill that I find very important is that Mickelson eliminated an inconsistency through using the same tempo and and ‘power’ behind each long stroke. The aspect of the stroke that he changes in how far to swing the club. His drill of putting from a distance is critical to developing this a lag putt that gives you the best opportunity to avoid three putts.

One other piece of information that I believe will lower the total number of putting strokes in a round is to ensure to follow through farther than the drawback. This will help keep the speed consistent and contact solid. This is one think I do all the time and believe it is a great tenet of putting.

What do you think of Phil Mickelson’s drill?

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!


10 thoughts on “Stop Three Putting

  1. Hi Jim,
    the one thing that Phil knows about the greens is the speed, he knows before a round the stimp meter reading. Us amateur’s have to make a guess, and sometimes it takes two or three greens to get used to the speed of the day.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree that reducing three putts is going to improve your scores, easier said than done of course.

    If you are putting a lot from above the hole, I don’t like your chances. Making a conscious effort to leave yourself below the hole especially when chipping is likely to give better results.

    And of course, practice your putting using whatever drill that you feels helps you best. I tend to focus more on weight when I practice.

    I also find that all three putts are not created equally. Personally, leaving a putt short (especially on a downhill putt) is inexcusable because it never had a chance. Putting twice from above the whole is never good.

    In putting, it pays to be a little delusional. You will have faith in yourself, you will be more relaxed and usually putt better. If you don’t have confidence, the result will be a self fulfilling prophecy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lorne,

      I like you last few lines. I agree that we must have confidence in our game. I think that comes from intended practice and of course playing. I had a volleyball coach once tell his players: Whether you say you can or say your can’t, you are right on both accounts.

      Cheers Jim


  3. Jim, Phil’s last point is the most salient. “Leave the ball below the hole.” This makes total sense when you think that most amateurs struggle with getting the ball to the hole. Put them in a defensive posture with a slick downhill putt and the situation is magnified.

    Every part of our game is important but in my view, GIR is still king. Check out this article about what stats are most important on tour. Putting is surprisingly low.



    Liked by 1 person

    • Brian,

      I will look at the article for sure, thanks. My experience with other amateurs is that they ‘waste’ many strokes within 15 yards of the green. And putting seems to be the biggest area and easiest part of our short game we can improve. Just my observation.

      Cheers Jim

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jim, one thing is for certain. The older I get, the harder it is to stay in an athletic position and make good swings consistently. As a result, I’m working my short game and putting very heavily to compensate. Lately, it’s been paying dividends but the swing limitations need to be addressed. It’s always something! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve always had an affinity for downhill putt’s but I know the numbers don’t lie and try to stay below the hole. But I think having a little less fear of going past allows me to get closer more often.

    Liked by 1 person

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