different ways to conform...learn your Inner Putter.

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different ways to conform...learn your Inner Putter.

Postby Sprague » Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:56 pm

Sorry for the cryptic title, but I meant it...

How do you answer someone when they ask for putting advice?

It seems that teaching someone to putt might be is as challenging as the skill itself.

And why wouldn't it be? Your individual style is like cooking the same dish over and over, adding spices slowly over the course of months or maybe years...it can be very different from individual to individual.

So to me it boils down to the COMMON DENOMINATORS.

A loaded 'Mechanism' with 'Linear Energy'. All of the great putters in the World have this in common, regardless of their individual style (push-spin-pitch-bullet-wristy-knuckleball-nosedive-pancake-sidearm- etc, etc, etc)

The great putters load a mechanism and project linear energy...they control the speed and reach for the pole...they always finish 'frozen' with a clean release.

I've personally found that as a right handed putter my body favors a hand pitch, over a hinged shoulder, on a rocking base, with a projected reach, finishing with a crisp finger pop ('Finger Pitch'). As a left handed putter my body favors a loaded wrist, over a rocking base, with a projected reach, followed by a crisp finger pop ('Spin Pitch').

Once again how do you explain this?

You don't, it's individual and you have to learn it.

So the more import question is how do you learn your style?

Take 3 or 4 discs and build your ENVELOPE. Start close to the basket and build an envelope of confidence outward. First 10ft, if you make it take a step back, and continue backing up when you make it, if you miss stay where you are. While in Monterey, CA I learned that one of the great teachers of disc golf, Merle Witvoet, has been using this exact method for 25 years! It works!

As you gain confidence build your envelope by taking a step and a half, but always reset at close range. I sometimes find myself taking 3 steps with confidence but this usually takes 15 to 30 minutes of solid putting. Your goal is to have a high percentage of makes ( Pretend like your the casino house, you want to test yourself - but always finish ahead!)

While using this technique I recommend studying video or live action of some of Worlds great putters. Jay Reading, Ken Climo, Tanner Duncan, Adam Olsen, Mike Randolph, Barry Schultz are all great players that Iowa Region players can learn from and that have personally influenced me as a putter.

Phase 2 is to start role playing various scenarios you've encountered while playing...experiment with different trick putts to keep it fresh. This only happens after a lengthy session of 'confidence building'.

Putting styles are very regional and varied much like grapes used to make wine, so enjoy your quest and become a putting connoisseur!
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Postby Ferch » Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:18 am

Thanks for the insight. With all of this off season hoop la on technique and form that gets ppl questioning their confidence, its good to know that Im still on the right track with just sticking with the same style. Its a spin putt of some sort, but the key is I still follow what you taught a few of us 2 yrs back in Burlington. Which is like you just said in building your envelope to gain a routine in which made my confidence stay high no matter the situation. Thanks again for the help, and I owe you for it! :)
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Postby Nohr » Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:07 am

Do you still practice 10 footers? I find myself practicing more 20 footers (maybe longer) than anything else. I try to at least do some shorter putts also.

Am I right in saying this? Just b/c you can hit a 30 footer doesn't mean that 10-15 footers are automatic.
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Postby Sprague » Sat Feb 27, 2010 3:29 pm

I always start close (5 to 15ft) and back up only after making...what 'close' is will evolve as your confidence builds. The main thing is that your putts change incrementally while you practice, building on your previous success and only moving when you don't miss. I've had nights where I pushed the envelope out 50+ feet by taking 2 steps after making , but I had built up to it and was hitting a high percentage of putts.

Keep in mind this is more of a core practice drill, I personally have several putting and trick shot drills that I use to build my number of shots.

The worst practice sessions are the ones where I'm outside chucking airballs from 45ft and not focused...I try to practice confidence to warm up and then mix in these longer putts sparingly. Theoretically you should have fewer of these putts if your also practicing your upshots and drives, so that leaves you with more of the 'must have 18-25ft putts.
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Postby IHearChains » Sun Feb 28, 2010 9:03 am

Nohr wrote:Do you still practice 10 footers? I find myself practicing more 20 footers (maybe longer) than anything else. I try to at least do some shorter putts also.

Am I right in saying this? Just b/c you can hit a 30 footer doesn't mean that 10-15 footers are automatic.



I can't putt like Jay Reading or Ken Climo so why should I practice what they practice?

Who wants to miss a come-back putt and have what was a deuce opportunity turn into a 4? I practice short putts because I don't want that to ever happen. I doubt that is an issue Reading or Climo have any concerns about.

Also it seems like using my practice time on increasing my percentage on the "makeable" putts is going to have more of a payoff in shots per round than practicing the really long putts. If you take one 60-footer per round vs six 20-footers, then obviously increasing the pct of 20 footers is more important, right?
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Postby Sprague » Sun Feb 28, 2010 10:26 am

IHearChains wrote:

I can't putt like Jay Reading or Ken Climo so why should I practice what they practice?



I made the biggest strides in my career after watching Mike Randolph, Ken Climo, and Barry Schultz. Learning to mimic and visualize an accomplished players style can help you discover what they are 'feeling' and how you can make it work within your own style.

While I do agree with "Who wants to miss a come-back putt and have what was a deuce opportunity turn into a 4?" You should hate bogeys more than you love birdies, I also think though it's important to develop a 'safe' run. The wind and terrain can open up opportunities to be more aggressive and taking advantage of those little percentage opportunities without risking too much is key to Open level play. But practicing these should not take priority over the 'Golden Circle' (25ft and in)
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Postby Nohr » Sun Feb 28, 2010 10:38 am

IHearChains wrote:

I can't putt like Jay Reading or Ken Climo so why should I practice what they practice?



vs

IHearChains wrote:

why can't I putt like Jay Reading or Ken Climo so should I practice what they practice?

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Postby IHearChains » Sun Feb 28, 2010 12:44 pm

Sprague wrote:
IHearChains wrote:

I can't putt like Jay Reading or Ken Climo so why should I practice what they practice?



I made the biggest strides in my career after watching Mike Randolph, Ken Climo, and Barry Schultz. Learning to mimic and visualize an accomplished players style can help you discover what they are 'feeling' and how you can make it work within your own style.

While I do agree with "Who wants to miss a come-back putt and have what was a deuce opportunity turn into a 4?" You should hate bogeys more than you love birdies, I also think though it's important to develop a 'safe' run. The wind and terrain can open up opportunities to be more aggressive and taking advantage of those little percentage opportunities without risking too much is key to Open level play. But practicing these should not take priority over the 'Golden Circle' (25ft and in)



Thanks for the feedback. I'm not saying I wouldn't try to learn from worlds best putters, just that I would focus my practice on different things because I have weaknesses to work on that those guys do not have.

If I am interpreting you right, it seems increasing my pct in the 'Golden Circle' will free me to be more aggressive at the longer low pct opportunities. So I am focusing on trying to reach closer to an ideal 100% in the 'Golden Circle' so that being aggressive on those longer low pct opportunities would become very low-risk.
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Postby Sprague » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:39 pm

Well put.
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Postby Single L » Sun Feb 28, 2010 11:06 pm

Sprague wrote:You should hate bogeys more than you love birdies


Tanner told me this as well ........ the best advise I've received all winter.

The high of getting a birdie is almost like a drug ....... that ensuing bogey is the crash. Pretty sure my wife would tell you most of her addicts/clients hate the crash/withdrawal more then they love the high. However most of them take the easy way out and choose to chase the high and ignore the crash, one of the major issues I see in the AM ranks, but if you can overcome the addiction you will be better off in the long run.

My wife is a State Certified Addictions Counselor and I have been helping her study for her Masters all day ..... so addictions are on my brain
"I'm not impressed with aces of any kind. 95% of the time, they're just bad shots that got lucky and happened to hit the chains. Otherwise, they'd have sailed 50' past the hole." ~ Cydisc
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Postby freburg36625 » Sun Feb 28, 2010 11:10 pm

that is one of the best ways I have ever heard it put
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Postby Nohr » Wed Mar 03, 2010 7:08 am

Sprague or anyone else that does this to warm up/practice. Is your putting stroke (form whatever you want to call it) the same for 15 feet as it is for 45 feet?

For me when I get 45-50 feet out I am starting to be more comfortable throwing a spin putt. Inside 30 I have something funky that is like push/spin combination.

So for me I feel I have 2 different putts depending on the distance. The close putts might help me get confidence up. But the way I throw my longer putts are completely different than shorter putts. Does that make sense?
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Postby z-man » Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:49 pm

Once I get out to that distance...45 feet or so...putting spin on the disc becomes a requirement, at least for me...Without the additional force/glide generated by the spin, your putts will more than likely continually come up short...
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