Do Your Putts Come Up Short?

Thank you for the weekly putting tips they have been extremely helpful. Your insights are refreshing and good for the game. Keep up the good work.

My question is, why is my distance control, out-of-control? I have a common blade style putter weighted on the toe and heel and find that even though the impact point seems to be in the center of the face for most of my putts, my distance control is not good. I seem to be making the same stroke but the impact with the ball sounds different every now and again and the ball comes up  short of where I had planned. Please help.

First let me thank you for the kind comments and I am pleased that the hints are helping.

Your observation is fairly common and this even happens on the Tour. At a recent tour stop when helping one of the competitors with his putting, he had the same experience so you are not in bad company.

Even though you think you are hitting the putter in the center of the face, this may not be the case. The impact point between the toe and the heel may be the same but not up and down on the face.

When you hit a traditional blade putter on the lower portion of the face, it will sound different from when you hit it higher up on the face and closer to the center of gravity (c.g.) i.e. the sweet spot. In this case the ball will not travel the same distance as it would otherwise even though the head speed is the same. We experience this phenomenon most dramatically when the ball is up against the fringe of the green and the putter is higher off the green surface than usual.

There is another situation when this occurs, and that is when you try to hit the ball with the putter moving upward beyond the normal and recommended, slightly upward path, in an effort to give the ball a little extra over spin. First, you cannot do this with any degree of consistency nor will it measurably affect the spin rate on the ball.

Justin, the very best way to resolve your particular distance control problem is to change your putter to a mallet style putter. This will have a c.g. much farther back from the face and a higher MOI (Moment of Inertia) about the toe/heel axis making the putter forgiving up and down the face as well as toe to heel.

I highly recommend the Frankly Frog for a couple of reasons, because  the c.g. is very low and far back and tests have shown it to be extremely consistent in distance for impact points over a large area on the face. Also the Frog face has no insert. Sometimes inserts can lead to inconsistent results because occasionally you will not make pure contact with the insert alone.

In your case, the Frog is going to help you with the less than perfect impacts up and down on the face as well as those occasional toed or heeled shots.

In addition, make sure that your putting fundamentals are sound by applying good mechanics as described in The Fundamentals of Putting.

I hope this helps you as it has helped so many others.

2 thoughts on “Do Your Putts Come Up Short?

  1. My experience with the Frankly Frog putter is consistent with what Frank says about it. It seems to produce consistent distances, and does an excellent of compensating for strokes that are high or low on the face.

  2. Thank you for your comments. It is a pleasure to receive them. I had problems leaving the ball short and left of the hole for years. And a couple of years ago I had my eyes tested by a sports vision specialist and found that I saw the hole short and left of where it was by a foot on distance several inches on direction on a 15-20 ft putt. So knowing that and adjusting and using the Frog, things are much better in the putting department. The specialist said that that condition was fairly common.

    Thanks again.


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