The word feel is thrown around a lot in golf and it is dubbed as one of the most important attributes a player can have. But how do we work on it? Does feel just come on its own, do we just wake up one day with increased ability to feel and control shots?
Unfortunately not, it’s a skill and attribute we must practice to gain but not many people know how!
Here’s a putting exercise to get you started. Instead of putting to a hole like so many of us do we need to change the way we think about our putting practice. If I wanted to work on accuracy of line, I would putt to a small target like a tee peg or pin. However accuracy is not what we’re after here, it’s distance control “feeling the distance”. We need to take a specific target away and leave ourselves with just a yardage to judge.
Stand in the middle of the putting green with 12 balls, your task it to putt a ball out at every hour on the clock face trying to stop the ball as close to the centre of the green as possible. But that’s not all, with every ball you need to “feel” whether the ball will finish short, on or long of the fringe cut line. This is where we will begin to build that all important ability of feel! The way to get the most out of this drill is to record how many of the 12 you call correctly. Then once you can call all 12 correctly the task then is to get all of the balls to stop on the cut line. To achieve this it can take several weeks of practice. But you will find as your feel increases and your calls get better your balls will be finishing far closer to your target.
This drill is great as out of the 12 balls no 2 putts will be the same simulating the conditions you will find when playing on the golf course.
Enjoy the drill and the results.