Blade vs mallet putters, which style is better for your golf game? In this ultimate guide, I’ll go over a few key things:
- The main similarities and differences between blade and mallet putters.
- The number one putter in each style available today.
- Different types of putting stroke and which option suits each the best.
- How to know if you are using the wrong style of putter or not.
If you think back to your last round of golf, putting makes up the majority of your shots out on the course. If you want to get better at golf, you need the right club in your hand on the green.
It has been a long-standing debate over which type of putter you should choose, blade vs mallet. Let’s dig into each so that you can make the decision on which type of putter to buy!
What is a Blade Putter?
Blade putters are a traditional style of putter with a hollow or non-existent back cavity. A blade has a much thinner club head design than a mallet putter. Blades have been relatively standard since the beginner of golf, and there aren’t many new things you can do.
The original blade-style design could be used by both left-handed and right-handed golfers, but blades today come in both hands. Everyone should know what a blade putter looks like, especially if you have done any mini-golf in your life.
Pros of a Blade Putter
The number one reason golfers use a blade putter is that it provides a tremendous amount of feel and control out on the green. Due to the thin design, you have complete control over the club head during your putting stroke, and you should be able to make solid contact each time.
Blades tend to do better on fast greens, again due to your level of control over the club. It helps if you have complete control over your ball on fast greens, and a blade putter will allow that control.
Due to the traditional design, golfers may lean towards using a blade. The look of a putter can help inspire confidence in the golfer using it, so golfers may find that a thinner, more subtle club head works better than a big mallet head shapes in different styles.
Cons of a Blade Putter
Blade putters lack the same forgiveness that a mallet head provides. Due to the thinner design, the sweet spot on the clubface is quite a bit smaller. If you mishit the ball, it will head off course quickly.
As well, a blade putter can be harder to line up putts due to the alignment line and head being smaller than a mallet head.
Best Blade Putter Today
Our pick for the best blade putter available today on the market is the Scotty Cameron Newport 2 Putter. The Newport 2 is the iconic blade design many PGA Tour pros use today, including Tiger Woods for his entire career.
Scotty Cameron is a premium brand, but for a good reason. This putter is packed with features that will have you putting like a professional in no time.
Check out the Scotty Cameron Newport 2 below.
Key Features of the Scotty Cameron Newport 2
Performance Balance Weighting
The Scotty Cameron Newport 2 features interchangeable tungsten sole weights that help increase stability and help provide an even bigger sweet spot on the ball. These weights are located on the bottom of the putter and provide excellent balance and perfect weight distribution through your putting stroke.
Refreshed Neck Configuration
Titleist refined the Newport 2 with a shorter plumbing neck positioned slightly back from the leading edge, which will help improve visibility on the golf ball. It will also help with the alignment of the ball before your putt.
Solid Milled Construction
This putter head is milled from a solid block of 303 stainless steel and has a mid-milled face pattern. The club face is soft and provides a great feel on every single putt.
What is a Mallet Putter?
A mallet putter is much larger than a blade putter and comes in many different shapes and sizes. The main feature difference in a mallet is the heavily weighted back cavity. This extra weight makes it easy to perform a pendulum swing and putt long distances.
When mallet putters first came on the scene, they were semi-circle in shape. However, companies are now coming out with different designs, while taking advantage of new technology. Some of the latest designed mallet heads include spiders, fangs, and more.
Pros of a Mallet Putter
Most golfers will prefer a mallet putter because it is very forgiving on the green. The club head is quite a bit bigger than a blade, so there is a more prominent sweet spot where you can make contact with the ball. Even if you mishit, there is a good chance the ball will stay on line due to the larger club head.
Another reason beginner golfers like a mallet is that they are quite a bit easier to line up putts with. All mallets come with relatively large and long alignment markings, and it is effortless to line up putts exactly where you want them to go.
Mallet putters come in so many different shapes, colors and sizes. Golfers love customization, which is a big reason they like mallets. They can choose something they want to look at, which will inspire confidence when out on the green.
Cons of a Mallet Putter
Mallet putters can be tricky to use on faster greens due to the large club head. Some mallets are heavier than blades, which may not be ideal when on fast greens. It’s a great idea to get on the practice green before a round to get a feel for how the greens will roll throughout the day.
When first using a mallet head putter, perfecting distance control can take quite a bit more time. You first must get used to the club head and sweet spot before perfecting how hard you need to hit the ball.
Best Mallet Putter Today
My choice for the best mallet putter available on the market today is the TaylorMade Spider GT. The updated GT was just released in March 2020 and is an upgrade on the beloved Spider model that many of the PGA Tour pros use. The modernized wing-back design features excellent perimeter weighting and maximum forgiveness on every putt.
Check out the TaylorMade Spider GT below:
- Lightweight Cap & Tri-Sole - A lightweight cap is crafted from anodized 6061 aluminum and is designed to deliver a centered CG for optimal forgiveness. The tri-sole design allows golfers to sit the putter squarely on the ground without changing face angle.
- Tungsten Roll Bar - For the first time, we’ve implemented a heavy tungsten stability bar (80g) that strategically wraps around the back and side of the putter for added forgiveness and stability.
- Pure Roll² Insert - The new firmer co-molded insert, manufactured of black TPU urethane with silver aluminum beams at a 45° angle designed to improve topspin across the face.
- Fluted Feel - A newly engineered stability putter shaft with a softer section located 5” from the tip, intently designed to enhance feel, increase stability and improve dispersion.
Key Features on the TaylorMade Spider GT
Steel Side Weight Construction
Two steel side weights create a heavy frame for maximum stability and distance control. The weight is all even, meaning complete forgiveness, even on mishits.
PureRoll2 Face Insert
The GT features the brand new black TPU urethane face insert with grooves at a 45-degree angle, which helps to improve topspin on the ball and keep the ball in a line toward the hole
The TaylorMade Spider GT comes in two different hosel options and multiple different color schemes. You can custom order from the Taylormade website and choose whatever color you want on each part of the club head. You won’t find this level of customization on any other putter!
Types of Putting Strokes
Which style of putter you should buy depends on what type of stroke you have. There are two common strokes to go through: square to square and arc style.
Square to Square Stroke
Square-to-square is the most straightforward and consistent way to putt. This putting stroke focuses on making sure your setup is sound and that you are hitting your putt right on target of where you are aiming.
Ensure that your hands are directly under your shoulders and that your putter head is square to your target. Imagine there is an alignment rod on the ground at your feet. This stroke means you move the putter head straight back and straight through, all on a straight line.
If you have an easy pendulum, you should hit your putts on a line to where you aim.
When it comes to the putter best suited for the square to square stroke, it is a mallet head. Mallet heads are quite a bit larger than blades. They have more prominent alignment lines, and mallet heads are easier to swing on a pendulum line straight through. Mallet heads are way more forgiving, meaning even if you mishit, the putt will stay online to where you were aiming.
Arc Style Stroke
The arc-style putting stroke is the other option that some golfers use. The theory behind the arced stroke is that it allows you to naturally match the motions of your full golf swing.
As you move into your backswing, the putter head will rotate open, much like in your full swing. At impact, the head returns to square. After impact, the head will move back inside and close.
Some golfers have said that an arc stroke offers a better feel on putts and distance control, but it can be tricky to master.
A blade style putter suits this arc style putting stroke best as the club head is smaller and thinner. A blade is easier to complete the arc and get the club face back to square at impact. With a mallet head size, it is quite a bit harder to arc and get the face square at impact. It is much easier to end up pushing every single putt.
How Do You Know If You Are Using the Wrong Type of Putter?
When it comes to your putter, there is no better way to figure out the best one for you than to head to a golf retailer and practice using all of them. Some golfers may grow up only using one putter style or think one is better than the other without using both.
Putting all comes down to personal preference and what feels best for you. If you don’t feel like you have consistency on the green, it might mean that you have the wrong club in your bag.
I also recommend getting custom fitted because the professional can then tell you exactly what would work best for your putting stroke. Your putting stroke and height/weight can determine many things, such as ideal hosel position, putter length, club face, and more.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do PGA Tour Pros prefer blade or mallet style putters?
If you asked this question to 100 different PGA Tour Pros, you would probably get a split answer of 50/50. Most tour pros used to say a blade-style putter was better due to having more control over the club head and a better feel. Nowadays, with the technology and customization, there are quite a few more mallet-style putters on tour.
Should a beginner golfer use a blade or mallet?
A mallet will provide more forgiveness on mishits, so I recommend beginners to use a mallet. It will take some practice getting used to the feel and distance control, but it will be better in the long run.
Is a mallet putter more forgiving?
Yes, a mallet is more forgiving than a blade. The mallet club head is quite a bit bigger, thus having a more prominent sweet spot for impact on the golf ball. Even on mishits, the ball should stay on the line.
Should you get custom fitted for a putter?
You should go get a fitting because most custom fittings are either free or inexpensive. The fitter will have you putt with many different options and find one perfect for you and your putting stroke. This will only provide more confidence when you are out on the putting green.
Video Tutorial: How to Choose the Right Putter
Want some more advice? Watch the video below on how to choose the right putter between a blade vs mallet!
Summary: Should You Use a Blade or Mallet Putter?
As I went over above, the best way to find out what kind of putter is best for you is to go out and practice with many different options. A blade will most likely provide a better feel-out on the green and is more familiar if you’ve ever used a different club before. A blade is a lighter putter that works better with an arc swint.
However, a mallet design will be more forgiving thanks to its heavier head weight. A mallet is easier to get a solid putting stroke with, especially if you have a nice and straight pendulum.
Plus, you will have a lot of different customization options on a mallet. I recommend going with a mallet-style because they are easier to use and get the hang of, but it all depends on your putting stroke and what feels best for you.
Overall, the blade vs mallet putter debate is an interesting one. There is no clear winner and you see a healthy mix on the PGA tour and for amateur golfers. You should give both a try and see which one you like better.
Last update on 2022-11-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API