#1: Choose the Right Putter for Your Stroke
Every time you make a putter stroke, you'll either swing with a straight back straight through stroke or an arcing stroke. Match the stroke you have with the right style of putter.
For arcing, you'll want to find a putter with toe weight to help close the face at impact with the ball. For straight back putting strokes, you'll wish to use a face balanced putter that helps keep the putter head from twisting.
#2: Check your Grip
Sometimes the first cause of a player's inconsistent putting stroke is due to the grip. Without a proper grip, your putter face could be prone to twisting, which causes putts to be hit with an open face and closed face.
An open face at impact causes a slice or a pushed putt to the right of the hole. A closed face can cause a hooked or pulled putt to the left of the hole.
Keep the grip soft but still hard enough to have some control over the club. The death grip is the type of putting grip we do not want so if you see your hands turning white from squeezing out the blood from them, this is too tight of a grip.
#3: Match Your Posture with Putter Height
Some golfers like to really hunch over putts and others like to stand up more straight in posture. Depending on your preferred posture style, you'll want to match the correct putter height to it for maximum comfort, control, and increased consistency.
For example, a hunched over putter will either need a shorter putter length (30 inches) or will need to choke down on the grip to shorten the putter up. For golfers who stand up almost straight or with little back bend, you'll want to consider taller putters 36 inches and above.
The average putter length is around 34 inches.
#4: Practice Putting with Tees as Guide Rails
Use tees in the ground to form a narrow path for the putter to hit putts through. This will train you to keep the putter straight during the stroke and force you to make sure you're not over twisting the face at impact, leaving it open or closed.
The ball should come off rolling straight down the line on a flat putting surface and these tees will help show you when putts are off line as the ball moves closer towards them on its way to the hole.
#5: Putt to a coin or ball marker
This speed putting drill trains you to develop proper feel in your putting stroke so you can control how far your putts roll and with correct speed.
To start the drill, please set down a coin or ball marker on the ground 4 feet away from you. This is the exact distance the ball should roll on a 3 foot putt. In other words, when you are 3 feet from the hole, you want to hit the putt with enough speed that it would roll past the hole only 1 more foot at most.
Practicing hitting putts and adjusting your power until the ball comes to a stop on the ball marker or coin that is 4 feet away from you.
For visual reference, you can set up this putting drill next to a hole by shifting outside the hole a few feet so the ball can roll past the hole rather than into the hole as it makes its way to the ball marker that is 1 foot beyond the hole.
#6: Always Walk the Green First
Before setting up to your putt or doing practice strokes, start off walking around the green to get a feel for slopes. You can get a sense if the ball will be traveling uphill, downhill or is positioned on a side hill where it will begin curving left or right after you hit it.
Crouch down to read the green from behind your ball, looking at the ball and it's distance to the hole. Also crouch down on the oppose side of the hole, looking back at your ball to read the green from this angle as well.
If you are having a hard time reading break, try going off the green several feet. Zoom out away from the green and you should be able to see slope as well as where the high points and low points of the green are.
Overall, try these putting tips to help you become a more effective putter. Start with the set up making sure you have the right putter to match your putting stroke and posture. Then work on your putting stroke path by using tees as guides to keep things straight. Next work on speed to hit more consistent putts that don't come up short and don't go to far beyond a hole should you miss. Lastly, practice your green reading skills to better learn how to read a putt and anticipate break as well as speed from uphill & downhill slopes.