Make More Putts Now With Free Ebook

PUTTINGZONEWith the average 20-handicap golfer typically needing about 36 putts per 18-hole round, it makes sense that most golfers are looking for any advantage they can find when using the flat stick. Improving your ability to read greens more accurately is one way to chip away at unwanted putts and one of the top putting coaches in the world is ready to help.

Geoff Mangum, a leading putting coach with over twenty years of experience working with amateurs and professionals on all tours, recently announced the release of his FREE 45-page ebook entitled “Slopes and Break”. Mr. Mangum’s new book details how to use one simple putt on the practice green before a round in order to test standard breaks on that course’s greens. His simple method uses real physics and greens science combined with the personal putting pace used by any specific golfer to make more putts.

“This method for learning break overcomes the flaws in green reading systems used by others who simply take a physics formula, assume some supposed “optimal” putting pace in general for all golfers, and then calculate breaks that don’t fit any specific golfer’s personal putting pace, and give breaks that are wrong for that golfer” said Geoff Mangum. “These calculated breaks also require golfers to use electronic gadgets on the course before playing the real round to measure green speeds, fall lines, and slopes in order to look up the breaks in calculation tables or charts, but never teach the golfer how to have skill to perceive these parameters independently as golfers are required to do when they play real golf. The PuttingZone teaches perception processes for putting reading and aiming, and the eBook covers these perceptual skills and methods.”

Mr. Mangum combines traditional putting techniques with modern neuroscience for human perception and movement in putting’s four skills as an integrated system: reading, aiming, stroking, and controlling distance. The result is a permanent and dramatic increase in putting competence and the added confidence that comes with real skill. His teaching has benefited PGA Tour players and launched amateurs into the top of the world amateur ranking and to victory in the British Amateur and the US Amateur Championships.

To learn more, visit the Putting Zone website. The eBook “Slopes and Break” is available FREE by email request to geoff@puttingzone.com.

Long Putters Surge in Popularity

MICHELLE_WIE_PUTTERWhat’s responsible for the surge in popularity of the long putter on professional golf tours? Why are so many PGA and now LPGA Tour golfers using the belly and broomstick models? For golf purists, the question is quite perplexing.

When Keegan Bradley won the PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club, he became the first golfer to win a major championship using something other than a standard-length putter. Bradley uses a belly putter, which is different from the broomstick putter that is anchored to a players chest or chin. That’s the putter that purists insist is not a real golf swing.

It’s not that long ago when a player using a long putter (belly or broomstick) was considered to be a player who couldn’t putt. Sure, there were the players who switched because of injury or age, trying to relieve a certain stress on their back or shoulders. But for the most part players with long putters were failed putters, golfer who had to search out a gimmick to come close to holing a putt.

A few weeks ago, 21 year-old Michelle Wie, began using a belly putter in an LPGA event. She joins a number of PGA Tour players in their 20s, including Bradley, who use either a belly or broomstick putter. It seems as though a long putter is no longer the last resort or something you fall into in your mid-30s or early-40s to stay on tour or when you are 50 and your back makes it tough just to mark you ball.

Golf’s New Statistics to Measure Putting


In the past few years, most mainstream sports have seen a drastic evolution in how they use and analyze statistics to track and improve performance. Although the process has taken a little longer, it looks like golf is finally reaching a similar stage by leveraging their Shotlink information.

Recently, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, working with the PGA Tour, have come up with a statistical formula to determine who are the truly great putters in the game. Although there have been some broad categories, until now there hasn’t been a reliable statistical method of measuring putting skill among the world’s best golfers.

The main problem is that too many external variables come into play. The most commonly used putting statistic, “putting average, ” measures the number of putts that a player takes per round when his ball lands on the green in regulation—that is, in par less two strokes (for example, in two strokes on a par-four hole). Not only does this approach exclude about 30% of putts attempted on the PGA Tour (those made on greens not reached in regulation), but it also rewards the accuracy of shots into the green as much as it does putting skill.

Two other commonly used putting statistics have weaknesses, too. Putts per round is a measure overly generous to the player who misses a lot of greens in regulation, then chips it close and one-putts. The average feet of putts holed per round, among other problems, penalizes exceptionally good lag putters who leave themselves second putts of inches rather than feet.

Moreover, none of the above statistics take into account the relative difficulty of the greens played. Players who compete on a higher percentage of courses with tricky greens, such as at the majors, get a bum deal.

A team of researchers at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, using PGA Tour data, has derived a metric it calls “putts gained per round” that corrects for these and other deficiencies and provides a more accurate picture of every Tour player’s true putting prowess.

The PGA Tour is so enthused by this new metric that it began work two weeks ago integrating it into its statistical ShotLink system. Working with its technology partner, CDW, it will take several months to write all the code and analyze feedback from players and staff, but if all goes well, “putts gained” will pop up as one of the Tour’s core reported statistics by the end of the year. Together with other new statistics being developed by MIT and other academic institutions, “putts gained” could open up a new frontier in golf record-keeping and performance analysis comparable to the sea change in baseball statistics following Bill James’s pioneering work in the 1970s and 1980s.

“Statistics can just become a big splash of numbers and not mean anything. But this, we think, will mean something,” said Steve Evans, the PGA Tour’s senior vice president for information systems. “It’s complex to calculate, but simple to understand.”

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Focus on Your Short Game to Lower Your Scores

SHORT GAME
Visit just about any golf driving range or practice facility in the world and there’s a good chance you’ll see a majority of players working on hitting the golf ball longer. The lure of more distance off the tee is quite enticing to many, especially men.

Unfortunately, if you’re looking to lower your golf handicap, working on gaining extra distance is probably not the best use of your time. If nearly 67% of all golf shots are taken within 100 yards of the hole, it becomes quite obvious that the short game often decides the men from the boys.

As a golfer, interested in shooting lower scores, there is little doubt you’ve heard this sermon before — “devote more of your practice time to your short game.” The reason is as simple as the math above, your score comes from your short game.

But wait there’s more. When you spend time practicing your putting and your short shots and swings — in the proper way – you get double the reward because the skills you develop in this area transfer to your long game.

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The Simple Secret to Putting Like Steve Stricker

STEVE STRICKER

How do you become the No. 2 ranked player in the world? Having a consistent and reliable golf putting stroke is a great place to start. Along with terrific iron play, that’s precisely what current No. 2 Steve Stricker has used to trigger his ascension up the golf rankings.

Stricker’s putting stroke begins with how he sets up with his forearms in line with the putter shaft. You may have noticed over the years how upright Stricker stands at address. This is a result of his left wrist position. One of the keys to the putting set-up is to grip the putter with the left wrist level and not cocked. Here’s how you do it: Extend your left arm out parallel to the ground, in line with your left shoulder while extending your index finger straight ahead and your thumb to the sky. This would be considered a level left wrist as defined to the top of the wrist. Now, cock your wrist so the index finger is pointing more towards the sky and then conversely, un-cock your wrist so the index finger is pointing towards the ground.

One of the most common errors in putting is gripping the lead hand too much in the fingers. This usually creates a cocked left wrist and leads to the right forearm being on a much different angle than the putter shaft. This is evident when you watch a stroke from down the target-line as you will clearly see the putter’s butt-end positioned well below the right forearm.

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Review: Phil Mickelson DVD Secrets of the Short Game

Secrets of the Short Game

Phil Mickelson’s DVD “Secrets of the Short Game” wasn’t the first short game video series and it won’t be the last. But it just might be the best production that can truly change your game and improve your technique around the greens immediately.

Yes, I’m a long time Dave Pelz fan and so is Phil. However, the quality and quantity of tips, technique and tricks in this two DVD set is worth its weight in gold. In fact, it’s often surprising at not only the content, but the candor Mickelson has while teaching and demonstrating the various shots in front of the camera. His personality and confidence shines through brightly in this DVD series which was produced and directed by Terry Jastrow, a seven-time Emmy award winner whose credits include Producer/Director of six previous Olympic Opening Ceremonies, Super Bowl XIX, 68 Golf Majors and events ranging from an Indianapolis 500 and Kentucky Derby.

The first “Secrets of the Short Game” disc focuses on putting and chipping while the second disc includes a flop shot section, bunker play and specialty shots such as buried lies and longer bumker shots.

Phil’s putting approach can be at times analytical, but almost always makes simple sense. One of the main suggestions that I took away from this section was the Jackie Burke 25/75 concept. Burke suggests that your backswing swing should be 25 percent and your swing through the ball should be 75 percent. This should allow you to hit the ball aggressively while accelerating through the shot and creating a smooth rhythm.

The chipping section is quite blunt – there is only one effective way to chip. In fact, Phil is quite honest in saying anyone who doesn’t subscribe to this theory is nuts. Here Mickleson teaches to break your wrist immediately when going back on a chip, then hold on and accelerate toward the hole. After watching him demonstrate this simple technique, it’s hard to imagine why you would want to do anything else.

Another highlight of the series is Phil’s precise explanation of his famous flop shot. The amateur golfer might actually be a bit frightened from trying this type of shot after learning about how much thought and preparation Phil puts in even before attempting such a shot. But this knowledge is priceless and Mickelson’s in-depth explanation of matching the shot with the lie can only help golfers of all experience levels.

Can Phil Mickelson’s “Secrets of the Short Game” help your game?  Yes, most definitely. In fact, you’ll be hard pressed to find more quality golf short game instruction content packed into a more entertaining and easy to watch format. Phil Mickelson’s “Secrets of the Short Game” retails for $49.95 and is available from Golfsmith.


Golf Shop Live Phil Mickelson – Secrets of the Short Game DVD

Golf Shop Live Phil Mickelson - Secrets of the Short Game DVD