Stop Missing “Low”
There’s a reason that missing on the low side is known as missing on the amateur side: most amateur golfers read too little break in their putts. In this lesson, I’ll show you why you’re probably not playing enough break and how you can change that and make more putts.
This Lesson Is For You If:
You struggle to read greens
You miss your putts on the “low” side
The lesson here can be summed up in one sentence: “The apex is not the aim point.”
Let’s start by defining those two terms. The apex of the putt is the high point of the break (see the picture above). The aimpoint is the spot that you’re aiming at.
Why are they not the same? Because although the break that we see comes in the later parts of the putt, the ball actually starts breaking as soon as it’s struck. That means that the apex of the putt is well below the point that you should be aiming at.
To break the habit of aiming at the apex, you need to see a “higher” target line. This is going to take some repetition.
Go to your putting green and find a 10-15 foot putt with substantial break. Using either a string (elevated or not) or some tees, mark a starting spot and define your aim point. Hit some putts and check the result. If your aim is good for your speed, go ahead and make a lot of putts. Focus on how “high” the target is. Then find a new breaking putt and repeat.
Be sure to work on putts that are right to left and left to right, uphill and downhill. Make note in your mind of which putts are farthest from your natural aiming tendencies.
As you work on this drill more, you’ll see your green reading improve along with your ability to control speed, hit your lines, and make more putts.