ARTICLES - AUGUST '07
Golfers tend to get worked up about putting. They make
it into a far more complex exercise than it has to be,
which is why it is sometimes jokingly compared to
performing brain surgery. No doubt about it, we put
unnecessary pressure on ourselves as we stand over that
little white golf ball before pulling the trigger.
players become anxious about having to look away from
the target and down at the golf ball to make the stroke. That
worry causes them to lift their heads too soon,
sometimes even before impact, ruining the putt. Others
focus too intently on mechanics, resulting in a tension
that turns their stroke into something more like a jab.
effective way to cure both problems is to practice
putting with your eyes shut. Address the golf ball as you
would normally, shut your eyes and make a few practice
strokes. You'll notice that your anxiety will be
relieved and you'll feel calmer right away.
Additionally, your head and body won't move as you
swing. That's because with your visual sense temporarily
shut down, there's no reason to lift up and look for the
golf ball. You'll also notice that with your sight blocked,
your sense of feel will be enhanced, almost magically
transforming your stroke into a free, relaxed motion.
This heightened sense of feel will show up dramatically
in your distance control.
players have so perfected their putting with their eyes
shut that they can do it in competition. If you can't
make that leap, at least try closing your eyes when you
make your practice stoke, then step up and hit the ball
with that same relaxed motion.
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