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The Putting Cyclops - REVIEW


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#1 Matt Saternus

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 02:06 PM

The Putting Cyclops Review



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Introduction

Would you pay $100 to drop 12 strokes off your game? The Putting Cyclops claims that, “On average our users drop 12 strokes off their game after using Putting Cyclops only 5 times.”

The Putting Cyclops is a putting aid that can teach a straight-back-straight-through stroke, a massively arced stroke, or anything in between. In addition to shaving 12 strokes off your game, the inventors claim that it can cure the yips and help to stop you from watching the putter in the backswing. This skeptical spy put it to the test…



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Ease of Use/Set Up – 10 Points

The Putting Cyclops clips together quite easily; set up doesn’t take more than a couple of minutes at the most. If you take it to a putting green, the only thing that would take much time is getting it perfectly aligned to a hole.

It should also be noted that ThePutting Cyclops can be used for right and left handed golfers without any modifications. They also include two different top pieces: one for center-shafted putters and one for all other types…no putter left behind!

As far as ease of use, The Putting Cyclops is quite simple once you decide what setting you want to use: simply allow the toe of the putter to “ride” the wall. The trick is deciding what settings will fit your stroke. On the instructional DVD, the inventor of The Putting Cyclops suggests that you try a number of different settings until you find one that feels good. You might also know the settings you want based on a putting lesson you’ve had or a philosophy you subscribe to.

Overall, after some initial calibration and decision making, The Putting Cyclops is quite easy to use.

Score: 9/10



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Effectiveness – 30 points

The Putting Cyclops makes three major claims: you will have a consistent putting stroke, you will not watch the putter head, and it can cure the yips. I’ll address each one individually.

First, The Putting Cyclops claims that it will give you a consistent putting stroke, and that “on average our users drop 12 strokes off their game after using Putting Cyclops only 5 times.” Well, if it could shave 12 strokes off my game I would be on tour, so let’s get rid of that expectation right out of the gate. To me, this claim says more about their test group than anything else. Either they tested this on the worst putters in the universe or the “after” testing was done on a par 3 course.

Regardless of the claim, the idea of a putting path trainer has been around for a long time in the form of putting arcs and putting rails. Many players swear by them, and believe that they are ingraining the stroke through repetition. The Putting Cyclops essentially takes all of those trainers: arcs, rails, inside-down-the-line, down-the-line-inside, and rolls them into one device. If you believe in the idea of training this way, but haven’t found a device that fits your stroke, The Putting Cyclops could be for you.

Personally, I have a healthy skepticism about the notion that you can ingrain a putting stroke with a trainer like this. Alas, I currently lack the technology to test whether or not sheer repetition can change or ingrain a putting stroke. I am hoping to have access to such technology soon, and if I do, you can expect that this idea will be put to the test.

Next, The Putting Cyclops claims that their device will help you to stop watching the putter head and instead focus on the ball. Again, I was skeptical. The human eye has evolved to be attracted to motion (kudos to Golfspy Dave for explaining the science of this to me). The putter head moves, the golf ball doesn’t, so it’s obvious which one your eye will be attracted to. Ultimately, I found that The Putting Cyclops did not have a huge impact on whether or not I watched the ball or the putter. The more important factor was whether or not I made a conscious effort to focus on the ball.

As far as curing the yips, this is a claim I can’t test. I don’t have the yips, and I hope to never have them. If anyone has some firsthand experience with it, please share it with us.

Coming up with a score for this was very tough for me. Ultimately, given that the number of golfers who believe in arcs and rails is probably in the thousands, and I can’t scientifically argue against them, I feel inclined to say that this type of trainer could help. As those types of trainers go, The Putting Cyclops is very good because of its flexibility. Thus barring the results of future testing, I am going to give it a solid rating for effectiveness.

Score: 26/30



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Longevity – 20 points

As always, longevity comes down to three things for me: is it effective, is it fun or rewarding to use, and is it easy to use. The Putting Cyclops is easy to use and the carrying case makes it easy to transport to the practice green. As far as fun, it’s no more or less fun than a putting arc or rail. It’s definitely fun to see the ball go in the hole a lot, but it’s not a ton of fun to hit the same putt over and over.

Score: 17/20




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Value – 20 points

The Putting Cyclops can be purchased through The Putting Cyclops website for $99.97, which places it right in the heart of the training aid price range. Putting arcs and rails can be purchased for anywhere from $10 to $90, but the difference is that those devices can’t be adjusted to the stroke you want to make. The Putting Cyclops also has the added feature of not watching the putter head.

For a teacher who wants to adapt the device to different students, The Putting Cyclops is a good value. For the player who is going to set up the device once and never change it, the question of value is a bit harder to answer.

The Putting Cyclops does come with two DVDs. One explains the basic function of The Putting Cyclops and how to use it. It’s a solid “How To” video and won’t take up too much of your time. The other is a putting DVD by Michael Breed. I imagine that there are plenty of people who might prefer other instructors (I’m one of them), but there are some good tips and drills on the DVD.

Overall, I think The Putting Cyclops is an average value as a training aid.

Score: 15/20



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The Peanut Gallery – 20 points

The Peanut Gallery’s response to The Putting Cyclops was generally lukewarm. The biggest question was, “How do I know what setting to use?” This reinforced my opinion that this is an aid that might be geared more towards teachers or players who have very strong ideas about how they want to putt.

With regard to “hiding” the putter head during the stroke, our test group was split. Some of the testers thought that this was a cool idea and felt that it was beneficial. Others argued that they still wanted to watch the head, and just watched the shaft or heel of the putter instead. The most knowledgeable member of the Peanut Gallery argued strongly that it is better to simply putt with your eyes closed, whether to cure the yips or just to teach feel and confidence, but he’s “not a training aid guy.”

The Peanut Gallery did like the carrying case and acknowledged that The Putting Cyclops was easy to set up and use. They also appreciated that it could be used for right and left handed players. While no one expressed disgust with the $100 price tag, no one voiced an interest in owning The Putting Cyclops at that price.

Score: 15/20



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Final Thoughts

Ultimately your decision to buy The Putting Cyclops comes down to a couple of questions: 1) Do you believe that this type of trainer can improve your stroke? And 2) Do you know what type of stroke you want to train yourself to have? If the answer to both of these questions is, “Yes,” than The Putting Cyclops might be a great fit for you.

Score: 82/100



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#2 mudfish

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 02:29 PM

Huh... I've been playing around with the Ping app, and trying to become more consistent with my stroke. In your final thoughts you asked about knowing your stroke type, and the Ping App is good for determining that. Combined with the Cyclops, it looks like it would be a pretty decent combination...

I'd be interested in one if it was cheaper (or free ;) ), but not for $100... I could use that money for a lesson and get advice from someone who would probably be able to help more...


And how durable is this? The plastic looks pretty thick...

#3 GolfSpy WD

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 02:40 PM

With regard to “hiding” the putter head during the stroke, our test group was split. Some of the testers thought that this was a cool idea and felt that it was beneficial. Others argued that they still wanted to watch the head, and just watched the shaft or heel of the putter instead. The most knowledgeable member of the Peanut Gallery argued strongly that it is better to simply putt with your eyes closed, whether to cure the yips or just to teach feel and confidence, but he’s “not a training aid guy.”


I'm intrigued, but not entirely sold, especially on the idea of hiding the putter head. I did like the idea of closing your eyes while also having something to guide your stroke. I would probably use it, but I think this would be great for my son, who's 8 (and a lefty) and really needs something to help his putting. The customization is also nice to lend out to friends. That said I'm skeptical of putting aids in general.

#4 SteveB1977

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 03:01 PM

Looks interesting, but price seems a bit high.

#5 Matt Saternus

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 03:31 PM

Huh... I've been playing around with the Ping app, and trying to become more consistent with my stroke. In your final thoughts you asked about knowing your stroke type, and the Ping App is good for determining that. Combined with the Cyclops, it looks like it would be a pretty decent combination...

I'd be interested in one if it was cheaper (or free ;) ), but not for $100... I could use that money for a lesson and get advice from someone who would probably be able to help more...


And how durable is this? The plastic looks pretty thick...


That's a GREAT point about the PING App (I love MGS readers, so smart). If you use the PING App, you can get an idea about what your "natural" stroke is, and then work to ingrain it with The Putting Cyclops.

As far as durability, I have no concerns. The plastic is plenty thick and the hinges are sturdy enough.

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#6 RoverRick

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 04:04 PM

I am a straight back and through putter guy and recently during the round while others are lining up their putts or whatever, I have walked over to the flag stick laying on the ground and made some practice putting strokes just to ensure that I have a straight putter path and not pulling or pushing it.

I guess that would not work for you swinging gate putters.

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#7 Jmikecpa

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 10:48 PM

Great review and it seems like a quality product. The design is very interesting in that it fits almost all strokes and putter types. I personally putt SBST and in the past I have used an aid that I put together myself out of some angle plastic and this is a huge improvement over my design.

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#8 dunk7

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:00 PM

I really need a putting training device...Cyclops please help me!

#9 MidMoMan

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:17 PM

I've never been a training aid kind of user.
Also, I can putt... is it just me that thinks putting is the easiest part of the game?
I mean, I'm closest to the hole of any shot, I'm using the shortest (unless you use those silly long putters) club in my bag.
It seems it should be the easiest?

#10 DogPro

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 01:10 AM

I do think repetition can ingrain your stroke. So practicing with this makes sense.

As far as hiding the putter head goes I prefer looking at the hole when I practice.
This helps you focus on the line and speed. You'll be amazed at how many you make!

#11 JonasVenture

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 03:29 AM

Interesting. I can't imagine dropping 12 strokes though...
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#12 RoverRick

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 04:24 AM

Interesting. I can't imagine dropping 12 strokes though...


You know, I read that and thought, yeah right. But I should order one because since I have averaged 28 putts a round and 28 - 12 = 16 then that means it also improves my chipping because I am going to chip in at least 2 times per round. Or maybe, I will finally get a hole in one. Every round. :D

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:taylormade-small: SLDR 10.5 on a Miyazaki C Kua 43S

:taylormade-small: Rescue 11 16.5 on a Fujikura Motore F1 S

:titelist-small: 909H 19 on a Project X PXv 6.0

:benhogan-small: CFT 21 & 24 on Project X PXv 6.0

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:mizuno-small: MP68 6-P on KBS C Taper Lite S

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#13 R.P. Jacobs II

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 04:40 PM

Matt, have you had the chance to try/use the TaylorMade TR3 Tru Path training aid...Though it doesn't have the bells and whistles of this device, it does have SBST/ARC rails to assist in "grooving a stroke,along with a base that can be used to measure ball placement & back stroke length..I only use the SBST rail & it can be used indoors or on the green...Nice carrying bag & it's only $44.99(suggested retail)...I guess I'm skeptical of the yips claim, & I might be being a little hard here, though if one can't focus on the ball(or for a few, the hole), without following the putterhead going back, they've got larger issues than a mediocre putting stroke...Nice review..Fairways & Greens 4ever

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#14 Matt Saternus

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:00 PM

Matt, have you had the chance to try/use the TaylorMade TR3 Tru Path training aid...Though it doesn't have the bells and whistles of this device, it does have SBST/ARC rails to assist in "grooving a stroke,along with a base that can be used to measure ball placement & back stroke length..I only use the SBST rail & it can be used indoors or on the green...Nice carrying bag & it's only $44.99(suggested retail)...I guess I'm skeptical of the yips claim, & I might be being a little hard here, though if one can't focus on the ball(or for a few, the hole), without following the putterhead going back, they've got larger issues than a mediocre putting stroke...Nice review..Fairways & Greens 4ever


No, I haven't seen that one yet, but I will look it up. At that price, it's got a head start on the "Value" portion.

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#15 Jgolf

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:18 PM

The adjustability options for the swing arc make this a much more enticing option. While I doubt any of their claims are realistic, based on my experiences with similar products they can be worth the money. A comparison would be very interesting.




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