Here recently I have been watching a lot more golf than normal, probably because I am so interested in improving my game and want to see what the pro's do. One thing that struck me odd, was the technique Bryson DeChambeau uses to putt. It is obviously not the typical pendulum style putt with that massively long putter. This intrigued me as I naturally wanted to know more about the technique and the equipment he used so that I could try it and see if it improved my game any. In this review I will be going over that very method of putting as well as the equipment I used to give it a try and what kind of results I found.
After doing research about what it takes to try the arm-lock putting method I found exactly what Bryson has in his bag. As you can imagine he has a custom length, loft, and lie angled putter that probably cost an arm and a leg to get, so I resorted to altering an extra putter I had to conform to the specs required of an arm-lock.
The putter I altered is a Ray Cook Silver Ray SR400, which is about $50 brand new at Academy. OEM length is 35" and it has a regular flex steel shaft with an aluminum head (Not really a fan of the putter but that another conversation). This is a very basic mallet style putter that has nice sight lines but a very lightweight head.
[Insert Picture of Shaft Length Comparison with Callaway Here]
The first alteration I had to do to the Ray Cook putter was to extend it up to almost my elbow joint which is 40" for me. This required me to put on a 5" shaft extension probably isn't the ideal way to get a longer shaft but considering it is just a putter I thought the structural integrity should hold up just fine. Unfortunately, my garage does not have as many tools as I want so I had to take the putter over to Dick's Sporting Goods to get all the work done.
The most important part of using the arm-lock method is getting a grip that is made specifically for this style of putting. I went with the Arm-Lock AL-2 Converter Grip because it seemed to be the best grip at the time of purchase. If any of you reading this know about this technique, then you probably noticed that the grip is actually installed incorrectly. I take 100% blame for this as I did not tell the fitter that this style of putting requires the flat side of the grip to be on the same plane as the putter face. I suppose next time I will remember to leave better notes with the fitter of what I want!
I am by no means a pro at the proper technique for using an arm-lock putter so I will keep this section rather short and just give the basics of how I understand it.
[Insert Picture of Putter Address Here]
From what I understand, the reason behind the arm-lock is that it isolates the movement of your leading wrist so that you can have a more consistent putt. When addressing the ball, your leading arm must be straight at the elbow with the top of the grip pushing into your leading forearm. By locking it in your leading forearm it naturally causes your head to be behind the ball (which in my opinion helps line the ball up with the target). When swinging, you rotate your chest and shoulders in unison, so that no joint moves independently causing a bad putt.
Coming into this trial I had high expectations for how this was going to perform. Prior to using this style of putter I was probably hitting my lines 20% of the time and I had terrible form. Once I started training with this style of putter probably 90% of my putts are on my lines. Given I do not have any statistics on shots made or shots missed because I had no idea about MGS' existence.
This putting style, even as a training aid, has helped me to hit straighter lines more consistently. The other day I broke out my old blade style putter that has a small sight mark on the head and I was able to hit straight, pure putts from the center of the head. I give credit to the rotational muscle memory I gained from the arm-lock putter.
To wrap up this unofficial review, I want to say that this putting style is not for everyone but is a very unique experience to try and do something that not many other people are doing! Let me know what y'all think and if you have any questions!
*More pictures coming soon!