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I think my eyes are starting to fail. My putting has been abysmal when it comes to the actual act of putting. I no longer know where to look. The ball, a dimple on the ball, a speck in front of the ball, the putter, a specific part of the putter.

Really messing with the direction of the putts. Distance control is still good (Timing is still solid in the act of putting, I regret the timing being to the beat of the Bee Gee's Staying Alive now, but it works and it's easy to recall the pace). Now the putter head is wobbling like crazy (Even with an armlock).

I have bought (Because it was cheap) a Cleveland 10.5 Frontline bladed mallet and painted the main section white to help. It seems to have helped a bit (Easier to focus on), so I've just (poorly) painted a line on it to hopefully focus on a contrast.

What are others experiences with being able to focus on the clubhead well? I was thinking maybe a black dot would have been better instead of a line.

(Funnily enough, it doesn't seem to have affect my full swing... Possibly because I never watch the ball in the first place!)

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I focus on a dimple toward the back of the ball.  Regarding the issues getting the putt on line, you may want to test your head/eye position in your set up. 

I found i miss the line to the right if my head /eyes are directly over the ball.  When I am there the line I think is directly at the cup is really out to the right about 3" on a 10' putt.  If i have my head/eyes over a spot about 8" closer to my body instead of over the ball then the line I 'see' actually is toward the cup.

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My problem is a bit different, it's more about depth perception. I had a detached retina followed by a cataract in that eye and those events have led to my either leaving putts short of well past the hole. I realize that sounds like an excuse for poor putting but did not have that much of a problem before the eye problems. I have tried just using the good eye, closing the bad eye and that just seems to make it worse. Anybody have a similar problem and if so how did you deal with it? Same issue judging distance but I can manage that with range finder and playing partners. Thanks

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16 hours ago, Shapotomous said:

I focus on a dimple toward the back of the ball.  Regarding the issues getting the putt on line, you may want to test your head/eye position in your set up. 

I found i miss the line to the right if my head /eyes are directly over the ball.  When I am there the line I think is directly at the cup is really out to the right about 3" on a 10' putt.  If i have my head/eyes over a spot about 8" closer to my body instead of over the ball then the line I 'see' actually is toward the cup.

Agree 100. I’ve recently had the same problem and found I just couldn’t see the line, I have switched to a triple track putter and put the TT on my ball which definitely helps me, however this video really helped me a ton. I re-examined my length/lie of my putter once I figured out where my eyes need to be to see the line, in my case it’s directly over the ball, maybe a tick back, I went from a 34 to 35” and my lie stayed at 71 degrees, this slight change really helped me, but it all had to do with eye placement, which will be different for everyone.

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I think in putting, it is not that important to look at the ball. I have a friend who is a professional golfer and very good putter who looks at the hole when putting,

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When that sort of thing happens to me, (distance control remains fine but I’m missing right or left) , it’s not what I’m looking at or not looking at, it’s grip pressure.  I’m right handed, if my right hand is gripping the putter harder than the left, my putts will tend to go right.  If my left hand is gripping harder, putts will tend to go left.  To check how hand pressure effects you, stand over a putt, intentionally grip one hand harder than the other and lift your putter slightly.  The face will open or close depending on which hand is gripping more firmly.  Correcting this is simple, equalize the grip pressure on each hand with the putter just barely off the ground at setup.  You will know when you are balanced when the putter face is square to the target, not open or closed.  Last thing, the grip should be light but firm.  A light grip with equalized pressure will result in a more steady stroke.  Your eyes might not be bad.  Try this a few times, it takes practice but produces good results.  Equilibrating grip pressure is part of my pre shot routine, it takes 3 or 4 seconds.

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I'm definitely going to check the grip pressure by that method.  My stroke feels the same but missing to the right on a flat surface.

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I had a retinal detachment around 7 years ago and it really messed up my putting.  The retinal has since been repaired, but my dominant eye was lessened to about 90%.

Several things helped.  1) Rhythm is important (Staying Alive...)  2) i read a book "7 Days in Utopia".  In that book they talk about a lagging drill of tossing washers into an orange can.  That drill can be applied to your distance control.  Imaging you are rolling the ball into the hole under-handed.  It works for me.  3) look into the concept of "Vector Putting.  Essentially it means figuring the high spot within 3 feet of the hole and aiming toward it.  Dave Pelz has some good advice on this.  4) Adapt your spot putting.  It means you aim at a spot 12" to 18" ahead of your ball in line with your 'high spot'.  From there it is all rhythm.

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For years I've been putting without looking at the ball. It started as a tip from a scratch player. I was complaining that my stroke was really herky jerky. He told me to go play a couple rounds just looking at the hole. It worked great. I went back to looking at the ball and the trouble returned. So I went back to looking at the hole. While doing that on shorter puts I realized I could see both ball and hole. I then experimented looking somewhere on my line ahead of the ball.  On 22-15 footers it's about a foot to 18"ahead of the ball. As a result of this my speed improved and putting has become my strength. 

Here's the trick to it. Find your line. Square the putter. Trace a line back from the hole to the ball and back out to that foot or so in front of it. All the while, keep that face sqaure, dont wait dont think, just let it go.

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I would get a putting mirror for practice.  Focus solely on the same setup every time. Notice not just where your head is positioned but what that feels like so you can replicate the feel on the course when the mirror isn't there. I also incorporated Dustin Johnson's routine of lining up the putt, then pulling the putter closer so my practice strokes are heel up. I never move my feet, so I don't get off line anymore stepping into the putt. My putts per round are 2-3 strokes less since I started this.

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8 hours ago, Blayne Hobbs said:

I think in putting, it is not that important to look at the ball. I have a friend who is a professional golfer and very good putter who looks at the hole when putting,

 

3 hours ago, Agent 87 said:

For years I've been putting without looking at the ball. It started as a tip from a scratch player. I was complaining that my stroke was really herky jerky. He told me to go play a couple rounds just looking at the hole. It worked great. I went back to looking at the ball and the trouble returned. So I went back to looking at the hole. While doing that on shorter puts I realized I could see both ball and hole. I then experimented looking somewhere on my line ahead of the ball.  On 22-15 footers it's about a foot to 18"ahead of the ball. As a result of this my speed improved and putting has become my strength. 

Here's the trick to it. Find your line. Square the putter. Trace a line back from the hole to the ball and back out to that foot or so in front of it. All the while, keep that face sqaure, dont wait dont think, just let it go.

My pro told me I had "hands of stone"; I was a terrible putter.  I tried everything, but my putting improved when I started looking at the hole about 6 years ago.  I started out with 5 footers or less.  I could see the ball out of the corner of my eye when looking at the hole, so it wasn't uncomfortable.  Longer distances took much longer to get used to, but I stuck with it.  I found I could more easily judge distances.  I have to line up my ball to my intended line; line up my putter to my ball, and trust my stroke.  I became even more consistent after I got fitted for my Ping putter.

It's very similar to throwing horseshoes, darts, or shooting baskets.  You learn how much energy to put into the shot for the distance.

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If that is happening regularly I think it is time to change your golf ball, probably something brighter than the standard white ball. Do you normally wear sunglasses when it is sunny or very bright as that might help reduce the eye fatigue. You might need to change to polarised sunglasses over regular sunglasses. It might be time to get change the way your ball is marked especially if your usual mark is very small. Focusing on the ball through the putt is defiently key to ensure that you have read the green right. 

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To start - I'll second everyone who mentioned practicing with a mirror and making sure your putter is fit to you, so that we can rule out alignment issues. Assuming you've done that and we know the alignment of the putter isn't the problem - what if instead of focusing on where to look, you tried not looking at all?  Admittedly, I haven't tried the eyes closed approach on the course, but maybe it would be worth experimenting with putting from various distances with your eyes closed like Sergio?

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This might help or not, but I'll throw it out there.

My putting gets worse when a feature of the clubhead is my focus. For putting (much more than on a full swing), I've found that keeping my head still through the stroke helps me create the impact that I want.

A few years back, I read a tip about imagining a coin (or a spot) underneath the ball, and focusing your eyes on that all through the stroke. That idea keeps my eyes from following my clubhead back or from "peaking" up at impact to follow the ball.

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I have to stop from following  the putter back with my eyes. I think I’m so concerned about mechanics and takeaway that I developed this bad habit actually a drill that has helped is putting while looking at the hole taking my mind off of perfect contact and roll 

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  • 5 weeks later...

All great suggestions.  As far as a putting mirror, I used an old shoe fitting mirror and a laser level when fitting putters.  It allowed for instant feedback on putter level, face alignment and ball position and direction.  It helped many golfers find the right putter, stance, rhythm, putting motion.

S/G

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