5 Putting Drills You Need

5 Putting Drills: Erase 3 Putts And Shoot Lower Scores

The following article about these 5 putting drills you need and will be the only outline and explanations necessary to erase 3 putts and shoot lower scores.

Of course golfers know nothing in this game is easy, so stick with the 5 putting drills and continue to practice, the results will speak for themselves.

1: The Clock Putting Drill

Clock Putting Drill on practice greens

This is my favorite putting drill by far and one of the first methods of putting practice I was taught.

The clock putting drill aims to make putters dangerous at 3ft.

If you stay consistent with this drill then you can master the short putts and you won’t ever want that gimme again.

The Set Up

No training aids needed for this great putting drill. Just what should already be in your bag.

  • Ideally the following set up should be used on an area of the putting green with some slope to really help with varying breaks. Same as you would encounter on the golf course.

  • Begin by using one putter length or alignment rod (about 3 feet away) from the hole and place a tee to mark the spot.

  • Continue around the hole creating a 3 foot circle and place an additional 5 tees around the circle. There should now be 6 tees total.

  • Using your putter as the length guide again move back to make a 6 foot circle and repeat the steps.

  • You Should now have a 3 foot from the hole circle with 6 tees and a 6 foot from the hole circle with 6 tees.

The Practice Routine

  • Begin the clock putting drill by going around the 3 foot circle you created and sink all the putts at the tee locations.

  • IMPORTANT: If you miss a putt, even just 1 of the 6 you must start over from the beginning. This style of training will breed repetition, consistency, confidence, and create a more quality practice for you.

  • When all the 3 foot putts have been made without missing simply move to the 6 foot tees and repeat the process.

  • If you miss a putt on the 6 footers then you just start over on the 6 footers again not all the way back to the 3 footers.

Are you someone that really wants to go the extra mile like myself? Then do not consider the putting practice complete until you have made all 12 putts in a row without missing.

Doing it this way can seem tedious and get annoying. But if you do complete all 12 without missing you will be booming with confidence.

The best thing about any of the putting drills I will talk about including the clock drill is that you can change the distances from the hole to make it a little easier if just starting or harder to up your training.

Often times I will use the clock drill at distances of 5 feet away for the smaller circle and 10 feet away for the larger circle. These distances seem like ones I will see more often on the course.

2: The Meter Stick Putting Drill

Best golf alignment stick

This one does use a training aid but it is a simple one, Just your average meter stick that you can pick up at a number of places for very cheap. They can be pretty useful around the house too, so a solid purchase.

The meter stick putting drill can be an extremely challenging drill at first. Especially if you have trouble keeping your putter square at impact.

If that is the case then you are in luck because that is exactly the purpose of this drill.

The Set Up

This is a very straight forward set up. Take your meter stick and set up about 6 feet from the hole. You want the meter stick facing in the direction that is in line with the break of the putt.

For example if it is a totally straight line putt then your meter stick should be in line with the hole.

If it appears the the putt breaks to the left by about 2 inches or 1 ball then the meter stick should be in line about 2 inches to the right of the cup.

You may have to adjust the stick to meet the proper line on the first few putts and that is ok.

The Practice Routine

  • Place the ball on the end (furthest point from the hole) of the meter stick.

  • Square the face and hit the putt.

  • The ball staying flat on the meter stick for the entire length of the stick indicates that putter faces are square and your ball rolls well.

  • If the ball falls to the inside of the meter stick then your putter face is closed at impact. Vice versa, if the ball falls to the outside then your putters face is open at impact.

  • I like to continue this drill until I can hit 10 putts in a row that roll the full length of the meter stick.

One of the great things about this putting drill other than it will definitely help you consistently keep the putter face square is that you can do it anywhere.

Even if you are just at home with no putting green or holes to hit towards. You can pick a target, set up your meter stick and just try to hit putts square and off the other end.

3: The Double Gate Putting Drill

Speed control from three feet. Alignment aid, alignment rods

This is easily one of the best putting drills around.

The double gate putting drill is probably the most famous of all putting drills, due to it being used as a staple in the warm up routine of the world’s most famous golfer Tiger Woods.

To this day if you watch Tiger Woods warming up on the putting green before a competitive PGA round then you will see him use this drill.

Since he is easily one of the best putters in the world I would say this a drill to pay attention to and give a try.

The Set up

Again no training aids needed to practice putting.

  • Measure out a putt 6 feet away from the hole (2 putter lengths)

  • Set two tees about a putter head width apart from the start of the putt. This will be Gate number 1.

  • Set two more tees about a golf balls width apart and 3 feet in front of your first tee gate (halfway between gate 1 and the hole).

The Drill

  • Stroke putts, keeping the putter head square so it passes through gate number 1 without hitting either tee.

  • The ball should also start on line and stay on line for the first 3 feet to successfully pass through gate number 2. This one can be tricky due to the gate only being the width of a golf ball. But thats why we practice putting right?

  • If both the putter and the ball pass through their respective gates without making contact it is counted a success. This means the ball does not always have to go into the hole every putt. This is where speed is a factor.

  • Repeat for 10 successful attempts or practice for a half hour to build up the skill.

As I said about the previous drills, this can be set up at varying lengths as well.

I personally like using it with Gate number 1 being 3 feet from the hole and Gate number 2 set up at the hole. This helps ensure those pesky 3 foot putts are hit firm and square.

4: In The Zone Drill

The zone golf clubs

What I love about the in the zone putting drill is it can be turned into a game. Where just like golf the lowest score wins.

This is a great drill to help hit the ball with confidence when lag putting. Long distance putts are what amateur golfers struggle with the most on the course and if we can master this skill then lower scores are guaranteed.

The Set Up

Unlike some of the other putting exercises, we need a lot more space on the practice green for this one.

  • Start with picking a hole that you can putt to from distances of about 20 feet, 40 feet, and 50 feet.

  • Place a tee and 5 balls at each of these distances to mark them.

  • Go back to the hole and using one putter length or an alignment rod measure 3 feet behind the hole and place a tee to mark the distance.

The Drill

  • Start putting the 5 balls at the 20 foot mark.

  • If you sink a putt consider that a birdie.

  • Roll past the hole but within the 3 foot tee you placed then consider that a par.

  • Leave the putt short or roll it past the hole and past the 3 foot tee then that is a bogey.

  • Move on to the 5 balls at the 40 foot and the 50 foot marks and repeat the process.

The goal here is obvious I think. Ideally you would end up under par meaning you made a few putts.

If you missed then you hit them with enough touch to get past the hole (meaning they at least had a chance) but not so much they are not within the 3 foot mark.

In my opinion this is one of the best putting drills for lag putting. It is a great drill for distance control, hitting the same line, and dialing in that putting stroke.

IMPORTANT: This drill can be reversed to help keep the ball 3 feet below the hole as well. No golfer wants to have that 3 foot down hill slider putt to save par.

For this just take that 3 foot behind the hole tee and move it to 3 feet before the hole. Ideally you can do this on an up hill hole location.

All the same scoring rules and putting distances stay the same just with different targets.

5: Breadcrumbs Putting Drill

average golfer, short putting alignment aid for right handed golfers

Now onto the part of putting that leaves everyone questioning if their eyes are playing tricks on them. This is one of the best putting drills for READING THE PUTT.

Short putts, long putts it doesn’t matter in the golf game. Reading putts properly is a skill that must be practiced and nurtured constantly to improve your putting.

You could be doing the best putting drills ever but if the line isn’t right then none of that matters.

The Set Up

  • When beginning this putting drill start with short putts and work your way out to longer ones.

  • Pick a putt on the putting green with some good break to it.

  • Starting from the hole, choose based on your read where you think the ball will enter the hole and place a very small flat ball mark on that spot. (I like using dimes for this drill).

  • Work your way back to the ball placing ball marks every couple feet on the line you think the ball will follow all the way back to your golf ball.

The Drill

Now simply roll putts starting on your intended line. Did the ball follow your line with the correct speed, distance control, and go in the hole?

FANTASTIC! Hit the putt a few more times and find a new putt on the practice green to try on.

Did you miss the putt below the hole? This means you are under reading your putts.

Did you miss the putt above the hole? You guessed it, this means you are over reading your putts.

This is one of the best putting drills to analyze your putt read style so you can improve and know what your tendencies are.

Putting Everything Together

I have given you 5 of the best putting drills I know and use every time I am practicing or playing.

Three balls, get a better understanding with more putts

Use them, combine them, and stay consistent with your practice. The 3 putts will slowly disappear from your score card and the lower scores will come.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Bonus Game 3 Up

A game that I love and started doing with my high school golf team mates is called 3 up.

You and your opponent(s) pick a hole and each take turns holing putts to that hole.

If you hole out in 1 putt you get 2 points. If you 2 putt you get 1 point. If you 3 putt then 0 points.

How to Win

The first player to be up by 3 points wins the game.

How many hours a day do pros practice putting?

Each club’s schedule is set for each player, and the putter is approximately four hours of exercise every day.

These players take their short range game very seriously because that is where tournaments are won and lost.

Every shot is worth thousands if the shot is missed, so they’re trying to avoid as many mistakes as possible.

Want some more information about things like golf psychology or how to grip a club then head back to the home page for the Golfer’s Blog.

Keep your head down and hit em’ straight!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top