It happens to the best of us:
You’re playing a fantastic round of golf and everything seems to be clicking. Your drives are sailing down the fairway, your iron shots are getting you exactly where you need to be, and you’ve even sunk some tough puts.
You’re half-way through the back 9 now and you’ve got a manageable 6 foot putt for birdie.
The second you make contact with the ball, you know something’s off—and you hopelessly watch your ball sail past the hole about a foot off target.
What the heck?!
If only you could know exactly what caused you to unceremoniously blow it just as your round was starting to look like a personal best. Was it tempo? Did you misread the green?
It’s likely that the answer has something to do with where your putter struck the ball. More specifically, it means you failed to hit the sweet spot on the putter.
But how would you know that, aside from us telling you? If putters don’t specifically tell us when we’re failing to hit the sweet spot, how can we get better at consistently hitting it?
These are questions we will answer in the post ahead, as we dive into the importance of the sweet spot and some solutions that will have you hitting the sweet spot on every putt!
Let’s jump in!
To a novice golfer, a putter head is a putter head. It doesn’t have distinct sections, and the concept of a sweet spot isn’t really emphasized.
Sure, most golfers—even new ones—can logically infer that they should probably make an effort to hit the ball with the center of the club, but that’s about as far as the knowledge goes.
What most golfers don’t know, is that hitting the ball even a fraction of an inch away from the sweet spot can drastically affect the trajectory, accuracy and power of a putt.
If you want to get scientific with it, hitting the ball with any area of the putter other than the sweet spot will have adverse effects on distance control, since the bad contact "reduces the efficiency of energy transfer from the club head to the ball."
So while you would think perfect speed and tempo would all but guarantee perfect distance, but that’s far from being the case. The contact point with the ball matters just as much.
There’s a danger to ignoring the sweet spot for too long as a golfer. Golfers who consistently miss the sweet spot and don’t know it may end up overcompensating with other elements of their game, like modifying their speed, tempo, or the way they read the green.
These are all bad habits, since they weren’t the issue in the first place. They will also make you a terribly inconsistent golfer, since constantly hitting the ball with different parts of the putter face will make each of your putts different from the last.
The only way to have good distance control is to consistently find the sweet spot. Otherwise, energy transfer to the ball will never be the same from stroke to stroke.
When you hit the ball with the wrong part of the putter face, the face will twist on impact. This will also modify the spin axis of the ball, causing your putt to be less accurate.
When you tee off and miss the sweet spot on your driver, the spin axis is also modified—but it tends to be quite a bit more subtle since the ball is in the air and traveling a much longer distance.
With a putt, you can’t afford to be off—even by a little.
In the introduction, we touched on the concept of knowing a putt was going to be inaccurate as soon as you hit the ball. That happens because even the most subtle twist of your club after an errant impact with the ball gives you enough feedback to know something is off.
This feedback is essential, because it helps golfers improve the consistency with which the hit the sweet spot.
For golfers who do know about the sweet spot on the putter and take it seriously, focus tends to immediately go to hitting the ball with the horizontal center of the club with consistency.
But that’s only part of the answer.
The center of the sweet spot also needs to line up with the center (or equator) of the ball.
It tends to feel more natural for a putter to almost skim the ground as it travels toward to ball. But this can cause the putter to get too far under the ball, which will result in poor energy transfer.
Instead, it’s important for golfers to realize that the center of the sweet spot should be hitting the center of the ball both horizontally and vertically.
This can be quite difficult to do with consistency if you have a normal putter.
While larger putters armed with a more forgiving sweet spot do exist, they don’t do the trick for more experienced golfers.
A serious golfer isn’t satisfied with a band aid for his putting woes—he wants to know exactly what’s wrong so he can fix it as quickly and effectively as possible.
According to Golf Digest,
“A large sweet spot will improve the quality of your misses, but no matter how large the sweet spot is, a miss is still a miss. Any time you miss the exact center of the clubface, you're going to lose something. That's why there's a trend among the best putters away from the large, forgiving putters. When a great pro like Phil Mickelson misses from 10 feet, he wants to know immediately if it was his stroke, a misread or if he missed the center of the clubface.”
So if large club faces and gimmicky putting aids aren’t the solution, how can I get better at putting?
That’s a great question—and we just so happen to have an answer.
There’s no debate that consistently striking the sweet spot will make you a better putter—and as we’ve found, regular putters don’t offer enough guidance or feedback to improve our muscle memory and let us know when and why a putt has gone awry.
That’s why we created the CenterPutt HC5, the only training putter equipped with a putter head that accentuates the sweet spot, helping golfers improve their muscle memory, accuracy and distance control.
The CenterPutt HC5 provides immediate and tactile feedback when you miss the sweet spot, leading to more consistency down the road. And more consistency means more efficient energy transfer, leading to better accuracy.
It’s time to get rid of those yips and stop missing manageable putts.
Use the CenterPutt HC5 to train your muscle memory and you’ll be hitting the sweet spot every single time.
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