Save Strokes: Don’t Forget to Go to the Practice Green

Why didn’t I spend 5 valuable minutes on the practice green getting a feel for the green before teeing off?

Use Coupon Code 908 and save $10. Reg. Price $79.95 for component clubhead. On Sale for only $69.95.

Use Coupon Code 908 and save $10. Reg. Price $79.95 for component clubhead. On Sale for only $69.95.

If you are like me and you have a pristine day waiting after work, you race to the golf course to play a quick nine holes or whatever you can get in. Just the other day was a typical end of the summer evening, warm and humid, but quite comfortable. The best part, at least for me, was the parking lot was sparse and when I got to the first tee I could see I had the whole course to myself.

I was thinking I would be a little rusty after another bout with poison ivy that sidelined me for a few weeks. But I was able split the center of the fairway on the first hole with my trusty Dynacraft Prophet ICT driver. Before I left home, I even took a couple minutes to exchange shafts to one (Cadence Blue) I had used successfully in the past.

Cadence Blue Shafts Only $19.95 each

Well, after just missing the green on the second shot and pitching to 8 feet, I proceeded to 3-putt. I felt I was holding a foreign object in my hands. Did I all of the sudden forget how to putt since the last time I played? I hope none of you have experienced this lately, but I proceeded to three-putt 4 of the first 7 holes.

Why didn’t I spend 5 valuable minutes on the practice green getting a feel for the green before teeing off? After all, that is why it is positioned usually between the clubhouse and the first tee. You can’t miss it! One excuse was “I might have been stuck behind the threesome that rolled into the parking after I did.” But I am sure they would have let a single play through. No, I got caught up in the excitement of the moment and wanted to get in the round before dusk. However five minutes would not have mattered when it was all said and done as I had enough daylight to play several more holes. If I could spend a couple minutes swapping out shafts in my driver to improve my game, I could certainly spend some time honing another part of my game.

You must admit that a beautiful night on a golf course is never bad unless you had a terrible round. At least I ended up on a good note. A well hit drive on the last hole followed by a perfectly struck 7-iron (prototype Dynacraft Prophet Tour) leaving a potential birdie putt that I barely missed. By that time I had finally found my old and yet still not great putting stroke. You might say a little too late.

A good lesson should be learned for all from my lack of common sense. Turn a mediocre round into a good round by spending only a few minutes on the practice green. This is one quick way to help lower your golf score.

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  1. Peter Langan says:

    Do you have a tall putter that has good weight and a curved sole………could be used as a regular tall putter or a sidesaddle style, all in one?

    And, yes, your story rings a bell regarding rushing to the first tee after a quick half bucket of balls, and then having that foreign object in my hands on the first green……….and having the touch of a blacksmith for the first few holes.

  2. Jeff Summitt says:


    The only ones that could work for a long (not belly) putter are the Acer CB3 and CB5. But you will need to use the broomstick hosel adapter (code H001) and the Apollo 53″ putter shaft in order to get the right lie angle and fit.

  3. John Schneider says:

    Jeff, what kind of golf industry worker are you!?! You are supposed to practice your stroke and alignment in the office on company time! Then when you leave, you only have to spend 90 seconds on the practice green. Shesh Jeff, where are your priorities?

  4. Gary Johnson says:

    Jeff: Suggest you try looking at the hole instead of the ball when making your putting stroke. Much like a basketball player looking at the hoop when shooting free throws, by focusing on the hole your brain will give your muscles the “feel” as to how hard to hit the putt. And since most putts are missed long or short (mostly short), your eyesight will provide the necessary information to the brain which will in turn transmit to the muscles. Second, as soon as the putter is behind the ball, hit it. Don’t stand and think about what you’re doing…rely on your instincts. Finally, the putting grip should be relaxed (soft hands).

    My 2 cents worth.

  5. Barry Nelson says:

    Jeff pointed me toward the CB5 for a long putter a couple of months ago. Thank Goodness!! It’s about the only club I’m hitting well right now! The CB5 with the Apollo long shaft and Karma 2-piece grip make for a great long putter with very low cost. Note: I MUCH prefer the Karma 2-piece grip to the Winn 2-piece grip (for a fraction of the price).

  6. FairwayJack says:

    Try putting like Jack Nicklaus used to. Hunched over, an open stance and left elbow at 90 degrees pointing down the line. Then just rock your shoulders…good luck !

    PS: Poison ivy…hate hate HATE that stuff

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