Fitness & Coaching Editor puts the "Perfect Putter" system to the test
Please note: Neither The World of Golf nor the Author received any compensation or remuneration from Perfect Putter
With all of the various swing and training aids on the market, it can be difficult at times to figure out which ones work better than others. In this installment, our Fitness and Coaching Editor, tests a device that he believes can help your putting.
For most golfers, putts account for approximately 45 % to 50% or more of their total score. Of course, one of the best ways to lower your score is to improve on your putting.
One of the better training aids for improving your putting is the "Perfect Putter".
This training aid is one of the more practical aids that golfers can benefit from when practicing their putting. This putting device has caught the attention from golfers of all levels looking to improve green reading and speed control.
The perfect putter device can be used by golfers of all different skill levels, allowing golfers to visualize speed and breaks (curvature) on a putting surface.
This device was designed for players to determine the perfect speed and break to any putt. A unique feature of this device is that it shows the player how to hit the same putt in multiple ways – depending on the desired speed (or sometimes called "pace").
The perfect putter acts as a "stimp" meter, providing feedback on how "fast" the greens are on any slope/putting surface. A "stimpmeter" was designed to provide a consistent, relevant measure of a green's speed. When the ball is dropped from the "0" mark on the ramp, the ball will roll out its full distance. The speed of the green is determined by measuring or pacing the distance from the perfect putter ramp to your ball.
To properly determine the speed or stimp of the green, you would then repeat the process in reverse, placing the perfect putter ramp where the ball stopped on the first roll, and rolling the ball back in the direction that it had travelled initially. You measure this distance the same way that you measured the first roll. Then you add the two distances together and divide by two ( average the two measurements out ). The averaged number is the stimp speed and is expressed as a number – for example, "the speed of the green is 10 on the stimp".
For you and your practice, you need not be so thorough in determining the "stimp speed", a single roll in the direction that you are practicing your putts is all you need for your practice.
Why is the perfect putter essential on the road?
When I spent time travelling to tour events, I noticed many elite players using this device in their preparations on the practice greens. It is important because green construction varies, from one geographic region to another. This often means that course architects and/or course superintendents are designing their putting greens with specific types of grass – usually grass that is native to the climactic area or region. This is done so as to achieve the most reliable greens year round, but it is not without its challenges. So when a tour player travels to a different region with its different green surfaces, a player must adjust to the current conditions and grass types given for that tournament venue.
Some weeks, in the more northern climates, you play on Bent grass; in others, Bermuda grass, and its ability to tolerate high temperatures and sunshine, is preferred in the southern climates. Some older style golf courses, predominantly on the west coast, you will encounter Poa annua greens, offering a bumpy surface depending the time of the day.
No matter what surface you are playing on that week, it is vital to have the information for determining correct lines and pace so that a player has the best chance for making as many putts as possible. Many players use the perfect putter to determine how much putts break and given that, they can calculate the slope. Players and caddies collect information on factors such as slope, using a digital level to understand the breaks on surfaces.
For example, a 0.5 % slope will break considerably less then a 2.5 % slope. Depending on the surface played that week, some types of grasses "break" considerably less than others. Bent grass is known to be a surface that better holds a true line of your putt, whereas Bermuda grass is known to "grab" the ball depending on the direction that the grain is growing. Generally, later in the day the grain is longer, impacting the line of a putt more dramatically. Having all of this information in preparation for a tournament is vital for the player's performance in that tournament. Remember, putting accounts for approximately 30 - 50 % of a players score, depending on skill level.
The Perfect Putter & How you use it
The perfect putter can be set up anywhere on the practice green. You can use it for a "right to left putt" (a putt that curves from the right to left), a "left to right putt" (which curves the opposite way) and you can practice putting with some uphill slope, downhill slope or side hill slope.
The perfect putter creates a perfect roll, providing golfers with accurate feedback on what the putt is doing.
Once you have determined what kind of putt you want to practice, simply put the perfect putter in position and begin to test the putt.
You may have to adjust the device to find the right break depending on what speed you want. The higher you drop the ball, the faster and further the ball will travel; the lower you drop it, the ball rolls with less pace.
Why is it effective?
The perfect putter simply teaches a player how to visualize break and speed for putts up to 35 feet. It provides quick feedback, allowing the player to adjust the putt as necessary. What most players fail to understand, is how important "speed" and the "start line" are when putting. Most players also do not realize how often you underestimate your start line when you are actually playing on the course.
The beauty of the perfect putter training system is that you can visualize the putt rolling to the hole with a face on view ( looking from behind the ball ). You have your whole body facing the hole and you can see all of the green characteristics when watching the putt. It is much easier to see the line of a putt when visualizing from a face on perspective, rather then a parallel side view. Giving the player the opportunity to see putts going in and knowing your start line, adds confidence when practicing your putting.
How it can improve your game
If you are a player who struggles with poor green reading ability or has poor speed control, this training device is for you. This device is used by 135+ pros on the PGA Tour, and many more professionals world-wide. The device simply gives you insider information on what the putt does, adding confidence to your practice routine. Seeing is believing, so watch more putts fall on the practice green. I can guarantee you will sink more putts on the golf course.
Practicing putting is something that most players simply do not do enough, but it’s the most effective way to lower your scores on the course.
Here are some practice drills with the "perfect putter" system:
Straight putts uphill and downhill
Side hill putts right to left
Side hill putts left to right
Downhill putts left to right
Down hill putts right to left
Uphill putts left to right
Uphill putts right to left
From 1 foot to 35 feet in length.
Set up the putting gates to determine mid points in the break. This indicates exactly where to hit the ball if the stoke and speed match up!
Happy putting and enjoy sinking more putts.
In the video below, the author demonstrates how the perfect putter is used to determine the appropriate line to the hole and the amount of speed or pace needed for that putt.
Austin Hughes is a professional golfer having played in professional events over the past few seasons. He graduated from Dalton State University (Georgia) where he attended on a Golf Scholarship. He has also caddied for various professional players in tour events and qualifiers.