More thoughts on Adam Scott and putting

Some people might think that Adam Scott would putt better if he was able to hit the ball closer to the hole. There’s no doubt that if Adam was able to nail one of those 7 approaches in the playoff, he would have won.

One of the commentators (I think it was Ian Baker-Finch) said for a player of Scott’s caliber, it was unacceptable he didn’t hit one of his wedge shots closer. That may be true.

I see things a little differently. If Adam was more relaxed and sure of his putting game I have no doubt he would make better and more freer swings with his approach clubs. Poor putting is a festy disease. It gets you down and affects your entire game.

I remember well when the putting yips riddled my game. I couldn’t walk onto the golf course without feeling tense and nervous. And because poor putting was at the front of my mind, I’d try too hard to get iron shots close to the hole. I’d shoot at pins I should have ignored and felt extra pressure to get chips, pitches and bunker shots inside the leather.

I was a basket case! The worse my putting game the more hopeless I was when I was in striking distance of the green.

Better ball striking alone is rarely the fix. It often makes it worse. When you flush the ball down the middle and onto the green but keep missing the hole, you start to feel like you’re wasting strokes. And it gets frustrating because playing partners and competitors shoot the same (or better) scores despite hitting it all over. It almost seems unfair.

The solution is to lighten up. See putting for what it is – a black art that is simply rolling the ball along the ground. Sometimes the ball goes in and sometimes it doesn’t. Adding to the complexity of a simple task is rarely the best option. Losing sleep over missed putts is definitely a waste of time and energy.

One more thought: Adam doesn’t need a caddy to tell him how or where to putt. Steve Williams brilliance wasn’t in reading greens (or anything else). It was in simplicity. He said the bare minimum and backed himself. No second guessing. Adam needs to start believing in his amazing talent and ability and stop listening to all the garbage. He needs putt the ball into the hole…

 

 

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5 Comments

  • Tony Lucas

    Reply Reply December 18, 2014

    I remember watching golf there on one occasion when they interviewed Loren Roberts and asked him what he thought about when putting and his reply was quite simple he didn’t worry too much about line and such so much but was concerned more about speed . As he said if the speed is not right the putt won’t go in .
    Cheers Lukey

  • Adam

    Reply Reply December 19, 2014

    Makes sense. Though the more you free up the more likely youll hit the putt too far, like I do. When im relaxed, basically, I hit the ball farther than usual, so my putts go about 5 feet past. All I do to fix this is simply aim a bit shorter. The putts have good speed then.

    Adam Scott needs to go back to what made him a great putter. Basically, putting isnt that difficult. I bet that he if and when he was a great putter he kept things simple.

    Cameron, one question. Tiger’s chipping. Dang, he fatted like 8 or 9 of them last week. What should he do to strike them better do you think? Just curious.

    Adam

  • Grayden Provis

    Reply Reply December 19, 2014

    Best putting strategy of all: think about NOTHING. Be miles away mentally and you’ll almost certainly putt better than you do when you “try”. It was proven to me one day on the practice green when I was “honing” my stroke – at least I thought I was…in hindsight I was just re-enforcing negative thoughts about what a poor putter I was…. but anyway, my mate walks up while I’m putting and starts telling me a story. I got really engrossed in it and after a while realised that far more putts were going in than when I was “applying myself”! The really funny thing is that I think thats unusual. I seem to be able to brush my teeth OK while thinking about something else and thats a far more complicated task. Definitition of insanity: keep doing the same thing and hope for a different outcome. Try just going out and putting completely free – don’t give a thought to weight or line or anything else. Just react. Putt quickly. I dare you.

  • Adam

    Reply Reply January 12, 2015

    Hi cameron. Heres my approach to golf improvement due to my thinking on it.

    I know this has nothing to do with putting, but I have to post it somewhere.

    First, I want to explain that, “just play golf” has no goal. You need to know where youre going to improve. Just playing may be more enjoyable, but you’re certainly not going to improve without a goal in mind. Lets say you want to better your ballstriking. Just hitting the thing doesnt work. Nor does experimentation, it just makes it worse. You actually have to work at it. Not all swing instruction is bad. Sometimes it helps. But its best if you make the changes subconscious. Mostly, if you work towards your ball striking, youll get better, as long as its what you really want.

    Success is the gradual realization of a goal.

    If you want to shoot par, you work towards it. Even if you have swing instruction, you can still be scratch. Ive seen this repeated over and over again.

    Let me explain the real reason you shot 64 after 12 months cameron. First off, you werent very good. First two rounds over 150. You improved because you wanted to. You made that your life. You kept working at it for a year and finally shot a par round. You werent just playing golf. It may seem that way, but in truth you had a goal, somewhere to go. You wanted to shoot the lowest score you could. Just playing golf has no effect. Im not criticizing, but I am disagreeing with your methods.

    Auto golf is fine if you want to learn better striking or better chipping to a small degree. You really wont improve your score by much more than maybe 6 shots. But if you really want to shoot par, you have to make some kind of effort.

    First, have a goal in mind.
    second, work towards that goal.
    last, once you reach it, once you are successful, set more goals above it.

    This is my golf improvement method.

    • Scott Barrow

      Reply Reply January 20, 2015

      Adam I agree with what you suggest improves golf performance in relation to goal setting etc. Without clear, defined direction we could go anywhere, and certainly not where we’d like.

      I also think you have completely misinterpreted Cam’s message if you think he’s advocating purposeless random hitting of balls. Read it all again. Obviously there is a reason anyone goes to play golf. And many people, including you, create specific intentions and goals. We know this works and is required. Recognise that much of Cam’s writing is around HOW to “play your best golf” (as he consistently promises). The best, most efficient, sustainable way to reach our goals.

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