Golf Tips for the Belly Putter Technique

By Denise Sullivan
Belly putters can work to keep your hands stable through the stroke, give one a try to improve your performance on the green.
Belly putters can work to keep your hands stable through the stroke, give one a try to improve your performance on the green.

Belly putters are designed to keep your hands and wrists stable on the stroke. The end of the club is anchored against the golfer's stomach, which keeps the putter moving in a straight line. While there has been some controversy on the ethics of using belly putters in United States Golf Association and pro tour events, top players like Sergio Garcia, Colin Montgomerie and Vijay Singh have at times used them to correct putting problems that have plagued them for their entire careers.

Choose the Right Size

Belly putters are available in a wide range of lengths to fit golfers of any height. If your club is not the right size, it will affect your posture when setting up for the putt. To test a belly putter's length, stand in your normal putting stance and let the end of the club rest against your stomach. Start with a club that contacts your body at approximately 3 inches above the waist. Place your hands on the grip as if you were putting to make sure the belly putter is not forcing you to stand up too high in your stance.

How to Grip the Club

Set up in your regular putting stance and lean the end of the club against your body. You may be able to use the belly putter without adjusting your normal putting grip. Try this first, but if it doesn't work, change to a grip modified for belly putters. Lean forward until your stomach presses into the club and place your dominant hand on the bottom of the grip. Point your index finger toward the ground to brace the club shaft. Wrap your non-dominant hand around the top of the grip with the knuckles facing away from you. Keep your hands loose on the shot and let the club swing back and forth like a pendulum.

Practice With a Plan

Do not waste time aimlessly putting the ball around the practice green. Set up in different places and hit 50 putts from each spot, paying particular attention to the force needed to hit the ball the appropriate distance. This drill is intended to help you adjust the speed of your putts, so do not worry about whether they are accurate. Once you are comfortable putting from a variety of distances, you can work on aligning the club face to hit the ball on line. Lay a string on the green that runs from the ball to the hole on a flat line. Hit a practice putt and watch the path of the ball. Use the string as a guide and rotate your stance to the left or right to bring the line of your putt closer to the string.

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