One of the more fiery and passionate golfers to ever play professional golf is Paul Azinger. Now a full-time golf commentator for NBC, Azinger (or “Zinger”) had one of the best short games on the PGA Tour.
But, it wasn’t always so. As Zinger explains in his The Azinger Way video, when he first got on Tour, he was statistically one of the worst putters. In a short time, he was able to turn that stat around and become of the best.
How did he do this? A few things:
- He changed his putting grip (moving his hands more opposite of each other on the putting grip – almost as though they were on the side of the grip).
- He was able to get his putts started on line better through a series of putting drills.
- And, he shortened his putting stroke.
What was the putting drill Zinger used to improve his putting?
In order to ensure he was getting his putts on line better and to create a more efficient putting stroke, Zinger utilized a putting drill that enabled him to become one of the games best putters.
What he would do is to start putting from about three feet from the hole and would essentially “push” the golf ball into the hole. If he was able to putt 20 of these in the hole without missing, he would move on to putting them with as minimal backstroke as possible and putting it in. If he was able to make 20 of these putts, he would then move on to putting them with a normal stroke. The idea is to have acceleration through the stroke, to avoid the deceleration which is common among golfers (and poor putters).
Zingers putting stroke was certainly efficient and a much shorter backstroke than what you might see typically among tour pros. But, it was effective and he made a lot of putts. I never sensed watching him that he would miss from shorter range.
Here’s Zinger’s video where he goes into further explanation about the drill and how you can apply it to improve your putting (due to the age of the video / however they recorded it, there is some static).
I’d love to know if you applied this drill to your game and how it improved your putting.