Today’s tip comes courtesy of PGA Master Professional Jerry Tucker. He was twice named by Golf Digest as a top 100 teacher, has been a four-time South Florida player of the year, played 13 major championships and set 19 course records, as well as achieving several other accomplishments and accolades. So he certainly knows what he’s talking about. This Tucker tip: how to determine the length of the backswing when putting.
Years ago, Payne Stewart’s instructor Chuck Cook suggested we take the putter back one inch for every foot of the putt’s length. For example, you swing the putter back 15 inches for a 15-foot putt. This was (and is) great advice as many golfers incorrectly take the putter back the same distance for all putts. They then vary the force on the forward swing, but that is a poor distance controller as the stroke becomes uneven and asymmetrical. We should strive for an even-paced stroke that goes back and forth the same amount, with neither acceleration nor deceleration. For more distance, simply lengthen the backswing and let the putter “swing itself” forward. By the way, the inch = 1 foot rule of thumb still works great when the stimpmeter reading of the green is a 9.