Putt Like Jordan Spieth: The Science Behind the Method

Thu, 04/07/2016

Jordan Spieth broke just about every putting record going in 2015 and if this year's US Masters is anything to go by, he will continue to dominate the game in 2016.

He has an incredibly positive rhythm, extra large grip on the handle and a cross hand grip but none of those are unique to Spieth. What sets Jordan's method apart is that from < 6 ft he looks at the hole while executing the stroke. 

The Fosbury Flop

In 1968 high jumper, Dick Fosbury, revolutionized his sport when winning the Olympic Gold by arching backwards over the bar. This is a familiar technique to athletics viewers today, since nearly all high jumpers have adopted the 'Fosbury Flop' method. At the time though, this would have seemed completely bizarre and counter to the accepted norms of high jump. It takes someone exceptional to attain massive results in order for the wider community to question their accepted method. Could looking at the hole be the Fosbury flop of

 

 

I tried the method many years ago with great success in practice but never had the courage to take it to the course. More recently and after Spieth's phenomenal success, I went back to it and did what I assume most club golfers do; I gave it a quick try on the putting green before a round and holed EVERYTHING! So there and then I was resolute that this was for me and I would stick by it. I then went out on the course and 4 PUTTED the first two greens from inside 12 feet! This served as yet another reminder of the difference between practice and playing conditions.

After continuous application of the method using the key putting drills familiar to Purposeful Practice members, I am really happy with the progress and am now ready to take it to tournament play in this year's National Club Pros Championship. I'll let you know how I get on.

You should definitely give the method a try on the practice green and if you feel comfortable with it then commit to the long-term process. It feels entirely intuative and as a movement scientist, it makes perfect sense. If nothing else then you will learn something about where your focus needs to be during the putting stroke.