Putting in golf are the ace shots. Highly strategic and precise to the last detail, you could still miss the cup. The shallow depth of the cup often causes the golf ball to pass right across it. So golf putter has to be a highly customized and advanced golf club.
Apart from the fancy touches to putter-head, its length is the next biggest concern. The putter length contributes to your control over the club. Putting with the putter of the right length for yourself gets you the accurate realization of your mental strategy.
In this post, we help you fit yourself for a traditional putter. We also discuss the unconventional belly and long putters.
How To Find The Right Putter Length For Myself?
A putter of correct length does not extend above your grip more than an inch. So here’s how you can find a putter of the right length:
Step 1 :
Take the putting stance. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees the slightest bit comfortable. Push your back out a little. Learn forward so that you look directly down at the ball rather than forward. Your arms should bend at the elbows and the elbow joint should touch your body. You must be leaning forward but only to a comfortable level.
Step 2 :
Now have a friend hand you putters of various sizes. If the shaft of the putter extends more than 1 inch above your grip, the putter is too long. If your grip is well above the putter, the putter is too short. If the putter extends only up to 1-inch above your grip, you have the correct length of the traditional putter.
We have explained how to measure the length of a golf club here.
Step 3 :
+ Belly Putters:
For belly putters, take the standard stance as explained above. Get your friend to measure the length of a standard putter and then extrapolate up to the place on your body where it should be anchored.
+ Long Putters:
For long putters, stand upright in position. Measure the length from the point where you decide to anchor it with your hand.
Some Usual Lengths:
Here are some of the usual putter lengths for various height ranges. These are only for reference. We would still ask you to get the right putter length based on your comfort:
Suggested Putter Length
6’ and above
4’11” and less
Should I Get Fitted Professionally For Putters?
We suggest that you get to a golf equipment shop and let them fit you for a putter professionally. This is a worthwhile exercise, especially for this golf club. The intricacies of the putting shot are evident in how much effort goes into practising it. People buy putting mats to practise putting off-season or they get their very own backyard putting greens. In the practice ranges too, putting practice finds predominance.
You have plenty of motivation to get the putting right. So your weapon of choice should match up to the task too. We have also posted reviews of the best putters that have shown great promise amongst a large number of golfers.
Apart from the traditional putters that cover the distance from your wrist to the ground, you also have the belly and long putters.
Belly putters are longer than standard putters and come up to your belly. They usually lie between 39-47 inches. Here are the length guidelines for belly putters:
Suggested Putter Length
6’2” and above
5’8” and shorter
While using a belly putter, the golfer anchors the top of the club shaft against her/his belly. This gives them better control over the putter by allowing only its lower portion to move without disturbing the wrist position.
Belly putters give you an unfair advantage over the standard putters. So many golfers argued in favor of banning them.
Come 2013, the USGA and the R&A issued Rule 14-1b saying that golfers aren’t allowed to anchor any club to their bodies.
While this disallows the golfer to touch a belly putter with anything but hands while putting, it does not ban the putter itself. For example, Angel Cabrera used a belly putter at the 2009 Masters without letting the club touch his belly. He won, so that merits the existence of the belly putter.
Apart from belly putters, there are long putters or broomstick putters. The shaft of these clubs reaches up to the chest.
You have to hold them like you would hold a broomstick. You have to make a sweeping motion with the club to putt. It’s more like a pendulum swing which eliminates wrist cocking movement. This is the last resort for a lousy putter.
By effectively stabilizing the wrist, it takes away any probability of open/close face. But it makes it harder to control the distance of the ball.
Long putters are still legal since you won’t be anchoring them against your body. Here’s a video on how to use them.
The usual long putter lengths are:
Suggested Putter Length
6’2” and above
5’6” and less
To fit you with the putter of the right length, a professional will also pay attention to the lie angle. Lie angle is the angle made by the putter shaft and the sole of the putter when held in neutral position at address. Lie angle makes a difference in how the sole sits on the ground:
If the putter has loft and an upright lie angle, the toe of the putter will be up in the air. Your shots will tend to the left. Or if the lie angle is too flat, the heel will jut up in the air and your shots will tend to the right. The standard lie angles offered are 70-72°.
The thumb rule is that the longer the putter shaft, the flatter the lie angle should be. As the shaft goes shorter, the lie angle should be more upright. When you get fitted for the putter, the professional will bend the hosel to change the lie angle. But if the club shaft is directly connected to the putter head, changing lie angle is much more difficult.
If you are consistently bad at putting, don’t be too hard on yourself. Often the putter club is at fault, not you. This DIY putter-fitting guide helps you rise above the standard putter lengths and find one that improves your game. Such a specialized club needs special attention. So we suggest:
- You get club fitted for a proper putter
- Choose the putter length and lie angle based on each other
- Choose a putter that suits your putting strategy rather than have the putter define your swing.
This along with our best putters buying guide and reviews post should help you make the right decision
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