Shrink the Hole to Build Confidence

Golf Monthly Top 25 Coach Paul Foston offers a great drill to shrink the hole to build confidence

Golf Monthly Top 25 Coach Paul Foston offers a great drill to shrink the hole to build confidence


- You miss too many short putts - The ball seems to role weakly off-line when you miss

Fix: Shrink the hole to Build Confidence

Short putting is one area of the game every player needs to devote structured practice time to. The problem is that it's very difficult to recreate the pressure of facing a four-footer for par, while you are on the practice putting green.

So a good way to improve the mechanics of your stroke, as well as your focus and confidence, is to make the hole smaller. There are two good ways to do this.

Firstly, make sure the putt you are facing is straight and then place two shafts either side of the hole essentially shrinking the size of the hole, or place tee pegs in the same position, again, reducing the size of the entry to the hole. What this drill does brilliantly is to stop you thinking about the entire hole and help you concentrate on a more specific target.

By looking down at a smaller target this creates its own degree of pressure and the more you hole, the more your confidence grows. It also teaches you a very important lesson that works well is every area of the game about picking a small, specific target. Even if you miss your target, if it is small enough, the chances are that you will still have a positive result.

Read more putting tips

When you get to the course, the hole will look far bigger, but remember you still need to pick a specific spot to aim at. Pick a mark in the back of the hole or a blemish on the green to role the ball over - this will help you hole out more successfully from close range.

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