The putting stroke

GOLFING IN  PARADISE By JOSE CALLEJA General Manager, Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course All golfers are different when it comes to putting so the proper mechanics of the putting stroke depends on
03 Mar 2013 13:26


JOSE CALLEJA General Manager, Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course

General Manager, Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course

All golfers are different when it comes to putting so the proper mechanics of the putting stroke depends on what feels natural to you. I prefer the traditional technique where my body is square to the target and my right hand is under my left hand. However if opening your stance like Seve or gripping with the left hand low like Vijay Singh is what feels comfortable then I suggest to keep putting in comfort. As we all know there is no right or wrong way to putt.

Posture is an important element of the putting stroke because it allows the putter face to strike the golf ball more consistently thereby increasing confidence and feel. Confidence and feel are the two most talked about topics in putting. A comfortable posture should include a forward pelvic tilt, maintaining a straight back and slightly bent knees so that your eyes are a directly over the ball.

The Stroke
Some players like to commence their putting stoke with a slight forward press like Phil Mickleson. Phil has had huge success using the forward press technique. Other players prefer to eliminate the hands and commence their stroke with their shoulders, encouraging a more pendulum appearance stroke like Tiger Woods. With this style of stroke you want to keep the lower body perfectly still, take the club away with the shoulders and have a slight flex in the right wrist. The left wrist should not be bent, bending the wrist can promote closing the club face through impact.

Putting Styles
• Conventional: Most golfers prefer this method because the putting action depends on your shoulders and not your hands, this putting action best resembles the pendulum action of a grandfather clock. Tiger Woods has a conventional putting stroke.
• Claw Grip: This is a recent putting style which I find very uncomfortable, however Chris DiMarco would disagree.
• Long Putter: This style takes the motion away from the shoulders and transfers it to the club. Adam Scott.
• Body Putting This style of putting uses a slightly longer putter than the conventional and tucks the butt of the putter into the stomach. Vijay Singh has experimented with this style.

4 Problems and 4 Solutions.
Putting makes up 40 per cent of most mid handicapped golfers strokes in a golf round. Most of these golfers use the conventional putting style. If you are not having the results you would like and you wish to improve your putting I suggest looking out for these problems:

1. Turning your head and following the ball.
We all want to see where the ball is going and by turning your head you also turn your body which pulls the putting stroke. So try practice putting with your eyes closed and begin to feel your pendulum putting action.

2. Breaking your wrist through impact.
Another common problem with putting is breaking your wrist and this has a very simple solution. Take you normal set up that you have for your putting stroke, then remove your right hand and place it in your pocket. Commence you putting stoke with the thought of a pendulum action however don’t look at the putter head, instead watch your left wrist. I guaranteed you with stop using your wrist within seconds. (Right Handed players)

3. Turning your forearm.
If you find you are rotating your forearm through your follow through then I recommend you think of your right palm. Palm to the Hole is your key thought. (Right Handed players)

4. No follow through.
If you have no follow through you need to implement in your putting practice the Push Putting Drill. Simply push the ball towards the Hole with your putter, do not take a back stroke. You will soon discover the feeling of a follow through.


Natadola Bay Golf Course is delighted to announce the return of the $1.00 per shot until par greenfee offer to Fiji Residents. That is an amazing greenfee rate of just $72.00 for 18 holes including a motorized cart (Regardless of how many shots you take).
The course is in a great condition and this a unique opportunity to world class golf at an unbeatable price.
Book with the Golf Shop on 673 3500 or via e-mail play@natadolabay.com
Conditions apply and include: Valid only to Fiji Residents with appropriate identification, not available with any other offer and valid until 28 March 2013.


This week we provide a review on the new Titliest Pro V golf ball.

Titliest has officially released the latest versions of the most popular golf balls on the PGA Tour, the Pro V1 and Pro V1x.
The seventh generation of the three-piece Pro V1 has a slightly lower compression and a softer core than the last version. These changes will help lower the ball’s spin off the tee and increase distance. With the driver and long irons, the Pro V1 comes down on a shallower angle, which should provide a few more yards of roll. The four-piece Pro V1x is also longer.
The three-piece Pro V1 has a large, solid core under an ionomer casing layer and a 352-dimple urethane cover. The core material is fundamentally the same, but subtle tweaks have helped Titleist lower its compression and make the ball feel softer.
Around the green and on approach shots, the cast urethane cover is designed to help create more spin and control.
Adam Scott won the 2012 Australian Open in November while using a prototype version of the 2013 Pro V1.
Titleist has added a sun-blocking material into the cover of both the Pro V1 and the Pro V1x to keep the white colour from fading or browning if the cover gets scuffed or scratched.
The new generation Titliest Pro V golf balls will be in stock at Natadola Bay in the next 6 weeks.


Last week’s the PGA tour headed to California for the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club. It was an exciting finish with John Merrick and Charlie Belijan both finishing with a 72 hole score of 11 under par. The tied score sent Merrick and Belijan off to a sudden death playoff with the Hometown hero winning on the second playoff hole.

This week’s event:
This week the players are at Dove Mountain in Arizona for the Accenture Match Play championship. The early stages of the tournament have been full of adventure. First Tiger Woods was knocked out by Charles Howell III on the 17th hole, then world number one Rory McIlroy was beaten by fellow Irishman Shane Lowry on the 18th hole. The final twist to the Accenture Matchplay Championship came with play being suspended due to wild weather, which resulted in the golf course being blanketed by snow. It will be exciting finish to this marquee tournament.

The LPGA tour travelled to the Australian Capital of Canberra last week to play the ISPS Handa Womens Australian Open at Royal Canberra Golf Club. Rolex World Number 8 Korean Jiyai Shin held on to win the championship by two shots from world number one Yani Tseng.

This week’s event:
Thailand plays host to the best female golfers in the world as they compete for the Honda LPGA Thailand Championship. Last year current world number one Yani Tseng dominated the field to win the title.

Last Saturday’s Competition results are as follows:

Winner: Mr Jeral Sharma – 38 points on count back

Runner up: Mr. Ashok Kumar – 38 points

NTP 7th Mr Rosco Greenville


• Wednesday 20th June – Mixed Competition – 4BBB
• Friday 22nd June – Bula Friday stroke Competition
• Saturday Open Competition- Stableford Competition


Mr. Eric Wilson


This week’s between shots is Mr. Eric Wilson.
What clubs do you use? I use Callaway woods and Ping Irons.
Where is your home club? I am a member of Beacon Hills Golf Club, Melbourne.
Who is your favourite player? My favourite player is Adam Scott.
What course do you love to play? I love to play Natadola Bay.
What is your favourite hole? The 6th and 9th hole at Natadola Bay.
What shot will you always remember? Hole in One on the 6th hole at Beacon Hills.
Who are your dream playing partners? Adam Scott, Tiger Woods and Ricky Ponting.
This was what Mr. Wilson had to say about Natadola Bay Golf Course: “I rate Natadola Bay in my top 3 courses I have played. Enjoyed playing it with the prevailing wind as well as on a perfectly still day. Great views and excellent clubhouse service …”


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