The Biggest Reason For Golfers 3 Putting

What Causes Golfers To 3 Putt.

The biggest reason we see for 3 putting from distance is the inability of the golfer to change the swing length and keep the pace of the putting stroke consistent.  Basically we see golfers having the same length backstroke, whether they have a 15-foot putt or a 45-foot putt. 

Generally we see the back swing length is pretty good for most golfers on 15 foot putts.  However we then see golfers using the same back swing for longer putts and with a short back swing you need to accelerate a lot on the through stroke to get the ball to the hole.  This rate of acceleration makes it difficult to get consistent distance control.

The best way to think of long putting is the length of the backstroke dictates the distance control, not the effort level.

Start Getting Those Long Putts Closer

Start by videoing yourself hitting some putts from different distances.  Then determine if you control the distance of your putts with the length of back stroke or effort through the ball.  If you are controlling distance through effort and you would like to improve your long putting then try lengthening your back swing and having a slower than normal through stroke. 

Time To Revaluate Your Putting

Now video yourself again.  Hopefully you will see that the backstroke length and through swing length are symmetrical on both sides of the ball position.


This change is only worth considering if you struggle with distance control or just want to get that little bit better at putting.  My hunch though is if you do control your length of putts by effort level you are probably not going to be as efficient as you would like to be. 

As always please leave your comments and we look forward to hearing from you.  For more great drills and videos on putting click here..


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  1. surfingsk8r Reply

    So here is a question for you based on my observation of my own playing. When i putt I have found that I am most accurate when I vary the length of my back swing just as the article suggests, but I also have to pretty much always have a fore swing that extends to a near parallel level to the ground that I imagine as me guiding the ball down the green. I don’t know why this extended fore swing seems to help me, but I am wondering if I really do need to avoid that to improve my golf game. I am by no means a proficient golfer at this point, but so far I am most comfortable with the above swing motion. Do I just need to practice myself into a habit of a more even pendulum motion, or should I just let it ride if its working for me?

    1. Piers Ward Reply

      Hi what a great question, ok the first thing to say is be careful what you change as if it works then you should really keep it. But for the future it would be worth looking at how you can improve, the way to do to do it would be on the practice green working at a definite finish, now this usually works best if the finish position finishes relatively quickly, but the best thing to do is to put both styles up against each other in several different skill games, you can just make them up. I would say that a shorter finish position would work better on the shorter putts but maybe your technique is better suited for the longer putts at this stage.

      I hope this helps, let me know how you get on…. Thanks Piers #TakeCharge

  2. rippedskier Reply

    Thanks guys! I’ll definitely work on this. I 3 putt my first 7 holes on my last round, so I need improvement. The greens were tough and fast, but 3 putting that much is not good…..


    1. Andy Reply

      Glad you like the video! Please keep us posted on how you get on and let us know how you get on.



  3. SteveR Reply

    Thanks Guys. I’m only relatively new to the game ( About 5 months ) and finding a lot of inconsistency in my putting. Now that ive now tried this method I have gone from 4-5 and sometimes 6 putting ( on long puts ) down to 2 and sometimes 3 putting.

    Thanks again Love your work.

    Regards Steve

    1. Andy Reply

      Hi Steve. That’s great! Glad your putting has improved!! Keep up the great work and keep us posted.



  4. Jim Reply

    I never thought of it that way- not varying effort level. Can’t wait to try it.

    1. Andy Reply

      Hope it helps Jim. Keep us posted.