10 Tips to Help You Hole Short Putts with Confidence

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Luke is an avid weekend-warrior golfer from the East Coast who plays golf more than he cares to admit.

Are you tired of missing those seemingly easy short putts? Frustrated by the impact they have on your overall score? You’re not alone. Many golfers struggle with the same issue. But fear not, we’re here to help! In this blog post, we’ll share 10 tips to help you hole short putts with confidence, improve your overall putting game, and leave the fear of missed putts behind.

Key Takeaways

  • Establish a solid pre-putt routine for maximum accuracy & shot potential
  • Master your grip and posture to boost putting confidence
  • Focus on putter face alignment, stroke tempo & cultivating a confident mindset to increase success with short putts!

Establish a Solid Pre-Putt Routine

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Before you step up to hit that short putt, cultivating a consistent pre-putt routine is beneficial. Why? Because most missed short putts are a result of rushing or not being fully focused on the task at hand. A solid pre-putt routine allows your fine motor muscles to engage properly, ensuring that you’re ready to make the putt with precision and accuracy.

Remember that holding your breath creates tension, which can lead to fear-ridden strokes and ultimately missed short putts. So, during your pre-putt routine, take a deep breath and gently exhale as you prepare to putt. This will help you stay relaxed, focused, and ready to execute the perfect stroke.

Great putting is all about finding the right balance between carelessness and anxiety. Rushing through your pre-putt routine can be absolute murder on your putting game, while delaying play too long can cause you to overthink and second-guess yourself. The key is to find a comfortable rhythm that allows you to remain continually moving while also taking the time for a final look at the putt before you execute it. This balance can be considered the putting aspect of your pre-putt routine.

Develop Proper Ball Position

Achieving optimal control and accuracy during your putt depends on the position of the ball in your stance. The optimal ball position is slightly forward of center, with your eyes directly over the ball for the best aim. This positioning engages your fine motor skills and helps ensure you make successful short putts.

To practice the optimal ball position, set up with your eyes directly over the ball and adjust your stance until the ball is slightly forward of center. The great Bobby Jones revealed that this positioning allows for maximum shot potential and accuracy.

Before each putt, double-check your setup to ensure you’re putting from the best possible position. Make sure your eyes are perfectly aligned over the ball to avoid missing putts due to misalignment.

Master Your Grip and Posture

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A stable and efficient putting stroke relies on a solid grip and proper posture. To achieve the best grip for maximum control, follow these steps:

  1. Place your thumbs on the flat top of the grip.
  2. Hold the club firmly in your palms.
  3. Engage your fine motor muscles to stabilize the club.
  4. Ensure a square face at impact.

By following these steps, you can promote a bold putting mindset and ensure that your improved putting stroke isn’t a stroke lost forever.

For proper putting posture, bow forward from the hips. Clap your hands and let your arms swing naturally. Incorporating this posture into your putting routine will lead to maximum effectiveness and help you hole short putts with confidence.

As you take your putting stroke, feel your feet firmly planted on the ground. This grounding sensation will provide a stable base for your stroke, increasing your chances of sinking those short putts.

Focus on Putter Face Alignment

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The direction of the ball is determined by the direction of the putter face at impact. Therefore, accurate putter face alignment is key to avoiding most missed short putts. Accurately aiming the putter face during your pre-putt routine helps avoid placing enormous pressure on yourself during short putts.

Focusing on the point of contact ensures you hit the ball square and make solid contact, preventing strokes lost forever due to missed putts. As part of your pre-putt routine, take a moment to visualize the specific entry point of the ball into the hole, and align the putter face accordingly.

Taking practice strokes while focusing on putter face alignment will help you develop a feel for consistently making square hits and solid contact. This deliberate and focused practice will ultimately improve your short putting game and boost your putting confidence.

Control Your Stroke Tempo

A smooth and controlled stroke tempo is key to better distance control and consistency in short putts. Every putting stroke has a lovely arc, which will roll the ball end-over-end with ease, helping you avoid the visceral and emotional blow of missing short putts.

Limiting your backstroke on short putts is one of a few ideas that can help you control the distance of your putts and deliver less power. By focusing on this aspect of your stroke, you can ensure the ball travels the desired distance, increasing the likelihood of sinking that short putt.

Too much movement in your lower body might be the primary factor affecting your putting efficiency and leading to missed short putts. By controlling your stroke tempo and minimizing lower body movement, you can maintain stability throughout your stroke, improving your overall short putting performance.

Cultivate a Confident Mindset

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With a confident mindset, you can commit to your putts, even if you miss putts, maximizing every opportunity on the green to hole short putts confidently. The pressure of not wanting to miss short putts can cause anxiety and lead to unintentionally sabotaging your own efforts as the golfer’s mind plays tricks.

Building anxiety while waiting to putt can cause your muscles and grip pressure to tighten, resulting in a tight, jabby stroke. To combat this, focus on having a clear plan before putting, making sure you hit the putt squarely and accurately. This will help reduce the chances of missed short putts and alleviate the anxiety that often plagues golfers during these critical moments.

Cultivating a confident mindset equips you better to handle the pressure of short putts, allowing you to commit to each stroke fearlessly. Embrace the challenge and believe in your ability to sink those putts, and watch as your short putting game improves dramatically. Build putting confidence by practicing regularly and focusing on your mental game, which will help you place enormous pressure on your short putts.

Learn from Missed Putts

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Although it can be disheartening, missed putts present valuable opportunities for learning and improving your putting skills. Reflecting on missed short putts can help you identify areas of improvement in:

  • your stroke technique
  • alignment
  • visual perception
  • commitment to the putt

Analyzing the reasons for missed putts involves evaluating the following factors:

  • Stroke technique
  • Alignment
  • Visual perception
  • Commitment

This will help you pinpoint the cause of the miss and create a plan for improvement. For example, to ensure that the putter face is properly aligned and avoid missed short putts, check the alignment to make sure it is square to the target line.

Evaluating your visual perception and commitment can boost your confidence and increase your chances of holing short putts. By embracing a mindset of learning from missed putts, you can turn setbacks into opportunities for growth and ultimately become a more confident and successful putter.

Practice with Purpose and Feedback

By honing your short putting and building putting confidence, you can unlock your potential to enhance your overall golf game. To maximize your practice sessions, incorporate purpose and feedback into your routine. Deliberate practice with a specific goal in mind and receiving feedback on your performance will help you enhance your skills and achieve your desired outcomes.

Practicing with feedback can help you identify areas for growth and bolster your confidence, reducing the chances of missed short putts. By focusing on specific aspects of your short putting game, such as putter face alignment or stroke tempo, you can address any weaknesses and make targeted improvements.

Consistent, purposeful practice with feedback not only helps you refine your short putting technique but also builds your mental resilience and confidence on the green. Embrace the process of improvement and watch as your short putting game transforms, leading to more holed putts and lower scores.


In conclusion, holing short putts with confidence is achievable through consistent practice, a solid pre-putt routine, proper ball position, mastering grip and posture, focusing on putter face alignment, controlling stroke tempo, cultivating a confident mindset, learning from missed putts, and practicing with purpose and feedback. By implementing these tips in your golf game, you’ll be well on your way to sinking more short putts, improving your overall putting performance, and leaving those frustrating missed putts in the past.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you calm nerves on short putts?

Take a moment to step back, close your eyes and take a deep breath. Visualize the putt from both behind the ball and behind the hole and control the stroke with your lower body locked while focusing on rolling the ball to a spot just past the cup. Don’t worry about results and take an extra few seconds to relax and clear your mind.

Why am I leaving my putts short?

I’m likely leaving my putts short because I’m peeking too soon, which causes me to push the ball weakly or strike the putter’s face too low. To get more consistent results, I need to focus on keeping my head still and striking with the center of the putter face.

Why do I struggle with short putts?

Struggling with short putts can often be attributed to a lack of distance control, ball position, putter face alignment, and off-centered hits. These missteps can easily cause misses on the most straightforward stroke in golf.

How can I develop a consistent pre-putt routine?

Develop a consistent pre-putt routine by taking deep breaths to stay relaxed and avoiding tension while initiating your stroke. Focusing on this will help ensure more accurate putts.

What is the optimal ball position for short putts?

Positioning the ball slightly forward of center in your stance with your eyes directly over it ensures an optimal aim for short putts. This will help you to make sure that your putts are on target and that you have the best chance of sinking them.

Luke Griffin

Luke is an avid weekend-warrior golfer from the East Coast who plays golf more than he cares to admit.

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