Putter Buyers Guide: How to Pick the Right Putter
If you’re not happy with your current golf club setup and you’re a beginner, be sure to check out my best beginner golf clubs article.
Putter Length and Fitting
If someone told me there are one million patents on putters I would probably respond by saying “is that all” because in the past 50 years I am sure I have picked up at least one million putters in golf shops all over the world.
I am also sure I have tried out or bought at least 250 of them. Let’s agree on one way to improve your putting temporarily – buy a new putter. It never fails, improves your putting – temporarily. Now while we are at it, let’s agree on one other thing. If you are looking for a long term fix to your putting woes, you can not buy it.
What to Look for in a New Putter
Allow me to take a few minutes to walk you through the five most important things that you have to consider before you buy a putter. If you are happy with the putter you are using you can skip this part and move on to the next section.
Let’s start with the length of the putter. Most putters come in lengths that range from 33-36 inches. The most important thing to keep in mind when you are trying out a new putter is the sole of the clubhead must rest on the ground. If the putter is too long you will have to stand too far from the golf ball and the toe of the putter might sit off of the ground.(#1) If the putter is too short you will have to stand too close to the golf ball and the heel of the putter might sit off of the ground.(#2)
What you have to keep in mind is that you should not try and to adjust your stance and posture to match the putter you are using. You should find the putter that matches your stance and posture. You will not believe how the slightest adjustment can throw off your stroke. ADJUST THE PUTTER TO YOU. -DO NOT ADJUST YOURSELF TO THE PUTTER.
Putters come in all different weights. The manufacturing companies do not stamp the weight on the putters. There is not a standard weight for putters in the industry. Some putters are heavier than others. Some putters are “head” heavy, there is more weight in the head, and some putters have the weight evenly distributed throughout the entire putter.
As far as the weight is concerned, two things are important. If you play on really fast greens you might be better off using a lighter putter than a heavy one. Secondly no one can tell you what feels good to you. You might like a putter that is much lighter than mine or you might like a really heavy putter. The weight of the putter is all up to the individual.
The lie of the putter plays a much larger role than people pay attention to. The reason is simple; golfers buy putters and then adjust to them instead of buying a putter that fits your setup. Remember if the putter is too long you will stand too far from the ball and the toe will sit up in the air. Furthermore if the toe is in the air, the heel of the putter will get stuck in the putting surface in the downswing and the toe will pass the heel during impact. Of course if the putter is too short and the heel is in the air the toe will get stuck in the putting surface during the downswing and the heel will pass the toe during impact.
The lie is very important. Make sure you find the putter that fits you.
The grip of the putter is not the most important part of the putter. As soon as I say those words you are going to tell me how your grip has to have three wraps of silk and one wrap of orange foam. Believe me I know what you are talking about. I have used the exact same type of grip for 25 years and I have to put the grip on all of my putters because I put the grip on sideways.
However for the masses there are two or three types of popular grips that manufactures use and you get what you get. Most grips have a flat pad on the top of the grip and we will discuss later what the pad is for.
Let’s move on to what I consider the single most important part of a putter is. The four S’s. The shape, size, style and the “sweep you off your feet look”.
What I am about to tell you is the one thing that is the deciding factor to buying the correct putter for YOU. If the putter does not sweep you off your feet, do not buy it. There is a putter out there with your name on it; you just have not found it.
You can get fitted for the highest tech equipment available and you can buy the hottest $300 putter and if it does not wow you, it isn’t the one for you. For the past 25 years I putted with the exact same putter.
I feel lucky that I found one I loved. Four years ago I was standing 20 yards away from the putting green at TPC Scottsdale the week of the FBR Open and I saw a Tour Rep walk onto the green with a putter and from 20 yards away I knew I had to have that putter. I had to wait three months to get one but the second I put in it into my hands it was exactly what I suspected. It felt great. I have used that putter now for four years. Get wowed or don’t buy. Keep this final thought in mind. I have bought most of my favorite putters at garage sales or the $10 barrel of used clubs. New and expensive does not equal one putts.
If you’d like to read some in depth reviews on the best putters on the market, we’ve got you covered here.