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Tee Time

Mike Rogers’ Tee Time Tips

May 15, 2012
By John Wickline , The Inter-Mountain

Today's tee time tip was originally taught to me by my high school golf coach, Mike Gillespie, and is not so much a tip as it is a drill to practice your putting. I have taken this drill and modified it some from its original form I learned from Coach Gillespie when the Buckhannon-Upshur High School Golf Team made the run of three consecutive West Virginia High School statechampionships in 1980, 81 and 82. That team amassed a record of 223 wins against just 3 losses, with a record of 84 -0 in the 1982 season. This was back when we did not compete in the three classes (AAA, AA and A) as they do today, it was just golf so we competed and defeated everyone in golf in West Virginia, not just Class AAA. Combine this tip with my previous tip about seeing the magic dot when you putt, and you can save a bunch of strokes on your round and make the game much more enjoyable.

Picture the golf hole as a clock (see photos). You begin at 12 on your clock, marking a putt 1 foot from the hole, and make 10 putts in row from that distance. Then once you have made 10 putts from 1 foot (hopefully 10 for 10), you move to 3 on your clock and move back to 2 feet. Again make 10 putts from that distance (Again, hopefully 10 for 10). Now move to 6 on your clock and measure back to 3 feet and make 10 putts in a row from that distance. Move to 9 on your clock and measure back to 4 feet. Now make 25 putts and record the number made. From 4 feet, a good number made will be around 20-22. In 2011, Y.E. Yang lead the PGA Tour with 98.61 percent made (24+ out of 25) from 4 feet, so not even the world's best pros make them all from 4 feet.

You continue this drill moving to again to 12, 3, 6, and 9 on the clock and back to 5 feet, 6 feet, 7 feet and 8 feet respectively and putt 25 putts and record the number made. To help you get a feel for what you might expect, here are the percentages made by the top player on the PGA Tour in 2011 from each of these last distances: 5 feet -- 92.39 percent, (23 out of 25) 6 feet -- 87.50 percent (22 out of 25), 7 feet 78.57 percent (20 out of 25), and 8 feet 71.93 percent (18 out of 25). .

Tee Time Tip of the Week: Tee Time Tip: Practice putting around the clock, and you will see better results. Also, if you would like to receive a copy of the practice putting chart to record your results and track your progress in putting improvement, email me at and put "PUTTING CHART" in the subject line. I will be happy to send you a copy of the putting progress chart I use with my students.



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