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Many golfers think getting better is about improving your swing, adding yards to your drives or getting better equipment.

All those things help, but they’re useless if you forget about the goal of golf: Making the cup.

And, unless you rely on hole-in-ones, you make the cup with your putts. That’s why putts are so important to finally break 90 consistently.

In this episode, you’ll find out how to make your putts so consistent you’ll know the ball is going in when you take out your putter.

Show highlights include:

  • The thought pattern that sabotages your putting and adds extra strokes to your game—and how to “break” this pattern to drain the ball at will. (1:30)
  • The step-by-step routine that consistently puts the ball in the cup from within 5 feet. (4:15)
  • One simple drill to make your short putts hit the cup consistently. (9:50)
  • Why consistent golfers make short putts almost every time (flip this mental “switch” and your short putt success will skyrocket). (14:30)

Find out about the 3 most common mistakes that sabotage your game before you ever step up to the tee at: https://mygolfcode.com

Read Full Transcript

It's time for a new episode of “Faith N Fairways” with the founder, Brad Thorberg, who after more than 16,000 lessons taught to over 2,000 golfers has discovered the most forgotten and overlooked part of your golf game that is keeping you from playing your most consistent and confident golf ever.

Now, here is your host, Brad Thorberg.

Brad Thorberg: Alright. Alright. Welcome back, my Birdie Crew. That's what I'm calling you guys—the “Birdie Crew.” Welcome Back.

This week's episode: how do consistent golfers make the short ones. How do they make the short putts? That's what we're diving into and it's the most important piece of the code of breaking 90. We've gone through the “30, 30 and five.” But if you can't get the ball in the cup from five feet and in, none of it matters, right? So, how do these consistent golfers always make the short ones? Seems like they never miss. Guys, how do they do it?

One, they have confidence from knowing the numbers. They have a putting routine that is clear of clutter. They know how to warm up in a way that helps them build confidence to drain the short ones. And they practice correctly. And I'm going to give you my number one drill to start making more putts inside five feet, so you're going to stay tuned for that to get that drill, to help you start just draining those, but by doing that, it's going to breed the confidence.

Alright, how do we make the short ones? How do we get the ball in the cup, then move on to the next hole? How does this happen? Why are you missing these short putts? Well, you're missing them because you lack confidence. You're trying too hard to get it in there. You're telling yourself, Don't miss it. You're telling yourself, Don't leave it short. Don't hit it way by. Just get it up there.

So, you're giving yourself these gray area thoughts that aren't specific. They're not positive. You're not saying, Hey, I've drained this. This goes back to week 1 or 2 of the Code to Breaking 90 series of you’ve got to be positive. You've got to be grabbing the putter out of the bag. You've got to be walking up to this four-and-a-half-foot putts saying, I've drained hundreds of these, hundreds, no problem. And you’ve got to get into your routine and just knock it in.

So, I've mentioned this in the last few episodes, but you should make 92 percent of your putts inside five feet. That's just the statistics. That's what the average golfer does. And, if you had putts that didn't matter, I guarantee you, on the practice green you’d drain five-foot and in putts all day long. And, if you have a four-and-a-half-foot putt for double bogey, not a problem, because you don't care, and you just look at the hole, look back and knock it in. But, if you have a two-and-a-half-foot putt for birdie and you miss the cup by two inches and knock and four feet past. Why? Because you freaked out. Because you weren't confident. Because you put the pressure of what that putt meant far greater than a putt from a further distance, and it freaks you out. [03:00] Because you didn't have the confidence. You didn't have the routine that creates relaxation and a confident mind, and a knowing of it already going in.

That's what we're going to talk about today. It’s to build a plan of action for the short putts that's going to just give you confidence, help you stay relaxed and just start draining them on the course just like you do on the practice green. Now you know the numbers. You should be making 92 percent of them, but you're not when it matters. Here's why: because you don't have a routine that clears out that clutter, clears out that gray-area garbage thought process of, Man, I left the last one short. Don't leave this short. We should never be thinking of that kind of stuff before we hit a four-foot putt for par, bogey or birdie, right?

So, you need to start implementing a routine. This routine should look something where you stand behind the ball with binocular vision, meaning you're looking with both eyes at the ball and at the cup, because we're at five feet or closer, because you now have the speed of a king, controlling that for days after the last episode. So, you now have the speed, so you're rolling things inside of five feet all day long. Now you've got to make the ones that matter. To do that, you've got to stay relaxed and have confidence.

So, we want to get a routine where we stand behind the ball, maybe do a practice stroke or two, doesn't really matter, but you're more just looking with binocular vision, and what you're trying to find is a tiny, tiny target. Tiny target. Now, if you're a person who tends to leave the putt short—because there are two types of putters out there, guys, two types of putters. There's the dyer of the ball and the aggressive. Both have their ups and downs, meaning the dyer the ball, the cup is technically bigger, because it's a slower pace and you're going to tend to come up short, and you have to play more break. An aggressive putter, the cups actually smaller because those over the edges don't have the gravity to drop in because the momentum is too far and moving forward. But you get to play less break. Your misses tend to go further by.

So, there's no right or wrong. Both are wonderful. You can look at tour players. You have your [dires? 0:04:32.9] and your aggressive putters. They're all over the map, major champions and on.

So, you need to figure out, Alright, am I more of a dire? Am I seeing the ball just trickle in? If that's you, that's fine. What you want to start doing is you want to start picking a tiny target in the back of the cup—a blade of grass, discoloration, a tiny black spot—but you're trying to find something in the back half of that cup to look at. And then, you go from binocular vision. You find that spot. You step up. You aim the putter at that spot. You get your feet set. You look at that spot. You pull the putter back and you just simply hit the ball at that spot. Don't take your eyes off it and you will start draining so many putts, but now you're just oozing confidence because you have a very specific target.

Too often, we put so much pressure on this five-, four-, three-foot putt that we're sitting there shaking in our boots saying, Just hit the cup. Please go in. Well, if you miss the cup aiming for the cup, you miss the entire cup. But, if you have a tiny target in the back of the cup, the size of the head of a pen, and you miss that by an inch, you still hit half the cup and you're probably going to make the [06:00] putt. So, you've got to aim small, miss small.

And the thing you’ve got to be telling yourself is you've made hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of these, and if you haven't, that's where practice comes into play. But you should be practicing in a way that is breeding confidence on the course where you can tell yourself, Hey, I have made hundreds of these. This is no problem. There's my tiny target. Get the putter. Aim. Look at it. Pull the trigger. Hit it right into that spot. And you're going to make so many of those. We should not be thinking, Don't miss this, or, man, I pulled the last one, or, man, I left it shorter. I hit it away, too. Don't hit it too far because it's downhill—those thoughts should never cross our mind.

Now, to keep those thoughts at bay, we need to have a routine where we spend less than five seconds from behind the ball to hitting the ball, and that is the key. If there's one thing to take away today, it's five seconds or less from behind the ball and a five-foot putt to the side of the ball and hitting it. So, you're looking with binocular vision. You're looking for break. You found your break. You find your tiny, tiny spot. Now it's go-time. Now you have five seconds.

Now, don't feel rushed. Five seconds is a really long time here. So, what you're going to do is you're going to set up over this ball in five seconds or less. You're going to get the putter aimed at your tiny spot. Feet set, look at your spot. Pull the putter back. Hit it to your spot. Less than five seconds.

The whole time behind the ball with binocular vision, you're saying, I've made 100 of these. I’ve got this. This is simple. There's my spot. Let's just drain it—so you're telling yourself something positive. You're building confidence. You're recalling upon seeing yourself make a lot of these.

And then it's go-time. Then, we're trying to stay in our reactionary, subconscious mind by spending less than five seconds stepping up over that putt and hitting it before we have time to think. And, guys, it's going to happen. You're going to have crazy-ass thoughts that creep into your mind, no matter how hard you do this, but that's what practice is so, so important. Practice is routine.

Now, to help build confidence before your around, what you want to do is last week I talked about you should never hit putts outside of five feet at the cup before a round of golf, because it's just detrimental to your psyche. I mean, how many of you have-- I mean, I used to do this before high school tournaments. I based my success of that around how many putts I made, and I always said putts at 10–15 feet. Well, 10, 15, 20 feet, if I hit 10 putts, I'm lucky to make three. That's just the numbers. That's just knowing the numbers. So, if you're lucky to make 3 out of 10, then you know that. Well, you don't know that, so you're sitting there going, I'm just not making anything. Now you're standing over four-foot putts thinking you can't make it.

Even though Brad has cracked the code to consistently breaking 90, there are still three major mistakes he's found from working with over 2,000 clients that will sabotage your round before you get to the first tee. Head to www.MyGolfCode.com now to receive your free guide where he outlines all three faults and provides you with some easy action steps to start playing more consistent golf today.

[09:03] So, before your round of golf, you should be doing your lag putting drill to the fringe for 5–10 minutes till you get a pace, a feel for speed, and then you end it by hitting 10 or 15 putts at about three or four feet uphill, downhill, sidehill, and just hit them right into the back of the cup. And now you're just losing confidence, because you have a feel for the speed and you just saw yourself make 8 or 9 out of 10 short putts, and now you know, Hey, I'm lagging. I'm close and I'm not going to miss. I got this. And now you have that, plus, a game plan for your short game and finding your safe area, and you are set to start breaking 90 consistently.

Now, how do you get better at your short putts? What you want to start doing, the number one drill for this is repetition, guys. My number one drill for my clients when it comes to short putting is repetition, seeing the ball go in.

I was not a great putter. I was good, but I wasn't great. What got me over the hump of being a far, far better putter was literally committing to hitting 50 four-foot putts a day at a target. That was either in the house at a little cup or that was at the putting green. That was in the shop at a cup that we had in the floor there. But my goal was 50 putts a day and I would track it—I’d use a little tally—and my goal was to not miss more than 10 out of 50. That was the goal. But I just started doing it.
What happened was I didn't even remember the ones I missed because I was making so many. I mean, if you make 40 putts out of 50, you don't remember the ones you miss. You don't. You just remember all the ones you make. You get used to hearing the ball go in the cup. You get used to picking your tiny target. You get used to being so focused on it and hitting it so quick, because you know you're going to make it.

So, the number one drill for you is, what I want you to do, it doesn't have to be 50. You start with 30 because 30 or trying to make 30 putts in a row is your goal. And by doing this drill—I mean, it'll take you probably 30–45 minutes to do, so we're keeping it in a half-hour window, less than an hour—so, if you can start doing that two or three times a week, I promise you this: when you go play golf the next time after you do that two or three times, and you've just hit 60–90 putts and you've just seen yourself make 50–80 of them, you're going to be shocked. You're just going to be in disbelief of how much confidence you have over putts inside five feet now, because of just simply seeing the ball go in the hole over and over and over, over the course of the week.

So, you want to start making 30 in a row—that's your goal—30 in a row from three or four feet. That's all you want to do. Three or four feet, 30 in a row. Three or four feet, 30 in a row. If you miss number 27, start over. Now, obviously, if you miss a few and you've been there an hour, that's okay, but you still probably have made a ton.

But your goal is to get where you can start making 30 in a row in 30 minutes two or three times a week, and if you do that [12:00], you're going to be putting the lights out and you're going to be 2-putting or less everything. Because a person who shoots 90 or better has 36 or less putts all day long, and we’ve got to get you there. It starts with speed and it's with oozing confidence in the short ones. Confidence comes with knowing the numbers, having a routine that keeps you in your subconscious mind before you can clutter it with all sorts of crappy thoughts, and seeing the ball go in the hole over and over with your practice drill. You do those things and you're going to start draining the short ones.

I've heard this over and over, over time: what makes great athletes and their sports so great as they do the monotonous, boring, simple, mundane things over and over and over that others do not want. Others think there's some miraculous putting stroke mechanic or thought or routine that's going to help you just make more putts, but it's not. It's doing the dirty routine is—not routine—it’s doing the dirty work. It’s doing the dirty work of just making putts inside five feet. It’s doing the drill of getting out there and draining 30 in a row, 30 in a row, 30 in a row.

I mean, how often have you seen tour players before a round just hitting 20–30 putts from, like, five feet? All the time. Why? Because it's the boring, mundane thing that gives them success. When was the last time you sat there and hit 30 putts in a row from four feet? Probably never for most of you. Some of you, maybe once or twice a year. I want you to start doing it once or twice a week. You've got to do the boring, mundane things, the basics.

You hear that all the time, I went back to the basics. Went back to the basics. This is a basic, basic drill, but it's the drill that if you do it once or twice a week consistently making 30 in a row, I promise you, you will start making short putts like there's no tomorrow, and it’s just simple—you just step up and hit it like it doesn't matter. Even if it's for birdie, eagle or double bogey, it doesn't matter. You've made so many of them, you already know you're going to make it, but you have to do the dirty work. There's no magical thought to making more short putts. It's literally building the confidence by seeing it go in and building a routine that's quick to where you're not giving yourself time to overthink and create negativity.

So, hopefully, that helps you guys. That's what the consistent golfers do that make more short putts. That's just what better golfers do. The ones who you see never make short putts, that's why. They will never miss short putts, that's why. Because they've seen themselves make it so many times that they don't even think of missing it, but for most of you just trying to break 90, you've missed so many short putts that that's all you can remember—and that goes back to week one: creating and visualizing the ball going in, creating positive thoughts of, Hey, I've done this. And you can do it in your practice over and over and over, and then you take that to the course to say, Hey, I made 30 of these in a row.

Because what happens if you miss one? What happens if on hole-1, you play the hole perfectly? You bomb the drive down the middle or maybe you hit a [15:00] hybrid, and then you lay it up and you're 20 yards off the front-right of the green because you found your safe place. Great job. You pitched and ran it, and it didn't quite get over the hill and you're 22 feet away. You rolled it to three feet and you missed the three-footer. What happens?

Well, if you were making 30 in a row a couple times this week or last week, you get to tell yourself, Hey, I don't miss many of these. That's the one I'm going to miss. I'm going to make the rest all day, and that's what you tell yourself to go through the rest of your round just oozing even more confidence. But most of you miss that three-footer and go, Oh, here we go again. Here we go again. I can't make anything today. You start telling yourself that. You started telling your league buddy and you're playing partners, I can't make anything. And you're going to believe that. Your body believes what you tell it to believe. So, if you're not speaking that you're going to make the rest of the rest of the day, you have no chance of making the rest. It ain't gonna happen.

But if you start doing this drill and you missed the first putt from three feet on hole-1, you get to tell yourself. You give yourself permission to say, Hey, I'm not going to miss any more of these because I'm making 29 or 30 in a row, so I'm not going to miss another one for the rest of today. How about that? I got that out of the way. Awesome. That's what you've got to tell yourself. That's gold right there. That's going to help you tremendously.

So, that's how you make the short putts. That's the drill. There's no secret. You’ve just got to do it. That's the thing, guys. I mean, I don't know how many times I’ve told my clients, I mean, I want 400 or 500 reps. There's no magical thought that creates a good mechanical swing. It takes work. To be a good putter and to be really good in the short putts, and just start draining them, it takes practice, and you’ve just got to get out there and do it.

So, that, hopefully, helps you guys. You've got to know the numbers. You've got to have a routine that gets rid of the clutter. You have to have a warm-up routine that breeds confidence as you move to the first tee. And you've got to have a drill that gives you the ability to miss one and realize you probably won't miss another one the rest of the day, because you've been seeing yourself make 20–30 in a row over and over, over the course of the week. Right?

So, that's how you make the short ones.

Now, next week, you don't want to miss because we're going to talk about why you might still be struggling to break 90 even after you've gone through and started implementing the code. I'm going to break down the four main factors why you might still be struggling to break 90, even after you've implemented the code. So, you don't want to miss that, because if you're still struggling to break 90, or maybe you’ve broken it, but it's that consistent there yet, or you're really close, but you just haven't gotten over the hump, tune in next week, because we're going to dive into why you might still be struggling to break 90, even now that the secret code, “30, 30 and five.”

You have the basics. Take those. Start implementing and start practicing what I've taught you to practice. You should already be there. If you're not, tune in next week. We're going to talk about why you might still be struggling or, if you are breaking 90, how you can be even more consistent in bringing that lower. That's what we're going to cover next week.

So, tune in next week. [18:00] Until then, have a great week. Get out. Practice. Play. Enjoy. And we will talk to you all soon.

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