The cage drill is to help you with determining the correct distance and always getting to the hole or just past it if you miss. The old saying is very true, Never Up, Never In. You always want to apply enough speed to either get to the hole or just beyond it.
Once a ball losses speed it will also loss the line a lot more dramatical. When a putt is just about to die any small amount of slope will influence the roll of the putt even the direction of the grain of the grass will now have significant effect. Professional golfers as part of their putting routine will closely survey the conditions around the cup even on a long putt because of this. Also, that is why so often we see putts get to hole the but gently roll to either side and just miss by a few inches.
By practicing this drill you will get in the habit of not coming up short and your goal well be to apply enough speed to your putt that if you do miss the putt you should ended up between 6-10 inches past the hole. In the long run you will be in a better position to sink more and lower your score.
Start by setting three clubs around the hole so they form a square with one side missing.
• The hole should be equal distance between the two clubs that are not touching.
• Now begin taking ten practice putts from 10 feet away.
• The aim is to get all ten putts either in the hole or inside the cage but not touching any of the clubs.
• This practice putting drill will help in your decision making when determining distance and get you in the habit of applying enough speed so you do not come up short. Also, if you do miss you will only be left with a three foot putt or less.
Remember from an earlier lesson that you are controlling distance with the length of your stoke. Continue to maintain a smooth rhythm and tempo to your stroke with no quick burst of power.
Practice with Your Eyes Closed: Now repeat the entire putting drill with your eyes closed. Just before hitting the ball close your eyes. You have already gotten the feel from the first round, so now you want to ingrain that feeling in your subconscious.
There is no better drill for practicing distance control then practicing with your eyes closed. The ability to visualize a putt in your mind will significantly improve your speed, distance and to trust your stoke. We recommend practicing with your eyes closed on several of these putting drills because of the significant improvements it will make to your over all putting skills.
PUTTING PRACTICE TIP: Before a match on the practice putting green you can take the small flag pole and set it behind a hole about 18 to 24 inches. Then start your practice putts to either go in the hole or land between the flag pole and cup.