Quote to note : “ Feel is practice and trust in that practice”
Paul McGinley, European Ryder Cup player.
The putting sequence from a golfer's perspective involves
1) looking at the line and length of the putt, and deciding on the strength of the putting stroke;
2) checking the results of those decisions, whilst taking some practice strokes parallel to the ball;
3) addressing the ball and taking a final look at the length and line of the putt, checking the club head alignment;
4) making the stroke.
In psychological terms, the putt may be described in terms of:-
C) Motor skills which blend together to produce the stroke for that particular putt.
It should be noted, from the outset, that although the putt is a far less complex set of movements than a full iron or wood swing, there is an enormous range of variations between one putt and another. These variations include not only length of putt, but speed of the green as well as the contours of the specific line from ball to hole.
Though these may be subtle factors, and are capable of almost infinite variation, the basic task of the putt: i.e. keeping the club head square to the target at impact and at the right strength, remains the same.
Putting successfully requires a strong element of technical skill together with good decision-making and a high degree of what golfers refer to as 'feel'.
In psychological terms 'feel' seems to represent a blending together of conscious thoughts. These involve reading of pace and direction for the shot, visualization of the line which in turn enables triggers in the memory to be activated and filtered before the correct specification lets us pick out the right program in our muscle memory to make the shot we need.
'Feel' at its best reduces the conscious thoughts to a minimum. Skill and experience allow the correct amount of strength and direction to be automatically found and used. The term also conveys the element of emotion which expresses itself in a low-to-moderate degree of arousal (we don’t get over excited) and a high degree of focused attention; as well as the tactile feel of the club in one's hands as the club is held firmly without over tensing.
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