How often have you missed a putt and then slammed your putter down thinking it was the club’s fault? Well you could be right as your putter may be working against you rather than with you.
We went to visit Applied Golf Technology at St Andrews Links Golf Academy in St Andrews to investigate a weighting system called Balanced Certified that claims to increase the accuracy of your putting.
Here’s the theory. Every putter has a vibration point like a tuning fork. You can find this by holding the grip of your putter between thumb and forefinger and gently tapping it on a hard surface.
Wherever you feel the greatest vibration is the point where the club will give you the most feedback on feel at impact. This is important because this is the feedback that helps you judge distance on putts.
If you do this test it is likely that the vibration point will be below your hands on the grip, rather than under them which is necessary for optimum feedback and feel. To ‘move’ this point under your hands you need to use a counter weight in the grip end of the club and it is this weight that Balance Certified has created.
Once you have the weight in the correct position it will stablise the wrists and hands at impact thus giving you more centre strikes on the clubface, which in turn will make you more consistent at judging the pace.
Putting It Into Practice
Having understood the theory, Ed Robertson of Applied Golf Technology took me through the fitting process which was remarkably simple.
Ed fitted a variety of different weights into the end of my putter grip and then had me putt 3 balls from different distances to a hole, focusing on getting the distance right.
The weights started at 20 grams for the number 1 weight and went up to 110 grams for the number 11 weight.
Ed recorded how accurate I was with distance control to narrow down the best one. Obviously it has to feel good too and my input on this aspect helped to make the decision.
After much trial and error we selected a number 4 counter weight and this was then inserted into the end of the grip in a simple operation. Once the weight is inserted, it is tightened to lock itself into the shaft which enhances rather than dampens the feel.
Original Balance Certified weights are tour tested and copies abound so make sure you get the right type as poorly fitting weights may not fit correctly in the shaft and will lead to less feedback rather than more.
I noticed an immediate increase in the overall weight of the club not surprisingly, but when I made a stroke it was hardly noticeable. What was noticeable was that the putter felt more evenly balanced between head and grip, when it had been head heavy before.
On the greens the feel from the putter is significantly better at impact and I am more consistent at judging the distance on long putts. Closer to the hole the added weight makes you feel more confident over short putts and that combined with the better feel means you hole out more often.
This really is a fantastic and cheap alternative to buying a new putter and it may be all your need to improve your putting, or at least have you blaming something else apart from your club!
For more information visit www.appliedgolftechnology.co.uk
Check out our features on driver custom fitting and iron custom fitting to see how the same principles have been adapted for them.