What Length Putter Do I Need?
Most golfers know how important their putting game is to shooting lower scores out on the course. In fact, having a consistently low putting stroke is far more likely to help you do better overall!
If you think about your lowest rounds, you’re going to realize that those are also the rounds where you had the fewest putts. While your drives are certainly going to contribute to your overall performance, it’s a lot less likely that you’ll have bad drives consistently. Golf is all about the short game, and getting the golf ball to the hole really depends on your putting.
So, naturally, having the proper putter length is absolutely crucial to your game. If you’re not sure that you’re using the right putter length, you’re not alone. We’re here to help you make sure that you have the correct putter length, and that you have the best games you can moving forward.
Do I Have the Correct Putter Length?
To be frank, probably not. The standard putter length you’re going to find on the market is 35 inches. But here’s the thing – a 35 inch putter is too long for most golfers. If we’re determining putter length by height, a 35 inch putter is really only suitable for golfers that are 6 feet to 6 feet 2 inches in height. So, tall golfers will enjoy the standard putter length, but most golfers won’t.
Putter Length By Height
There’s an easy way to determine general putter length, it can be done using just a golfer’s height. This is going to work for everyone, even taller golfers.
Generally speaking, you can match the correct size putter to a height based on the list below.
Height – Putter Length Fitting Chart
Under 5′ – 32 inches or less
5’0″ to 5’2″ – 32.5 inches
5’2″ to 5’4″ – 33 inches
5’4″ to 5’6″ – 33.5 inches
5’6″ to 5’8″ – 34 inches
5’8″ to 6’0″ – 34.5 inches
6’0″ to 6’2″ – 35 inches
6’2″ to 6’4″ – 35.5 inches
Over 6’4″ – 36 inches
Of course, there’s always room for some wiggle room. Not every golfer of the same height is going to be built the same way. It’s important that you fit your putter to your comfortability.
Using the Tri-Fit Method
This method is more exact and can be done easily, provided that you’ve got someone to help you with some key measurements. If you want a properly fitted putter, you can always go to a shop near you for a putter fitting. However, putter fittings aren’t always necessary, if you’ve got a willing partner to help you at home or at the course.
Step 1: Take the Correct Posture
Grab a putter, or pretend to have a putter in your hands, and take the correct putting setup posture (or the address position). This entails having your eyes directly over the golf ball’s inner edge. Your hands and arms hang naturally under your shoulders, and your hips should be over your heels.
Step 2: Measure the Distance
You’re going to need to take two measurements in this stance. We’re going to call them A and B. Measurement A is the distance from the crease of your wrist directly to the ground. Measurement B is the distance from where A meets the ground to the inner edge of the golf ball.
Step 3: Time for Some Math
Now that you’ve got your two measurements, it’s easy to determine how long your putter needs to be. It’s as simple as the Pythagorean theorem, seen below:
A^2 + B^2 = C^2
All you’ve got to do is plug in your measurements. So, for example, let’s say measurement A is 31 inches, and measurement B is 12 inches. Here’s your math:
31^2 + 12^2 = C^2
961 + 144 = C^2
1105 = C^2
√1105 = C
33.24 = C
So, the optimal putter length for that individual is 33.25 inches. Easy, right?
Get Custom Fitted for a Putter
Now, if you’re completely dedicated to golf, then you’re going to know that a properly fit set of golf clubs is incredibly important. However, a properly fit putter is equally important. You don’t want to be putting with 34 inch putter when you need something that’s 34.5 inches.
If you want to up your game as much as possible, a custom fitted putter may be the way to go. These are the things that you’ll go through:
Your golfing goals. Believe it or not, a professional club fitter is going to be able to pick a putter for you that will adhere to how you play the game.
How you feel about your current putter. If you feel comfortable with what you’ve got, a club fitter will still find something better using different parameters measured in relation to your putting stroke.
Testing different putters using Balance Certified weights. This is to help find the best stroke path and impact consistency.
After all of this, the club fitter will be able to help you find the putter, including putter length, that will change the way you play for the better.
Understanding Why Proper Putter Length Matters
Many golfers will tell you that proper putter length matters, but they may not tell you why. Well, we’re here to help you get that crucial information.
Putter Length Determines Swing Arc
One of the biggest reasons to get the correct putter length is due to the way it determines your swing arc. When a putter is the correct length, it creates the optimal lie angle. Lie angle is the angle created by resting your putter’s head on the ground behind the ball.
If you have the correct putter length, the center of the putter head will lie on the ground, giving you the proper lie angle. If you have a longer putter, the heel of the putter will rest on the ground. If you have a shorter putter, the opposite end will lie on the ground. This is going to have a dramatic effect on the way that you swing the putter, and as such, it’ll change your short game dramatically. If your lie angle is incorrect, you’re going to see your golf ball traveling in a direction that you never intended.
So, why does putter length matter? Well, it’s going to be the basis of all of your directional control.
Putter Length Determines Putting Stance
In golf, stance is everything. This is especially true when it comes to putting. Your putting stance is going to determine your overall perspective of the short game, as well as your swing weight and distance control.
Posture is everything, so let’s talk about how it changes perspective. If your putter is too long, your eye position is going to be too far underneath the golf ball. If it’s too short, it’ll be too far over it. This is going to change the way you see the target line to the hole.
Now, let’s cover the way putter length will affect stroke power. A short putter is going to, for all intents and purposes, be swung too hard. When you change your posture to swing, your swing weight is going to increase, since there’s less likelihood you’ll collide with anything (including the ball). The opposite will happen with a long putter – you’ll probably chip the ground, and probably the ball.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the standard putter length, and does it work for everyone?
Most manufacturers produce putters are a standard length of 35 inches. This is certainly not going to work for everyone. In fact, it’s only really going to work for tall golfers. Putter length is highly specific to each golfer, and long putters aren’t going to work for people under 6 feet tall.
I like my putter but it's too short, can I extend it?
If you like everything about your current putter, but it’s a bit too short, you can actually have it extended. A shorter putter can be given a putter extension, which involves a professional club fitter adding a new shaft or an extension. The process is not as easy as adding a new grip, though, and it will probably take some time and money to accomplish.
I feel like my putter is too long, but it is the correct length, what's wrong?
This is really going to come down to the individual. If you have the right putter length, then your posture may be the issue. Not everyone approaches the ball the same way when putting. Some people prefer a bent over posture, while others like an upright posture. It’s all about finding what works for you. There’s no universal putter length that’s correct. Be patient, and find the putter that ups your game the most!
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