Best Putter for Yips
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Consistent putting can be elusive; look at the variety of grips used by top professionals in search of consistency. Their problems often began with the yips which I am happy to say have never affected me. I’m not playing for the pressure of money, so I won’t labor the point, but is there more to it? Whatever the cause, here is some advice on the best putter for yips if you have a problem.
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Why Do People Get the Yips?
Some people say the yips are purely in the head; not so others claim. It is something that affects many golfers all of whom seek a cure. It is not merely the pressure of the moment or it would no longer affect golfers who are ‘’serial winners.’’ Take Ernie Els as an example of this. ()
It is human to be anxious when under increased pressure of course but that does not mean anxiety is the root cause. The term ‘’yips’’ was coined by Tommy Armour, the famous Scottish golfer a century ago; he described it as a “brain spasm that impairs the short game.” In the Shawnee Open, Armour, who had won the US Open a month previously, took 23 putts to complete a single hole!
The other names formerly used to describe the condition such as ‘’the waggles,” or ‘’the jerks” have now largely been forgotten. There are three reasons why the condition occurs:
- The neurological condition “Focal Dystonia” which causes involuntary movements during certain actions sums up the problem. It does not result in any golfer necessarily being a poor putter in general but certainly it taxes the brain from short distances.
Studies have been made whereby golfers are connected to devices that measure reaction and response and they have confirmed that the yips is a neurological issue that affects the muscles in the arms preventing them from operating as the brain is asking them to operate. The result is that the stroke is ‘’jerky’’ and rarely successful because it takes the putter face off its intended path. It is something found in other sports where players are seeking a smooth action, games such as darts and snooker.
- Mental Pressure is something that is likely to worsen a pre-existing condition as opposed to causing it in the first place. Some golfers speak of trying to distract their conscious minds from the process of putting so that they do not give the moment too much importance.
- Emotional Issues are related in a way. The putting problem can be the result of things that have happened during previous rounds when a similar putt was unsuccessful or even earlier in the round; a very poor shot or two. It is difficult to forget such things and easy to bring them to the front of the mind as pressure builds.
The ironic thing is the yips is not something that a talented golfer was born with. For professionals to reach the top of the game, they must have developed well in all aspects of the game or they simply would never have made the higher reaches; the professional tours. It regularly happens to players who have been competing successfully for many years. The problem comes suddenly, without warning, and without an obvious defined cure, nor certainty of recovery, perhaps even probability of recovery? Everyone needs the best putter for yips.
The Ways to Cure the Yips in Putting
If you suffer from the yips, the first thing you should do is to try putting one-handed, first with your right hand and then with your left. Frequently you will find that you have the problem in just one of your hands. If that is the case, you should try using different grips with the problem hand. It will no longer be the dominant hand now and will have less impact your short putting.
If you watch professional golf, you will see a range of different grips these days, many a result of the player having developed the yips.
The golf industry understands that yipping is a significant problem in golf and has set about finding a solution in manufacturing putters to combat it as far as possible.
Some players have had success by concentrating on breathing which can be a way to take their minds off the putt itself, and the process of making the stroke.
What to Look for in a Putter to Cure Yips
Yips are almost always a factor in short putts when there is little room for maneuver because of a short back swing and follow through. When putts are longer and hence so are the back swings, there is time to adjust a slight yip to straighten the putter face again. Manufacturers have produced heavier heads counterbalanced with weights in the grip to increase stability. If you just release the putter in a pendulum motion, the swing becomes more automatic.
Standard grips are usually thin to get players gripping the putter firmly, if not too tensely. That is counterproductive for golfers with the yips who should have a large grip on their putters. It means there is far less tension in the whole process of putting. It is easier to relax and therefore produce a smoother swing.
A longer shaft in the putter can help someone with the yips. Anchoring a belly putter was the solution for a while but that is now illegal. However, there are still prominent golfers using the broomstick putters to help their strokes even though there are strict rules about their use; strictly no anchoring with only the hands directly in play. These golfers clearly find the design which varies between 48 and 52 inches long helps them to relax.
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The Spider is a modern mallet shape design which promotes stability and roll while allowing you to achieve good alignment between the putter face, the ball and the intended target; there are three alignment lines to help in the process.
The design is not new but TaylorMade relaunched the Spider X more recently and it comes in three shaft lengths to suit individual purchasers. It aims to compensate for those who hit the ball slightly off-center.
It has a lightweight core with stainless steel frame created with high Moment of Inertia (MOI), perimeter weighting to increase forgiveness, helping you to keep the face square. Its soft Surlyn insert adds to the ability to control distance with the foam between the 350 gram head and frame giving both feel and sound off the face.
The black shaft reduces any glare that might distract you as you think about the putt.
The White Smoke is a quality counterbalanced putter with a 130-gram grip that increases the stability of your stroke. With a good Moment of Inertia (MOI), it is a forgiving putter with a large sweet spot to compensate with off-center strokes, the Surlyn insert helping to create a consistent roll from a pure stroke. Even the pure sound off the putter face is confidence building.
It is a putter that TaylorMade has manufactured with budget in mind without compromising on the Brand’s quality. The White Smoke is both durable and looks good. The mallet head is large and with the weighted grip it is a little heavy for some golfers. However, it is important to remember that weight is a factor in combatting the yips. TaylorMade has established a good name among golfers for its research and development and the White Smoke takes advantage of that.
If you buy the Shaftlign, you will be immediately impressed by how easy it is to align the putter face with the ball and the intended target. The Shaftlign has a quality milled putter face and comes with white shaft continuing through the white bar on the head of the putter which is otherwise black. A simple way to create good alignment through color contrast.
Shaftlign is a center shaft design with that simply meaning the shaft joins the putter head in its center, not at the toe which is another common design. The weight is evenly distributed between the heel and toe which makes it more forgiving than other brands
Its manufacturer produced the Shaftlign precisely to counter the problem of the yips because it was a problem that he had himself. It has a soft feel which promotes a smooth roll off the face. Shaftlign is in the mid-price range amongst today’s putters so it addresses the important problem of the yips without stretching your budget too fat.
Odyssey has established a name for the quality of its putters although it comes at a price; what price solving a major problem in your game? The Sabertooth’s micro hinge insert technology helps you both with topspin and roll, however poorly you strike the ball.
The counterbalanced design helps you feel the putter in your hand as well as countering the chances of a yip as you draw the putter back. The head is certainly large and as a result has a large sweet spot. Sabertooth is durable, as well as good to grip in your hands to give you confidence in your putting stroke.
The Sabertooth is very easy to align, drawing your eyes to the face and ball. It comes with two alternative grips, Slim and Pistol GT.
The Cleveland 2135 is a great putter for anyone who has problems with alignment. The sightline has been raised off the ground to line up exactly with the golf ball’s center. It provides excellent feel because of the MOI that helps combat any poor strike and the TPU Insert. The design is counterbalanced, the basic necessity in putters designed to fight the yips and with a head weighing 405 grams, you are certain to feel it in your hands. Cleveland produces two shaft lengths as standard, 35 and 38 inches.