I spent some time Tuesday by the new practice green at Augusta National, by the new practice facility. There was a huge crowd there because Tiger Woods and Rory McIlory had been practicing their putting. I parked by Masters round one leader Lee Westwood and watched him and his caddie work on the stroke. Westwood has quite a setup.
The first thing they did was find a putt on the practice green of about 10 feet which was dead straight. It took them a while, about 10 minutes to get the perfect spot. When they found the straight putt, they installed a string line on the line of the putt with two small spikes and a 10 foot string.
I get this. You can putt along the line and also use the line to check your putter head and stroke against it.
The next thing they setup was a putting arc training unit. These units help putters with their stroke’s ark and some can be setup for straight arc or the “swinging gate” style.
Westwood put two tees in the ground outside the heel and toe of the putter. This is a common drill to force players to keep their putter head in the proper position. If the head moves inside or ouside the initial position, it will hit the tees. The tees can also provide a visual representation of a line 90 degrees perpendicular to the line. So they help the player visually make sure the putter face is square.
This is the part I’m not so sure about. Once the string, tees and arc trainer were in place, Westwood put a towel down beneath his feet. I’m assuming that since he plans on standing in the same position for a long time to groove the putting stroke, the towel is to reduce the possible damage or indentation his feet might put into the green.