Golf's Mental Game & The 4-Footer

Joe Culverhouse
  • Author: Joseph Culverhouse
  • Manager - GLT Content and Communications
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rickie reads a putt


Today, we'll kick off GLT's latest mini series, built around golf's mental game and designed for coaches to easily share with players, by discussing one of the most fearsome putts in golf, the four footer.

As golfers, the 4-foot putt is something almost all of us dread. This is because most golfers have become fixated on the outcome of the putt. The outcome of a putt is something we can’t control, and when we focus on things we can’t control, it leads to stress and tension.

Luckily, by focusing on the things we can control – in this case, the stress and tension –  we’re able to better perform when faced with adversity. Even more luckily, there’s a simple exercise we can perform on the course to help reduce tension.

We begin the exercise by clenching our fists and/or jaws, releasing the tension, taking a deep breathe then relaxing, and repeating as necessary before beginning our pre-shot routines.

After that, simply approach the ball, line up and take a few practice strokes. We should now have a heightened sense of awareness of the tension in our bodies, and our only goal now is to maintain the current level of tension, removing the focus from the actual putt.

By doing a few pushups, jumping jacks, laps around the green, basically anything that leads to an increased heart rate, then going through the same drill we practiced on course, we can help our bodies learn to better recognize and regulate levels of stress and tension.

Soon, you’ll be knocking down those 4-footers like you’re playing mini golf.

To see this tip in action be sure to click the Youtube link and share with your students or check out how to help them with the dreaded water shot,

Thanks for being part of our mission to help golfers train differently and think differently.  

Click Here For GLT's FREE Golf Psychology Online Course. 

reading a putt