A putter, the club used in golf to make short and low-speed strokes with the ultimate intention of rolling the ball into the hole from the shortest distance.
Due to its unique use, a putter is one of the most essential tools in the golfer’s bag. The putter is used from a very close distance to the cup, usually on the putting green.
It is essential for every golfer to have a putter that fits their size, stance and need hence, the great need of knowing how to measure the exact length of a putter.
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Factors to Consider While Measuring a Putter Length
There are many factors to consider when measuring the length of a putter. In this section, we will discuss all of them.
1. Golfer’s Height
The first factor is the height of the individual using the putter.
A golfer’s height directly affects the kind of putter they use in the field. There are standard putter sizing guidelines that are used and can help one in getting the right putter.
For 6 feet or taller golfers, the 34 ½ inch putter is recommended. For 5 feet 10 inches to 11 inches tall, we suggest the 34-inch putter.
It follows a simple formula; the shorter a golfer is, the less inched putter they require.
The length of a putter affects both distance control and direction control of the putt equally and is quite important concerning consistency in putting.
2. Putting Stance
The second factor to consider is the putting stance. When measuring the length of a putter, the golfer should be comfortable while in the putting stance.
Every golfer is well aware that positioning in golf is of paramount importance as it dramatically affects the results.
The most popular putting stroke today is when the golfer is slightly bent over at the waist with knees slightly bent having their eyes directly over the ball.
Such a position enables the golfer to have the stroke in a pendulum motion using the shoulders as a pivot point. The putter length is measured and fitted with the golfer in this position.
The gender affects the length of a putter as men putters are mostly sold in 35 inches and 34 standard lengths. The women putters, on the other hand, are conventional at 33 inches. Usually, both men and women fit into shorter lengths than those offered as standard.
In measuring the length of a putter, the golfer's thumbs should be in the front flat area on the grip. The thumbs should be stacked one on top of the other. If one grips down the shaft of the putter so as to remain in the correct position, then it is apparent that they require a shorter putter.
The same case applies to the golfer gripping way up toward the top past flat area and thus needs a longer putter.
4. Thumb and Elbow
Using a putter that is not in accordance to your height will cause injury to your wrists. The shaft putter should be in line perfectly with the golfer’s forearms to avoid this. Such a putter has the correct length.
The level of a golfer’s elbow affects the length of the putter. The elbows should be lightly touching the ribcage in a correct stance when using a putter that has the correct length in accordance to the golfer.
If the elbows are wedged into the golfer's ribcage, then the length of the putter is too long. Using a putter longer than required will definitely affect your swing making it off centre as the elbows will be too close with a longer putter.
5. Eye Position in Stance
Another factor to consider in measuring the length of the putter is eye position in the stance. Your eyes should fall directly above the ball indicating one has the perfect length of the putter.
If one has to look out at the ball, then it is because the putter is shorter and causing the golfer to stand too far back.
Using a shorter putter will require one to either stand too close or bend too much, and this eventually results to major back pain.
Bending more at the hips than once is required in order to reach the ball with the putter. This creates pressure in your lower back which is a clear indication that one is using a shorter putter.
Though it may take a while for one to notice the back strain due to using an ill-fitted putter, one should be keen on the putter length immediately they start experiencing back pains after golfing.
6. Weight of the Club Head
The club head weight should match the length of the putter. The standard 35 in 89 cm putters club weights of around 73 pounds.
When the length of a club head is not proportional to the weight of a club head, the swing is negatively affected.
The head’s lie-angle should match the putter’s length. The lie-angle should promote good posture and eye position over the ball. Also when putting, the ball should go straight and not veer off to a side.
8. Stroke Type
The type of stroke also affects the length of the putter. Belly putters and long putters will help control involuntary tremors during one’s stroke. This is by anchoring the putter toward one’s stomach or chest and stabilizing the putter more.
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Common Measurement Tips
How exactly does one measure a putter’s length, one may ask. Herein, one should have the most appropriate equipment to measure.
A yardstick is too short, and a measuring tape sounds too flexible. Such may tamper with the accuracy of the length.
The correct equipment would be aluminum or any other metal ruler whose length is at least 48 inches and 120 cm.
When measuring, the putter's center should be in contact with the ground in order for one to get the most accurate results. Avoid placing the end of the putter; the toe or the heel on the ground for measuring.
The edge of the ruler should be placed at the back of the heel of the putter and be sure that the ruler is even with the putter remaining close to it. The amount at the edge of your putter's grip-cap or consequently where the grip ends reflects the length of your putter.
A putter, as mentioned earlier, is one of the essential clubs used by the golfer and thus having the right measurement of the putter is important. Not only to avoid back pains and wrists injuries but also to achieve desired results through a perfect swing.