Play Better Golf

Lesson 25: How to Have Pendulum-Style Strokes Consistently

Area: Putting

Practice Site: At home or practice green

Instructions by: Kellie Stenzel

How frequent your one-putts can be dependent on how good you are in controlling the distance of the ball roll on each attempt. To control putt distance, the best putters use a pendulum-style stroke and at the same time switch the swing length and not the speed, in order to control the distances of the putts. How do you make your strokes similar to a pendulum? Here’s the drill:

Get a yardstick and mark it at 18 inches using a Sharpie, as well as the consecutive lines every 2 inches. If possible, use different colors when marking each increment.


Set the yardstick on the green; place a ball lined up with mark at the center of the stick. Putt from one mark to another, using the lines on the stick as guides in making your strokes in consistent length.

As you do this, note the distance each putt rolls with the even-length strokes (2, 4, 6, 8, and 9 inches). You will understand the equation of stroke sizes with the distance of the putts with this drill. It is important to note the distance of ball rolls for every stroke.