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Mythbusters: It's Going, Just Not Quite Gone Yet...

April 15, 2014

 ‘It’ started with “Diegling” in 1924 when Leo Diegel putted hunched over with the butt of the putter in his stomach. ‘It’ progressed when Richard Parmley patented ‘it’ in 1965. The debate was sparked in 1989 when Orville Moody won the US Senior Open with ‘it.’ ‘It’ is the belly putter. And ‘it’ is the focus of this first edition of MythBusters


Myth: More people are winning majors using an anchored putter 

The issue of Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson, Ernie Els, and Adam Scott winning a cumulative Grand Slam using anchored putters in a 9 major stretch triggered this debate. However, that is only 4 of the last 9 victors, which is less than half. More people are not winning majors using an anchored putter. To further emphasize the point, Bradley’s 2011 PGA Championship triumph made him the first to secure a major anchoring his stroke.


Let’s not pretend that there haven’t been exceptional putting performances in majors prior to his win. Rory McIlroy did win by 7 strokes at Kiawah and 8 strokes at Congressional using a conventional putter. This myth is busted. 


Myth: Using anchored putters provides an unfair advantage 

Carl Pettersen led the way in 2012 with the extended flat blade finishing 21st in Strokes Gained on the PGA Tour. That wasn’t even among the 20 best players that season. Furthermore, PGA Champion Keegan Bradley finished a less than impressive 97th in 2011. Let’s take a look at the statistics of notable anchored putter users since this trending performance in majors began in 2012: 


Strokes Gained 2014 (To Date) 

Webb Simpson 6th 

Adam Scott 18th 

Ernie Els 21st 

Keegan Bradley 76th 

Tim Clark 99th 

Carl Pettersen 132nd 


Strokes Gained 2013 

Webb Simpson 40th 

Keegan Bradley 49th 

Tim Clark 85th 

Adam Scott 102nd 

Carl Pettersen T111th 

Ernie Els 126th 


Strokes Gained 2012 

Carl Pettersen 21st 

Keegan Bradley 27th 

Webb Simpson T54th 

Ernie Els 112th 

Tim Clark T123rd 

Adam Scott 148th 


To date, no loyal anchored putter user has finished inside the top 20 in Strokes Gained using an anchored putter. Adam Scott may have used a broomstick to win The Masters, but he also failed to crack the Top 100 in Strokes Gained last year. This myth is busted. 


Myth: There aren’t any tools available to help players make the transition from long putters to short putters 

Adam Scott is seen here using a device very similar to the Pendulum Rod from Eyeline Golf.  It is allowing him to make a stroke without the actual putter being anchored to his body. This transitional device will help players of all skill levels make the necessary changes to comply with the imminent rule change. Given that there are products to help you make the change without adversely affecting their game, you guessed it. This myth has been busted. 


Thank you for reading this first edition of MythBusters on anchored putters. If need help moving away from the anchored stroke or just want to stabilize your stroke with your current putter, ask me about the Pendulum Rod. It will do wonders for your putting and helping you play Your PAR Golf. Click HERE to print the full version of this article or click HERE to contact me for a future lesson. 



How it All Began: A History of the Long Putter, Golf Channel Digital

PGA Tour Stats: Strokes Gained Putting, PGATour.com


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Click below to contact with inquiries

Preston Combs, PGA Teaching Professional

6034 Hollister Avenue

Goleta, CA 93107

E-mail: pcombs@pga.com


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