Back to The Putting Tree: Capture Speed
How many times have we had a painful lip out or see a putt crash into the back of the hole and pop out the back? The answer is probably more times than we care to admit, but hopefully since you've taken The Speed Class, those times are far less frequent.
If you haven't done that yet, keep reading. You'll have more than one compelling reason to take that class before too long. And even if you have, there are some more nuggets for you to learn below.
A New Topic
Does everyone remember the Key Concepts that determine our speed? They're size and tempo and primarily decide how fast the ball leaves the putter face. So now fast forward to the good part - when the ball reaches (and hopefully goes in) the hole. That's the main topic of this post: Capture Speed.
Don't worry, this new fangled concept isn't too hard to grasp.
Capture speed is the pace at which a ball is rolling when it crosses the front edge of the cup. Since discussing how fast a ball is rolling in revolutions per second might pose a challenge, we reference this speed based on how far past the cup the ball is travels.
Why Does it Matter?
Consider that if a ball is traveling faster, the cup size will become effectively smaller and the likelihood of you making the putt decreases. You could hit the edge of the hole and will likely be left with the aforementioned lip out. So the logical solution is to drip everything over the edge, right? Wrong. The last thing we want is a spike mark or ball mark to knock the ball off line or keep it from reaching the hole. That said, there's likely an ideal range that gets the job done. Let’s take a closer look.
The picture on the left shows us the effective cup size based on the capture speed. To the guy in your scramble that hammers it six feet past the cup and exclaims “I gave it a run!”: He had as good a chance of making the putt as a guy that left it short. Six feet by is too much speed for the cup to handle and the ball will simply roll over the cup.
While experts will always disagree on the exact number, it's safe to say that there's a functional range you can use as a reference point. We'll work with 6-12 inches past the cup as a safe reference point on medium green speeds. You'll make the cup larger and have an element of predictability for your speed.
Your Opportunity So here's a question for you. How are you going to develop consistent capture speed when you're out on the course?
You guessed it. All roads lead back to The Putting Tree and being proficient at managing your size and tempo. Click the button below to download The Speed Class - Volume 1!
PS - If you're a good player, keep an eye out for an upcoming post entitled Capture Speed, Part 2. You're going to want to know how this concept applies on fast greens and breaking putts.