There are many considerations when it comes to putting and the right putting tips, and one of the most important things to keep in mind is your ball speed. This might not be top of mind when you’re super focused on alignment and keeping your ball on line, but speed can really throw off your putt if you aren’t careful.

One way to think about why speed control is important in putting and in drills for putting is to think of the childhood game of leapfrog. With this drill, PGA Professional Tessa Teachman has given us a fun way to practice lag putting.


Developing the correct distance control is going to help you hole more putts and, therefore, reduce the number of putts you have in a round. Practicing lag putting drills (and reading greens correctly) will improve your putting stats and help you find the proper amount of speed to propel the ball towards the hole.



To improve your speed control, consider the following putting tips for your golf game:

  1. Match the Length of Your Back and Through Stroke

An even rhythm of your stroke is pertinent to controlling ball speed. Altering the rhythm can affect the consistency of impact location and face angle when your putter comes in contact with the ball. With better rhythm, the stroke will feel more fluid and repeatable.

  1. Focus on Solid Contact

The more centered you hit your putts, the more predictable the distance traveled will be. Toe and heel hits can deaden the strike and will result in a weak roll.

  1. Speed Will Trump Line

As distance from the hole increases, the goal is to lag the first putt close. The chances of making a long putt decrease significantly, but lagging the putt close depends more on good speed control versus picking the perfect line.



To improve the consistency of your speed control, a great game to play is the golf version of leapfrog. Instead of vaulting yourself over another person, the goal is to send each golf ball past the previous one and see how far you can get.

This is one of the best putting drills for speed. It helps you learn and maintain better control of the ball and see whether you tend to hit the ball too hard or soft. You can also follow along with the steps below by watching the video above.

  1. Place a mark at your start line.
  2. Place a second mark 3 feet from your start line.
  3. Place a third mark 15 feet from your start line.
  4. Hit your first putt as close as possible, yet past the 3-foot mark. Mark where the ball finishes.
  5. Hit your next putt as close as possible, yet past your first putt. Mark where it finishes.
  6. Repeat this process until you leave your next putt short of the previous one or past the 15-foot mark. Start over from 3 feet if this happens.
  7. See how many putts you can leapfrog within 3-15 feet and build on that number as you improve.

This is one of the best putting drills for speed because you can see how much power it takes to overshoot a ball or come up short, allowing yourself to better gauge the right amount of force you need for a specific speed. You can vary the distances, amount of slope and break. Play games, have fun and watch how distance control is one of the fastest ways to start lowering your scores (aside from playing with SuperStroke putter grips, of course).