Putting follow-through problem?

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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby JR » Thu Jan 24, 2013 5:53 pm

Bents your posture starts with the torso and upward of it being bent forward and it stays that way and your bum is sticking out away from the basket. You should start the putt with the bum pointing away from the target and as the arm moves forward so should the pelvis so that your posture is straight up when the disc leaves. Think of a heavy rock musician displaying their jiggly bits. That's what you do toward the basket jam your wiener at the pole :-) Your list sounds good and your experiment with physics is approved by Sir Isaac Newton and for the explanation as to what goes on there google Newtons law. There are more than one and knowing each of them helps in disc golf.

I agree with Mark that is good to try out new styles. Most try something out and if it does not work immediately they'll drop it. Switching styles can take a while and you can practice the new and the old time simultaneously so you'll always have a back up form to fall back to. A better form will absolutely transform poor putting. The yardstick to when to start a search for a new form should be your score card. If you miss a lot or are otherwise losing to people you don't want to lose to because of putting the form needs to change if a lot of practice with the old style does not produce improvements. No improvements despite a lot of practice means either you have reached the limits of the form or your execution of that form is off. To check for the latter remember that all the best putters in the world accelerate the arm hard and often in a very short distance of a few inches only. Maybe as little as 2" of fast acceleration.

The other underlying key is to accelerate as fast as you can meaning optimizing how your body can accelerate optimally. Which is with as loose arm as possible without losing the angles of the disc. So try yawning shaking the arms and raising the arms up and dropping the arms low with gravity alone. You should be as loose or looser in the muscles as they are when you wake up. That is the comparison minus the minor tension needed to just keep the disc oriented correctly. Flat for spin putters at shorter ranges and a minimal anny at long ranges. A degree to few based on the distance and fade characteristics of the disc. I'm not a fan of hard fading putters so ideally the anny should be very small and the disc mildly fading so that it will stay on the line all the time.

Mark Ellis: How fast do you accelerate your arm and is there any muscle tension in your arm before and during the putt? What happens when you move to a thin putter like the APX and the Magnet vs your trusted Rattler? It is way easier to accelerate the arm when you are totally loose in the arm muscles and it is in turn helped by having a thinner disc in your hand. Wrist snap is not even necessary but it is good in small movements say 2" or less for a spin putt.

One of the best putters of all time Cam Todd won't move his wrist at all. While snapping the wrist a little adds power (and accuracy due to added acceleration=better disc weight pushing against the finger=more feedback to aim with) so that you can take some off elsewhere for more accuracy and consistency the wrist needs to stay in control needing more arm muscles to last an event. You'll lose the timing of movements when you're tired and spin putts hurt more for that than pitch putts.

The larger the movement of the wrist snap in a spin putt the better the chance of a mistake is. If you snap slower than normal you'll miss right, too fast misses left and if you're tired and the wrist acts like a ball bearing flapping the hand right without resistance you'll miss wide right. If you need or want to use wrist snap less is definitely more inside the circle.

The only time the wrist should really work hard and have a larger motion range is going for it around your maximum putting distance. There is a crucial difference between the wrist snapping hard vs firmly and still almost as fast. Fast adds accuracy and consistency 100 % murders accuracy and consistency doubly so. 70-80 % power wrist snap is probably ok and when you have a good wrist 90 % should work too but never 100 % within the circle if you don't face monster headwinds and you have to force the disc into the basket on a laser line risking missing long and faaar.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby bents » Thu Jan 24, 2013 6:48 pm

Update: After Mark told me not to fear change, today I tried to switch to a straddle pitch putt. The reasoning was that the straddle pitch putt uses very little body motion, and I think my body motions were inconsistent with the staggered spin putt.

The results were promising... I had very little power and missed low a lot, but was usually straight. But if I can get 90% within 20 feet, and 25% at 30 feet, my score will actually drop a lot! I'm still working on when the wrist snap should happen... not sure if it should be early and quick like Blake's short arm technique or towards the end.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby Mark Ellis » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:31 pm

JR wrote: Mark Ellis: How fast do you accelerate your arm and is there any muscle tension in your arm before and during the putt? What happens when you move to a thin putter like the APX and the Magnet vs your trusted Rattler? It is way easier to accelerate the arm when you are totally loose in the arm muscles and it is in turn helped by having a thinner disc in your hand. Wrist snap is not even necessary but it is good in small movements say 2" or less for a spin putt.

One of the best putters of all time Cam Todd won't move his wrist at all. While snapping the wrist a little adds power (and accuracy due to added acceleration=better disc weight pushing against the finger=more feedback to aim with) so that you can take some off elsewhere for more accuracy and consistency the wrist needs to stay in control needing more arm muscles to last an event. You'll lose the timing of movements when you're tired and spin putts hurt more for that than pitch putts.


How fast do I accelerate my arm? How much tension is in my arm on a putt?

I have no idea. I have never paid any attention. I throw harder if I need to throw farther and therefore with faster arm movement. Tension? Tension is only between the ears and only then on an important putt. Why would I concentrate on these factors? I just want my putt to hit center chains.

I once had a buddy ask me if I released a putt in front of or behind my knee. I had no idea and further no idea why it might matter. I still have no idea.

I do concentrate on particular things I have found to be important to my putting success. I concentrate on hitting the line and finger pop. If I don't push out with my fingers on a putt it finishes weak and left. Finger pop somewhat makes up for a weak wrist. The rest just flows. As I set up for a putt I make sure my balance is right and confirm it on practice pumps. I plan out the line and visual it. During the putt all I think about is the line and finger pop. Hundreds of hours of practice putting have taught me this works best for me.

I have watched Cam Todd play and discussed form with him. Cam is a great putter (and player), as talented as anyone who has played the game. Cam has a world class wrist. Cam can hyzer flip a brand new overstable putter on a jump putt. Very few human beings can do this.

I have heard Cam describe throwing by locking his wrist. I'm not convinced this is what really happens. I think he has such a fabulous snap that he gives it the barest snap (a small degree of movement with his wrist) and it rockets out of his hand like an explosion. Under a high speed camera I think he does snap, just not much by his standards.

Just like a push putter who says he doesn't snap. Sure he does. Push putters have good wrist snap. The shot doesn't work otherwise.

Look at it this way: If a player were to injure his wrist (and then either have it fused together or put it in an inflexible wrist brace) how much would it affect his putting? I think it would disable the putting motion. Wrist snap is essential to putting and throwing. You just might not notice it until you lose it.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby Stringbean » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:55 pm

I think the key is to not move the wrist much past neutral. Any more than that and the disc will release off line with the rest of your arm.

A drill that I did to increase the quick pop is to roll my wrist over (palm up) during the release while at the same time trying to keep the flight of the disc flat. It forced me to release the disc a little before neutral or else the disc would end up on an anny. In order to get any spin, it had to be a real quick pop of the wrist.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby JHern » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:48 pm

Stringbean wrote:I think the key is to not move the wrist much past neutral...


I find that my wrist opens past neutral when my brain unconsciously decides that the disc needs a little more zing to make it to the basket, causing me to miss right. This happens especially after an arm workout, when I'm fatigued, if my bag is particularly heavy and I carrying it with my right arm by mistake, etc..

I think this could be called "strong-wristing" the putt (analogous to strong-arming a full power throw). Your brain is confused and trying to compensate for a lack of power, so the easiest answer is to use better form that requires less power, so that your brain can relax and not get in the way of your putt (which is essentially the most difficult challenge).

The solution I've found is to use a little more of a flinging motion in my throw, which has more than enough power to get to the basket, even well outside the circle. The flinging motion is essentially produced by leading the forward motion of the arm starting with the wrist (loading the tendons on the back of your hand), and allowing the disc to lag behind slightly. Then the disc accelerates and rotates forward and out of the hand just as the wrist opens to neutral. If you time it right, then you I think this is very similar to the essence of Blake's "short arm" technique. It's great because it gives you a different aiming mechanism and feel for the throw, and your wrist doesn't feel like it has to play as big a role as it otherwise would.

If you have a difficult time getting the feel, try starting with the disc and wrist neutral, away from your body, then bring it in and then reverse the motion outward so that the disc wags and you bounce your wrist as it loads the tendons on the back of your hand and wrist. You can play with different degrees of wrist motion and tension in order to fine tune your release.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby bents » Fri Jun 14, 2013 1:47 pm

SIX MONTH UPDATE!

Back in January, I switched to a straddle long-arm pitch putt, then did Blake's short-arm pitch putt for a few months. Neither had good consistency, and I went back to the from-the-chest spin putt. Then I watched this video which explains how to get spin from the fingers more than from the wrist. The drill is great and really helped improve my putting:

After incorporating the above finger pop, about a month ago, my putts got a lot more speed and spin without losing consistency. At this point, I finally understood my technique. Meaning, I knew what a perfect putt was supposed to feel like. Before, I would always be unsure... "should i follow through upwards, forwards, or stop?" "should i hump the pole like JR said or not worry about my hips?" etc etc plus all the questions in this thread above. Before, I was always messing with these details and it made it so I was inconsistently practicing 30 slightly different techniques. At this point, having a set technique made my practice way more beneficial, because I always had the same goal in mind.

Then three weeks ago I started Mr Ellis's putting confidence program. Holy cow, what a difference! Practicing short easy putts is freaking magic. Doing 15 minutes of mostly short putts right before a round makes the round go way better. I still miss left/right, but I know what usually causes it (early/late release).

(ALSO. Last week I mistakenly decided to switch back to a long-arm straddle pitch putt, thinking that the finger pop techniques from the above video would help, and that a pitch putt wouldn't miss left/right. I tried variations for hours for a few days but couldn't get it right. I went back to my spin putt and BAM! It's still there, still hitting the pole.)

Now I'm about 90% from 15 feet, 60% from 30 feet. My average score is about 3 strokes lower than a few months ago. Below is what it looks like now, from about 25 feet. I know I'm not using my legs as much as recommended, but I don't need to at this distance. The finger pop, combined with good timing with the weight transfer makes plenty of power for a 25-foot laser putt.

Also, a question: what do you guys do differently between short putts and long putts? I still miss some 5-10 footers sometimes, because I'm not sure of the best way to power down. Something I started doing yesterday for very short putts is using the exact same arm/wrist/hand motion that I'd do at 15 feet, but with almost zero leg motion. This seems to be more consistent than a slower arm motion combined with some leg motion.
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Re: Putting follow-through problem?

Postby JR » Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:55 am

For some not squaring up to the target lets the muscles be looser. Blake says that pushing the right shoulder forward hurts sideways accuracy. I have not noticed that in myself but i often putt squared and when i don't i'm much closer to squared than you. YMMV putting is very personal.

I try to make the arm move quickly accelerating even at shorter ranges unless it is very short like 10' to avoid the elbow getting straight and the resulting wrist flap right. At short ranges i drop power generation by not having a small lift in the arm movement and not reaching back as much with weight shift and arm backward movement.
Flat shots need running on the center line of the tee and planting each step on the center line. Anhyzer needs running from rear right to front left with the plant step hitting the ground to the left of the line you're running on. Hyzer is the mirror of that.
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