Jack Nicklaus Golf Tip: Aim for a Six-Foot Circle

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Illustration by Jim McQueen

Early in my career, the really long putt gave me more trouble than it should have. Eventually, however, I found it easier to judge the weight of stroke necessary if I walked all the way from the ball to the hole, and easier to see the line if I raised my eye-level by standing more upright at address.

What helped me most—figuring I wasn’t going to make too many of these monsters anyway—was expanding my target from the 4¼ inches of the cup to a six-foot deep circle around it. When I started actually “seeing” the circle in my mind’s eye, then stroking to let the ball die just over its front edge, the improved results I achieved made me a lot less anxious about these putts.

That more realistic target “picture” might do the same for you.

Next week’s topic: Try ‘Spot Putting’ on Shorties.

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