Which putter is best?
If you want to see the biggest difference between an amateur weekend golfer and a professional, it’s on the greens. Putting is a difficult skill to master and, typically, the best players are the best putters.
When putting, you need to use a specialized golf club called — not surprisingly — a putter. It has a flattish face that helps you strike the ball squarely.
Our pick for the best putter is Scotty Cameron Select Newport Putter. It won’t instantly make you a pro-level putter, but it can help you have more success on the green with a bit of practice.
What to know before you buy a putter
Shape of the putter head
One of the easiest ways to distinguish one putter from another is through the shape of the putter head.
- Blade: The blade-style putter head is rectangular in shape with a flat face. This is the simplest design in a putter. It’s not really made to help golfers who have flaws in their putting strokes.
- Mallet: The mallet-style putter is larger than a blade putter. It has a large putter head and almost a blocky or chunky shape with a flat face. These mallet heads use the extra size and weight in the putter head to help the golfer maintain a putting stroke that stays in line and square to the ball.
After the shape of the putter head, pay attention to the offset in the putter. This refers to the way the putter shaft connects to the putter head.
A full offset putter has an angle in the shaft so it’s ahead of the head, while a putter with no offset has the shaft connected to the head just behind the face.
The offset determines the strike point for the ball. For a right-handed golfer, if you pull the ball to the left quite a bit, you may want a putter with no offset. If you often push the ball to the right, a full offset putter may help.
What to look for in a quality putter
Even though a putter looks like a simple golf club, it has quite a few features that greatly change how the club works. Think about where you need to improve your putting stroke, then pick a club that can help with those improvements.
The face of the putter can be smooth or have a slight roughness to it (called a milled face). Some golfers like the way the ball rolls off a milled face, creating a truer roll than a smooth face.
For golfers who struggle to keep the face of the putter squared up to the ball through the backswing and impact, weight distribution in the head helps. With the weight at the edges of the head, your putting stroke feels balanced and natural.
A heavy putter head creates a more forceful putter stroke, which is helpful on greens with a slow ball roll. Fast greens — which consist of grass that’s drier and shorter than slow greens — require a lightweight putter.
How much you can expect to spend on a putter
Putters have a wide range of possible prices, anywhere from $15-$400 for famous brand-name putters. To receive a putter made from decent-quality materials, expect to pay at least $50.
Q. Is one particular design on the top of the putter head better than another?
A. Not really. The lines and shapes that are visible on the top of the putter head are made to help the golfer keep the putter head in line. Finding the best markings for your game is a matter of personal preference.
Q. What is the best length of putter for me?
A. You should be able to stand naturally, bending slightly at the waist, while holding the top of the putter grip. If you must bend over too far or hold the putter near the bottom of the grip, it’s not the right size for you.
What are the best putters to buy?
What you should know: Provides a perfect balance between the head and toe of the putter for a true putting stroke each time.
What you’ll love: Offers a stainless steel face so you have a precise feel on the green. Made to help low handicap golfers.
What you should consider: Price is high, and inexperienced golfers won’t be able to take full advantage of its features.
Where to buy: Sold by Dick’s
Top putter to buy
What you should know: The price is perfect for a beginning or intermediate golfer looking to improve their play on the greens.
What you’ll love: Weight balance is accurate, resulting in a smooth putting stroke. Build quality outperforms similarly priced putters.
What you should consider: Shorter and weighs less than average putters, which some golfers don’t like.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you should know: Design of the face of this high-end putter helps you keep the putter head in line, resisting mis-hits.
What you’ll love: Has a simple look in the design that players who are tired of distracting lines and shapes on the putter will appreciate.
What you should consider: Higher price than average for a putter. Not made for players looking to fix an off-line putting stroke.
Where to buy: Sold by Dick’s
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Kyle Schurman writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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