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putting tips

Annika Sorenstam: One key thought I used any time I was 'putting well'

November 22, 2023

Michael Cohen

From major winners to average players shooting in the 90’s, all golfers know the power of one good swing thought. The right thought can unlock a part of your game you thought was doomed.

When Annika Sorenstam was dominating the LPGA Tour back in the early 2000’s, she was also a playing editor for Golf Digest. In the 2006 December issue, she shared a thought that led to good putting. That season, she had won the U.S. Women’s Open.

“When I’m putting well, one thought I have is that my right elbow moves straight away from the target on the backstroke,” Sorenstam said. “This keeps the putter on line and maximizes my chances of hitting with a square face.”

Right elbow moves straight away on putts

Throughout the piece, she talks about the importance of making contact with a square face. Having the right line and speed doesn’t matter if you’re not hitting the ball with a square face. If the face isn’t square at impact, the ball will come off inconsistently and your putt doesn’t have much of a chance of rolling along your intended line.


Nick Laham

Sorenstam also shared an important aspect of your setup you should focus on to help hit the ball squarely.

“At address, the key is to get your shoulders parallel to the line you want to start the putt on,” Sorenstam said.

Setting up with the shoulders on the correct line and focusing on “the right elbow moving straight away from the target” are two keys that will also help keep your hands and wrists quiet during the stroke, which is always a good thing when you’re looking for consistent contact with your putter.

You can read the full article, and more, in our Golf Digest archive right here.