Putting is one of the hardest skills to master in all of disc golf. Something that seems so easy, but destroys the hopes and dreams of disc golfers almost every round.
It starts with your lie. You look up and immediately get nervous. Even though it’s a short putt at just 15 feet, you’re not sure you can actually make it. That’s a crappy feeling for a beginner. So let’s end that today!
In this post, we’re gonna’ take you through 5 simple tips to help you improve your short game and become a better putter in disc golf. These tips are the best of the best and will help you improve quickly and efficiently. So what are the top 5 best disc golf putting tips for beginners?
The Top 5 Best Disc Golf Putting Tips for Beginners!
1. Find a disc that you like
This concept is very simple. You need to find a disc golf putter that you don’t just like, but LOVE to play with. Try out a few putters until you find one that feels good to you. If it flies well, too, that might be the one for you. If you don’t like how it feels, find a new disc. Because if you don’t like how it feels in the hand, you probably won’t putt that well. So you need a disc that you absolutely love to putt with.
For me, that’s the Dynamic Discs Judge. When I first started, I was given a few discs including the Innova Aviar. The Aviar flew well for me but I hated how it felt. So another buddy gave a me a Judge and that’s all she wrote. It’s been my go-to putter for years now.
Don’t settle for a putter you hate. Check out these awesome putters here – The 17 Best Disc Golf Putters: Cut 10+ Strokes Off Your Score!
It’s okay to use a couple of different putters, but try your best to find a primary putting putter. I use the Dynamic Discs Judge, Axiom Envy, Infinite Discs Tomb, and the Viking Discs Rune, with my primary being the Judge.
Once you’ve found you putter, buy 10 of them! 10 of the same disc. This will help you in your practice sessions and will reinforce your mastery of your chosen putter and help you become highly skilled in your short game.
2. Master the putting technique
Even though putting in disc golf might seem easy, it’s actually one of the hardest parts of the game, in my opinion. Putting is also one of the most important aspects of disc golf. Have you ever heard the old golf adage, “drive for show, putt for dough”? Driving might look cool, but it’s all to put on a show. Putting is what actually helps you win and take home the money.
In order to actually close out each hole successfully, you’ve got to get the disc in the basket. So you have to master the putting technique in order to improve. It’s very simple and I’ll show you how in the next few paragraphs. Let’s check out the 7 simple steps to perfect disc golf putting technique:
- Step 1 – Mark your lie: simple to do, but it has a purpose. By legally marking your lie with another disc or a mini marker, you’re helping yourself get just a little bit closer to the basket. It may not be but 6-8 inches, but every little bit can help.
- Step 2 – Get comfortable: when setting up to putt, get as comfortable as you can and find what works for you. Do you need to putt from a knee? Do you need to putt with one foot in front or both feet parallel? Find a good putting position and stick with it. Gauge your gap for obstacles and find alternate angles to the basket if need be. Just check around you and make sure you’ve got enough room to putt. If not, adjust accordingly and try to get as comfortable as possible.
- Step 3 – Stay relaxed: this can be more difficult than it sounds. Try to keep your whole body, including your shoulders, as relaxed as possible. I mean, it’s just a putt, right?
- Step 4 – Disc nose up and forward: before you putt, make sure your disc is angled up just a little bit. Nose up and forward. Simple and easy.
- Step 5 – Rock into or step into your putt: this is an interesting concept that I saw in the video below. Kind of a quick pro tip. In the video, Innova’s Jonathan Baldwin emphasizes the importance of weight transfer in putting. He shows us how pros rock their weight when putting but takes it a step further by actually stepping into the putt. Whether you rock into the putt or step into it, make sure to transfer your weight while putting. This will help break nervous tension and promote good short game habits.
- Step 6 – Grip, commit, and “pop” the disc: get a good grip on the disc, commit to your throw after you rock/step into the throw, and “pop” the disc up using your last 3 fingers (middle, ring, and pinkie). Spring the disc upward using those fingers for more putting efficiency. The quick video below from Overthrow Disc Golf should show you exactly what I’m talking about.
- Step 7 – Vertical hand after release: otherwise known as the “handshake,” after you release the disc, your hand should be vertical showing something that resembles what your hand should look like if you were reaching out to shake someone’s hand. Check out the video below from JustDisc as he describes this in detail.
3. Daily practice
If you really want to improve quickly, practicing as much as you possibly can is the best thing you can do for your disc golf game. Here are a few ways to do that!
Personal practice basket: the easiest way to get more practice in is to buy an at-home practice basket. Personal baskets are convenient, affordable, and provide you an efficient way to practice, all from the comfort of your home base. When choosing a basket, you have the option of choosing either a portable non-metal or non-portable metal basket. Choose what works best for you and start practicing today! For some great options, check out this post here – The 17 Best Disc Golf Baskets (Updated for 2023)!
Daily practice: if you want to 10X your putting game, and become a highly skilled putter, you need to practice every day for at least 1-2 hours per day. I know, not easy. Most of us don’t have that kind of time. But if you’ve got the time and the desire, practicing for 1-2 hours every day is the absolute fastest way to become an elite putter in disc golf.
Doing that for a full month will make you into a decent putter already. 5-6 months of daily practice will turn your short game into a spectacle of sorts. And if you keep this up for a year or more, your putting game will be unstoppable. You’d probably be one of the top 10% percent in all of disc golf
However, if every day doesn’t work, just practice as much as you can. A few times a week for 30-60 minutes or more will help you out tremendously.
Start close: whenever you start your practice sessions, start close and move out. This way, you get a feel for hitting the chains and get yourself back into the groove of putting. Plus, some early putting success will motivate you to move back. Once you’ve hit 40-50 good putts, start gradually moving back and out from the basket. Then, try to hit solid putts from as far out as you can before wrapping up your putting practice.
Get creative: don’t be afraid to get a little creative with your practice sessions. Because there’s no reason that practice should boring. You gotta’ have fun and change it up! Try the following with you putting practice: different angles, different distances, different wind directions (if windy), around obstacles, and anything else you can think of.
Not only will this help you have fun, which will help you stay consistent with your practice, but will also challenge your skills and help you get better. That, then, will make you want to practice even more. Something I like to call the circle of consistency. If you make putting practice creative and fun, your putting skills will grow exponentially.
4. Putting drills and games
When it comes to working on your short game, one of the most awesomely fun ways to do that is to try a few putting games and drills! And there are a bunch of them, so check out the few I’ve got below:
Perfect Putt 360: Perfect Putt 360 is a fun putting game that you can get on your phone’s app store to both play and keep track of your putting. Start close and end around 30 feet (edge of circle 1). As you play, you mark in the app which putts you made and which ones you missed. At the end of your “round,” you get a score that could range from 0 (if you missed all your putts) to 360 (you made all your putts) or anything in between. Most average scores end up being anywhere between 100 and 200.
Drill 1 – 100s Drill: a simple drill in which you practice until you’ve made 100 putts, or you can up that to any number you’d like – 200, 300, 500 or whatever number of putts you want when you practice. I recommend at least 100 or more.
Drill 2 – McBeth Putting Drill: a very easy and fun drill in which you simply put 3 discs at the 10-foot mark and every 5 feet until the 35-foot mark. If you make all 3 discs, move back. If you only make 2, stay put and try again. If you only make 1 disc out of 3, move closer. Do that until you crush all 3 at the 35-foot mark.
Drill 3 – Cone drill: a slight variation of the Paul McBeth drill. Put cones out starting from 5 feet out to about the 30 or 35 foot mark. If you make a putt move back 5 feet. If you miss, move closer by 5 feet. Do this until you make the last putt at 30-35 feet. If you want, do a few sets of these.
If you make putting fun, but still have serious practice sessions, your putting skills will grow exponentially. Keep it light, creative, fun, and actually continue to work on improving and bettering yourself with each full practice.
For more putting drills, check out this post – The 11 Best Disc Golf Putting Drills and Games!
5. Work on your approach game!
So, my last tip might seem counterintuitive, but in order to make it easier for yourself in your short game, you need to work on your approaches. Approaches, or the shots that you take when approaching the basket, can be very tough. They can also make or break your score if you leave yourself too far away or with a really tough putt toward the basket.
The goal of an approach shot would be to perfectly position yourself for a simple tap-in shot or drop-in over the basket. But most players neglect working on their approach shots, which in turn can seriously affect their putting during each round. So work on your approaches and this will only help you in your putting game.
For more, check out this post – How to Throw Approach Shots/Upshots: 11 Disc Golf Approach Shot Tips!
Putting isn’t easy. But if you take the time and commit to rigorous practice every single day, you’ll inevitably improve. But how long that takes is up to you.
If you use the 5 simple tips I’ve got in this post – finding the disc you like, mastering the putting technique, daily practice, using drills and games, and working on improving your approach game – you won’t just become a good putter, you’ll become highly elite in your short-game. That’s what every disc golfer wants. So use these tips and go make it happen!
Don’t forget to check out the book!
If you’re looking for more tips and tricks on how to play disc golf, check out my book, “The Disc Golf Player’s Manual.” This ultimate beginner’s guide is loaded with over 200 pages of content, helping you to improve your game AND lower score on the disc golf course. Check it out here on my site.