Use your arms to mirror the movement of a clock's pendulum -- and drain it from anywhere on the green!

Use your arms to mirror the movement of a clock’s pendulum — and drain it from anywhere on the green!

The game's best putters swing the club like a pendulum. Increased hip mobility creates the base needed to putt this way.
Angus Murray / SI

We do more at the Titleist Performance Institute than research full swings. We look at putting strokes, too. Thousands of them. And we've found that the best putters in the world — guys like Brad Faxon, Jordan Spieth and Steve Stricker — swing the putter using their arms and very little else. It's as though both arms come together to work like the pendulum on a grandfather clock, moving back and through at the same speed and along the same arc. This consistent, repetitive arm action lets you contact the ball in the center of the putterface and control distance from anywhere on the green.

To putt like this, your shoulders must be relaxed and tension-free, so that your arms can work freely underneath them. To get your shoulders nice and loose, use your hips. That's right — your hips. As you settle into your stance, push your rear end out a bit. Notice how this "unlocks" your hip joints and allows you to easily hinge your upper body toward the ball without hunching your back. The less you hunch, the softer your shoulders and arms will hang, freeing you up to make the ideal pendulum-style stroke.


It takes a certain level of hip mobility to hinge correctly at address. Take this test: Stand erect with your arms at your sides, and while keeping your head in line with your spine, hinge from your hips. See if you can touch the ground. If you can't, you need to increase your hip mobility, or you won't be able to putt like a pendulum. Visit for a series of easy stretches and exercises to whip your hips — and stroke — into shape.

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