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London design firm introduces PuttOut training aid

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In the pantheon of indoor putting aids, you’ve basically got the glass laying on its side and this thing.

vintage-oscar-jr-golf-electric-putting-machine-with-ball-ex-c2c0ae6b71a359291f5cb5106d613947Not requiring electricity and a heckuva lot more aesthetically pleasing than our old green friend above is PuttOut. Developed in-house by London-based design firm Therefore, PuttOut is a simple, inexpensive (primarily) indoor putting solution.

perfect_putt_chalenge

I spoke with Cam Slaughter from Therefore about the training aid and its development.

BA: First of all, tell me how this thing works.

CS: Essentially, there is a silicon disc at the base of a slope that is “the hole,” however, the real aim of the product is to get the ball to stay within the micro-target half way up the slope. To do this, the ball must go in at an exact pace (only a putt close to what would be 18-inches past the silicone disc/the hole) and exact line will suffice. Because this is a difficult achievement, on a missed putt to the micro-target the ball rolls back down the slope and returns back to you, saving bending and reaching to draw back the ball every time.

The ingenious part of PuttOut is that although the goal is to get the ball to stick in the micro-target, whenever the ball is rolled into the opening of the slope this would indeed be a made putt on a regulation hole, so the user is practising twice as hard without realising it!

So who at Therefore came up with the initial idea?

CS: The inventor of the product is one of the four key founders of Therefore, Martin Riddiford. A keen player himself, playing off four, and has a bit of a history with golf. In fact his grandfather, Cecil Hayward, made it to the 1926 English Amateur Championship at Walton Heath G.C, and his mother, Pru Riddiford, was twice crowned British Senior Ladies’ Open champion. Now 90-year-old and still walks the course daily at Royal Ashdown G.C!

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What was the basic concept?

CS: Originally Martin was just going to create a better putt returner; the ball would simply go up the ramp and return, similar to the electric version that still sells 20k+ units a year, but more aesthetically pleasing, easier to carry and didn’t have those strange whirring and pinging noises.

The creation of the product which we now know as PuttOut originally came about as Martin was only playing very sporadically and not having a chance to get to the course to practice putting at all (not great in any case but certainly more stressful the night before a foursomes match, which is more of a thing over here in the UK). After fiddling around at home with different objects to aim at, he decided he could do better than the existing training aids on the market, which largely lacked either desirability, convenience, a chance to actually get get better or even all of the above.

I understand Martin also wanted to go a step further?

CS: Upon deciding it could already be a good product (simply by creating a better version of what was already available), Martin believed that he could go a step further. Here is where the idea for the “micro-target” came about. Having a repetitive putting stroke is what we all strive for, however, there’s very little use for it if you’re not aiming with a very particular purpose and not practicing toward a very specific aim point. Introducing a smaller target meant the opportunity to do this, but it also meant PuttOut could now include a game element to the practice (i.e. how many putts would it take to get three balls to stay in place on PuttOut), and hence the first edition of PuttOut was complete.

PuttOut will be at the PGA Show (booth 2176) and is taking orders currently.

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27 Comments

27 Comments

  1. Gollie

    Apr 30, 2017 at 5:28 am

    I have a 14’x5′ piece of synlawn pro putt in a high traffic area at home (no hole). Before this I used to hit 14 balls in several different drills (speed drills and putt at a quarter). With Puttout I use one ball and because it’s coming back to me I get many more reps per time invested. This is so simple it’s brilliant.

  2. J.R.

    Jan 30, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    I got mine in last week so far so good. the Micro target is pretty cool. Can’t wait to see the results on the course.

  3. Tony P

    Jan 26, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Shank

  4. Dill Pickleson

    Jan 25, 2017 at 2:29 am

    nice product.

  5. S Hitter

    Jan 24, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    If you’ve ever putted on Stimp of 13 or 14, it ain’t 18″, I can tell ya.
    And who wants to look at this human-tongue looking thing spit the ball back at you as it mocks you when you don’t get it up and into the small hole.
    Really horrible idea, looks terrible, you really don’t want the visual of a ball being spat back you etched into your brain. Seriously. We all want to see it go in the hole. Go buy a conventional putting mat with a rise and a proper hole, which are so much better.
    Nobody is going to carry this in their bag

    • the Sheriff

      Jan 25, 2017 at 9:05 am

      S Hitter, you are a moron. 18 inches past the hole is 18 inches past the hole regardless of green speed. also this is mainly for home use. why don’t you just go and and try and break 120 at a mini putt course, it would be a challenge for you I’m sure.

      • S Hitter

        Jan 26, 2017 at 2:30 am

        Nah. I’ll continue to play scratch golf from the back tee and watch you miss 2 footers on deadly 14 stamp greens that run poor putts past the hole 6 feet as you try to hit it past 18 inches and I will enjoy saying buh-bye to you

  6. Bert

    Jan 24, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    Poor roll back – bad eye training.

  7. Perry

    Jan 24, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    18″ past is Pelz logic. Aim point is 6″. Too bad they don’t have a 6″ past version.

  8. Mfj the great

    Jan 24, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    I have one of these and use it regularly. Highly recommended!

  9. Seb

    Jan 24, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    I can’t buy it in Canada…This would have been awesome especially during the winter storms.

    • Smith

      Jan 24, 2017 at 2:30 pm

      I tried as well. WHYYYY?

      • Cam

        Jan 24, 2017 at 3:02 pm

        Hey Seb and Smith,

        How about you message us on twitter @puttoutgolf and we’ll see what we can do to help.

  10. Frank

    Jan 24, 2017 at 1:00 pm

    Mine will arrive by 4pm today. Been looking at this for months.

  11. Mike

    Jan 24, 2017 at 12:44 pm

    Looks pretty cool to me. I doubt you’d be hitting the micro-target too often or you wouldn’t be using a training aid. So it wouldn’t be too big a deal to walk down and grab your ball every 10 putts.

  12. Steve

    Jan 24, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    Mark Crossfield loves this thing and it’s only $24 on Amazon.

  13. Ann Matthew

    Jan 24, 2017 at 11:32 am

    This is a lovely invention and I cannot wait to purchase one. Thank you for a fine product that will be so much fun to use and does incorperate that spirit
    of competition against yourself for the game later. It is also lovely to look at.

  14. Eddie

    Jan 24, 2017 at 11:17 am

    Similar to the boomerang.

  15. Kevin

    Jan 24, 2017 at 9:54 am

    They don’t even sell in the US. Shank!

  16. DB

    Jan 24, 2017 at 9:51 am

    So if you hit into the micro-target, then the ball is stuck and doesn’t roll back?

  17. Large chris

    Jan 24, 2017 at 8:03 am

    I know some ladies who would love this ????

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Equipment

The most popular golf carry bags on Amazon right now (Winter 2020 edition)

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What are the most popular golf carry bags on Amazon right now? From time to time, we like to get out of our little bubble of OEM releases and what’s being played on tour to look at what golf consumers are buying on one of the largest online retail marketplaces: Amazon.

Here are some of the best-selling golf carry bags on Amazon as of December 2020.

1. Champkey Professional Golf Sunday Bag

From the listing:Takes up very little space in a trailer, camper, or car trunk; when not in use, the bag can be folded and stored neatly until you’re ready to go again. The bag can carry 3-9 clubs easy , the padded shoulder strap for extra comfort and a convenient handle on the side to quickly pick up and go. Made by 600D nylon fabric material that has great water resistant & durable. 6 pockets can carry everything you need in golf(like: cup,divot tool,towel, gloves ,tees & ball etc.).”

Price: $24.99

Buy here.

2. Titleist Carry Bag

From the listing:Full length apparel pocket. Ultra-lightweight design. Premium heathered material. Included Components: 4 Pockets.”

Price: $99.95

Buy here.

3. Craftsman Golf Portable Mini Carry Bag

From the listing: “The material is durable,light weight.And portable. The should strap is adjustable and a convenient handle available. It can hold 5-8 clubs. It can be folded for storageIt or just hook with your golf bag.”

Price: $14.99

Buy here.

4. LONGCHAO Golf Stand Bag

From the listing:The stand of the ultralight golf bag can even be unfolded in an uneven place stably, you could easily get out the clubs. The cool golf bag has a generous and stylish appearance,enough room for as many as 6 or 7 clubs comfortably. Backpack-style shoulder strap for extra comfort provides you a convenient handle on the side to quickly carry and go.And the shoulder soft strap adopts detachable design for detaching freely when needs.”

Price: $49.99

Buy here.

5. Wilson “W” Carry Golf Bag

From the listing:5-way open top with 2 full length dividers and an integrated handle. Plenty of storage with 7 pockets. Lightweight at 4.1 pounds.”

Price: $79.99

Buy here.

6. Golf Bag Clubs Case Foldable Zippered Carry Bag

From the listing:Waterproof and durable. Holds 7-10 clubs. Padded shoulder strap for extra comfort. A handle on the side for more quickly pick up. Great for traveling: takes up very little space in a plane, trailer, camper, or car trunk.”

Price: $34.99

Buy here.

7. Champkey Premium Golf Sunday Bag (Carry 3-7 Clubs)

From the listing:Takes up very little space in a trailer, camper, or car trunk. The bag can carry 3-7 clubs easy , the padded shoulder strap for extra comfort and a convenient handle on the side to quickly pick up and go. Made of premium canvas material that’s has great water resistant & durable.”

Price: $22.99

Buy here.

8. Ranger Sunday Bag

From the listing:Ultra-lightweight stand bag weighs only 2 lbs. Soft grip rubberized top with two compartment dividers. Durable automatic stand legs with slide-resistant traction feet. Convenient carry handle integrated into bag top.”

Price: $63.91

Buy here.

9. Light Weight Water Resistant Foldable Golf Sunday Bag Golf

From the listing:Light weight,foldable.The material is durable. The shoulder strap with shoulder Pad,avoid metal buckle digging into shoulder. The bag is outfitted with a fully adjustable shoulder handle and padded carry handle, so the bag is very easy & comfortable to carry around. It can hold 5-8 clubs,it is decided by the type of your club.”

Price: $39.99

Buy here.

10. Wilson W Golf Bag

From the listing: 5-way open top with 2 full length dividers and an integrated handle. Plenty of storage with 7 pockets. Lightweight at 4. 1 pounds.”

Price: $68.39

Buy here.

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Equipment

Are staff bags becoming obsolete?

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Earlier this year at GolfWRX, we had some very interesting debates about golf bags and the features and styles that you – the golfer prefer. Opinions were strong and few were swayed but nonetheless, some very interesting discussions were had:

Stand-bags on tour?

The one topic that we never quite got into was a discussion on staff bags. Sure, we see pros use them all the time on TV because they are big, bold and are great for promoting sponsors. But what about regular golfers, do we really need them for day to day use? We don’t get paid to use clubs so why carry around a giant billboard?

This brings us to the PGA Tour, where many trends are born, whether it be clubs, balls, or in this case bags, because a few weeks ago at Sea Island and the RSM Classic, we saw an uptick in caddies and players using what are known as “tour” carry bags—larger “staff-like” stand bags with the full branding of a tour bag, except in a smaller stand bag package.

Both Dylan Frittelli (Callaway – title image) and Nick Watney (Mizuno) are using versions of their companies stand bags this week and we have seen other players using them more frequently, like Camilo Villegas, although under a different set of circumstances since he doesn’t have a current bag sponsorship deal in place. Camilo’s situation is interesting because generally, even sponsorless players use a staff bag, even if it just features their name.

Tour stand bags at the consumer level

There must be something about these tour-like bags that golfers love because many golfers can’t get enough. Ping recently released a Tour Staff bag (above) to serious fanfare with it selling out quickly across most channels and actually being resold online for over MSRP—which is a pretty unusual thing to happen in the golf bag market beyond very limited release items. Other companies also offer larger staff like stand bags including Wilson, Titleist, and Srixon, to name a few.

The only drawback to these larger stand bags is their extra size brings with it extra weight, and for golfers who prefer walking over riding, any extra weight is generally avoided at all costs. This makes tour stand bags a great option for occasional walkers, or for those who use a pushcart, or ride but still enjoy the convenience of a stand bag when going to the range or practice area.

What do you think, GolfWRXers? Do you like the convenience of a larger stand bag or would you still rather use what most tour players use? I mean if you don’t have to carry it—why not?

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Equipment

Should you be using a blade or mallet putter?

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‘Should I use a blade or mallet putter?’ It’s a frequent question, and here we will provide you with our essential guide to help you decide.

Blade vs Mallet: Which style suits you?

As far as golf equipment goes, your putter may be the most critical item in your bag. That’s why it’s crucial to know the key features of both blade and mallet putters and what they are designed to provide so that you can closely identify which style of putter your stroke and game require to help you lower your scores.

Blade Putter

Scotty Cameron Blade Putter

The traditional blade putter features a sweet spot positioned closer to the heel and designed to offer maximum feel to golfers on the greens

A blade putter contains a traditional head shape and is a favorite amongst golf ‘purists’. Blade putters are heavily toe-weighted with a sweet spot positioned closer toward the heel. This sweet spot position is because the shaft connects to the club head of the blade at the heel or sometimes center of the blade. This heavy toe-weighting and heel sweet spot means that blade putters will typically suit players who have an arc in their putting stroke.

Mallet Putter

TaylorMade mallet putter

A mallet style putter gives players stability and balance in their stroke.

The more modern style mallet putter is a flat-stick with a larger head. The heads come in various shapes and sizes, and because of the size, a lot of the weight is often distributed away from the clubface so that players find plenty of stability and balance in their stroke. 

The ‘game improvement’ style of the mallet putter means that the larger sweet spot will help players who struggle to strike the ball directly in the center of the face, and the added weight in the clubhead is designed to prevent the putter twisting during the stroke.

Mallet putters also offer additional aid when it comes to alignment, offering more prominent features than a blade such as longer or added lines and can also benefit golfers who struggle to hit putts hard enough due to its heavier weight.

Do pros prefer blade or mallet style putters?

With the 2020 season in the books, we can take a look at who were the top-10 performers in the Strokes Gained: Putting department for 2020 and see what style of putter they used:

  1. Denny McCarthy: Scotty Cameron Tour-Only FastbackMallet
  2. Matthew Fitzpatrick: Yes C-Groove Tracy IIBlade
  3. Andrew Putnam: Odyssey White Hot RX No. 5Mallet
  4. Kristoffer Ventura: Scotty Cameron NewportBlade
  5. Kevin Na: Odyssey Toulon MadisonBlade
  6. Matt Kuchar: Bettinardi Kuchar Model 1Blade (Wide)
  7. Ian Poulter: Odyssey Stroke Lab SevenMallet
  8. Mackenzie Hughes: Ping Scottsdale TR Piper C Mallet
  9. Maverick McNealy: Odyssey ToulonBlade
  10. Bryson DeChambeau: SIK Tour prototypeBlade

Blade style 60% vs Mallet style 40%

Should I use a blade or mallet putter?

Typically, this choice comes down to feel and stroke. Your stroke, just like the stroke of a professional, is unique, and your stroke will determine which style of putter will help you perform best on the greens. Like any other club in your bag, fitting and testing is a key element that shouldn’t be overlooked.

That being said, there are two prominent strokes and identifying which category you fall into can help identify where you fall in the Blade vs Mallet putter debate..

Square-to-square stroke vs Arced stroke

Square-to-square stroke

A square-to square stroke is when the putter face is lined up square to the target, and the stroke is straight back and through. If you possess a natural square-to-square stroke, you may be more suited to a mallet putter. The reason for this is that a mallet putter is face-balanced with the center of gravity positioned toward the back of the club meaning the club is designed to stay square to the putter path all the way through the stroke.

Arced stroke

An arced stroke is when the putter face will open and close relative to the target, and the stroke travels on a slight curve. Should you possess an arced stroke, then a blade putter may be more suited for you because of the natural toe-weighting of the blade-style putter.

Other factors to consider

Feel players will also usually opt for a blade-style putter, due to the desire to feel the way the ball reacts off the putter face which allows them to have more control over their putting and to gain confidence. Mallet putters make ‘feel’ less easy to attain due to the softer inserts on the clubface.

Don’t put aside the issue of aesthetics when considering the issue too. The look of a putter can inspire confidence, and each individual will feel different when placing either a blade or mallet-style putter behind the ball at address, so choosing a style which makes you feel comfortable is an important aspect to consider.

Hopefully, you’ve now got more knowledge as to how you can find the right putter shape for you and your stroke. At the end of the day, the right putter for you, whether it’s a blade or mallet, will be the one which helps and inspires you to make more putts.

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