Practice putting greens at courses - are they all worthless or just most?

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Dirtydawg67
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My local course has a decent putting green. It is fairly large with subtle breaks, much like the greens on the course. Some of the nicer courses around here have some excellent practice greens. Most are kept at course conditions and offer some bigger slopes.
 

Hawk

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I actually have trouble finding a 5 foot stretch that is completly flat. Yeah the practice green doesn't slope or have the same speed as the course's green.
But a little flat area to check your stroke would be nice as well.
Same here at one of the courses I play pretty often. However, the course has ridiculous greens that have tons of elevation changes, so it's representative of them. Still, not too fun for putting practice in general.
 

Thechosen1

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My practice green is pretty bad a bunch of hills not many flat areas which are nice to have on occasion.
 

TMSHACKS

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i think what is more annoying is when the practice green is cut differently. Like really slow and then you get on the course and they roll at a completely different speed.
 

rrpruett

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My home course has two putting greens. One if fairly flat and the other has a lot of shape to it. lots of difficult puts and 18 holes. I think they put close to course conditions but some people say that they are different. I don't think so. I would think it would be quite difficult to keep the practice greens the same with all the traffic.
 

aces13

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i'm a member at 2 courses... first one has the smallest putting green that is on a hill. no joke, its on a hill... and its pointless to putt on. second course has a putting/chipping green that is always slower than the course greens. they also have one next to the first tee. that one is more like the course greens but pretty much flat. however the course, is pretty hilly, so the greens are full of breaks. makes no sense.
 

Osahar

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It's a mixed bag around here. A few of the courses I visit have practice greens that are like putting on a billiards table. But then I can also think of one city course and 2-3 of the better courses I frequent that have very authentic practice greens which really get you ready for what you'll see on the course.
 

JR

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Around here, I have found the practice greens are very true to course. Great speed.
 

kokogirl

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It's a mixed bag around here. A few of the courses I visit have practice greens that are like putting on a billiards table. But then I can also think of one city course and 2-3 of the better courses I frequent that have very authentic practice greens which really get you ready for what you'll see on the course.
My course (near you) has good a practice green. Sometimes it is off the course speed if one of the courses was just aerated, but usually it is very close.
 

Penglynns

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My feeling is that a big problem with slow play is putting and the problem with putting is that most golfers never see "real" greens except on the course. They warm up on mostly flat practice greens that are probably not the same speed, and then get out on the real course and have no idea how to line up a 15 footer than has 2 feet of break, etc. And so they three putt. And so does most of the group. And suddenly now the entire course is backed up because most of the golfers out there are three putting because they never see slope until they are on the course. It seems having practice greens that mimicked on-course conditions of slope and speed would be of benefit to pace of play in the long run, at least slightly. It's like having your teenage student driver take a spin around the school parking lot and then sending them straight out onto the freeway.
 

dankil13

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My feeling is that a big problem with slow play is putting and the problem with putting is that most golfers never see "real" greens except on the course. They warm up on mostly flat practice greens that are probably not the same speed, and then get out on the real course and have no idea how to line up a 15 footer than has 2 feet of break, etc. And so they three putt. And so does most of the group. And suddenly now the entire course is backed up because most of the golfers out there are three putting because they never see slope until they are on the course. It seems having practice greens that mimicked on-course conditions of slope and speed would be of benefit to pace of play in the long run, at least slightly. It's like having your teenage student driver take a spin around the school parking lot and then sending them straight out onto the freeway.
Slow play is generally caused by people who aren't ready to play when its their turn. They try to immitate the folks on TV who are playing for millions and spend way too much time studying a putt they have little chance in making. And I really get annoyed when a player doesn't even start to look at his putt until its his turn, then needs to make 5 or 6 practice strokes.

Courses could slow the green speed down a little but then most golfers would complain. I think common sense on pin placements during heavier play days would help.
 

Fourputt

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My feeling is that a big problem with slow play is putting and the problem with putting is that most golfers never see "real" greens except on the course. They warm up on mostly flat practice greens that are probably not the same speed, and then get out on the real course and have no idea how to line up a 15 footer than has 2 feet of break, etc. And so they three putt. And so does most of the group. And suddenly now the entire course is backed up because most of the golfers out there are three putting because they never see slope until they are on the course. It seems having practice greens that mimicked on-course conditions of slope and speed would be of benefit to pace of play in the long run, at least slightly. It's like having your teenage student driver take a spin around the school parking lot and then sending them straight out onto the freeway.
Any experienced player should be able to walk onto any course with no practice at all and still putt acceptably. If he can't then it isn't lack of warmup, but lack of skill that is his primary deterrent. Not getting to warm up certainly isn't an excuse for slow play. :dohanim:
 

bumpnrun

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We have 3 practice greens at my home course. One has subtle breaks that are tricky to read like to ones on the course, another is much more aggressively sloped and the third is relatively flat and used mostly for bunker practice and chipping.

I was once on the practice tee watching an older couple from out of town warm up on the second green. As they walked off I heard the lady mutter to her husband, "If that's what it's like out there, I'm going home." I let her know it wasn't that bad but some of our greens do break uphill.

At Bandon Dunes it seems like the practice greens are much tougher than the actual greens which leaves you well prepared for your round.
 

bumpnrun

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The problem with slow play is that the vast majority of us are not scratch golfers. If a scratch golfer can play a round in 4 hours that is a shot every 3 1/3 minutes. At that same pace, someone shooting 95 will take 5 1/2 hours. I don't know about you, but I am a 19 index and the only way I can complete a round in much less than 5 hours is if (by some miracle) I never have to look for a ball or I am playing by myself.
 

Golf Chick

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At the course where we take lessons, they have a big putting green, I think its pretty much the same as the greens on the course. The putting green here doesn't have too many dead straight on holes :( so everything breaks one way or another. I guess that's good :confused2:
 

dankil13

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The problem with slow play is that the vast majority of us are not scratch golfers. If a scratch golfer can play a round in 4 hours that is a shot every 3 1/3 minutes. At that same pace, someone shooting 95 will take 5 1/2 hours. I don't know about you, but I am a 19 index and the only way I can complete a round in much less than 5 hours is if (by some miracle) I never have to look for a ball or I am playing by myself.
I play with plenty of higher handicaps who can get around the course quicker than some of the scratch golfers I play with. They don't waste time in between shots, don't have much of a preshot routing (i.e. rarely take practice swings), and understand ready golf. Often carts slow things down because golfers think they have to sit in the cart while their partner is getting ready to hit instead of pulling a few sticks and walking to their ball.
 

Smallville

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The problem with slow play is that the vast majority of us are not scratch golfers. If a scratch golfer can play a round in 4 hours that is a shot every 3 1/3 minutes. At that same pace, someone shooting 95 will take 5 1/2 hours. I don't know about you, but I am a 19 index and the only way I can complete a round in much less than 5 hours is if (by some miracle) I never have to look for a ball or I am playing by myself.
I hope you will let my group through then because there are open holes in front of you.
 

Fourputt

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The problem with slow play is that the vast majority of us are not scratch golfers. If a scratch golfer can play a round in 4 hours that is a shot every 3 1/3 minutes. At that same pace, someone shooting 95 will take 5 1/2 hours. I don't know about you, but I am a 19 index and the only way I can complete a round in much less than 5 hours is if (by some miracle) I never have to look for a ball or I am playing by myself.
Then you need some lessons in pace of play techniques. I've played with people who shoot in the high 90's and 100's who play faster than that, and in a foursome as well. It isn't how many strokes you take, it's how much time you waste between those strokes that makes the difference.
 

bumpnrun

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Then you need some lessons in pace of play techniques. I've played with people who shoot in the high 90's and 100's who play faster than that, and in a foursome as well. It isn't how many strokes you take, it's how much time you waste between those strokes that makes the difference.

I have never had anyone other than a single catch me. Maybe the problem is I play on a course that is heavily wooded with very narrow fairways. A shot that strays even a little is apt to catch a branch, and then another one and you have no idea where your ball might be after that.

http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-courses/blogs/wheres-matty-g/2010/08/singin-the-blues-of-my-buddies.html

The chances of catching a tree here are the same as catching a bunker at Whistling Straits only it adds search time every time you do it. So 4-5 misses for each player in a round adds at least 30 minutes to a 4 hour round.

I still think slow play has more to do with bad golfers than practice putting greens though.
 

Fourputt

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I still think slow play has more to do with bad golfers than practice putting greens though.
If you amend that to read "bad golfers who are clueless" then I'm on board with this. :drinks:

That course would seem to be a bit of an exception to the rule. With all of those spruce trees, the odds are good that the ball never even makes it back to the ground. I've lost more than one in the spruces on my home course, and they aren't nearly as numerous as yours. A humorous story... the par 3, 8th hole - on his tee shot, a friend got his ball stuck about 15 feet up in a blue spruce next to the green. Trying to knock it out, he tossed his 4I at the ball and the club got stuck. Then he tossed the flagstick at it to try and get his 4I back, and got that stuck. He had to call the clubhouse and get a maintenance guy out with a ladder to finally retrieve all three. Took almost 45 minutes to play that hole, but he only ended up with a one stroke penalty for the unplayable lie. :dohanim:
 
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bumpnrun

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Osahar

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My course (near you) has good a practice green. Sometimes it is off the course speed if one of the courses was just aerated, but usually it is very close.
I haven't checked in the last year or so - Suntree is still member-only isn't it?
 

Lynchburg14

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I understand why people use the putting green to get a feel for the day and to get some lag down. But I do not really see the need for them. I mean each green is different on each hole. So why should I care if I have the lines and speed nailed on the practice green, unless that green is on the course somewhere it does me know good.
 

ogiebogie

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I understand why people use the putting green to get a feel for the day and to get some lag down. But I do not really see the need for them. I mean each green is different on each hole. So why should I care if I have the lines and speed nailed on the practice green, unless that green is on the course somewhere it does me know good.
Where else would you practice your putting or do you not just go to the course and putt for an hour?
 

CRucker300

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I agree that most courses have flat putting greens, but my club does have a putting green with a fairly severe slope.
 

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