Reading The Green: How It Can Improve Your Game of Golf

Sunday, November 17th, 2019
man reading the green golf game
Golf is a simple yet complex sport. You can perfect all the different techniques for grip, torque, and stance, and still find yourself hitting bogey after bogey, after bogey, if you fail to do one simple thing: read the green.

What does “reading the green” mean?

Simply put, reading the green is to observe the surroundings of your putt. When you become familiar with a course and its unique topography (particularly the sand traps), you gain a powerful advantage that will allow you to shave off strokes from your game.  For example, by studying the varying degrees of steepness in the green, you can decide how to approach the putt and tailor your swing accordingly. The contours of the land, the weather, and your capabilities are all factors that can come into play. In summary, reading the green benefits your game.

How to start reading the green

When you read the green, one of the first things you’ll want to figure out is the grain and break of the grounds. Don’t worry about following any kind of method, you’ll develop your own! But you can get started with these two steps: 

Take it all in

Go survey the green before you meet for tee-time. As you walk the course, remember to take in the landscape and allow yourself to take it all in. What do you see? Hills? Tiers? Where are the hazards? Trust your instincts, the information you initially glean is usually what you need to know for a successful putt.

Look for Water.

When looking for a course’s hazards, be sure to take particular note of water. Remember, the direction of a green’s slope can. be determined by how it drains. You’ll likely find all you need to know about slope, direction, and drainage by surveying the water hazards.

Feel what’s underfoot

A pair of sharp eyes can do a great job at reading the green, but there’s also another way to get a feel for your putt: your feet. The spatial awareness from your balance, your stance, and the dimensions of the ground itself can all give you all the measurements you need to calibrate a well-delivered swing. These are just a few of the many perspectives, techniques, and methods for reading the green that golfers use. But as basic as they are, they can serve as a strong foundation for you to build upon with your own preferred approach to improvement and success on the course.


To learn more about improving your golf game, contact the experts at The Academy of Golf Dynamics today. Our school of golf features high-quality Lodging and expert Instructors that will focus on you as an individual. You can call us at (512) 261-3300 or Contact Us to learn more about our available Schools (Austin, Texas or Colorado Springs, Colorado) and Facilities. We are located at 1700 Kahala Sunset Dr in Spicewood, TX near Austin.