An example of the forward press technique. *Photo supplied
An example of the forward press technique. *Photo supplied

A forward press is when the grip end of the club is pushed towards the target as trigger or precursor to starting the backswing.

Often the problem is that in golf you are starting from a static position and this means that it is difficult to have a smooth start to the swing.

Having a trigger movement helps smooth that transition.

Although the forward press in putting is a matter of preference, it has recently been my style, and I recommend you give it a try.

By nudging your hands toward the target a couple of inches before starting your takeaway, you’ll find it easier to return at impact with your hands ahead of the ball.

This is a real key to maintaining the ideal amount of clubface loft and making the ball roll smoothly.

The forward press will also signal you to keep your hands moving toward the target during the forward stroke, instead of stopping and
allowing the clubhead to pass your hands, which adds loft and often changes the face angle.

Also, keeping the hands in front of the ball means that the quality of strike is improved.

I see many players hit the ball from the bottom of the putter, causing loss of distance control. I have found that the ball rolls better because of improved contact with the ball when I push my hands forward in this forward press movement.

The forward press can help you at the start to establish good tempo and rhythm, which are as important in putting as they are in the full swing.

Finally, be careful. If you push your hands too far forwards it can disturb your aim and alignment, so the press should be more of a nudge than a aggressive
push.

Paul Adams is the PGA director of golf at Rosewood Tucker’s Point.