Putting Tip from Paige Spiranac: “One Potato, Two Potato”

In this video tip, Myrtle Beach golf ambassador Paige Spiranac demonstrates an easy drill to help improve your tempo and timing on the putting green.


Today, we’re going to talk about putting. I actually learned this tip from a family friend of mine. He noticed that when I was putting, I would kind of jerk it back and force it through, or I wouldn’t take it back long enough for the longer putts and I would have to come down really hard and hit at it. It’s a bit silly, but it works, so stay with me here.

He told me to say “One Potato, Two Potato.” It really helps your tempo and your timing because you have to go “One Potato, Two Potato.” You let the club head swing, and it almost feels like you’re pausing it and let the momentum take it through instead of if you’re doing it. For me, I was kind of get here and have to push through it, because I don’t take it back far enough or if I’m really nervous. We all know those five footers, and we’re playing with our buddies and it’s for money, how quick we can get. I’ll go like that, and so this really helps me.

This is usually my 20 feet kind of distance, I would say. If I do it exactly how I say it in my head. But you can do it for smaller putts, shorter putts, longer putts, whatever. It really helps you slow it down.

When you get to the green, don’t go to a hole. That’s really important. You just get to the green, feel it out a little bit. It’s just like when you’re on the driving range, you kind of want to warm up into it. You want to see how the greens are running — if they’re fast, if they’re slower — because that will also adjust your putting stroke throughout the day.

Nothing’s around. I’m just going to step up, do a couple practice swings to make sure that I’m doing it correctly. “One Potato, Two Potato.” “One Potato, Two Potato.” Obviously, you don’t have to say it out loud. You probably want say it in your head. But whatever works.

Okay. “One Potato, Two Potato.” Feels good. “One Potato, Two Potato.” This really helps your distance, too. I hit two putts within a couple inches, so I know that the greens are rolling consistently. If I do the same stroke then I can just adjust. This is about 20 feet. Say it’s a little bit shorter, so let’s go like 10 now. “One Potato, Two Potato.” Okay. That was about half the distance. If I want to go longer … Well, we’ll double. Let’s go 40. “One Potato, Two Potato.” It really makes sure that you’re slowing it down.

For me as well, it’s also nice to think about something. When I’m over a putt, I’m just thinking, “Don’t miss it,” or “Gosh, this is breaking more than I thought,” or those really negative thoughts seem to come into your head with putting. It’s nice when you’re standing over it, you’re thinking of that instead of, “If I miss this, I make bogey,” or “If I make this, I make birdie,” or your mind just goes crazy. It really slows you down, slows your tempo down. It’s great to get to the golf course and see how the greens are running as well.

“One Potato, Two Potato.” Easy as that!