Putnam has been a professional golfer since 2011 and so far in 2017, he leads all Web.com Tour players in earnings and has posted three Top-10 finishes – including a playoff win at the 2017 Panama Claro Championship. After taking time to improve all the major areas of his game at the end of last season, he has dropped his scoring average to 69.63 this season.
We recently sat down with Putnam to get a closer look at his mental and physical approach to golf, while getting his take on fundamental training tips and advice for golfers of all levels.
GETTING ON BOARD WITH BLAST
Putnam first heard of Blast and the exclusive Blast Lab through friends and fellow professional golfers. His curiosity was triggered, and he soon decided to find out more.
“Blast has been in the golf world for a little while,” remembered Putnam. “I just sort of heard of Blast through being part of the game. One of my friends had been connected with Blast Motion founder Michael Bentley, and told me a little bit about his Lab experience. He said he really enjoyed working with the Blast team, and said it might be something worth checking out.”
Once Putnam’s season ended a few months ago, he decided to fly out to Carlsbad, California to meet with the Blast team.
“A couple months before my season ended, I still had a chance to get my PGA Tour card, so I was just trying to stay focused on what I was doing, and not really bring in a lot of new instruction or information when you’re trying to play and perform,” recalled Putnam. “But I knew that after I missed getting my PGA card, I had some time off to go check everything out, and that’s when I flew out to San Diego to visit the Blast facility.”
Once he arrived at the Blast headquarters, Putnam sat down with our Blast team to conduct an interview and analysis of his swing and stroke as well as his mental and physical approach to the game. The team concluded that while his putting was a strong point, there was room for improvement in his long game – particularly on his full swing mechanics.
Putnam then had his swing evaluated in the Blast Lab using various motion capture technologies and data was uploaded to Blast Connect for analysis. Based on the data, our Blast team prescribed Putnam a series of exercises to perform on the course, range and in the gym, Putnam even built a home gym. From there, he was on his way to improving his ball striking and consistency .
“The more that things start to click, the less time I have to put in, and the more I kind of start getting the patterns ingrained,” said Putnam. “That’s the whole goal – to not have to work 10 hours a day on certain patterns.”
As a Web.com Tour pro, Putnam faces a demanding and sometimes grueling travel schedule. That can make it hard for him to get consistent, quality training in on a daily basis.
“Depending on my schedule, my training varies a little bit,” explained Putnam. “I definitely train pretty hard in the offseason, when I have a lot more time. I have my place with my own tools and with all the resources available to me. So, offseason was a lot more training, a lot more time, a lot more dedication to make changes. Once you get into the tour schedule, there’s a lot of wear and tear on the body. You’re trying to maintain the patterns in season.”
Putnam stressed that he tries to work out and train hard at the start of each week, but that can obviously vary based on that week’s travel and tour schedule.
“When I’m traveling to different countries and not knowing what kind of gyms or facilities are available on the Web.com Tour, it’s a little bit harder,” said Putnam. “On the PGA Tour, they have better facilities set up and you just know what to expect. They have a trailer that travels every week that you can train in.”
“I have to go out and play, and that is taxing on its own. But at the beginning of the week, I try to work out and train, but it obviously is a little bit harder.”
Putnam gets assistance during those taxing times on the road from Blast Golf 360 and Blast Connect. By using the sensor in daily training sessions, Putnam and the Blast team work together using Blast Connect to analyze movement patterns, data from the sensor and more. From there, the team at Blast can provide Putnam prescriptions for any parts of his game that might need improvement.
BACK TO BASICS
Golf is a complex game. Even a pro like Putnam can never stop to rest on his successes – or begin to think he has it all figured out on the course. At the same time, Putnam believes you must also be cautious of trying too hard to perfect your golf game.
“I feel like in golf you’re always chasing to get better, you’re always on the road to trying to improve, and there’s endless ways to improve,” explained Putnam. “And that’s one thing that actually can be harmful – if you’re trying to become too perfect.”
For Putnam, the key is always one constant lesson:
Go back to basics. And and use Blast Solution to keep you on track.
“The basics are so important in golf, and I know that’s something that I’ve kind of keyed in on the last month and a half,” said Putnam. “Just having a good setup is important – and that’s something that I know Blast has definitely helped with. It helps me with just understanding what a biomechanically correct setup should look like and feel like, the way your body can move, what positions it can move from the best.”
These seemingly simple adjustments have resulted in a rather dramatic and consistent shift in Putnam’s golf game.
“It’s not something that’s overly technical, and I feel like when trying to perform and play your best, it’s probably good not to be super technical, but something like just having a good setup is something that has helped me from the beginning of the season.”
SOMETHING FOR EVERY LEVEL
According to Putnam, the power of Blast should not be reserved for professional players. Nor should some of the other training techniques he utilizes in the offseason and while on tour.
If he could provide amateur golfers with just one tip to improve their game, what would Putnam tell them?
“I think just seeking out solid instruction based in science and something like Blast would be extremely useful and helpful,” advised Putnam. “It’s so valuable having a system and technology that gives you feedback and allows you to understand what is happening, what is going on in your game or your putting stroke. I think that’s something that’s well worth the money for golfers, especially if they’re going to invest a lot of time in practicing and getting better.”
To follow Andrew Putnam’s progress, follow Andrew at @AndrewPutnam1.