This story originally appeared in Mile High Sports MagazineRead the full digital edition.

Have you ever tried using the straight line on the cover of the ball only to stand over a crucial putt and think, “This doesn’t seem right?” Did it appear as though you might hit yourself in the left foot if you followed that path?

If you answered yes to these questions, here’s the reason why. It’s called “parallax error” – that’s viewing the same line from two different angles. It causes your eyes to see the line differently.

As golfers, we’re generally brimming with negativity and doubts. I can recall the last 3-foot putt I missed more readily than the last thousand I made.

You don’t shoot a rifle across your body. You hold the rifle out in front of you so you can peer straight down the barrel in order to aim directly at your target. So, here’s the deal; you have to position the ball with the line facing your target. Then, step back so you’re looking directly from the ball to the intended mark, or “straight down the barrel.” You must learn to trust the line from that point because as soon as you step up to the ball to make your putt, you’re standing perpendicular to your line, creating that parallax error.

I have my students use a template on the ball that creates perpendicular lines. That gives them a second checkpoint when standing over a putt; one matches the line on the flange of their putter. The perpendicular line is then parallel to the face of their blade.

If you’ll give this an honest attempt, and trust the line, you’ll make a barrel of putts.

Jerry Walters is a putting and short game specialist at the Trent Wearner Golf Academy. Contact Jerry at [email protected] or 303.645.8000