ATCH enough golf on TV and the overwhelming impression you get is the best golfers in the world make everything on the greens.

Think about how often you watch someone hole a 30-footer for birdie, as opposed to someone missing an eight-footer.

Having come through the PGA of Australia traineeship ranks before embarking on a life on tour, Matthew Guyatt’s love of watching golf ultimately gave him the yips.

He put himself in such a tortured headspace as he walked towards the green that his chances of making anything were significantly diminished. Every time he missed he’d think about those guys on the US PGA Tour draining them from long range.

But they don’t hole every putt and that realisation has not only changed Guyatt’s approach to putting, but struck a chord with amateur golfers – including this one – across the country.

The article he wrote on his blog ( was picked up by the PGA of Australia and became the most viewed article of the month on their website.

SEN’s Mark Allen tweeted his followers with a link to the story and fellow professional Kim Felton said it had “changed golfing lives all around on all levels”.

The teachings of tour pro Matt Guyatt helped Tony Webeck drastically improve his putting and shoot a 4-over 75 off a 10 handicap.
The teachings of tour pro Matt Guyatt helped Tony Webeck drastically improve his putting and shoot a 4-over 75 off a 10 handicap.

Armed with Guyatt’s insights, I shot a 4-over par 75 off my 10 handicap – the best round of my life – and the key to it all is this: You won’t make every putt you attempt.

Jordan Spieth, the hottest putter on the planet, makes one-third of all putts he attempts from outside 10 feet, so what hope have you got?

It is amazing when you free yourself of the pressures of expectation just how good a roll you put on the ball. And you know what happens when you put a good roll on it? They go in more often, and we all know what a boost it is walking to the next tee having made 4-a-3 as opposed to 5-a-2.

Guyatt recently shot four rounds of 71 to finish in the top 10 at the Isuzu Queensland Open using a short putter for the first time in 15 years. And he says it was an enlightening chat with fellow Aussie pro Matt Ballard that opened his eyes to the root of his problems.

“He helped me at a time when I was really at my lowest point and almost at a stage where I was considering giving the game away. Matt was this really great voice of reason,” Guyatt tells Australian Golf Digest.

“He opened my eyes to the possibility that my expectations weren’t really where they needed to be with putting.

“Even a weekend golfer off 27 who hits it to 15 feet and has a birdie putt, they have an expectation they are going to make this for their birdie.

“Then, when they don’t they get really down on themselves, but the reality is the best players in the world are only going to make 30 per cent of those putts. And that’s the absolute best in the world. But we all expect that when we hit it that close we should make it.

“I honestly believe it was the true reason I had the yips; I had this unrealistic expectation and this mental spiral that was associated with it.” Guyatt has been sharing his inner-most thoughts on his golf career since March 2011, but nothing has hit a nerve quite like the one he wrote sitting in front of the TV at home in Brisbane on August 4.

“I had a random guy who is 77 years old write in on my blog. His name is Ralph and he said he’d recently shot 74 with no birdies after applying my relaxed approach to his entire game and I think that’s where the article has really hit me,” Guyatt said.

“I’ve had people from my church who play an instrument or sing in the worship team in front of 600 people read it and comment on it.

“They’ve obviously got a talent to do that but there’s been an anxiety that stops them being able to do what they do best.

“Any of the great putters of the world will tell you the best putting is done in the subconscious mind and that’s where I was having the biggest battle and I’m sure all people with the yips are putting in the conscious mind.

“Now I just don’t have a fear of whether I’m going to make a putt or not.

There is absolutely zero thought into how I stroke the ball; it’s just free. There’s no thought of taking the putter back or anything like that.

“It’s just created a freedom and a true feeling of being able to swing the putter and let it flow.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, may be the best tip you ever get from a golf professional.