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Feeling For The Fall Line THE MYTH

Updated on June 13, 2016


The Myth

Feeling For The Fall Line

by C.J. Decker

Golfers don’t want putting lessons, however, they do want to learn how to read greens.

The first thing you look for is the fall line.

I use my eyes to find the fall line.

They say you can’t.

I say you can.

Let’s see.

The Myth …

There are articles and YouTube clips where professional instructors explain why you should use your feet to feel for the fall line vs. using your eyes. They say architects can trick you with hidden contours, so they recommend using your feet … not your eyes.

That’s the myth.

Listen To What They Don’t Say …


If there is a hidden contour between me and the golf hole, I’ll admit it … I can’t see it. However, neither can they! After all, we are dealing with a HIDDEN contour … right?!


They use the characteristics of the green.

The popular method of finding the fall line is to use your feet to feel the slope, and then, locate where downhill meets uphill.

(1) They find the fall line at their feet.

(2) They’re standing about ten feet from the hole.

(3) Then they apply their fall line from their feet to the golf hole.


It’s just common sense, in order for them to get their fall line from their feet to the golf hole, their fall line must pass over that hidden contour! Which means that hidden contour will change the direction of their fall line long before it ever reaches the golf hole. Whoops!

By accepting their original premise, then we must also accept this conclusion since we’re using their reasoning as to why we can’t use our eyes in the first place. Can’t have it both ways.

The True Fall Line …


The professional instructor’s reasoning is based on their understanding of grain, drainage and slope. Actually, there are five constants involved in finding the fall line and none of them have anything to do with grain, drainage or slope. However, they are all math related.

The clues needed to find the fall line have been hiding right in front of us for over one-hundred years. These are the clues that explain why good putters were never able to articulate how they could read greens.


You can ignore the characteristics of the green. Instead, use the characteristics of the golf hole. Which means you can look right over those hidden contours and then

(1) You can find the fall line at the golf hole.

(2) You’re also standing about ten feet from the hole.

(3) Then you apply your fall line from the golf hole back to your feet.


There isn’t an architect in the world who can change the characteristics of the golf hole.

Makes sense … doesn’t it?!


The Myth is true. Hidden contours can trick you. Unfortunately, the golfers who get tricked include the one's feeling for the slope with their feet. Not exactly what they meant.

C.J. Decker is a golf specialist who has studied the fall line for over 30 years. His findings have been reviewed and verified by some of the elite instructors in the game today.


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