Will the pioneering putting data analysis help improve my scoring on the greens?
After playing for over 10 years I consider myself a decent putter. I can normally read the greens, have a pretty good handle on speed and good ball roll. Could the CAPTO putting device give me a better picture of what my putting technique is really like?
The Background to CAPTO
The brainchild of Luca Menci, an Italian mechnical engineer, and single handicap golfer, the CAPTO was launched in 2016. Its aim? To help golfers improve their scoring by analysing the putting stroke in greater detail than ever before.
It's portable and versatile and can be installed quickly on any putter. Fitted just below the putter grip the device delivers real-time feedback. Adaptable for indoor and outdoor use in real game conditions, the cutting-edge CAPTO system incorporates a small screen attached to the putter shaft to provide precise feedback on performance with the short stick and enables coaches to analyse an unparalleled collection of data parameters to correct any putting stroke issues.
It comes in two formats – one designed for coaches and elite players and the other for those golfers wanting to play and practice with their own device.
My Masterclass was taken by Jordan Baker, an PGA Elite Putting Coach based at London’s Royal Mid-Surrey in Richmond. He introduced the CAPTO system to members about two months ago and since then his one-hour sessions using the pioneering sensor and video analysis have been booked out each week.
Jordan commented to me that “CAPTO enables me to improve putting performance much faster. As well as looking at set up, putting stroke and equipment, we also include practice drills based on the analysis that are emailed to clients along with lesson notes,” He has also helped his fellow teaching pro fix his putting arc and make more putts within 10 minutes!
It took Jason about 30 seconds to attach to my Ping Anser.
Jordan then asked me to make a few putts to ensure the device was being picked up by the tablet he was using to collect data.
We then ran through what I thought of my putting and any issues I felt I had on the putting green and my putting stroke in general.
Jordan then asked me to make a few putts but first give him my reading of the green, conditions, etc. I also had to explain my thoughts when I was setting up and my pre-putt routine.
Finally, Jordan measured a 3m (9.8ft) length of putt and we analysed 20 putts.
The device itself features 14 (!) sensors that work in tandem with the Capto app (which can be loaded on mobile or tablet) to provide over 30 different performance-based metrics, ranging from attack angle to tempo.
The three key measures are direction, length and consistency.
Honestly, the numbers were totally overwhelming. And that's why you need a putting expert to explain them and give you advice of how to change your stroke accordingly.
In our short time together Jason identified an issue with the direction of my putting path. I believed that I had a problem with pulling putts to the left but CAPTO showed that 1/3 of my putts were pulling right.
A quick fix with the putting matt and some strategically placed tee pegs allowed me to change the direction of my path angle of my putter.
With more time, I'd also want to investigate why I am twisting my hands when the putting - CAPTO refer to this as "handling - trembling".
I really enjoyed my brief Masterclass and there are definitely areas of improvement that Jordan identified.
I wouldn't buy* the CAPTO putting device as I think it is better to combine it with an experienced putting coach to explain the metrics.
Watch this space!
For more information about CAPTO visit www.captogolf.com.
* Price of CAPTO - The EZ sensor for the average golfer is £494 RRP. The Gen2 model is built for coaches and elite players retails at £2,040.
**There isn't a list of elite putting coaches but do a web search for "pga professional elite putting coach" and your county and you should get some answers.