The vision strategy of golf putting

  • Kristine Dalton

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Golfers, coaches and researchers alike, have all keyed in on golf putting as an important aspect of overall golf performance. Of the three principle putting tasks (green reading, alignment and the putting action phase), the putting action phase has attracted the most
attention from coaches, players and researchers alike. This phase includes the alignment of the club with the ball, the swing, and ball contact. A significant amount of research in this area has focused on measuring golfer’s vision strategies with eye tracking equipment. Unfortunately this research suffers from a number of shortcomings, which limit its usefulness. The purpose of this thesis was to address some of these shortcomings. The primary objective of this thesis was to re-evaluate golfer’s putting vision strategies using binocular eye tracking equipment and to define a new, optimal putting vision strategy which was associated with both higher skill and success. In order to facilitate this research, bespoke computer software was developed and validated, and new gaze behaviour criteria were defined.
Additionally, the effects of training (habitual) and competition conditions on the putting vision
strategy were examined, as was the effect of ocular dominance.
Finally, methods for improving golfer’s binocular vision strategies are discussed, and a clinical plan for the optometric management of the golfer’s vision is presented. The clinical management plan includes the correction of fundamental aspects of golfers’ vision, including monocular refractive errors and binocular vision defects, as well as enhancement of their putting vision strategy, with the overall aim of improving performance on the golf course. This research has been undertaken in order to gain a better understanding of the human
visual system and how it relates to the sport performance of golfers specifically. Ultimately, the analysis techniques and methods developed are applicable to the assessment of visual performance in all sports.
Date of Award2013
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorShehzad Naroo (Supervisor)


  • eye tracking
  • sports performance
  • sports vision
  • vision strategy

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