Ross May 15, 2017
Sorry this got a bit long, but it is all great stuff that will work well once incorporated.
In a perfect world, the shoulder line and toe line would be parallel to the target line*. I know my feet are a bit closed, but that is okay because the path the putter head moves along, is exactly underneath the shoulders, and can be seen/practiced, by letting the arms hang**. What this means is, the shoulders dictate the path, not the feet. The path won’t change unless you let your hips or head move (a nono [nono]). The shoulders are the only thing that moves with my method. Have a friend watch you to point out how many other body parts move during your stroke. It takes a lot of work to not move anything except the shoulders.
Now, the putter face is exactly 90° (perpendicular) to this target line, and hangs (about 1/2″ off the ground) above this line, exactly on the sweet spot … and your eyes*** must be over this line too. These all add up to many more makes.
No, there should not be any contact with the body during the stroke.
* The target line is the line you want the ball to start on that allows for break if needed. This may be a line straight thru the cup if no break is needed.
** Once setup, with the arms hanging, you can find your shoulder alignment, and the path the putter head will travel, by pointing your thumbs towards each other (Thanks to Dave Pelz)… then while pointing your thumbs towards each other, push down and pull up the front shoulder to see the path. It is easy to see if your path is in-to-out, or out-to-in, to your target line… we want straight back and straight thru along the target line. We don’t use the hands/arms to manipulate the path, the shoulders must do the work while the arms hang. Then, setup using your putter the same way. Just make sure the putter face is exactly 90° to the path your shoulders make. HINT: The grip end must be setup ahead of the ball a bit, and you must keep firm wrists during the entire stroke, to keep the putter head from flipping ever.
*** As you let your arms hang at setup, you want your eyes exactly over the target line too. Once setup, you can drop a golf ball from the bridge of your nose, and see where it hits on the ground, to see if your eyes are over the line. Most are surprised when they try this. You may need to allow for a bit more tilt, to get your eyes over the line to not brush your body during the stroke. If you add more tilt, this must still be athletic and in balance (no lean out or reach out).