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Oculomotor considerations in golf putting consistency

1 May 1990


This study was designed to investigate the influence of oculomotor posture (fixation disparity and/or heterophoria) on a visuomotor task, golf putting. Although studies have shown that inducing changes in heterophoia at distances < 1 meter causes errors in distance judgements, previous studies which have considered only naturally occuring fixation disparity and heterophoria have not been able to demonstrate a relationship between direction and/or magnitude of fixation disparity (or heterophoria) and spatial judgement errors as measured by golf putting error. The subject sample of 62 participants consisted of 36% amateur golfers, 11% club pros and 53% LPGA tour pros. Following measurement of the subjects' oculomotor status, each subject attemped 6 putts with no auditory or visual feedback. Results indicate subjects with a higher magnitude and/or greater instability of fixation disparity were less successful in task performance. Although oculomotor measures are not predictors of left-right and long-short putting errors, we found they may be predictors of the golfers ability to consistently aim accurately and therefore make less endpoint putting errors.


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