Every golf shot combines two basic elements. One is judging distance and the effect of wind or terrain on the ball. The other is the execution of the swing. In putting, the mental calculations are more important than in any other shot—and more difficult—but there are ways to help yourself. Many golfers simply pace the distance to the cup. I don't recommend that. Instead, stand over the ball and look at the line to the hole, simultaneously measuring the distance in five-or 10-foot intervals. Then check the texture of the grass and remember these few tips: you obviously do not have to hit a putt as hard when the grass grows toward the cup as when it grows toward you, but the grain can be difficult to see. In Florida grass grows toward the setting sun; in California it grows toward the ocean. With both bent and Bermuda grass the grain is with you when the grass looks slick and shiny, and it is against you when it looks dull and dark.