We all love big drives and sticking hero shots into the green but nothing brings more confidence than rolling in the putts for the birdies and pars. Putting is what we do more than half our shots. You know what they say: the 1 footer counts as much as the 300 yard drive!
The important question we need to ask is which type of putter is better for your game? We'll take a look at the difference between a blade and a mallet putter and which type of putter will help you hole more putts.
A blade-style putter is generally designed much thinner than a mallet putter. An old school traditional mallet putter was a semi-circle coming out of the back of the golf club. The mallet putters nowadays have so many shapes that you may think of a UFO when you see one.
The blade putter has not changed much and still looks the same as it did in earlier days of golf. Mallet putters are generally more forgiving because of how the weight is distributed and the alignment aids, while the blades provide more feel and control to golfers who do not focus as much time on mechanics in their stroke.
Depending on your putting stroke - whether you have an arc or straight back and through stroke, one of these two putters may be better for you than the other.
What is a Mallet Putter?
A mallet putter is much larger in size than a blade. When the original mallet putters were created, they were semi-circular, The common characteristic of all mallet putters is that they extend beyond the back of the putter much further than a blade.
Modern mallet putters have changed shape and you can find designs that look like animal fangs, space ships, and even square shapes coming out the back of the putter. The mallet putter heads are growing larger and larger.
A common misconception is that the mallet putters are much heavier than the blade putters. Often the blade can be the same weight as the mallet putter, but the difference is in how that weight is distributed. For example and EVNRoll Tour Blade 1.2 is as heavy as a Spider from Taylormade.
The materials may be different where one is lighter material than the other but more is used, or the same materials may be used, but just made into a hollow body on the Spider.
Golfers prefer the mallet putter because the MOI of the putter allows the ball to roll quicker without the skipping and jumping that comes from a blade. The weight of the putter comes from further back and it transfers into the ball, creating a 'roll' immediately off the face instead of a 'jump'. This helps with getting the ball started on line and pace control.
Large mallet putters are best for golfers with a straight back and through stroke. The straight back and through strokes is important for this putter due to the way the head is balanced. If there is too much manipulation like on an arc stroke, putting is difficult. Golfers who prefer the mallet are more conscious of putting mechanics than the golfers who like a blade.
The alignment lines on a mallet putter make it MUCH easier to line your putt up with confidence to start the ball on the correct line. This cannot be overstated. it is MUCH easier to line up with your eyes, ball and putter with a mallet putter.
Pros - Mallet putter
- Forgiving faces with different material inserts
- Distance control is very consistent
- Alignment is infinitely easier especially on short putts
- There are so many designs of mallet heads
- Suits the straight back and through strokes
- Mechanics-focused golfers will love the mallet
- On slow greens, the mallet gives more power with less "slap"
Cons - Mallet putter
- Some people find them difficult on fast greens with their stroke
- Not recommended for arc putting strokes
- Most mallets suit the fatter putter grips
What is a Blade Putter
A blade putter is a traditional golf putter design. The original blade putters were completely flat, and some could be used from both sides. Today’s blade putter is a little larger than this, but the clubhead does not extend nearly as far back as it does with the mallet head design.
The blade putter has long been thought of as the player’s putter. Many of the top professionals use a blade putter, and they say that it is because of the feel and control that you get with a blade. There is no question that a blade putter has a great feel, but the mallet seems to have come quite far in regards to feel.
If you happen to have an arc type putting stroke, you will enjoy the benefits of the blade putter. As you swing back, you can fan the putter face open a little and then release and close it as you make your way through impact. A blade putter (just like the mallet) can come with a solid milled face, or it can have a face insert put in to help add a level of feel and control.
The blade putters have a slight disadvantage when it comes to forgiveness and alignment. They are a bit harder to line up as the alignment line will only be about an inch long or so. This is much different than the length of the mallet putters currently on the market. However, if you have a solid putting stroke and you don’t need help with your alignment, the blade is a terrific choice.
Pros - Blade putters
- The light feeling in the hands and different MOI are good for quick greens
- For players with an arc stroke
- The heads are usually all metal and this provides great feedback and feel
- For people who play golf with feel and less concerned with mechanics
Cons - Blade putters
- Less forgiving than a mallet with straight back and through stroke
- More difficult to align to your target line
- Can feel too light for some people
- On slow greens, the putting stroke can start to feel like a 'slap'
FAQ - Blades vs Mallets
Now you know the differences between a blade and a mallet putter, let's take a look at some common queries.
Mallet Or Blade Putter For A Beginner?
If your beginner set comes with a blade putter, do not feel like you are off to a bad start. You will be able to use this putter and learn and adjust, however ideally; a mallet putter is easy for a golfer to learn the game.
How Does Your Putting Stroke Suit a Putter?
If you have an arc type putting stroke, it makes more sense to go with a blade style putter. You can fan open the clubface and then close it as you go through impact. Straight back and straight through strokes do better with the mallet design.
Is A Mallet Putter More Forgiving?
The only thing that makes a mallet putter more forgiving is its size. It has a much larger clubface and, therefore, a larger sweet spot. You do not have to be as precise to hit a great putt with a mallet putter.
Signs You Are Using The Wrong Type Of Putter
The most significant sign that your putter is not right for your game is that you are not making enough putts. Try to figure out why you are missing your putts, are they all coming up short are they all over the place? If you can narrow down which way you are missing, you may be able to figure out if it is related to the putter or related to your stroke and ability.
Should I Get A Putter Fitting?
If you are a great player, if you are outside of the standard height range of a conventional putter and if you are struggling with your putting stroke, you should very likely get a putter fitting. Putter fittings can be very helpful, but they are not necessary for every golfer. Finding a putter that feels good and performs is more important than fitting.
Best Mallet Putter 2023
Best Choice: Odyssey Stroke Lab Triple Track Putter
The Stroke Lab putters have taken putting and putting specifications to a whole new level. The Stroke Lab putters come with a unique shaft that is partially graphite and partially steel. This particular model also has the Triple Track alignment.
Interestingly Callaway also makes some golf balls with this Triple Track patter on them. If you combine this golf ball with the putter, you will have a much easier time making sure that your ball and stroke are on track. The Marxman is our favorite Triple Track design; it is very similar to the Odyssey 2 Ball Putter that did so well for Odyssey for many years. The Triple Track looks and performs even better than the original 2 Ball design.
Best Premium Mallet Putter: TaylorMade Golf Spider X Putter
If you enjoy watching professional golf, then you may have seen the number of professionals using the TaylorMade Spider X putter. The concept behind this large mallet design is that you will want the impact to be as stable as possible.
The X shaped clubhead and forgiving sweet spot give this putter incredible feel but a ton of consistency. When you combine this mallet putter with a standard straight back straight through stroke, you can turn into quite the putting machine.
Spider X is also available in lots of different color combinations and customizations.
Best Value Mallet Putter: Cleveland Golf 2135 Satin Cero Oversized Grip Putter
The Cleveland Golf 2135 Satin Cero is like a traditional mallet putter that has become an overachiever. You will notice that this putter has a large semi-circle type design. We love that the bottom of this putter is very flat to the ground; it helps it feel less bulky and makes for effortless alignment as well.
The Cleveland golf putters are always offered at a great value, and you can usually find them in several different lengths as well. Choosing a putter that is the correct length will make a big difference in your game.
Best Blade Putter 2023
Best Choice Odyssey Works 2020 Putters
Odyssey has been one of the top putter names for many years. They make quality products that are known by both professionals and amateurs. The O Works series has been out for a few years, but it keeps getting updates that are quite impressive.
We love the all-new micro hinge face insert on this club. Odyssey has been known for its soft feeling face inserts, and this one is just as impressive as years past. The all-black design on the Works putters makes them very easy to see and align as well. This is a model that will earn a spot in your bag for quite some time.
Best Premium Blade Putter: Evnroll ER2B MidBlade Putter 2020
The Evnroll putters are going to be quite premium as far as pricing is concerned, but they also have a great feel. Evnroll is all about making sure that your putting stroke stays consistent and that you can repeat your stroke over and over again.
When purchasing an Evnroll putter, make sure that you get something that fits you from a length and lie angle standpoint as well. This particular model is a mid-blade design so that it will be a little bigger than a traditional blade, but some golfers are having an easier time with distance control using this putter.
Best Value Blade Putter: Cleveland Huntington Beach #1
Cleveland makes a wide range of excellent short game products. Another great thing about the Cleveland putters is that they are always very reasonably priced. If you have been thinking about putting a blade putter into your bag, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money, Cleveland makes a great choice.
Huntington Beach is made from a soft 304 stainless steel. Unlike a lot of other golf putters on the market, this is milled from one single piece of steel. Some golfers claim this gives them a much more solid feel when using the putter. If you don’t like the #1 style Huntington Beach, there are plenty of others you can choose from.
You could analyze and debate blade verse mallet putters all-day, and you will probably never come up with a clear winner. Blade putters are great for individual golfers, and the mallet putter is perfect for others. The key is to find the putter that works best for your game. Pay attention to feel, look, and the type of putting stroke you have if you want to choose a great putter.