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The physics of putting

Forces involved

    There aren't too many forces involved in putting or really any unique ones but they're all very important to the process. The first one, one that is out of control for the golfers, is the green speed and hardness. Both of those are major factors in the coefficient of friction that the ball undergoes while on the green. The green speed comes from the topography of the green and how short that the grass is cut on the green, shorter=faster while longer=slower. The green hardness comes from the type of grass on the green and the type of soil underneath the grass, softer=slower and harder=faster. The other factor in the coefficient of friction is the type of golf ball they're using and the condition of the ball where the more nicks, scratches and bumps in the ball increase the friction between it and the ground/grass.
    The next major force is the one that comes from the putter. There are a few different factors that go into how much force is transferred from the putter to the golf ball. The most obvious one is how much force you apply to the putter when you swing it. The other is the putter face design and the material it is made of.

Putters compared to other clubs

    The reason why a putter is needed is because of its completely flat face that is perpendicular to the ground at the point of contact with the ball.

Putter face(9)

    The flat face makes it so that the golfer can get good, clean contact with the ball when s/he is putting. This helps the golfer hit the ball more in line with where they want it to go. If the putter had an angled face like other golf clubs the ball would leave the ground when hit and that gives the ball more opportunity to deviate from its intended path. Having the completely flat and angle-less face also allows the putter to be more forgiving when the golfer messes up his/her swing. 

Comparison of clubs(10)
Here is a comparison of the other golf clubs from in a normal golf bag to a putter.

How Happy's putter gave him the edge

    Towards the end of the movie Happy received a slight boost in his putting skills. One reason was because he found his happy place to go so that he could focus more during his putts but the other reason was because of the putter he received. 

Happy with his putter(11)

    Happy got a brand new custom made putter from his friend and golf mentor Chubbs. The putter was made to resemble a hockey stick while having the usability of any other putter. This was a big help for Happy because he used his putter like a hockey stick in the first place so now that he has the putter resembling a hockey stick his accuracy will greatly increase.

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