IB Putter Sweet Spot Review

I’m a big fan of the unusual, especially when it comes to golf. Whereas some golfers are put off by something a bit different from the norm, I embrace it. The whackier the better, especially when it comes to putters.

It’s probably because I’ve never felt comfortable on the greens and at no point during my golfing life have I ever been a confident putter. So I’ll try anything. 

When I first saw the IB Putter Sweet Spot in a post on Twitter (I still refer to Starburst as Opal Fruits so it will be a cold day in hell before I ever refer to Twitter as ‘X’) it immediately grabbed my attention. I love things like this. I’ve been trying to get hold of a Cleveland Smart Square Stubby ever since I saw Jaco Van Zyl using it at the 2017 Joburg Open so I was intrigued when I saw this new creation by Ivan Ballesteros, nephew of the great Seve.

Ivan came up with the idea during the COVID lockdown and after several years perfecting his design it’s now ready for golfers to try. I spoke to Ivan prior to reviewing the IB Putter Sweet Spot for Golf Monthly and what came across emphatically is how much he believes in this product and how passionate he is about it. That passion was infectious and I couldn’t wait to try it.

When it arrived I was like a kid on Christmas morning. Because of how unusual it is I was so excited to unbox it and get it in my hands. It looked even smaller than I expected but I was struck by the quality. It looks fantastic. It comes in silver or black but I had the silver one which I feel looks really high end. The grip looks great, the branding on the base of the head is stylish and I liked how balanced it was in my hands.

After unboxing I had a little try of it on my artificial turf putting green at home and I made half a dozen in a row from six feet. That’s pretty good for me, but it’s not the same as being out there on the course so I wanted to see how I performed with it for real.

Here are my thoughts having spent the last few weeks practicing with it and using it on the course.


Difficult one to judge this. On a good stroke when I found the sweet spot it felt nice but nothing special. There’s no mistaking when you’ve found the middle though. As soon as I caught it and felt that solid contact I knew it was going to be a good putt. It’s extremely satisfying when that happens. However, when you miss it doesn’t feel good at all. It’s not supposed to though, that’s the whole point of it, to train the golfer to find the middle of the putter face. The sound is pleasing. It’s a nice ‘tock’ and isn’t high pitched, which for whatever reason I suspected it would be.  

I absolutely love the grip and although it has a heavier head than most putters, I didn’t find that a problem as it aids the balance on the stroke. When you make that pendulum motion and strike one out of the middle it feels very satisfying, but it can be tricky to do that consistently, especially on longer putts when you need to give it a bit more “hands” in the stroke and can’t rely on a pendulum motion.


This will split opinion as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I love it. I think this putter looks stunning. I know it’s unorthodox and unlike anything we’ve seen before, but that’s part of the charm. I’m probably going to be in a minority here based on the reactions I’ve seen from fellow golfers when I’ve shown them this putter, but I like how different and unique it is.

I’m drawn to it visually as it’s interesting and it also has a very premium look to it. Everything is made from high end materials, the head design is beautiful and the branding is very stylish. The grip is luxurious too, both aesthetically and the feel in your hands. It’s probably my favourite grip from any putter I’ve used.


The main strength of this putter in my experience with it is from short range. It’s easy to repeat the pendulum stroke and keep your hands out of it. My problems I have with short putts are often a result of letting my hands be too active and I have a tendency to grip the putter too tightly. This putter eliminates both of those issues. The first time I took it out onto the course I made birdie putts from six and eight feet. I only used it for a nine holes so two birdies made is good for me. 

I usually miss those putts because standing over the ball on the golf course I have a million and one other things going on rather than simply “make a good stroke”. I’m thinking about the one I missed from solar distance five holes back, the tough hole I’ve got coming up next, what my score is, have I got the read right, make sure I don’t leave it short and things of that nature. With the IB Putter Sweet Spot you don’t have that luxury. Take your eye off the ball and you might miss it completely so it really focuses you on the task at hand. All I am thinking about is making a good stroke and finding the middle of the putter face.

So I absolutely love it from close range but it was erratic on longer putts and that’s why I can’t currently have it in the bag. The greens were particularly slow and more than a little bumpy at Effingham Golf Club the day I tested this putter and while that certainly hampered the performance, it’s just a reality of golf in the UK at the time of year. The greens had been treated so they weren’t running smoothly, and that caused me a lot of problems on longer putts. Even on good greens I think it would have been tricky though and this is the main drawback to the putter in my opinion. Not every course I play on is going to have smooth fast greens and that means I can’t take this onto the course with me, regardless of how much confidence it gives me on shorter putts.

And it did give me confidence. On anything from inside 10 feet I had a belief that I rarely have on the greens. Usually I’m more confident of hitting a narrow fairway with driver in a strong wind than I am of holing a straight four footer, yet with the IB Putter Sweet Spot I genuinely thought I’d make any putt from inside 10 feet (I didn’t of course, but it was nice to believe that I would). 

So that’s a big positive. I also had four three-putts though and on anything over 15-20 feet my speed control was terrible, with most putts being left well short. I think the explanation for that is quite simple really. It’s a putter that promotes a pendulum stroke, which is a good thing in terms of consistency of stroke. But for longer putts, especially on slow greens, a pendulum stroke won’t get you to the hole and you need to use your hands more. Any time I needed to move away from a pendulum motion there was a good chance I’d not strike it properly and when I didn’t get that sweet spot, the putt came up well short.


I really wanted to love this putter. I don’t yet, but I’m very fond of it and it’s fascinating to use. Any time I’m practising at home and need to reach for a putter to use, this is the one I grab. I have a custom fitted Ping PLD Oslo 3 in my bag, but this is the putter I enjoy practising with. I don’t know why, I just enjoy hitting putts with it. Whether you will too I have no idea, but all I would say is keep an open mind and if you see it in your local golf retailer give it a little try and see what you think. 

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Author: David Usher

Bang average golfer. Avid collector of vintage Ping putters and World's biggest Payne Stewart fan. Golf equipment reviews for T3.com and writer for Golf Monthly.

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