Published: Tue, 07 Jun 2011 00:00:00 -0700
Published: Tue, 05 Oct 2010 00:00:00 -0700
|Just Right!||My Club’s On Plane|
|Too Tall!||My Arms And Shoulders Don’t Match|
Published: Tue, 19 Jan 2010 00:00:00 -0800
Published: Tue, 19 Jan 2010 00:00:00 -0800
|The key here is to hit on the lower portion of the face. As shown by the top photo, hitting lower on the face will generate more backspin, helping the ball to lift higher and quicker. If you catch the ball more in the middle (lower photo), the ball is likely to travel on a lower trajectory out of the bunker.|
Published: Thu, 12 Nov 2009 00:00:00 -0800
Published: Thu, 12 Nov 2009 00:00:00 -0800
Published: Tue, 01 Sep 2009 00:00:00 -0700
|The simple cause of slicing is an open clubface. The simple cure for slicing is to get the clubface square through the impact zone on a consistent basis. To accomplish this, you must learn to properly rotate your lead arm in a counterclockwise direction.|
Most players who slice only have a vague idea of why they do so. Some think it’s due to their swing path or their release, and some even blame their equipment. The angle of the clubface is an element they often overlook. However, the simple fact is that if a shot moves left to right, you can be sure the clubface is open at impact. A great way to make sure the clubface isn’t open at the “moment of truth” is to get your left forearm to rotate through impact.
To see the correct rotation, try this simple drill using your watch. Turn your watch so the face is on the underside of the wrist of your lead arm (the left arm for right-handed golfers, the right arm for left-handed golfers).
Keep your lead elbow a couple of inches from your side and rotate your forearm so you can see the entire face of the watch. The left wrist should be flat. This should help you visualize the proper rotation in your swing and also prevent you from flipping the club with your wrists at impact.
If you don’t rotate the clubface at all, the face of the watch remains pointed at the ground. During your swing, this incorrect movement results in the open clubface that causes a slice. If you try to rotate with your wrist and not your forearm, you won’t see the entire face.
Do this drill with your lead arm alone before practicing with both hands on the club. Continue to work on this movement until you see the watch face consistently, and your slicing woes will disappear for good.
Nick Kumpis, PGA, teaches at Pelican Hill GC in Newport Coast, Calif.
Published: Fri, 01 Aug 2008 00:00:00 -0700
One of the best indicators of a good golf swing is the finish. If there’s balance when the swing is over, it means there was probably balance during the swing. Often, players who slice do so because they don’t finish correctly. See the photo of the finish below? Not only did my arms collapse and my feet remain flat, but I didn’t make a full body turn. This bad finish is due to the excessive tension in my hands and arms that restricted the proper body movement.
Pam Wright, LPGA, teaches at the We-Ko-Pa Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz. For more information, visit Pam online at pamwrightgolf.com.
Published: Sat, 31 May 2008 17:00:00 -0700
Square The Clubface And Hit It Straight!
As most of us know, the slice is probably the most common fault in all of golf, particularly for the recreational player. Though that fact isn’t particularly surprising, what is surprising is how long people are willing to struggle before seeking a legitimate method of eradicating the slice from their game. One of the typical methods players pursue in hopes of straightening their slice is trying to develop more of an inside-out swing path, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, though an outside-in swing path definitely promotes the production of left-to-right spin (slice spin), the ultimate cause of slicing is an open clubface at impact. Learn to get the clubface square through the hitting zone, and that left-to-right spin—and those banana balls—will quickly disappear.
The basic fact that all slicers have to accept is that, though other factors contribute to poor golf shots, more than 70-percent of shot shape is due to clubface angle and nothing else. Controlling the clubface is the secret to both solid contact and accuracy, and is the one thing you must focus on if you hope to improve. To help accomplish this task (which isn’t as daunting as you might think), I’ve come up with three simple clubface keys that just about any golfer can learn. Work on these keys, and I guarantee your slices will become significantly less severe, and maybe straighten out completely.
Published: Sun, 16 Sep 2007 17:00:00 -0700
How many times have you been told the reasons why you slice, without being told what you actually need to do to stop slicing? Too often I hear instructors explaining the cause and effects of sliced shots, without providing a shred of information on what kind of swing is required to prevent banana balls. If you find yourself agreeing with me, then my lesson in the next few pages should be right up your alley. Unlike other articles, we aren’t going to figure out why you’re slicing. That’s not going to get you anywhere, considering it only deals with half the problem. Instead, I’m going to teach you what it takes to draw the ball so you can start hitting more approach shots from the fairway instead of the right rough. Sound appealing? Good. Let’s hook that slice once and for all.
Balance Your Setup In All Directions
To eliminate the slice, let’s start from the beginning. The address position should reflect an even weight distribution in every direction. In other words, your weight should be evenly distributed over both feet and proportionally on the balls and heels of your feet. For example, think of an infielder ready to catch a line drive. By flexing his knees and balancing himself in every direction, he’s ready to spring in any direction to catch the ball. As a golfer, you too should be in a similarly athletic position to be ready to make a golf swing. If you’re leaning one way or the other, it’s a sure bet your golf ball will lean to the left or right as well.
Published: Sun, 16 Sep 2007 17:00:00 -0700
The majority of recreational golfers, and even some better players, suffer from chronic slicing. Anyone who has experienced this problem knows how frustrating it can be and how difficult it can be to overcome. One of the main reasons so many golfers are unable to straighten out their banana ball is because they attempt to find a cure without properly understanding the disease. To fix your slice once and for all, I suggest first understanding what fundamentals are key to solid ballstriking, and then taking measures to incorporate those moves into your swing. By so doing, your slice will disappear automatically.
The Role Of The Body
The body has but one role in the golf swing: to maintain balance and provide the foundation for solid rotational motion. Simply stated, you must maintain your balance while the club orbits around your body throughout the swing. Any loose motion will cause you to lose your balance and will disrupt the club’s orbit, which often leads to slicing. In order to do this, you must set up correctly at address, focusing on maintaining the proper forward bending of the spine, the proper amount of lateral spinal bending, and a solid amount of knee flex based on the amount of motion you want during the swing.
To set the proper forward bending of the spine, you need the clubshaft to point at your beltline (from a down-the-line view), and you need your arms to hang slightly out from your body so they clear your upper chest (see photo, below). These positions should be set with your balance point located around the middle to the back of the soles of your shoes. Setting the proper lateral bending of the spine is simple as well. Lean away from the target with your upper torso while your hips remain centered. This will move your center of gravity behind the mid-line of your body and allow you to easily shift your weight to your rear foot during the backswing (compare the large photo to the photo far right). Finally, to set the proper flex of the knees, you must first determine just how much rotary motion you need during your backswing. If you feel more comfortable turning more in the backswing, then you don’t require as much knee flex. If you need less turn to the top, you need to flex your knees more. As you look down at your knees, they should be flexed somewhere between the knot in your shoelaces and the mid-point of your laces.
Once you’re set up in a good position, the next thing you need to do is make sure that you have a solid rotational base for your club to orbit around. The first key to remember is that the right knee (for right-handed players) must remain relatively stable from address to the top in order to tighten up the hip turn in the backswing. If the right knee changes flex or position on the way to the top of the backswing, then you’ll have a bigger hip turn as you take the club back. In addition, the rate at which your hips turn off the start of the backswing will also influence the overall amount you’ll rotate. Players who rotate more have a greater tendency to alter the position of the clubshaft at the top, and also have a greater tendency to lose their balance during the swing. If this sounds like your swing, you need to be aware that over-rotating could be the cause of your slicing woes.
The Role Of The Clubshaft
In a solid swing, the path of the clubshaft is controlled all the way to the top. Players who have any type of radical motion during this part of the swing are forced to compensate in the transition to prevent poor shots. The key to controlling the clubshaft is to keep the clubshaft in an area that, at belt high, is around the tips of your toes (see photo, below right). The hands, clubshaft and clubhead should lie directly above the stance line defined by your feet. If you move too far in front or behind this position, you’ll find that it’s impossible to achieve a solid position at the top of the swing.
The Role Of Plane Angle Shifts
When the body flops around en route to the top, the clubshaft tends to lift up, requiring a plane angle shift in the transition that drops it down onto the plane (like you see in the swing of Jim Furyk). On the other hand, when the clubshaft moves off plane too quickly, it usually goes too deeply to the inside, causing an over-the-top move in the transition (like you see in the swing of Craig Parry). Obviously, both methods can work, but both require compensations that can be difficult to execute on a consistent basis. They also require timing realistically achieved only by golfers in the world-class strata. The best way to visualize a manageable clubshaft motion to the top is to draw a mental line from the hosel of the clubhead through your beltline, and a second line from the hosel of the clubhead through the top of the right shoulder at address. Keeping the clubshaft in this triangle area (photo, left) will allow you to control the plane throughout the swing. There are many players on Tour who take different paths to the top and back down to the ball, but all of them stay in this triangle.
Published: Tue, 15 May 2007 16:56:42 -0700
We’ve all experienced this one time or another. Midway through the round, after hitting what seems to be a decent number of fairways, the ball starts to slice. And not only does the ball begin creeping to the right, the slice becomes more and more pronounced with each swing. This then causes the body to tense up and limit the needed rotation of the hands through the impact zone. Now that’s an awful thought, isn’t it?
Well, if you’ve suffered through a “slice attack,” here’s an immediate and simple remedy. To help diagram this simple drill, my daughter Carly Ray Goldstein has stepped in. Carly, who’s no stranger to winning her fair share of junior events (she’s won more than 40 junior tournaments at the age of 11!), isn’t immune to a slice, either. But with this simple drill, she’s found a way to get back on track and in the fairway in a hurry.
First, get a hold of your driver. Set up as if you’re going to make a normal practice swing, only lower your right hand on the grip, about two to three inches below your upper hand. This will cause you to have a split grip. Now, in a smooth and slow motion, simulate a three-quarter golf swing and pay attention to these three critical positions.
Position 1. On the backswing, once the arms reach chest high, the right arm should bend with the elbow pointing inward, and the left arm is to remain straight. The shaft should be pointing vertically. These three lines should form a triangle, between your left forearm, the shaft and your right forearm. See the photo for help.
Position 2. Through the impact zone, the hands should be rolling to a closed position. Because of the split grip, the closing of the clubface will feel more pronounced, which is the desired effect to counteract that slice! At impact, the lower hand (Carly’s right hand) is directly below her left, indicating her hands are in the process of closing the clubface through the hitting zone.
Position 3. About halfway through the followthrough, the hands should act as a mirror image of the hands in Position 1, where the forearms and shaft once again form a triangle. If they don’t, that means you’re not releasing and rolling the hands properly! Practice this drill as often as needed to counteract a slice, and don’t forget it come time to battle the effects of an unexpected banana ball.
Barry Goldstein is a professional golf teacher at Inverrary CC in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Published: Tue, 01 May 2007 16:02:29 -0700
Body alignment is one of two key setup elements most frequently changed by amateur golfers (the other is ball position). Because players often associate the alignment of their upper body with the starting direction of the ball off the clubface, they tend to incorrectly alter their alignment for a variety of reasons, the most common of which is to compensate for a chronic pull slice. While the logic of aiming the torso further left to prevent hitting the ball to the right may appear sound at first, this faulty compensation actually causes more harm than good in the long term.
Another common alignment change players make when fighting a pull slice is aiming their feet to the right of the target, creating a body position that features a closed lower body stance and open shoulders. So instead of aligning the shoulders and feet square to each other, as they should be, the player has assumed a classic pull-slice setup position without even knowing it. In effect, they’ve fueled the fire that they’re trying to fight.
The important thing to understand regarding a pull-slice stance is that it starts a chain of events that’s almost impossible to stop or save in the downswing. When the feet are aligned farther right of the target than the shoulders, it almost always results in a takeaway that goes too far to the inside along the toe line and then back out over to the shoulder line on the way down. This inside takeaway and over-the-top transition results in a club that strikes the outside of the ball, starting it left with a high degree of left-to-right spin. Remember, you always want to give yourself a chance to hit the inside of the ball if you want to make consistently solid contact.
The Fix: Put a shaft down on the ground and point it slightly left of the target. Assume your setup position and point your shoulders slightly right of the target. Make sure your left foot is farther from the ball than your right foot and your left shoulder is closer to the ball than your right (feet slightly open, shoulders slightly closed). This position will allow you to deliver the club from the inside rather than over-the-top, across your body, and you should immediately feel freer and more powerful.
Kevin Scheller’s students include professional golfers, nationally ranked juniors and Division I collegiate players.
Published: Sun, 18 Feb 2007 15:15:51 -0800
Beating the slice once and for all is a goal that can be accomplished
by almost any golfer, provided the right approach is taken. In my
four-step system, there are no quick fixes—just sound instruction that
focuses on key slice-causing elements and methods for eliminating them
from the golf swing. In step one, youll learn to analyze your divots
and figure out if your slice is the result of a bad path or a faulty
clubface angle, or both. Step two will tell you how to determine what
type of downswing you have and what powers it. In step three, the
question of proper grip and how to match it to your downswing type is
addressed, and in step four, youll learn to match your position at the
top with the right transitional move toward the ball and impact.
One of the few constants in the game of golf is that recreational players tend to struggle with the slice, particularly off the tee. Of course, more accomplished players lose the ball to the right from time to time, but not to the point where they cant enjoy the game due to the sheer frustration of continually slicing the ball off the course. In addition to causing an overall lack of accuracy, hitting shots with a significant amount of left-to-right spin also robs distance, an effect that no golfer enjoys.
If youre a player who currently struggles with this common problem, its time to put an end to it for good. To accomplish this seemingly difficult task, begin by asking yourself these questions: What type of slice do I hit? Is my swing path faulty, or is it my clubface angle at address, or both? Is my swing rotary- or lever-driven? Does my grip, address position, position at the top and transition match my swing type? All of these questions are addressed in my four-step process to beating the slice, and if you follow them in order, youll be well on your way to ridding yourself of the banana ball forever. Plus, youll understand what elements cause your particular slice and how to repair your swing when things start to go bad.
Step 1: Determine Your Divot
Open Clubface With Incorrect Path Slice
This creates divots that move extremely left of the target line and shots that slice out of control. The correct fix is to develop a swing path thats less out-to-in and to learn to square the clubface at impact. The incorrect fix is to try to swing even more left or to hit with a closed clubface. This type of slice is the ugliest of them all, and fixing it is definitely a challenge. However, developing a swing path thats less severe will make squaring the clubface easier.
Incorrect Swing Path Slice
This creates divots that move somewhat left of the target and shots that start to the left and then curve back across the target line. The correct fix is to improve the swing path by moving it more down the line and less over the top. The incorrect fix is to experiment with different clubface positions in an attempt to compensate for the faulty path. The sad truth about this type of slice is that its the result of a faulty swing path that travels from outside to in and across the ball. Fixing this problem will take some time and effort.
Open Clubface Slice
This type of slice creates relatively straight divots and shots that start along the target line and drift to the right. The correct fix is to square the clubface at impact. The incorrect fix is to swing farther left in an attempt to keep the ball on line. The good news about this type of slice is that its simply the result of a faulty clubface position, which can be relatively easy to fix. If this is your type of slice, you can take solace in the fact that your swing path is relatively sound, as illustrated by the direction of the divot, which is actually a bit to the right.
To beat your slice, you first need to determine if its your downswing path or your clubface angle at impact thats faulty, or both. This can be determined by analyzing your divots and ballflight characteristics. To begin, find a grass practice range and lay a club or piece of colored string along your target line. Once youre fully warmed up, place a ball on the inside of the club or piece of string and execute a normal, full shot. If you dont make solid contact the first time, simply move down the shaft or string and hit another ball from that spot. The key is to hit a shot that represents your normal ballflight and to create a clearly recognizable divot in the process. Continue to hit several shots until you feel youve made at least a couple of clear divots that have resulted from what youd consider your typical shots.
Once youve done this, take a look at the shape and direction of your divots and consider your normal shot shape. If your divot runs fairly parallel to the target line, and your shots tend to start toward the target and then drift to the right, you most likely have a correct swing path but an open clubface at impact. This is the easiest slice to fix because all it requires is a correction of the clubface position as it passes through the hitting zone.
Published: Tue, 01 Aug 2006 10:49:42 -0700
The first fundamental I teach every new student is how to properly hold the club because good golf swings start with good grips. Your hands are your only connection to the club, thus making them the primary mover of the shaft and controller of the clubface. If you hold the club incorrectly, youre immediately at a disadvantage and more likely to make compensations in your swing.
While I reinforce proper grips to my students, I cant always be there to check up on them, so I teach them how to monitor their progress. One simple way is to analyze how their glove wears out. Take this battered glove, for example. It took only 10 rounds for this to happen! As you can see, sometimes the root of a swing fault lies in the palm of your hand.
The most common glove-wear pattern, a worn-out palm is caused by holding the club in the palm instead of correctly holding it beneath the heel pad of the hand and fingers. Gripping the club this way leads to a lack of distance and a tendency to slice. Whats really amazing about grips like this is that they can wear down a glove after only a few holes! So if this has ever happened to you, and you thought that new glove of yours was defective, think again.
The Fix: Hold a ruler vertically in your glove hand. Cradle it in your fingers and feel the heel pad of your glove hand resting on top. This home remedy is a great way to exaggerate the feeling of a proper grip.
Look at the massive tear in the thumb! It resulted from a two-fold problem: poor thumb placement and incorrect grip pressure (too much or too little) applied between the thumb and the handle. This grip usually results in a lack of control.
The Fix: Adopt a short thumb, where the thumb is cinched up and pinched against the top of the forefinger. Hold a business card between your thumb and forefinger with a grip pressure of 3 (out of 10) to learn the appropriate feel.
A tear or wear pattern here indicates a poor connection between a players hands and is usually caused by an overlapping grip, where the dominant hands pinkie digs into the glove hands knuckle. You may even notice a callus forming on your dominant hands ring finger. What results isnt just a torn glove but discomfort as well.
The Fix: Extend your pinkie farther into the gap that separates the knuckles on your glove hand. Another option is to adopt an interlocking grip, where your dominant hands pinkie and glove hands index finger wrap around each other.
PGA Professional Jeff Ritter is director of instruction at the ASU Karsten Golf Academy.
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Published: Tue, 01 Aug 2006 10:37:50 -0700
No matter how fundamentally superior the swings of the world’s best players are to those belonging to the rest of us, there has never been, nor will there likely will there ever be, a golf swing without at least one flaw. The swings of greats such as Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Ernie Els may look perfect, but each features a number of flaws—the same weaknesses that plague the swings of recreational players. If that’s the case, then why do these golfers own championship trophies while you can’t even make the A flight at your club championship? Is it because great golfers can overcome flaws by grooving them out? Not quite. The real answer lies in the ability of tour pros to repeat their flaws and effectively apply others to compensate for the error.
For example, Ben Hogan battled a snap hook early in his career. It affected his game so badly that he developed a very weak left-hand grip, a cupped wrist and an open face at the top in order to offset the hook. Not only did Hogan learn to negate his hook, he also managed to win nine majors and notch 63 victories—not a bad effort considering the flaws inherent in his swing.
Like Hogan, you, too, can learn to use swing flaws to your advantage. The key is to identify your flaws and make sure you have an even number with which to work. I believe you can play great golf with an even number of mistakes by balancing them out. With an odd number, however, you’re in for a long day.
A slicer’s golf swing is inherently too steep relative to the ideal swing shape. When you’re too upright, generally the effects are:
1) Deep divots.
2) Toe-first contact with the golf ball.
3) An open clubface at the point of contact.
A steep swing is traveling down too abruptly through the impact zone, which makes it difficult to pick the ball clean and avoid digging deep into the turf. The necessary fix is to inject some width into your swing to help shallow out the steep, descending blow. A great way to add width is to widen your takeaway, much like Jack Nicklaus did in his heyday. The steep-swinging Nicklaus triggered a bigger turn by first turning his head away from the target. Although turned, Nicklaus kept his head stationary, forcing him to stretch his arms low, wide and away from the target on his backswing. This trigger was exceptionally useful with fairway woods.
Despite the awesome information we can get from a videotaped or televised golf swing, it’s darn near impossible to get an exact idea of how close or far we should stand from the ball. Players with naturally steep swings tend to benefit from standing closer than usual to the ball to accommodate their upright swing shape. For a player with a normal swing, standing closer to the ball can put the heel dangerously close to the ball, often causing shanks. But for a steep swinger who misses frequently on the toe area of the club, standing closer will help balance the toe hit caused by the steep swing. Scott Hoch, who has among the most upright swings on the PGA Tour (his irons are about four degrees upright), stands closer to the ball to accommodate his steep swing. If he were to back away, it’d be near impossible for him to hit solid shots. In this case, he didn’t change his swing, he just changed his distance from the ball.
Published: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 00:00:00 -0800
Here we go again. Yes, another “fix your slice” feature, which says a lot about the banana ball—it’s not going away. For some golfers, that left-to-right ballflight never seems to disappear, and for those new to the game, it represents the first true taste of golf-related frustration. While I’m sure you’ve heard your fair share of anti-slice tips, this story approaches fixing a slice in unique fashion. Position by position, I’ll compare the components of a solid swing to those typically associated with a slice, plus a corresponding fix. Giving equal weight to what you should be doing to what you’ve already grooved into your swing may pay better dividends.
In the setup position, the number-one slice-inducing fault is a weak grip. A weaker grip (hands rotated too far to the left), is more apt to produce an open clubface at impact than a strong grip (hands rotated more to the right).
Take your grip and hold the club straight out in front of you with your arms relaxed and with your normal grip pressure. Next, have a friend pull the clubface straight away from you. If the clubface opens to the left, your grip is too weak and will probably be open at impact.
The fix is to simply let go of your grip and let your left arm hang by your side naturally. Take a look and see in which direction your left thumb points. Is it 12:00, 12:30, 1:00, 1:30, 2:00 or 2:30? Now, grip the club in your left hand, making sure your thumb has the same look and time. Hinge the wrist up and down to ensure the clubface stays square. Place your right hand on the grip and again have your friend pull the club straight out to make sure the clubface doesn’t rotate open. Keep adjusting until the face is square.
A weak grip (above left) is more prone to leaving the face open at impact than a strong one (above right). To find the correct grip, allow your left arm to hang naturally. The direction in which your left thumb points should be mimicked when you grab the handle.
A slice backswing features two fundamental flaws: 1) an inside path and 2) a flat shaft plane.
A takeaway that moves the club too far to the inside leads to an open face in the backswing and usually an outside-to-in downswing path. Make a half backswing with any club and stop to check two takeaway keys.
Check #1. If your hands are inside the buttons of your shirt, then you’ve brought the club too far inside and will probably try to make a correction during the downswing path. When you make this type of adjustment, expect momentum to take the club outside your desired path, producing an outside-to-in downswing.
Published: Sun, 01 Aug 2004 13:46:12 -0700
If you can’t hit your woods off the tee—or when you do hit them, the ball slices uncontrollably—chances are that your downswing is too steep. The reason this occurs is that the clubface can’t return to square when it comes down so vertically, and the open clubface creates a slice.
To fix this problem, perform what I call the “tall tee drill.” Take a fairway wood or small-sized driver. Tee the ball so that the entire surface sits above the face of the club (you may need the longer 2 3⁄4-inch tees to accomplish this). In order to hit this ball solidly, you’ll need to make a more sweeping downswing. Your goal should be to hit the top of the tee and the golf ball simultaneously. This will produce better contact, and because the shallower downswing will allow the clubface to more easily achieve a squared position, you’ll hit straighter shots. You’ll know if your downswing is too steep if you pop the ball straight up in the air or miss it completely.
When you go on the course, tee the ball only slightly higher than normal until you’re comfortable hitting from the taller tee.
Rob Stock is an assistant golf professional at Farmington Country Club in Charlottesville, Va. Stock also is a certified golf fitness trainer.
Published: Thu, 01 Jul 2004 12:02:35 -0700
There’s only one thing that can cause a slice, and that’s a clubface that’s either open (or opening) at the point of contact. That being said, here are three tips to help you square up the clubface and rid your game of that slice forever!
Get A Stronger Grip. The clubface tends to return to the ball “open” when the hands are placed on the club in a weak position—that is, turned too far to the left. A correct grip has the hands rotated more to the right. To strengthen your grip, rotate your left hand so that your thumb is positioned to the right of center (two to three knuckles should be visible). The right hand also should be rotated to the right, matching the angle of the left hand. To experiment, turn your hands to the right until the ball begins to hook, then back off a little for optimal positioning.
Ease Up! Excessive pressure in your hands and arms inhibits the natural rotation of the clubface through the hitting area. Soften the pressure in your hands, wrists, arms and shoulders to encourage a more natural, effortless face rotation. If you imagined a scale running from zero to 10, where 10 was the tightest you could possibly squeeze the club and zero was the club slipping out of your hands, then the ideal pressure for most shots would be a 3.
Flatten Your Plane. Most slicers approach the ball on too vertical a plane, another error that facilitates an open clubface at the point of contact. A flatter swing shape will promote a natural squaring of the clubface and create the preferred right-to-left ballflight. To sense the feeling of swinging on a flatter plane, make some practice swings with the clubhead moving back and through at knee-high level. Swinging the club in this elevated position will help you feel the more rounded swing shape needed to allow the toe of your clubhead to rotate past the heel. After a few of these “baseball” swings, try one off the ground with the same feel. Your ensuing ballflight should be much straighter and, perhaps, curve slightly to the left.
PGA professional Jeff Ritter is the Director of Instruction at the ASU Karsten Golf Academy in Tempe, Ariz.
Published: Sun, 01 Feb 2004 10:21:29 -0800
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