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TIP FROM THE PRO
Hitting Off a Downward Lie
Many golfers struggle when faced with shots off downhill lies. Often times they hang back and try to scoop the ball, when you actually want to do the opposite. Next time you are faced with a downhill lie follow these tips to hit a great shot:
- Make sure your shoulders are angled down along the slope of the hill
- Place more weight on your front leg and do not transfer your weight during the swing
- Place the ball a little further back in your stance than normal
- Swing along the slope of the hill and hit down on the ball
Keep this mental checklist in mind and you will find downhill lies are not so difficult.
Hitting the Coveted Draw
Most golfers struggle with a slice, and because of this lose out on a great deal of power. Learning to hit a draw will unlock your power potential. To hit a draw there are a few keys to remember:
- When taking your grip make sure your left hand is rotated clockwise on the club so you can see two or three knuckles while gripping the club.
- Align your feet a little right of the target, while still aiming the clubface at your target. (This will help you with an in to out swing)
- During your follow through make sure your right hand turns over your left hand. This is called the “release” of the club and it will allow you to square the face of the club at impact.
Follow these steps and you will be hitting high draws during your next round at Bristol Harbour Lodge and Golf Club.
Improve Your Fairway Bunker Shots
Many golfers struggle out of the fairway bunker and are not able to advance the ball as far as they would from the fairway. To make proper impact out of fairway bunkers, there are a couple keys to remember:
- First, make sure you choke down on the club. Since you are choking down, make sure you take an extra club to get the ball to the green.
- Next, play the ball a little back in your stance. This will allow you to hit the ball first, and pick it clean from the sand.
- Finally, dig your back foot’s instep into the sand. This will prevent any weight transfer, and keep your weight on your lead leg.
Follow these steps and you will be hitting great fairway bunkers shots your next time on the course.
Proper Chipping Set Up
Most of the errors that are made in hitting a chip shot are as a result of a poor set-up. First, grip down slightly on the handle of the club. Second, narrow your stance so that the outside of your feet are no wider that the outside of your shoulders. Third, place about 85% of your weight on your foot closest to the target and move the ball position to the back third of your stance. Finally, make sure the club face is aligned square to the target line.
Getting Out of the Bunkers
A bunker shot is the only shot in golf where we don’t actually hit the golf ball. To improve your bunker play, use this practice drill. Draw two parallel lines in the sand approximately 4 inches apart that are 3 to 4 feet long and run perpendicular to your target line. Aligning your body left of your target line, placing your lead foot even with the line closest to the target. Next, open your clubface so it is aiming at the target. This increases the loft and allows the bounce of the club to work. Now make ¾ length swings, having the club enter the sand at the back line and taking the sand out between the lines. The swings should follow your body line, not your target line. When you have become proficient at making the club enter and exit the sand between the lines, again redraw the lines and placing balls between them. Making the same swings, the golf balls should come out of the sand high and land softly on the putting green.
How to Pick Up Distance
A lot of golfers do not realize how much potential power they have in their wrists. If you find yourself wondering where all your power has gone, there is a good chance you are not hinging your wrists properly. A good checkpoint is when you get your hands waist high on the backswing your club and lead arm should form a 90 degree angle. (Pictured below) This 90 degree angle is formed because your wrists hinged upwards during your takeaway.