Play Like A Player!

Quick tips and advice to make you look, feel and perform like a star

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Tour players are always thinking ahead. One way they do that is with their approach shots. For instance, they know that most greens tend to slope from back to front in some way. And, for most players, hitting putts that roll right to left are a lot easier than putts that roll away from you, or left to right. This is why some players take aim and favor the right side of the pin, especially if the pin is in the middle or left side of the green. Why? Simply because those right-to-left breakers are easier to make.

As for hitting a slight draw? They do this too, since this shot means less backspin and more roll toward the back-left corner of the green.

Try this technique and take aim to the right side of the pins. See if that helps your putting.


Speed is your friend. Even though you're hitting short shots around the green, sometimes you need to add some speed to your swing to produce good results. One of my favorite shots (that Tour players use a lot) is the cut swiper. It's basically a pitch that has cut-spin. The mechanics require a slightly outside-inside path and plenty of body rotation to ensure you "cut" across the ball as you pick it off the turf. The trick to hit this shot successfully is to remember to turn the body with the hands close and allow them to gain some extra speed. This may mean taking a shorter backswing, if necessary. The result is a mid-height pitch that hops and stops in a hurry. Don't close the clubface as you hit this shot. Hold it open as you swipe across the ball. It's a risky shot, for sure, but if you can master it, it's incredibly useful.


Here it is in action. George McNeill is hitting this exact shot. Notice how the club moves across his body and the face is still open with the abbreviated finish. That's what you want. Swing across the ball and nip it with an open face. You'll put a combination of slice and backspin on the ball, causing it to check up faster than a standard chip would. Aim a little left to account for the slice-spin, too. The ball will hop a tad to the right.

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