Hit More Greens

Make Consistent Contact With Your Irons

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THE SHADOW CHECK
OUT ON THE COURSE, YOU PROBABLY WON'T FIND TOO MANY FULL-LENGHT MIRRORS, but that doesn’t mean you can’t check your swing to see whether you’re swaying or not. To do so, simply turn your back to the sun so your shadow is in front of you. Start at the setup and note where your head and hips are. As you swing back, watch your shadow and make sure you’re rotating, not sliding back and forth. This also is a great way to make sure you’re keeping your spine angle, too.

Once you’ve practiced with the shadow, turn around, face the sun and repeat the way a good swing feels. This will train your mind to ignore your shadow and keep you focused on the back of the ball come time to hit your next shot.

Give it a try, use your shadow and make sure you rotate, not slide, through the hit.

At the setup, your shadow should resemble a golfer with no arms. Pay attention to any tilt away from the target, as well.

The shadow you cast when you slide too far away from the ball will show you a lot of things: a slide, a greater separation of the hands and a clubshaft that’s not parallel to the target line.


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TWO-TEE DRILL
what’s the secret behind solid ballstriking? Ball-first contact! Hitting the ball first, before you make contact with the turf is critical if you want to become a better ballstriker.

A great way to practice ball-first contact (without actually using a ball) is to use two tees, situated gate-style in the position where your golf ball would be. As you swing, concentrate on hitting the turf on the target side of the tees, and not behind. Notice in the sequence above, doing so requires two key components. The first is a good extension of the arms. The second is a full rotation of the body through and up to the finish.

Iron Types

CHOOSING the right type of irons for your game ought to be your first step toward improving your score. And if a new set isn’t in the budget, or you’re content with what you have, at the very least, consider getting your irons properly fitted. This means having them inspected for length, loft, shaft flex and lie angle.

You may find that your irons fit improperly, and a few tweaks will make a big difference in helping you hit better iron shots. Or, let’s say your irons actually fit your game as they should. Then why aren’t you seeing any improvements? The answer may be in the type of iron set you have. If you struggle with a lack of distance, wayward shots or even getting the ball airborne, maybe it’s time to ditch those blade-style irons and opt for a cavity-back set—or better, a mixed set with a couple hybrid irons to choose from.

Either way, the era of sizing up one’s golf game based on the types of equipment in the bag are long gone. Many of the best players in the world not only have adopted cavity-back styles, but also have worked hybrids into their sets. This is all in an effort to stay competitive and hit shots that, frankly, you could never do with a long-iron blade.




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