Here's a tip for low-handicappers who have a hard time controlling the distance of their short irons.
The problem usually lies with the path your club takes as it approaches the ball. Because better players tend to swing from more inside the target line, their clubface can easily shut on shorter shots. This approach may generate a lot of distance on longer shots (because the clubface is turning over), but it doesn't produce much distance control. In fact, often it will lead to hooked shots. And that's not an optimum shot shape for your control irons.
To remedy this, keep your left wrist cupped throughout the swing, especially just before impact and into the finish. (See the color photos at right.) When you try this, I want you to feel like you're hitting a soft cut shot. Practice at first with just your left hand, then place your right hand on the grip and retain that feeling. Hold these shots off a little and watch the ball fly straighter and stop on a dime.
Top-25 Instructor Zach Allen, PGA, teaches at DeBell Golf Club in Burbank, Calif. For more info, visit zachallengolf.com.