Friday, November 1, 2002
Slice: Rights, Boomers And Flares
Discover which slice is yours, then leave it forever
Learn Anti-Slice Matchups
Before we attack ways to correct the type of slice with which you’re currently infected, it’s important to become aware of six Anti-Slice Matchups. These matchups are key to removing damaging sidespin from your ballflight regardless of the type of slice you typically produce. They’re the hallmarks of a consistently straight shot pattern.
1. Target And Clubface
Aim your clubface correctly so it’s pointing where you want the ball to start. Select an intermediate target, then use the vertical aiming lines that are a part of every club to get your clubface pointed in the right direction.
2. Body And Target Line
Arrange your body correctly, paying particular attention to your shoulders. In the swing, the arms follow the shoulders; if your shoulders are too open or closed at address, you’ll cut across the ball at impact.
3. Spine Angle And Shoulder Tilt
Since the shoulders work perpendicularly to the spine, how your spine is angled at address holds the key to what kind of slicer you are. If your spine is too upright, your shoulders will swing on too level a plane, trapping the club behind you so you have to come over the top and produce the Boomerang or, if you exaggerate enough, the Right-To-Right. If your posture is too bent over, the club will swing on too steep a plane, often causing the Flare.
4. Ball Position and Shoulder Position
A ball that’s played too far forward causes the shoulders to open; too far back creates closed shoulders. Use the ball position that will allow you to align your shoulders parallel left to your target line—it will vary according to your body build.
5. Grip And Clubface Position
The positioning of the hands on the grip must allow for either a flat or slightly bowed left wrist—stay away from the slice-causing cupped wrist. A neutral grip typically creates a flat left wrist (square face), a strong grip augments a bowed left wrist (shut face) and a weak grip too often creates a cupped left wrist (open face).
6. Foot Flare And Release
The front foot should be adjusted by experimenting with less flare. The amount of flare of the front foot controls the release of the clubface—the less flare, the sooner the front leg straightens, causing an earlier release by squaring the face more aggressively.
Groove A No-Slice Swing
The following anti-slice fixes apply only to the specific slice type for which they’re meant to cure. This illustrates the importance of recognizing the type of slice your swing typically produces—whether it’s the Flare, Right-To-Right or Boomerang. Once you define your slice, the journey is half over as the following fixes are quick and take just a few practice hours to ingrain.
Fixing The Right-To-Right
Curing the slice demands a counterintuitive approach. Basically, the cure isn’t what you think it should be. You have to do the opposite of what you think because the slice is a fooler—feel and real are different.
To fix the Right-To-Right, your task is to start the ball left of target and let it fade back to target. Once that’s done, experiment deflaring your front foot until the ball begins to draw away from the target. Then, adjust your aim/alignment until the ball flies directly at the target as follows:
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