High Hopes

You’ll discover the need to hit over an obstacle–tree, fence, even a scoreboard–during the course of an everyday round. And while amateurs fear the shot, pros know that only a few setup adjustments can fuel success.

Conquer Obstacles

Take the high route over what?s between you and your target

Many golfers have difficulty in hitting a high-trajectory shot when they have to. A reason for this inability is a ball position that’s too far back in the stance. This makes varying the trajectory of your shots nearly impossible.

Conquer Hardpan

Regardless of where you play, you’ll eventually face a tough pitch off

hardpan. This is a dicey situation, as ultra-tight lies such as hardpan

make it easy for the clubhead to bounce off the turf and into the top

half of the golf ball, skulling it over the green. The key for pitches

off hardpan is to make sure the clubhead does anything but bounce off

the turf. Knowing how to accomplish this will save you strokes

not only in this situation, but in dozens of others that involve tight lies.

Dial In The Distance

To get the clubhead traveling a little faster (a necessary requirement

for hitting longer shots), you need to create a longer backswing with

an increase in the amount of arm swing and body turn. Not only must the

swing be a little longer, but you need to pick up the pace of your

swing to increase clubhead speed as well. The pace of the forwardswing

should be slightly faster than normal.

Hill Rides: Downhill and Uphill Shots

Uphill and downhill lies are a challenge as they demand balance and control of the clubface throughout the swing

Set up with your spine perpendicular to the slope and shoulders

parallel to the ground so you can swing up the slope on the backswing

and down the slope on the forwardswing. The arrangement of your body

will favor the creation of an upright swing and make it more difficult

to square the face through the hitting area—that’s why a shot from a

downhill lie tends to curve a little to the right. To help shallow the

plane and encourage a swing that’s a little more around your body, drop

your right foot back to close your stance slightly and match up the

ball position to your stance by putting it about two inches back of


Under 100

Five lessons that will lower your handicap in '07

Golf isn’t a game of who hits it the best, it’s a game of who misses it the least. Even the best players in the world routinely mis-hit shots. In fact, the average Tour player hits only about 12 greens per round! How do they miss one out of every three greens and still manage to routinely shoot under par? Two reasons: steely determination and a red-hot short game.

Shotshaping Formulas

How to make the shots you need to play your best

It’s a “how-to” world these days. Everywhere you look, you’ll find someone, somewhere or something dedicated to what I like to call, “HTH” (How-To Hysteria). “How to bake a cake, how to wire a motorcycle, how to build an arboretum, how to fix a car—we as a culture have become so fascinated by the “how-to” genre that dozens of magazines, Websites and even television channels have been developed to help you help yourself. Luckily, Golf Tips is no exception, as the authors in every instructional story provide you with the scoop on how to become a better player.

Tips From The Tour

Study the best in the world and improve your game

It goes without saying that the players who compete on the PGA Tour are

the best in the world. Not only do they have impressive natural talent,

but every guy out there spends a tremendous amount of time and effort

working on his technique, strategy and fitness. For those of us not

fortunate enough to be able to spend all day, every day improving our

all-around game, this opportunity seems like a dream come true. For the

players on Tour, however, it’s a job that they take seriously, and one

that’s both extremely competitive and tough.

25 Shots

A tee-to-green guide to great score-saving plays

Shotmaking is a broad term and one that’s typically reserved for highly skilled players. Yet all golfers, even those who have a tough time breaking 90, should consider themselves shotmakers. Face it, the game of golf constantly demands a degree of creativity, and unless you play on a perfectly flat course with no rough, no hazards and no undulations on the greens, you have to be ready with a variety of plays–just to get through a single round.

Drop Down, Choke Down

In the late 1970s, the greatest player in the world came to the realization that he had to change his swing in order to better control his golf ball in the wind. That golfer, Jack Nicklaus, spent the better part of a year relearning the golf swing in heavy Florida winds. A few years later, Nick Faldo retooled his leggy, high-ball hitting motion by inserting mechanisms that helped him lower his trajectory in order to produce a more penetrating ballflight. The move led him to six majors.