Tip From the Archives

Copy the Clubface

Problem

You hit inconsistently, hook, or slice the ball without a known cause.

Cure

Check the position of the back of your lead hand during contact. You want it and the clubface to be aimed at target as you make contact with the ball.

Therapy

Watch other players that are hooking, slicing, or hitting unpredictably. Look to see where their forward hand is aimed. If the back of their lead hand is facing towards the ground, you will likely see a hook. If it is facing towards the sky, you will likely see a slice. Now practice swinging a mid iron and focus on trying to have your forward hand square to the target at impact so that it is aimed in the same direction as the clubface is aimed. An easy drill to reinforce this feeling is to swing without a club with your forward shoulder against a wall or golf cart. Take your arms back as if you had a club in your hands. Swing forward and allow your lead hand to slap the wall or cart. Whenever you feel you are turning your hands over too much or not enough, use the image of slapping something with the back of your forward hand to help you square it at impact.

Copy the Clubface

Problem

You have a severe hook or a snap hook. For a right handed player, the ball will immediately curve hard from right to left and it quickly loses loft.

Cure

Contact with the ball with most duck hooks leaves the clubface pointing to the left of the target if you are right handed. Pay attention to the movement of your forward hand and use it to help aim the clubface. Try to prevent your wrists from moving too much by leading your swing with the outside of your forward hand.

Therapy

A good drill to try is practicing your swing without a club. As you take your downswing, chop down towards a chair with the side of your forward hand. The purpose of this drill is to learn to have the backside of your forward hand copy the position of the clubface when you make contact with the ball. Therefore, you need to keep your forward hand pointing to the right of the target so the clubface will do the same. Practice the chopping motion several times to help you visualize your knuckles pointing to the right side of the target as it would when swinging the club. Once you have mastered this feeling, pick up a club; take a stronger grip than usual and keep your forward hand and wrist flat at the top of your swing.

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