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Golf Lesson: Hitting Off The Toe

Golf Lesson: Stop Hitting Off The Toe

golfsmith

Last week during a round I was struggling with my driver. I was hitting everything off the toe. It was clearly a case of over compensating for my normal potential miss hit, which is a pull to the left. My distance was fine but I only hit four of fourteen fairways but two of those I hit my four hybrid off the tee.

My Iron play and putting were solid but missing that many fairways is a lot to overcome. The next day, off to the range I went. I treated myself to a free golf lesson. I used my smart phone to video tape myself after twenty warm up hits. I saw in my video that I was losing my spine angle during my setup which caused a chain reaction of other swing flaws. Thanks to the beauty of technology I was able to correct this within fifteen minutes at the driving range.

This may or may not be the cause of your hits off the toe. Golf Quick Fix highly suggests seeing yourself hitting golf balls on video. It may very well be the best golf lesson you have ever had. Here are some additional ideas to keep in mind while you try to stop hitting the ball off the toe.

Golf Quick Fix 

1) Don’t Squeeze The Grip
In order to hit the ball more consistently and avoid hitting the golf ball off the toe, it is essential to maintain a consistent and not too firm grip pressure during the course of your golf swing. Some of the greatest golfers that ever lived encouraged a gentle grip…Nicklaus, Snead, and the great Bobby Jones.
Try to understand, the maintaining of a light grip from set-up through impact and to your finish position permits you to swing the golf club quite naturally along an arc. Squeezing the golf club produces a jerking movement that results in inconsistent tempo during your swing This can very often lead to hitting the ball off the toe of your club (more so off the driver).

2) Check Your Stance 

taylormade-logo Much like myself, to stop hitting off the toe, it is imperative that you position yourself the appropriate distance away from your golf ball. Many people make the blunder of setting up too close to the golf ball. This can very often result in a plethora of issues (such as inconsistent contact).
Golf Quick Fix Rule of Thumb: your hands should hang directly below your shoulders. This will help you judge if you are too close or too far from the ball. Standing too close will cause you to not give the golf club enough room to work smoothly right through impact. Not giving the club sufficient room to work in the impact zone, will cause you to hit the golf ball off the toe. Standing too far just makes it even more difficult to find the sweet spot of the club head. You may find yourself reaching or lunging at the ball.

3) Solid Stance 
Try not to sway. Swaying prevents you from turning your shoulders and hips correctly during your back swing. Rather than turning away from the golf ball, you unwittingly modify your spine angle and shoulder level. This suggests that in order to strike the ball solidly, you have to somehow make some awkward body movements through-out your swing to just to get your spine angle and shoulder level back to a point where you can merely make contact with the golf ball. Obviously just making contact is not good enough. These “compensations” cause inconsistent contact and more often than not causes toe hits.

edwin watts

In order for any golfer to stop hitting the ball off the toe, it is imperative to consider the above swing fundamentals as gospel. If you address the issues discussed above, you’ll be on your way to a higher quality golf swing, and more consistent ball contact.

Good luck and hit’em straight from Golf Quick Fix.

Here is a awesome video to help you: CLICK HERE

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Chipping: Golf Lesson From Golf Quick Fix

Golf Lessons: Chippinggolfsmith Nothing makes up for missed greens in regulation like a solid chipping game. Tightening up your short game will turn many would-be two putts for bogey into a chip and a putt for par. Golf Quick Fix Attempting to lift the golf ball is one of the greatest causes of poor chipping. A weak chipping approach is exposed even more so  when a golfer attempts to to hit a high chip shot when there is really no need for it. This causes them to hit up at the ball in an overstated fashion which turns a bad thing into something worse. Before you try to lift your chip shot, you need ask yourself, what exactly are you trying to hit the ball over? Unless you are trying to hit over a sand trap, a group of bushes or even a range of tiers on a large green you will most likely be better served keeping the ball down. Low balls tend to get down quicker and roll. Golf balls that roll are less difficult to control. The next time you are watching the weekend highlights on the Golf Channel and they show the tournament winner chipping in from off the green, observe if the golf ball was hit high and bouncing or hit low and rolled-up into the hole. Whenever a golf ball bounces in it certainly makes for electrifying T.V., having said that the vast majority of the time you will observe the ball is usually rolling a good distance before it gets to the hole.

Golf Lesson: Don’t Lift The Golf Balledwin watts

Creating a one-piece chipping stroke with limited hand movement is imperative to developing short game precision. A stable left (lead) wrist is the most fundamental component. If you allow your left (lead) wrist to break down thru impact, it unnecessarily increases the loft to the golf club. That can often times cause your chip shots to fly higher and much shorter than you anticipated. It can also cause to hit the ball thin or even top it. A large number players mistakenly hinge their left wrist hoping to get the ball up into the air, which is completely unnecessary since you are using a club with loft built into it. Don’t fight this…you will just have to learn to trust it. Nevertheless, you need to have a firm left wrist and arm to hit a solid chip. Be cautious not to squeeze the club too tightly or tense up. Additionally, your hands and forearms need to be free to rotate without your wrists hinging during your back swing and more importantly, your follow thru. I heard Fred Couples recommend that letting your stroke be all about swinging your arms on short hits and have a quiet body and legs. Be all arms, so to speak. I find that this swing thought helps me not to decelerate through impact. taylormade-logo   Prior to hitting your shot rehearse chipping with your lead arm and the golf club establishing and sustaining a straight line thru your swing. The top end of the grip or the butt needs to set up stay close to the lead wrist thru impact…do not allow your wrist to breakdown. Remember to set up with hands forward of the golf ball, this will create the downward motion and crisp impact you need to chip it close.

Here is great VIDEO to help you

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Golf Lesson For Hitting Off The Toe

Golf Lessons: Hitting Off The Toe

golfsmith

Last week during a round I was struggling with my driver. I was hitting everything off the toe. It was clearly a case of over compensating for my normal potential miss hit, which is a pull to the left. My distance was fine but I only hit four of fourteen fairways but two of those I hit my four hybrid off the tee.

My Iron play and putting were solid but missing that many fairways is a lot to overcome. The next day, off to the range I went. I treated myself to a free golf lesson. I used my smart phone to video tape myself after twenty warm up hits. I saw in my video that I was losing my spine angle during my setup which caused a chain reaction of other swing flaws. Thanks to the beauty of technology I was able to correct this within fifteen minutes at the driving range.

This may or may not be the cause of your hits off the toe. Golf Quick Fix highly suggests seeing yourself hitting golf balls on video. It may very well be the best golf lesson you have ever had. Here are some additional ideas to keep in mind while you try to stop hitting the ball off the toe.

Golf Quick Fix 

1) Don’t Squeeze The Grip
In order to hit the ball more consistently and avoid hitting the golf ball off the toe, it is essential to maintain a consistent and not too firm grip pressure during the course of your golf swing. Some of the greatest golfers that ever lived encouraged a gentle grip…Nicklaus, Snead, and the great Bobby Jones.
Try to understand, the maintaining of a light grip from set-up through impact and to your finish position permits you to swing the golf club quite naturally along an arc. Squeezing the golf club produces a jerking movement that results in inconsistent tempo during your swing This can very often lead to hitting the ball off the toe of your club (more so off the driver).

2) Check Your Stance 

taylormade-logo Much like myself, to stop hitting off the toe, it is imperative that you position yourself the appropriate distance away from your golf ball. Many people make the blunder of setting up too close to the golf ball. This can very often result in a plethora of issues (such as inconsistent contact).
Golf Quick Fix Rule of Thumb: your hands should hang directly below your shoulders. This will help you judge if you are too close or too far from the ball. Standing too close will cause you to not give the golf club enough room to work smoothly right through impact. Not giving the club sufficient room to work in the impact zone, will cause you to hit the golf ball off the toe. Standing too far just makes it even more difficult to find the sweet spot of the club head. You may find yourself reaching or lunging at the ball.

3) Solid Stance 
Try not to sway. Swaying prevents you from turning your shoulders and hips correctly during your back swing. Rather than turning away from the golf ball, you unwittingly modify your spine angle and shoulder level. This suggests that in order to strike the ball solidly, you have to somehow make some awkward body movements through-out your swing to just to get your spine angle and shoulder level back to a point where you can merely make contact with the golf ball. Obviously just making contact is not good enough. These “compensations” cause inconsistent contact and more often than not causes toe hits.

edwin watts

In order for any golfer to stop hitting the ball off the toe, it is imperative to consider the above swing fundamentals as gospel. If you address the issues discussed above, you’ll be on your way to a higher quality golf swing, and more consistent ball contact.

Good luck and hit’em straight from Golf Quick Fix.

Here is a awesome video to help you:

 

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Golf Lesson For Thin Lies

Golf Lessons

Golf Quick Fix for thin lies

Most amateur golfers walk away from their golf round analyzing what they could have done better to shoot a better score. It could be a few better chips, eliminate the three putts or just find more fairways off the tee. All of these would certainly lower most of our scores and this is solid analysis, but we often overlook that the average golfer struggles and loses strokes on those shots from thin or tight lies.
Whenever you have a thin lie, it’s truly difficult to hit your mid and even more so, your long irons high enough to get the golf ball to land softly without having to play the ball way up in your stance. The problem with that is, on a thin or tight lie the risk of hitting the ball fat goes up a great deal.



You can reduce your odds of hitting the ball fat by playing a knockdown shot. This is a shot with lower trajectory that purposely allows the ball release forward when it lands. Make a three-quarter golf swing while attempting to trap the ball against the ground. These shots are a lot more forgiving because you are swinging down and slightly less from the inside than normal (more so on your target line) with a much shallower swing path than you usually swing.
If somehow you don’t catch the golf ball first, the golf club is less likely to bounce off the ground way it would with a swing that isn’t quite as steep. Instead, your iron is more likely to skim along the playing surface, so it’s quite possible you may even turn an average swing into a very decent golf shot.



Proper setup is pivotal

You will want to play your golf ball further back in your stance when you have a thin or tight lie. The shaft of your club needs to be angled forward, toward your intended target as you take your stance over the ball. You will want to club up and use a club that is a little longer than you would usually use.  Gripping down an inch will help you maintain more control. The longer club will help compensate for any loss of distance from the three-quarter swing. Allow for the golf ball to travel in the air a shorter distance than normal but it should roll quite a bit more towards your target.

 

Shallowing your golf swing promotes more forgiveness

The most helpful element about playing a knockdown is that the shallow angle in your swing will allow you more margin for error, in particular on thin lies. You won’t need to strike the golf ball perfectly to execute a high quality shot since your club will stay down a little longer through the impact zone.
Bringing the club less inside during the the takeaway promotes more of a cut shot so allow for the ball to work from left to right.

Here is a great video to help you understand this better:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPClTkNG8Rw

 

 

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Golf Lessons Should Always Begin With The Take Away

Golf Quick Fix:

The Takeaway

Many golfers stress about proper swing plane, proper position at the top, the downswing, et cetera. However each of these components of the swing are predicated on the beginning of the back swing.

The means or direction by which the back swing is initiated can and will influence the rest of the golf swing all the way thru the impact  position and quite often the follow through (or lack there of).

The important thing is to make full use of your larger muscles to begin the back swing, instead of pulling the club with your hands, inside the target line or basically just lifting your arms up.
The golf take away is perhaps the most integral components of your golf swing. In the majority of circumstances, the first two feet of your back swing determine the swing path the head of the club will trek thru impact.

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The mistake that is most common among amateurs is beginning their take away from a closed set up position. This causes the club head to get “stuck” behind you, leaving you no other alternative but to cast the club (coming over the top). Now you’ll be cutting across the golf ball generating the least desirable ball flight…the pull fade.
On the flip side, positioning yourself with a closed golf stance to promote more of a draw on the ball is often times a “band aid”.  An inside take away with a closed set up position is really fairly simple and can feel 100 % natural the first time someone tries it. It’s not very often you find a professional with a golf stance with his/her feet pointed more than a few yards to the right of the intended target (left for you south paws).



However somehow, somewhere along the line golfers still hear it or read it someplace that merely closing your set up position will help promote a draw of the golf ball. In some instances this “might” be true, but many times positioning with a closed position causes a pulling of the golf ball to ensure it flies in the direction of the particular target area.
The “pull” is an outside to inside swing path, this creates a slice or even a fade of the ball when he face of the club remains open at impact. To generate a draw the swing path of the golf club needs to begin from the inside to outside from the top thru the point of impact.

Golf Lesson:
Fundamentals For The Take Away 

  • Get shaft of the club parallel to the ground while still below your waist.
  • Your club shaft should also run parallel to your target line.

Golfers initially may fear or not like the feel or the aesthetics of this positioning, however, you can not argue with the results. Try to embrace that proper mechanics in golf feels very different or even feels weird at first. This  is reason playing golf is so challenging. We, as human beings  get pleasure from instantaneous gratification and immediate outcomes.
If playing golf was easy… wouldn’t everyone be a tour pro?
As I said earlier, the important thing is to make full use of your larger muscles to begin the back swing.

Here is a great video to help you better understand what that means.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&v=pMG7U_E19Lg&NR=1

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Golf Lessons: The Wet Sand

Golf Lesson:

Check Out This Video:

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For years the thought of landing in a sand trap filled with wet packed down sand was one of my greatest fears on the golf course. There was no need for it. There are now times that I find the wet sand is a little more manageable for me, depending on the height of the trap. Now that I understand how simple the technique is, it is no longer a great concern of mine.

I am not trying to downplay landing in the bunker. There is a good reason they call the sand bunker a hazard. You can come across a wide variety of  of lies in the sand trap. Each of them can require a somewhat unique strategy.
Some golf courses have a light and fluffy sand in there bunkers  however the course a mile away might have sand traps loaded with a very heavy and course type of sand. Some bunkers have heaps of sand while the others will only have a thinner covering. All that being said if the bunkers are wet due to rain or in the path of a rotating sprinkler, you are working with another factor all together.

The powers that be in golf do not permit you to tryout the texture of a sand trap with a golf club, so you will have to depend on your feet to deliver any feedback regarding the depth of the sand, the texture and the consistency.

Your sand wedge typically has a particular amount of bounce. The bounce is found on the sole of the golf club head. The bounce provides the ” lift ” required to burst the golf ball out of the bunker under regular or dry conditions. In cases when the sand is flattened by dampness, the bounce that assisted you to hit the golf ball out of the dried out sand can lead you to blade or skull the golf ball…hitting it thin from wet sand.

If you are in green side bunker, you should consider using a lob wedge. A lob wedge has more loft but does not have as much bounce. If you do not have a lob wedge, try a few practice shots with your pitching wedge, it also has less bounce.
The approach from wet sand is not quite the same as from dry sand. Utilizing this approach, the golf ball will come out a little hotter and fly a bit further than a typical sand shot.

Golf Quick Fix

Open your stance, however not as much as with a standard sand shot. Open the face of the club, but not as much as in typical conditions. Keep most of your body weight on your lead foot. Shorten your back swing. You will not want to strike as far behind the golf ball as you would if the sand was dry. Swing the wedge a tiny bit harder than normal. It is vital that you follow through or the ball may stay in the trap. When executed correctly you will hear a ” thump ” when the sole of the club hits the sand. Listen for the ” thump ” when you rehearse this shot.

Your short sticks are your scoring clubs. And this is one of the shots you need to have in your bag. If you don’t have one, think about getting a lob wedge.

Good luck and hit’em straight from Golf Quick Fix.

 

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Golf Lessons: Finish Like Luke Donald

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Golf Lesson:

Golf announcers love to comment on Luke Donald’s ability and tendency to hold the finish in his golf swing. He likes to finish, like all of us with a weight shift to his forward leg and his arms and golf club finishing all the way to a full follow through. He does this with so much balance and control that he more often than not, will hold his finished pose until the ball actually lands.

Why is this helpful?

Golf Quick Fix

More often than not the swing flaw that leads to your slice or hook works perfectly with creating poor balance during the swing. Whether or not its the swing flaw creating the unbalance or the unbalance creating the swing flaw, developing proper balance from start to finish will most likely correct most swing flaws anyway.

In order to finish your swing and hold the pose, in balance, a lot of things will have to go right. Finishing that exaggerated balanced position until the golf ball lands creates a sense of balance and control throughout your entire swing.
This prevents you from twisting out, or lunging at the golf ball, or generating other bungle-some moves.  After a swing like that, no golfer says, “nice swing” in a slightly envious manner.

Golf Lesson:

Practice an optimal pose as you finish your golf swing, completely in balance and with your belt buckle pointed toward the target, then implement that swing so that is how you finish your swing.

 

Why focus on your finish?

You will be able to overcome those components of your swing that hinder the sought after finish.  It may sound way too simplistic to actually be effective, right?  Aren’t we  striking a golf ball and not posing for a photograph? NO!  Pose for the photograph! This drill and swing technique is extremely effective, most especially if your swing is somewhat solid, and you tend to be just a tiny bit off here and there like most golfers are.

Here you see in slow motion how Luke Donald demonstrates this for us.  His golf swing appears effortless just like the efficient golf swing you strive for in your head. Truthfully, it is not so effortless, it’s quite simply, a matter of the exertion being spent from the torso down, not the shoulders and arms.

Notice Luke’s impressive flexing at the knees. through-out his swing, and most especially how well he holds at the finish position, almost a perfect pose, with his belt buckle pointing toward the intended target.

If you can maintain your fished pose as long as this former top ranked player in the world, it’s more than likely you just made a pretty good golf shot. This does not take long to implement, maybe one or two buckets of golf balls, and it could very well be a life changing correction for you with regards to your golf game.

Good Luck and hit’em straight from Golf Quick Fix.

 

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Golf Lessons: Start With The Foundation

 

Golf Lesson:

The golf stance has always been the cornerstone of the golf swing. A proper setup to make a good golf swing is just as important as pouring the foundation of your home. Screw this part up and everything else you do won’t matter much.

Spring has arrived so here is a gentle reminder of what to work on first in the early part of your golf season. Let’s reinforce your foundation as we shake off the winter rust.

Golf Quick Fix: Golf Setup

How do we setup? First off, the golf grip is pivotal. Any and all control you exercise over the golf club and your swing begins with how you hold the club. However, the purpose of this post, is more about posture and stance. The golf grip is probably the most personal part of the golf swing so we’ll just gloss over grip. For the time being, let’s proceed under the assumption you have a solid and trusted grip on the golf club

With both your hands on the club, lead arm sitting slightly on top of lead side of your chest, lead shoulder is elevated as opposed to your trail shoulder. (spine angle tipped slightly away from the target area). Your trail arm is relaxed and soft at the elbow, the trail shoulder is back and down. Be careful you aren’t turning that trail shoulder towards the target in your setup (open stance). The golf shaft should be straight out with the butt pointed  just a few inches above your mid section.

Golf Stance

Position the feet a little bit wider than your hips but not quite shoulder width, toes slightly turned out just a few degrees, and while keeping your back straight, bow from the hips.
Allow your wrists to drop. The golf-club head now lowers to the ground in the midpoint of your stance, the butt of shaft still pointed just above your mid section.

Golf Posture

The back remains straight. Buttocks slightly out (don’t exaggerate this part). Chin up, this helps you avoid hunching over. Bend your knees slightly. You need to feel as though you are in an athletic stance. A child should not be able to knock you off balance in any direction with a slight shove. Feel as though your center of gravity is strong but not tense.

Finally, step up to the golf ball. From this positioning with the golf-club head on the ground, center stance, give a little waggle over to the golf ball while keeping your “set-up posture.”

In simple terms, golfers set-up standing a couple of inches away from the golf ball, then slip the golf-club head in to the rear of the golf ball as your feet step forward to reset the posture and stance you just rehearsed.

If you have access to a full length mirror at home or the golf range, see if you look like what you “think” you look like. If not use your smart phone and make a quick video of yourself setting up. How we feel and how we look can quite often be two different things. I can tell you your stance is open or you are slouching, and you may very well make a temporary adjustment. But seeing for yourself what you are doing wrong will help you make a more permanent correction. Seeing is believing and believing is seeing.

From Golf Quick Fix, Good luck and hit’em straight.

 

Golf Lessons: Own This Shot

Golf Lesson

There are a number of components in your golf game that you can cultivate in an effort to lower your scores. There is one part that can be one of the biggest if not the biggest handicap dropper of all; if you are willing do the work. The 100 yard shot.

Sounds simple enough. You are probably thinking, no big deal, I can hit the green from 100 yards. So can everyone else. However, that is not nearly good enough. You need to OWN the 100 yard shot. You need to wear out the grooves on your pitching wedge practicing that shot.

A golfer should get an incredible sense of relief when they stroll up to that golf ball laying in the fairway and find the middle of the green is an even 100 yards away. This is your shot…you’ve hit it a few thousand times this year alone at the range. You’ve been waiting all day to play this yardage. That’s how it needs to feel.

The confidence of owning the 100 yard shot can and will spill over into the rest of your game. This confidence will allow you to really develop your course management. Most golfers, when they are 250 yards or more out, dig in and try to get all the yardage they can out of their next shot. Now the hazards the golf course architects designed for this very thought process are all in play for you. wfh

Most likely the vast majority of the holes at your local golf course have no hazards at the 100 yard marker. Some par three’s being the possible exception. You’ll even find a 100 yard marker on all the the par 4’s and 5’s. Take the hint.      

Golf Quick Fix: Take that same 250 yard shot. The sense of relief and the self-confidence you can take into this shot magnifies 10 fold when you know advancing the golf ball a mere 150 yards will bring you to your “go to” shot. The shot you practice more than any other. The shot you hit hundreds of times each month.

EMP NET BEACH

Play better golf:   I can not say it enough, you need to own this shot. Make the 100 yard shot your happy place on the golf course. You will be amazed how the rest of your game elevates and how much your self imposed stress levels plummet.

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Golf Lessons: Work On That Short Game

edwin watts

Golf Lesson: You will save the most strokes possible in the early part of the season by working on your chipping and putting. You can practice chipping on any patch of grass you can find which is another way to say that you can practice chipping for free.

Golf Quick Fix: This is a real good video…it doesn’t cover everything but it really drives home the idea of compressing the golf ball and why that is important. If nothing else, hopefully this minute and a half video motivates you to break out your wedge this weekend and chip some  golf balls.

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