Posts tagged golf ball
How to Control Distance with Your Pitch Shots

I am always having golfers ask me how to hit pesky 30-70 yard shots so here is your weekly golf tip. The basic pitch shot is a miniature golf swing. The set up is slightly different in that your feet are slightly open to your target and your hips and shoulders remain square to your target. The ball is The Pitch Shotplayed in the middle of your stance with a slight knee bend.

Once you have the set up you want to keep the lower body (legs and feet) quiet on your back swing and swing the arms and upper body together, keeping the club on the correct plane. If you keep a light grip the club will have a better chance to hinge naturally on your backswing, preventing the golf club from going behind your body.   Here’s a good checkpoint: as you swing the club half way back, the grip end of the club should be pointing to the ground with your lead arm forming an L with the shaft. A good visual image is to feel like you are getting your stomach in motion. This will allow you to turn away from the ball and then turn towards the target on the follow through.

There are two ways to control distance on these pitch shots. You can grip down on the golf club and/or you can shorten your backswing. As you grip down on the club also narrow your stance a Clocklittle and move the ball a little back in your stance. Another good way to control distance is to think in terms of matching numbers on a clock – swing back to 9:00 and through to 3:00 and see how far you hit it. Practice different distances using different times on the clock to dial in yardages.

You can also work on different trajectories on pitch shots. To hit a lower shot, move the ball back in your stance and keep your weight on your front foot. To play a higher shot move the ball forward in your stance and your weight will be more evenly distributed on your feet.

As always, you never want to try a shot on the golf course until you have practiced it. Practicing this pitch shot will help your tempo with full shots.

How to Make More Short Putts

Although short putts are one of the most frequent shots played, it is one of the most feared. Short puttsAs a matter of fact, studies show that the fear of missing is one of the main reasons this shot is missed so often. Although no one makes 100% of these shots, this tip will help you make the short putt with increased confidence and success. When dealing with this shot, the player must do four things:

  1. Be absolutely certain that the putter face is aimed at your intended target. This sounds overly simple, but you'd be surprised how many putts are missed because the face was not pointed directly at the target. Try marking a line on your golf ball and then line this line to your target.  Then all you have to do is align the center mark on your putter with the line on the ball; if you have read the putt correctly and you have the correct speed, you will make more putts.
  1. Make sure you have a very specific target. Aim at something definite - a blade of grass or spot on the line of your putt. The theory is that if your target is the entire hole, a quarter inch left or right of that target will result in a miss.
  1. Stroke the ball hard enough to go 12 inches past the hole. When you hit the ball hard enough to go 12 inches past the hole, it is less likely to be affected by such things as grains of sand, or other impurities that might deflect the ball. A ball that is accelerating to the hole will hold its line much better than a ball that "dies" at the hole.
  1. Listen for the putt to go in the hole. This means you need to keep your head still and do not follow the ball with your eyes as it leaves the putter face. A good thought is to count to two before you look up.

Give these tips a try and you'll see improvement in your putting and your score. So practice it regularly. Good luck and have fun!

For more tips please visit our website at or stop by my office located at Old Trail Golf Course located just outside Charlottesville in Crozet, VA.