Do you need help?
If you play poorly one day, forget it. If you play poorly the next time out, review your fundamentals of grip, stance, aim and ball position. Most mistakes are made before the club is swung. If you play poorly for a third time in a row, go see your professional.
Powder the ball
Many average golfers are not sure which part of the clubface is striking the ball--whether it's with the putter, an iron or a driver. It's very simple to find out. Take a can of talcum powder with you to the range or to the putting green. Powder the ball. Hit it. Look at the clubface. You'll know immediately.
Chip of pitch?
Always chip the ball if:
1. The lie is poor.
2. The green is hard.
3. You have a downhill lie.
4. The wind influences the shot.
5. You are under stress.
1. The lie is good.
2. You have an uphill lie.
3. The green is very soft.
4. There is an obstacle in the way.
A practice rule
Never practice your full swing when the wind is blowing at your back. If you're right-handed, this means the wind is left to right. The more you practice with the wind blowing at your back, the more you will be inclined to swing across the ball and hit from the top. Ben Hogan was one
If you practice into the wind, just use your regular swing. Don't try to hit it harder. And please be careful not to practice too many "punch" shots. There is no follow-through on a "punch" shot.
A putt that dies at the hole will sometimes topple in, whereas a putt that is struck too hard will hit the hole and spin away. Just as many putts are missed behind the hole as short of it. The cup is only one inch wide for a putt that is struck too hard. The cup is four inches wide for a ball that dies at the hole. I like to see a putt slip into the hole like a mouse.
Photo by Dom Furore/Golf Digest