Golf Digest editors picks

10. Martin Hall

197 votes

Ibis G. & C.C., West Palm Beach (561-624-8922)
---
DRILL: CLIP THE TEE
When golfers deliberately hit down on the ball with their irons, it just doesn't work. Instead, practice this drill from Harvey Penick: Push a tee almost all the way down into the ground, then set up with your 5-iron and practice clipping the top of the tee. You'll learn to position the bottom of your swing arc right at the tee. Controlling this low point is the trick to making solid contact with any ball that's sitting on the ground.

MORE TIPS FROM MARTIN HALL

11. Rick Smith

196 votes

Rick Smith Golf Academy at Treetops Resort, Gaylord, Mich. (ricksmith.com, 800-881-0765)
---
HOW TO HACK IT OUT
For punching out, use a middle iron, not a wedge. A 5- or 6-iron has plenty of loft to get the ball off the ground and will counteract the tendency to flick at the ball with the wrists. Make a short backswing, hinging your wrists slightly, and accelerate through, extending the club to the target. The club shouldn't get much above chest high.

MORE TIPS FROM RICK SMITH

12. Bob Toski

193 votes

Toski-Battersby Golf Learning Center, Coconut Creek, Fla. (learn-golf.com, 800-274-8545)
---
WORK YOUR WAY UP
Why is the driver the hardest club to hit? If you're 6 feet tall, your sleeve length is 34 inches and your driver shaft is 45 inches, the clubhead will be close to 150 inches from the ball at the high point of your swing! The driver requires you to synchronize your hands, wrists, arms and shoulders, supported by your lower body. Learn to hit it by starting with shorter clubs and graduating up.

MORE TIPS FROM BOB TOSKI

13. Randy Smith

187 votes

Royal Oaks C.C., Dallas (214-691-0339)
---
ANCHOR YOUR LEGS
With big-headed drivers and tall tees, players have gotten the message that they need to tilt their shoulders back to launch the ball in the air. That's good advice, but only if you tilt the right way. Take a solid, shoulder-width stance, then tilt your right shoulder down without allowing your right knee to buckle toward the ball. If you do let that right knee break down, you'll slide away from the target on the backswing, and you won't be able to turn. Stable, anchored legs give you the foundation to wind up and unwind into the ball with power.

MORE TIPS FROM RANDY SMITH

14. Gary Wiren

183 votes

Trump International G.C., West Palm Beach (garywiren.com, 561-682-0700)
---
BEAT THE BURIED LIE
When you find your ball buried in the sand, you have to adjust your approach. Instead of trying to glide the club through the sand under the ball, you must explode it out with vigor. At address, close the clubface considerably and set your hands in front of the ball. Then pick the club up abruptly and bury the club into the sand behind the ball with a lot of force. This will cause the ball to pop out.

MORE TIPS FROM GARY WIREN

15. Manuel de la Torre

168 votes

Milwaukee C.C. (manueldelatorregolf.com, 414-352-5876)
---
TRUST YOUR EYES
On the greens, a lot of golfers make the mistake of trying to figure out the correct length for their backstroke. I always ask them: If you're throwing a ball to me and I'm two feet away, would you think of the amount your arm has to move to reach me? What if I were 40 feet away? The answer is always no. You're going to make the throw based on what your eyes see and what your mind processes. It should be the same way with putting.

MORE TIPS FROM MANUEL DE LA TORRE

16. Jim Suttie

168 votes

Cog Hill G. & C.C., Lemont, Ill. (jimsuttie.com, 800-765-3838)
---
ADD FEEL TO CHIPS
To hit a chip shot softly, remember three things: (1) Keep the clubface slightly open through impact. You can do this by weakening your grip at address, rotating your hands more toward the target; (2) Shallow your angle of attack by keeping your wrists stiff, like you do on a putting stroke; and (3) Maintain a smooth pace throughout the backstroke and through-stroke.

MORE TIPS FROM JIM SUTTIE

17. Craig Shankland

160 votes

LPGA International G.C., Daytona Beach, Fla. (386-212-4364)
---
SPIN IT FROM THE SAND
Tired of your bunker shots rolling to the other side of the green? Try an alternate grip in the sand. Set both thumbs straight down the handle, instead of turned to the right like in a standard grip. This will guarantee that the clubface stays pointing upward through impact, so it can slide under the ball and create spin. Your shots will bounce twice and zip to a stop.

MORE TIPS FROM CRAIG SHANKLAND

18. Pia Nilsson

154 VOTES

Legacy Golf Resort, Phoenix (vision54.com, 602-305-5550)
---
DRILL: SPEED CHECK
If you struggle with your driver, it might be because -- unlike for every other club -- you don't try to hit it roughly the same distance every time. You keep trying to hit it farther and farther, and your swing gets out of sync. A great drill to set your driver swing at a consistent pace is to alternate shots on the practice tee with another club, like a 7-iron. The goal is to replicate the tempo and swing effort you use for a 7-iron when you hit the driver.

MORE TIPS FROM PIA NILSSON

19. Dave Pelz

151 votes

Pelz Scoring Game Schools, Spicewood, Tex. (pelzgolf.com, 800-833-7370)
---
THE MUST-HAVE CHIP
The low-running chip is one of the most underused shots. Why? Because it takes practice to learn the touch. Golfers focus on how the ball will roll on the green, but distance control comes more from judging the bounces before the green. Set your golf bag in the fairway, drop five balls at various distances and practice chipping to your bag. You'll get a feel for bouncing the ball on fairway grass -- the same grass as you'll find in front of the green.

MORE TIPS FROM DAVE PELZ
Around The Web
Subscribe to Golf Digest
Subscribe today
 
Advertisement