124th U.S. Open

Pinehurst No. 2


Have you ever noticed the interesting way Rory McIlroy tees up the golf ball?


Andrew Redington

LOUISVILLE — It's easy to get lost in the moment watching Rory McIlroy hit golf balls. The golf swing; the firing of the golf ball off the clubface; it's easy to focus on the beauty of the end product. The ball sailing high, straight, and far into the sky.

But have you ever noticed how he tees up golf ball?

I hadn't either, but on-site at Valhalla Golf Club this week for the PGA Championship, I noticed it.

This is what Rory's golf balls look like, by the way. He plays the TaylorMade TP5x with the words "RORS" instead of a number.


Andrew Redington

Rory aims using the line on the golf ball (which is interesting in itself, because he doesn't use the line on the ball on the greens), but he seems to do it a slightly different way than most who use this method. He appears to aim the ball in the direction he wants to swing, using the line on the ball as a kind of visual cue.

Obviously, most of the time he's trying to hit the ball straight, which means aiming the ball—and swinging—pretty much straight in the direction he wants to go.

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But when he's trying to hit his fairway finder, kisser cut?

Well, that's when Rory appears to tilt the line to the left of his target. That's not the direction the ball will end, but rather, the direction he wants to feel like he's swinging.

He's trying to start the ball left and bring it back to the right, so he aims that line on the ball to the left, and uses that as a visual cue to remind him to swing in that direction.


(If you struggle with a slice and want to hit a draw, you could do the opposite of this. Aim the line out to the right of the fairway, and swinging in the same direction as the line).

Whether you want to hit the ball straight, left, or right, this visual trick applies. It's good enough for one of the very best, and worth trying for the rest of us, too.