Approach Shots

Butch Harmon: Beat The Rough With A Steeper Downswing

September 24, 2015

To hit good shots out of the rough, you need speed on both sides of the ball. By that I mean clubhead speed as you swing into impact and ball speed coming out of the grass. The first part comes from catching as little grass as possible before impact, and the second from jumping the ball out of the rough with some loft.

Open the clubface slightly to help prevent the grass from shutting the face before impact. That will set up a little fade, so aim your body more to the left. Then set more weight on your front foot, swing back and pull the butt of the club down toward the ball (above). That pulling action will create a steeper angle into impact, so you'll catch the ball cleaner. The more speed and loft you have at impact, the better your chances of getting out of the heavy stuff.


No. 1: Butch Harmon

Henderson, Nev.

Teaches: Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Jimmy Walker, Brandt Snedeker