Focus On Footwork

By Hank Haney Photos by Dom Furore
November 27, 2011

One of the biggest problems amateur players have is inconsistent contact. The tendency is to hit the ground behind the ball instead of catching the ball first and then the turf. Understanding good footwork will help you control where your swing bottoms out—the key to making good contact.

It's hard to feel exactly what your feet are doing at impact, because it happens in a fraction of a second. But you can work to get into a good position at the finish, with your rear foot completely up on its toes and the bottom of your shoe facing away from the target (above).

Concentrate on getting into this position, and you'll make a full turn through the ball with your hips so all of your weight is on your front foot. Think of it this way: The tip of the rear foot should serve only as a balancing point. If you can do this—and it's hard to fake good footwork—you'll move the bottom of your swing arc forward and to a more consistent spot.

Once you start compressing the ball better at impact, you'll hit longer, more accurate shots and do it more consistently.