Lesson TeeMay 19, 2013

Hit From The Inside

Good footwork is your key

FLEET FEET: Shift from the middle of your back foot to the instep of your front foot as you swing through.

FLEET FEET: Shift from the middle of your back foot to the instep of your front foot as you swing through.

Many players try to fix the common over-the-top swing by forcing their arms to stay to the inside, but most can't do it. A better way is to improve your footwork on the downswing.

An out-to-in downswing tends to get you up on the toes of your back foot too early. The only place the club can go from there is across the ball from the outside, producing a pull or a weak slice. If you can keep your back foot on the ground longer and still transfer your weight to your front foot, you'll have a much better chance of swinging the club from in to out.

Feel as if you're rolling your weight across the bottoms of your feet as you make your downswing. It should go from a flat back foot as you start down, to the inside of the back foot before impact, to the instep of the front foot through the strike (above).

How I See It

HOW I SEE IT

The game has changed so much since 1981 (the last time the U.S. Open was at Merion), and everybody wants to see if such a short course by Open standards (6,996 yards) can hold up to today's bombers. My guess is, it'll be the best Open in a long time. Players will be able to make birdies and put pressure on the leaders instead of just waiting for mistakes. Low scores wouldn't mean Merion is out of date. We'll likely see more guys with a chance to win on Sunday.

Hank Haney, a Golf Digest Teaching Professional, runs the Hank Haney International Junior Golf Academy, Hilton Head.