Fortinet Championship

Silverado Resort and Spa North



Simple Way To Hit A Soft Pitch

February 12, 2012

Don't Open The Face: Open your stance but not the clubface for better contact and plenty of loft.

If you don't work a lot on your short game, you'll struggle with the old-school lob shot, where you open the clubface and swing out to in across the ball. With this method, you don't transfer a lot of the club's energy to the ball, so it's tough to figure out how hard to hit it. Plus, the open face can make the ball fly to the right.

Here's a better technique:

1. Play the ball just ahead of center in your stance, and set the clubface square to the target. If you want to add loft, lower your hands so the shaft isn't as upright. (Lowering your hands points the face left, so adjust.)

2. Keeping your shoulders and hips square, drop your left foot back so your stance line points left of the target (above).

3. Make your normal backswing, then swing the club down along your stance line. You'll make better contact than with the old method, and that means more consistency.


One of my favorite songs is "Priority" by rapper Mos Def. The first verse says it all: "Peace before everything/God before anything/Love before anything/Real before everything." What's this have to do with golf? Well, as Mos would say: everything. Golf is a passion, but in the grand scheme of your life, does that triple bogey you just made really matter? Fear and anger are the two hardest emotions to control in golf. When you start feeling either of them, try to step out of the moment and remember it's just a game.

Don't let yourself forget what matters most--family, friends, whatever you hold sacred. If you do this, you have a good chance of disarming the situation quickly. Your goal is to turn an emotionally charged event back into what it is: just another golf shot.