Lesson Exert On The Start To Better Ballstriking
The following is something I wrote for one of my lessons and thought it might be worth sharing.
The way I teach is that in almost all cases a player should get to a point where they can draw the ball consistently (starting outside target line). If you are a fader of the ball, which you may be, please hear me out on this.
The journey to better ball striking starts with a draw because we swing the club around our bodies and so it only makes sense that the club will come from inside the ball and have a rate of closure through impact that creates a draw pattern. We see the majority of professionals often playing a draw, while amateurs struggle with a slice.
So yes the majority of good ball strikers do play a draw, but, the really great ball strikers over the course of history have often played a fade. Ben Hogan ended his career a fader, Trevino was a fader and more recently we have David Duval and Dustin Johnson being faders, just to name a few great ball strikers that are faders.
The reason these guys were and are such good ball strikers, and faders, was they hit the fade using great rotation and delivering the club from inside their intended target line. For most golfers, good rotation and hitting the ball from the inside will create a draw, but the reason these players I mentioned can fade the ball is the way they use their levers.
They all were and are able to hold enough leverage in their trailing hand (right in all of their cases) that they could delay the release of the club so much that the club face, although coming from inside their target line, was aiming out to the right at impact. And so, with that said they all played a fade that never started across their body (left of target for right hander) but that started fractionally away from them and then moved a little farther away (to the right) in the air. Simply, aiming left and making the ball fade back to the target, often with no fear it will ever go left.
In all of my mentioned examples you would see a very open position of the body at impact in relation to the target line, as to hold this leverage their pivot or body rotation must respond accordingly. Hence why we see all of these players’ lower bodies leading their downswing, it is a merely a response to how the backswing has been set up. Things such as depth of turn, the amount of lateral shifting, wrist angles and path become extremely important in create the right response.
Back to the draw. The majority of golfers do not turn well enough, set the club well enough or understand the importance of an inside strike enough to be close to what I have described above. So the path to really great ball striking starts with the things I just said and they will very much create a draw in the early days, and most likely for a decent amount time after that depending on the work one can put in.
The simple reason better ball striking does not start with a fade, is because typically a fade for an amateur starts inside the target line. Slowing the body down to allow the club to get at the outside of the ball and the release be dominated by the hands. And this for me is not the most effective way to combine distance and accuracy.
You may have heard that before, if so the rest should be pretty easy, otherwise I hope it helps to create a picture of how things are going to improve for you.