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Iron shots make up a big bulk of the shots that you would hit on an entire round of golf. So it’s really important that you are good with your irons. You have got an awful lot of them in the bag, so you really need to get it good right from your short irons, through to your long irons. And here is five really crucial tips, that I think would help you improve as an iron player. Tip number one, is don’t be afraid of taking a divot, we often see golfers around the course, trying to sort of be the green keeper’s best friend, they are scared of taking a divot.

They think hitting a divot is going to get them told off, but you watch the world’s best players, they are gauging out pieces of turf all around the golf course. As long as you put that divot back, there is no real harm done, but a divot is a sign that the golf ball was hit correctly. We should hit the ball and then the club should keep descending down into the turf, anytime, the club hits the turf first, yes, that’s going to be a problem.

We wouldn’t want to hit the divot behind the ball, but we should be taking the divot after the ball, taking a nice piece of turf as we hit through the ball. Tip number two, here relates to the fact that when you are playing your iron shots, you shouldn’t necessarily try and hit the ball flat out full power all the time. We want to see a slightly more relaxed approach to hitting your business, is hitting your irons. So for some golfers, they – they try and over hit themselves, they think they hit it 150 yards with an 8 iron, so they force that distance and they get two times in trying to hit the ball too hard. So just try and feel like your swing instead of 90% of your normal power with most of your full swings, that would keep the iron swing a little bit smoother, a little bit more relaxed and mean that your distances are more achievable.

This brings us onto tip number three, which is making sure that you do know your distances with your irons. You might have 9 irons in your bag and generally, there would be ten yards between each club, as you go through your bag. But it’s really important that you know your yardages and your yardages are accurate and attainable. There is no point standing there trying to tell yourself, that your 8 iron goes a 150 yards, if we all know it only goes a 130 yards, because then you end up having to hit it too hard. So make sure your yardages are accurate and attainable and I daily write them down somewhere. Then when you are out on the golf course, 160 yards from the green, I know that’s a 5 iron and that’s the club I will play and I can go ahead and hit that one.

One nice thing I would like to see with a lot of golfers is their understanding and their ability to make sure that striking the ball correctly out to the middle of the golf club, by the sound of it. So when we are standing on the driving range and we are hitting balls, good players are listening as much as watching. We can’t really see the strike on the ball at full speed and what we can do is hear it and as good players we can also determine, whether we are hitting the toe of the heel, the top or the bottom. We want to make sure we are striking that ball dead in the center, then as we got out in the golf course, if we start to hear the ball striking the wrong part of the golf club, we can make the relevant adjustment to get better quality contact.

And the last of the five tips I would like to focus on, is understanding that there is a sweet spot in the middle of a golf club, a sweet spot where the ball will fly better. You can find the sweet spot just by bouncing the ball on the club face and you will hear it in the sweet spot of the golf ball, the golf club sound nicer, bounce up a little bit higher. You will also then appreciate when you hit the toe of the heel up and down on the sweet spot, that the ball doesn’t bounce up quite as high.

Now if it’s not bouncing up as high, just doing this, you can imagine how it’s definitely not bouncing as far when it does this either. So as a good golfer, we want to strike the ball in the middle more regularly. You will see this one the golf course, it’s either a white mark from the ball or even a grassy muddy mark off the ball as it hits if you are playing off the turf. Or actually get yourselves some face tape, which is just white tape, you slide it on the club face and it will leave an imprint or remark on the face. You want to make sure that sweet spot has been hit regularly, then it sounds good, you are taking a nice divot, you know your yardages and you are not over hitting those yardages. That way, you will be a much better iron player.