How Should I Play Downwind Shots? Video
How can you play downwind shots when you’re out on the golf course? Now generally speaking, playing downwind shots is an awful lot easier than playing into-the-wind shots. You know, struggling up a 400 yard par four into a gale force wind that’s hard work. Turn around the other way and play it back down the wind that’s quite good fun. But it does sometimes send us its own problems. Generally speaking teeing off downwind, that’s dead easy. Tee the ball really high with the driver, play it right off the front foot, sweep it away, let it carry a long way down there as far as you can. The only thing I would advise you not to do is, don’t try and over-hit it. Some people when it’s down they try and drive it on the green. You don’t need to; the wind is going to give you the distance. Just launch it up in the air and it will carry nicely.
The problematic shot when you’re playing downwind is when you get nearer to the green and judging the distance of your shot to get it onto the green exactly. So what might normally be 180 yard, sorry 150 yards with an eight iron, now might be 150 yards but with a nine iron. Swing smooth, swing within yourself. Try and judge the wind and then judge the club appropriately. You see most of the best players grabbing blades of grass off the floor and just flicking it up in the air. That helps to have a judgment of the wind direction but also the wind speed. Might be able to look down there at the flag and see what the flag is doing. If the flag is fluttering vigorously or is limping still, you know whether the wind conditions are the same here and down at the green. Then you can choose the club appropriately.
Once you’ve made that club decision, just stay within yourself, make a nice smooth swing. You don’t need to hit it harder or softer; the club should have taken care of the distance issues, so if you got 150 yards, normally an eight but now it’s a nine, normal setup position, normal smooth swing. Get the ball popped up into the air, let the wind carry it, it will roll, it will fly all the way down there onto the green. Now when it comes down, it probably won’t stop and spin back as much because as it’s coming down, the winds pushing it forwards so when it lands on the green, it might just roll out. Use your experience and your judgment to make sure you’ve chosen the right club when you’re playing downwind holes.