Three Tips For The Run Up Approach Shot

Once you’ve worked on a run up approach shot a bit in practice, you can think about using it in an upcoming round. Of course, to actually put it to use, you will need to find the right opportunity. Even when you wind up with a short approach from the rough, the surrounding conditions might not be suitable for a run up shot. Below, we have listed a few points to watch for when trying to decide whether or not the run up shot will be appropriate.

  • You need room. Before you can run the ball up to the green, you need to be facing a shot where there is actually room to do so. In other words, there needs to be room in the fairway for the ball to land and bounce up onto the putting surface. This is not always going to be the case. For instance, there might be a bunker guarding the front of the green, blocking your path. Or, there might be a steep slope which is going to make it too difficult to run the ball up with any degree of control. So, before you even give a second thought to the idea of playing a low run up shot, it will be necessary to spot a path that you can use to access the green. It should be noted that you don’t necessarily have to have a path right at the hole. Even if you can get the ball on the green in a decent position, that may be good enough based on the circumstances you are facing.
  • You need the right conditions. If the ball is going to run up from the fairway onto the green, you need to have conditions which are relatively firm and fast. When the fairways are soft and soggy, using a run up shot just isn’t going to be viable since the ball will stop quickly after it lands. Of course, there is an upside to this issue – if the course is soft, you should just be able to play a high shot without too much trouble. The greens should be soft as well, so you can fly the ball right up to the hole and have it stop quickly. Even though your shot may not have much spin, it will be able to come to rest shortly after it lands thanks to the turf conditions. Before you even begin your round, consider what kind of conditions you are going to be facing on the day. Then, with those conditions in mind, warm up on the range in a way that is going to prepare you for the shots you’re most likely to face.
  • You need the right lie. Playing a run up shot requires the right kind of lie, although that might not mean what you think at first. In this case, we are referring to the slope of the ground under the ball when we talk about your lie. To play a run up shot, you will need to have the ball either on flat ground, or on a downslope. These kinds of lies will let you hit relatively low shots that run up toward the putting surface with ease. If your ball is on an upslope, however, the run up shot is far less likely to be effective. The slope of the ground is going to cause the ball to fly higher than it would otherwise, which is a problem here. A higher trajectory is going to cause you to lose bounce and roll distance, and the run up shot may not make much sense. Instead, you might be better off just trying to fly the ball up to the green as usual.

You never want to feel like you are forcing the action on the golf course. Instead, you want to feel like you are taking what the course wants to give you. If the opportunity to play a run up approach shot is there, go ahead and take it. If not, don’t force the issue – just opt for another plan. Golf is a game which presents you with many different options on each shot, and it is always your job to settle on the right choice based on the situation at hand.