Problem of Not Getting the Golf Ball Up: Cure Hit Down Onto the Back of the Golf Ball (Video)
Problem of Not Getting the Golf Ball Up: Cure Hit Down Onto the Back of the Golf Ball (Video)

I think for a lot of beginners and improvers the most common bad shot they might be hitting is going to be classed as a top or a thin shot. Basically a shot where the club would hit above the equator of the golf ball causing a ball that scoops out very low across the floor or even nose dives into the floor. And if that’s the shot that you’re struggling with just consider why that might be happening. For a lot of people actually topping the ball when they hit above the equator, when they try and correct it, they make it even worse because they actually end up trying to lift and scoop the ball up so it’s like a self perpetuating fault, they do it and they keep doing it. So as I set up to this ball, if I’ve been leaning back and trying to help the ball up into the air, the chances are I’ll either hit the ground here way before the ball or I’ll scoop up over the top of it even more. So leaning back desperately trying to get the ball up in the air and it just nose dives into the floor, the next time I approach I try even harder to life it up into the air. And it really isn’t the solution, what we should actually be doing when we’re hitting down on the golf ball is exactly that. We’ve got enough loft on the club, so as long as we wedge that club under the ball the loft on the face hits the ball up in the air quite nicely. So it’s this idea that you can hit down on the ball to make the ball rise up.

Now hitting down more doesn’t necessarily create more height but it does give a good contact and then the club can get busy doing what it wants to do, which is hitting the ball up in the air. So if you want more height the best thing to do is change club so now it’s highly lofted club and then focus on hitting down nicely, rather than using a lower lofted club and then desperately trying to scrape it up into the air and scoop it up into the air. So a good set-up to make sure it can hit down, is to play the ball around about the center of my body, place my hands slightly forward its set up, move my body weight forwards in the down swing, focus on hitting the back of the ball with a downwards descending blow. So you should actually then continue through the ball and take a divot. But the divot will be a square of grass after the ball. It would never be a divot before the ball that’s a misconception about divots. We should take a divot after the golf ball as the club continues downwards so we get a nice set of position, position the body weight left for the right handed golfer as you hit through it. Focus on hitting the back of the ball downwards and that will produce a nice high shot as long as you’ve got enough loft on your club.

2013-03-29

Golf is a game with a bad reputation as far as beginners are concerned.

Problem of Not Getting the Golf Ball Up: Cure – Hit Down onto the Back of the Golf Ball

For many who are just getting started in this game, it can be extremely difficult to make progress and feel like they can keep up on the course. Plenty of individuals have purchased clubs and tried out the game a few times – only to give up because it was so frustrating.

One of the problems here is that new golfers generally don’t understand exactly what they are trying to do with the club when they swing. Sure, this is a hard game even if you do know how it works, but misinformation – or just a complete lack of information – makes the game even harder than it already is. If you can arm yourself with accurate information before you head out to practice or play, you’ll significantly improve your odds of success.

For beginning golfers, and for some experienced players, simply getting the ball off the ground is one of the biggest challenges that need to be overcome. If you see the ball just roll along the ground time after time, it’s easy to get frustrated and think about giving up. Even if you have no aspirations to play this game at a high level, you still want to see the ball soaring through the air after you strike it.

What we are talking about here is usually iron shots, as most golfers can get their driver and fairway wood shots off the ground (especially driver shots which are played from a tee). Iron shots are a different story, however, since the ball is resting on the ground and it seems like a lot of work needs to be done in order to get it airborne. For many golfers, getting over the hurdle of being able to hit iron shots in the air is a big step – and cause for celebration. Once you learn how to get your irons off the ground with regularity, you can feel good about your ability to enjoy this game moving forward.

In this article, we are going to talk specifically about one key element of getting your iron shots off the ground – hitting down through impact. Many new golfers are surprised to learn that the key to getting iron shots airborne is actually to hit down through the ball at the bottom of the swing. That seems backwards on the surface, but it starts to make sense the more you think about it. Since your irons all have some degree of loft built into the club head design, you can hit down and trust that loft to do the job of getting the ball off the ground. As long as you make clean contact, backspin will be produced at impact – and that backspin will help the ball to climb higher as it flies. Once a golfer experiences the feeling of hitting down and seeing the ball go up, everything changes. If you are still struggling to get the ball off the ground when swinging your irons, we hope the content below helps you get on the right track.

All of the content below is based on a right-handed golfer. If you happen to play left-handed, please take a moment to reverse the directions as necessary.

Getting Over the Mental Hurdle

Getting Over the Mental Hurdle

The first task on your agenda when you begin to work on getting the ball off the ground is clearing the mental hurdle associated with this problem. If you’ve been struggling for some time to get your iron shots airborne, you’ll probably have some mental ‘baggage’ holding you back. You’ve been frustrated at the sight of so many of your shots rolling along the ground, and you may feel like you are never going to figure it out. As you might imagine, turning that attitude around and finding a way to believe in yourself is a big step in the right direction.

Beyond your attitude, you need to believe in the technique that you are trying to learn. When you hear that the best way to get the ball off the ground is to hit down through impact with your irons, you need to believe that is the case. If you are still thinking in the back of your mind that it makes more sense to lift up through impact to help the ball on its way, you’re never going to reach your goals.

A good way to convince yourself that this method is the right way to go is to take some time to watch a bit of golf on TV (or watch golf highlights online). By watching the best players in the world make their way around the course, you can see how they get the job done. For the vast majority of the iron shots you see the pros play, there will be a divot which comes up after the ball has been struck. That divot can only mean one thing – the player has hit down nicely through the ball.

A divot is the result when the club tears into the turf at the bottom of the swing arc. Before coming back up and moving into the follow through, the club pulls up some turf and sends it flying. A divot in front of the ball– whether made by a professional or by your own swing – is sure proof that the club was moving down through impact. There is simply no other way to create a divot in front of the position of the ball.

So, as you watch the pros hit their iron shots, take note each time you see a divot (it will be nearly every time). After you see the divot come up, watch as the ball flies beautifully through the air and toward the target. There can be no debate that the professional golfer on the screen managed to get the ball up in the air by hitting down. And, if he or she can do it, you can, too.

There is no point in heading out to the range to work on your swing until you are fully on board with this approach to the iron game. Until you believe that hitting down is the right way to go, you simply aren’t going to see progress. Make sure you have your mind in a good place, and then get ready to start working on the technical improvements necessary to get the ball off the ground time after time.

Finding the Right Position

Finding the Right Position

It’s one thing to know that you need to hit down on the ball – it’s another thing to actually make that happen. You need to have both your body and the club in the right position if you are going to move the club down through the ball effectively. If you are out of position, it won’t matter how much you want to hit down, as it simply won’t be possible. Since the golf swing happens quickly, you don’t have enough time to make up for any mistakes that occur along the way. You need to be in the right position from start to finish if you hope to produce consistent results.

As far as hitting down on the ball is concerned, the first key is to make sure you remain nicely balanced throughout the swinging motion. This is a point that not many amateur golfers are able to hit successfully. It is common for golfers to lose their balance at some point during the swing, which will inevitably lead to trouble.

Since so much of placing your body in the right position comes down to balance, we want to quickly touch on a few of the ways in which golfers commonly lose balance in the swing.

  • Swaying to the right in the takeaway. This is an extremely common mistake. As soon as the swing begins, the player will slide laterally away from the target, rather than rotating. As the slide to the right continues, the majority of the player’s body weight is going to end up over the right foot – and it is nearly impossible to recover from that position. The only way to get back to the ball is to slide to the left, meaning you won’t be able to rotate aggressively and build the kind of speed that is needed to hit great shots. Even if you do make clean contact – which is far from a guarantee – it’s likely that you will be disappointed with the outcome of the shot. Don’t let your swing go wrong so early in the process. Make sure to rotate away from the target, rather than sliding laterally, as your swing gets started.
  • Swinging too hard. Another issue that can lead to a loss of balance is simply trying to swing too hard. You’ve probably seen this mistake at your local driving range, and you may have even made it yourself from time to time. Most of the time, when a player tries to swing extra hard in order to hit a powerful shot, he or she will carry on the backswing much too long. That means the club is going to wrap around the body at the top of the swing, and the body weight may be pulled toward the target prematurely. If you find yourself leaning to the left at the top, you’ll have no choice but to lean back a little to the right as you swing down (just to avoid falling over). Not only will this problem make it difficult to strike the ball cleanly, you are also at risk of hitting up through the ball, rather than down. For players who struggle to get the ball airborne, the problem of swinging too hard is a big hurdle to clear. Learn how to swing ‘within yourself’ and focus on fundamentals to produce the power you need.
  • A poor setup. It’s possible to sabotage your balance before you even begin making a swing. If you don’t settle into a proper address position before the club goes in motion, you’ll be doomed to fail right from the start. At address, you want to check on a couple key points. First, and most obviously, your weight should be evenly distributed between your two feet. If you are leaning to one side or the other before starting the swing, you can’t reasonably expect to find your balance once the club gets moving. Also, you want to make sure that you are using plenty of knee flex in your stance. Flexing your knees makes it easier to stay balanced once the swing does begin, and it will also help you to engage your lower body in the swinging action.

At the end of the day, the position you are looking for at impact is actually quite simple – you want to be balanced, with your center of gravity over the ball, and your hands just slightly in front of the ball (leaning the shaft toward the target). That’s it. If you can pull that off time after time, your club should move down through impact, and the ball should climb high into the air.

Some Practice Tips

Some Practice Tips

If you already make a habit of practicing your game regularly at the driving range, you have a step up on your competition at the local club. However, if you fail to use that practice time efficiently, you may be wasting your efforts. It’s important to have a plan when you practice, as there is limited to use to just standing on the range and swinging away.

When you head out for a practice session with the purpose of learning how to hit down through the golf ball, consider the following tips.

  • Start small to get the idea. There is no need to pick up one of your long irons right from the start when working on this key fundamental. In fact, using one of your longest irons is only going to leave you frustrated with your lack of progress, as those are the hardest clubs in the bag to hit. Instead, start with one of your wedges and work on hitting down on some soft pitch shots. You should only be trying to hit the ball 30 or 40 yards on these shots, with the focus placed on hitting down and taking a small divot. Even on these kinds of short shots, you will be able to see the way this concept works – you hit down, and the ball goes up. As you gain confidence and belief in yourself, gradually make bigger and bigger swings with longer and longer clubs.
  • Miss the tee. If you are practicing on a grass tee line (rather than one with artificial mats), you can use this quick and easy drill to help you focus on hitting down. Place a golf ball down on the grass in front of you and take your seven iron out of the bag to hit the shot. Before taking your stance, take an extra golf tee and press it into the turf an inch or so behind the ball. You should push the tee down far enough that the top of the tee is flush with the top of the turf. Then, go ahead and hit your shot. As you swing, keep in mind the goal of avoiding that tee on the way down into impact. If you hit down properly, the tee shouldn’t be in your way at all – and it should remain exactly where it is even as you swing through to the finish. This is a nice drill to use while working on getting the ball airborne, as it doesn’t require any special equipment or complicated setup.
  • Build a streak. One of the big problems you are going to encounter when trying to learn how to get the ball off the ground is a crisis of confidence. Having hit so many shots on the course that never left the turf, you’ll lack belief in yourself and may assume that things are going to go wrong on the course even after you practice. To build up some confidence, try establishing a long streak of airborne shots on the driving range. With your wedge, hit a few shots toward a target and count how many of them in a row get off the ground. At first, you may only make it to two or three, but that number should grow before long. Then, when you are on the course, you can think back to the streaks you put together on the range and draw on them for confidence. Knowing that you are capable of hitting plenty of airborne shots in a row, you’ll have every reason to believe that you can get the ball off the ground when playing on the course.

Smart, attentive practice leads to good results in this game. Many golfers spend time at the driving range mindlessly, and then wonder why they aren’t getting better. Golf does not reward players who simply show up at the range and fire off a large bucket without a plan. Instead, the game rewards those who think about their practice routine, work on specific issues, and gradually improve their skills.

Short Game Application

Short Game Application

It can be embarrassing when you make a full swing and the ball fails to leave the turf. Everyone in your group is probably watching you make the swing, so you may feel self-conscious about your lack of skills on the links. In the short game, failing to get the ball off the ground might not be so embarrassing, but the damage to your scorecard can be even worse. Fortunately, the same rules apply in the short game (for the most part) that we have covered for the long game. In other words, if you want to get your chip and pitch shots off the ground consistently, you need to hit down through impact.

For a standard chip shot, it is a good idea to use a wedge while playing the ball slightly back in your stance. Then, you simply rock your shoulders back and through in order to hit down on the ball. With clean contact, the ball will pop up into the air, and hopefully land on the green before rolling out toward the hole. When executed properly, it’s an incredibly easy process, and one that should lead to consistent results.

Unfortunately, many golfers try to help the ball off the ground when chipping, just as is the case with the full swing. Despite using a club which may have as much as 60-degrees of loft, some golfers can’t help but think they need to scoop the ball off the turf. If you do try to lift the ball off the ground, there are a couple of negative outcomes which are possible. For one, you may hit the ground behind the ball, taking the speed out of your swing and often causing you to hit the shot only a foot or less. On the other hand, you might miss the ground entirely, hitting the shot thin and sending the ball shooting across to the other side of the green. Either way, you won’t be happy with the result, and you’ll probably need to hit another chip for your next shot. As you practice the short game, work on leaning the shaft slightly toward the target and hitting down with confidence. Keep the club head moving through impact and don’t look up until you are sure the ball is on its way.

You shouldn’t have to struggle your way around the course hitting one ground ball after the next. Not everyone is going to be able to play this game at a high level but learning to get the ball airborne is something that is within the reach of just about every player. We hope the information offered in this article will help you make big strides in this area. Good luck!

I think for a lot of beginners and improvers the most common bad shot they might be hitting is going to be classed as a top or a thin shot. Basically a shot where the club would hit above the equator of the golf ball causing a ball that scoops out very low across the floor or even nose dives into the floor. And if that’s the shot that you’re struggling with just consider why that might be happening. For a lot of people actually topping the ball when they hit above the equator, when they try and correct it, they make it even worse because they actually end up trying to lift and scoop the ball up so it’s like a self perpetuating fault, they do it and they keep doing it. So as I set up to this ball, if I’ve been leaning back and trying to help the ball up into the air, the chances are I’ll either hit the ground here way before the ball or I’ll scoop up over the top of it even more. So leaning back desperately trying to get the ball up in the air and it just nose dives into the floor, the next time I approach I try even harder to life it up into the air. And it really isn’t the solution, what we should actually be doing when we’re hitting down on the golf ball is exactly that. We’ve got enough loft on the club, so as long as we wedge that club under the ball the loft on the face hits the ball up in the air quite nicely. So it’s this idea that you can hit down on the ball to make the ball rise up.

Now hitting down more doesn’t necessarily create more height but it does give a good contact and then the club can get busy doing what it wants to do, which is hitting the ball up in the air. So if you want more height the best thing to do is change club so now it’s highly lofted club and then focus on hitting down nicely, rather than using a lower lofted club and then desperately trying to scrape it up into the air and scoop it up into the air. So a good set-up to make sure it can hit down, is to play the ball around about the center of my body, place my hands slightly forward its set up, move my body weight forwards in the down swing, focus on hitting the back of the ball with a downwards descending blow. So you should actually then continue through the ball and take a divot. But the divot will be a square of grass after the ball. It would never be a divot before the ball that’s a misconception about divots. We should take a divot after the golf ball as the club continues downwards so we get a nice set of position, position the body weight left for the right handed golfer as you hit through it. Focus on hitting the back of the ball downwards and that will produce a nice high shot as long as you’ve got enough loft on your club.