The Art of the Golf Swing
The game's greats are absolute craftsmen with their tools. They are original, creative and have an artist's eye when it comes to playing the game. Their ability to visualize the shot in their mind's eye before they execute it is an enormous advantage. By seeing the best possible shot and then creating the swing that will produce the desired ball flight for that shot, the great players of the game are setting themselves up for nothing but success. I've always said the best short game players in the world are those that are the most creative and simply make stuff up. That's right...they just create shots. This holds true for the full swing as well. If all a player can do is hit a straight ball, which by the way is the most difficult shot to hit, then he or she is limiting themself dramatically. Golf courses simply aren't designed on straight lines. Holes have curves, dog legs and undulations. Being only capable of one swing, one trajectory and one ball flight is not only a disadvantage...it's boring!
Beat The Course By Being a Master Shot Maker
Playing the golf course around it's design is the way to beat the golf course. If you stand up on a dog leg left and aren't capable of hitting a draw off the tee, you will lose significant distance compared to someone who can. You might find yourself 60 yards behind someone with whom you usually are equidistant to off the tee, because you hit your shot straight, while they had a nice draw on theirs.
If you are able to work the ball, not only will you give yourself a distance advantage, but you will be able to place your shots strategically on the greens for the best results when the ball lands. There is nothing quite like landing the ball on that perfect slope and watching it funnel down and nestle up nice right next to the stick. I have had 3 holes in one in my career and although the second was a bit of a miss hit, all 3 landed where I wanted them to on the green, took the slope and rolled in.
Trouble Shots Require Precise Shot Making
Then of course there are the occasions where shot making isn't a choice. You may have landed your ball on the side of a hill, or behind a low hanging branch. More commonly known as trouble shots, these shots also require precise shot making to control the damage. Being able to "stop the bleeding" and get the ball back into play is what will save you from those high numbers on your score card. It's rare that you will get a perfect lie on a golf course, therefore, knowing how to play the following shots is a must.
Creative shot making allows you to go low.
- Knock Down
- Uphill Lie
- Downhill Lie
- Ball Below the Feet
- Ball Above the Feet
You can talk to a fade but a hook won't listen.- Lee Trevino
Some shots are easier to hit and easier to control. You should always play your predominant ball flight whatever it may be for the majority of shots. If you try to work too hard against it, it will backfire under pressure. Being able to pull out the various shots you need when you need them is what is going to bring your scores down. MyGolfInstructor.com has all the tips, drills and tools you need to become a master shot maker!
Maria Palozola is a member of the LPGA and has participated in multiple LPGA Tour events. She has provided instruction to thousands of students in the past 20+ years and has won multiple teaching awards from the LPGA, Golf Digest, and Golf Magazine including being ranked as one of the top 50 female instructors in the world.