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Question on Diagnosing Problems:

My bad shot with my irons are when the ball comes off the toe.

Is there a fix as to why and how this most commonly happens?
--Troy V. from Arizona City, AZ

Hi Troy. Thanks for writing

Shots off the toe are aggravating as they spin off weakly to the right (for right handed players) so you not only hit off line, but you lose distance as well.

The simple answer is that something is causing you to move from the sweet spot (assuming you are starting at address with the ball lined up in the sweet spot) out to the toe by time you return to impact. There could be several causes so let's see if we can find out which is yours.

The first thing I would like you to check is your set up and distance from the ball. Often times my students line the ball up in the toe or heel and don't realize they are doing it. It becomes comfortably visually and when I put the ball in the sweet spot for them, it takes a while to adjust. Also, make sure that the butt end of the grip is a fist or a fist and a thumb's distance from your thighs. If you start out by reaching, chances are your arms are going to want to move back in towards your body. As they pull in you strike the toe of the club. Those are the two easiest issues to check and fix.

Next, I'd like you to be aware of your posture. If you are starting too bent over, your body is going to want to straighten back up during the swing. As you stand up and move further from the ball your arms move in and you move towards the toe. This is a very common cause of toe hits.

Last, I'd like you to check your swing plane. You do that by using this drill here: Swing Plane Poles Drill
This drill will help you to check if you are coming too far outside/in through impact. That is a common cause of toe hits because as the player swing severely across the target line, they pull their arms into their body moving from the sweet spot to the toe.

Troy, give these 3 things a try for a couple weeks and see if one doesn't help. If not, please write back and we will see if we can find a better solution.

I always recommend that you start logging your scores in the free Game Tracker and put your practice sessions down in the Practice Planner. This gives me a better overall picture of what is going on in your game. Remember if you sign on as a premium subscriber you can send in your swing for review with your questions.

Best of luck!


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