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Question on Diagnosing Problems:

I'm a right handed golfer who has a tendency to hit the ball left. I seem to be aligned correctly, but I continue to yank the ball left. How can I correct this ?
--John G. from Bensalem, PA

Hi John. Thanks for writing I'm looking forward to helping you with your game.

Pulling the ball is often caused by:

1) Your alignment
2) Your club face
3) Your swing path

It sounds like you have checked your alignment so we won't spend too much time there. I would caution you though to pay close attention to your shoulders, not just your feet. Often players look at only their feet, and while those may be square, your shoulders have much more of an affect on where the ball goes since they are connected to your shoulders. Make sure that your right shoulder feels both lower and a bit behind your left shoulder so that you can get the club back to the inside.

Next, the ball could be going left if you have too strong of a grip. The Vs that you form between your thumb and forefinger of each hand provide a good guide as to the strength of your grip. If you think this could be a clubface issue I would recommend that you have both Vs pointing straight up. This would put you in a very neutral grip position that should not cause the club to roll shut through impact.

Your swing path is most likely the major cause of your pull. We need to make sure that you are striking the ball from an inside/out angle of attack. To accomplish this try keeping your back at the target for a second or two longer as you start your arms down. This will allow your arms to drop down on plane. If you are spinning your shoulders open to start your downswing your arms will swing over the top and you will come outside/in through impact. Get the feeling that you are somewhat backing into the ball and that your shoulders are pointed to the right of your target line at impact for a while.

Thanks for the question. Give this all a try and let me know how it goes.


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