Drills for better ball striking

Published 22/09/2009 08:00:00

When plotting your strategy for any particular course, you do so in the expectation that your ball striking will be clean. However, occasionally, hitting the ball from the middle from the blade can feel like finding a needle in a haystack. Here are three drills guaranteed to help you find the centre once more.


Tee drill

Perhaps the most common reason behind poor striking is altering your spine angle through the swing. A good posture set at address needs to be maintained until after you have struck the ball. If you have been suffering with fat or thing strikes, it is worth working on your posture through the swing.


To do this, tee a ball up a couple of inches and hit a series of smooth practice shots with a 9-iron. The only way to clip the ball cleanly off the top is to maintain your spine angle.


Wet sand drill

Seve Ballesteros was famed for his imaginative and instinctive game, which yielded two Masters and three Open victories. As a boy, growing up in Santander, Seve would practice hitting shots on the beach with a 3-iron. This inadvertently honed precise, reliable ball striking.


If your timing is letting you down, find a practice bunker, pour a bottle of water on the sand and hit some mid- or long-iron shots. If the club catches the sand fractionally too early it will lose all speed and the ball will come up woefully short of its target.

A crisp contact is harder to achieve when playing from wet sand, and once you have mastered it you will reap the rewards on the golf course.


Through the corridor drill

If you have been striking the ball from either the heel or the toe of the club, this drill will help you.


Place two soft objects either side of your ball, fractionally wider than a club width's apart - I normally use headcovers.

Hit a series of practice shots without touching either of these objects. At first you might find this hard to do, but you should soon develop a feel for how to alter your swing to make a clean contact.

Hit as many practice shots as it takes to hone consistently precise contacts from the middle of the clubface.


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