Using the wind to your advantage

Published 15/11/2008 10:37:30

Get the wind to help you lower your scores - use it rather than fight it. If your are confident in your approach, you can turn both tailwinds and headwinds to your advantage.

A tailwind can help you increase your distance and improve your tempo, and a headwind can help you stop your ball quickly on the green. Playing these positive shots brings greater confidence to your all-round play.


Using A Tailwind


The key to playing downwind is to concentrate on keeping a smooth rhythm and staying relaxed - the same as in other wind situation. Do not let the wind disturb your timing. Your club and the wind combine to do the work for you, and your ball soars further down the fairway than usual.

When you stand on the tee with the wind behind you, consider the options, as a tailwind has more uses than simply gaining extra distance.

A huge drive can make your second shot easier, but it can also send your ball into the the trees or out of bounds. If you want to play safe, and do not feel confident with your driver, club down to a 3-wood.

Tee the ball higher than normal and set up with your weight slightly favouring your right side (about 60% of your bodyweight). Although you make a full swing, your set-up ensures that you hit the ball on the upswing. The ball should rise quickly into the air and be taken by the wind.

The ball travels just as far as it does with a full drive in windless conditions. You also have the advantage of more ball control because of the extra loft of the 3-wood. This makes the shot easier to play, increasing your confidence.


Using A Headwind


A headwind is a huge asset in stopping your ball quickly on the green, which lets you fire your balls straight at the pin.

You must be confident and keep your rhythm. Trust your swing to take care of the shot. Don't let the wind in your face disturb your concentration by causing you to swing more quickly than normal.

Whatever the distance is to the green, take more club than normal (for example, a 7 iron when you would normally use a 9 iron) and e sure to make a firm hit. Do not be afraid of overshooting the green with the extra club - the strong headwind causes the ball to ahng in the air longer than you expect before it falls softly to the green.

As you strike through the ball, make a positive weight shift to your left side into a balanced followthrough position.


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