A common question that many golfers ask is "how do I drive a ball straight?" The best answer is usually the most complicated one - there are so many factors, and they each have subtle differences on how your ball will move.
This article describes some of those factors, and what you can do to get the ball to fly straight for you.
You need to understand where the ball will start and finish, and which way it is moving between those points. If you know that you have a slice or hook when hitting into the wind or downwind - your body can bend slightly (or if in a cart, put more weight on one foot than the other) so that your swing will tend to have less curve.
To hit straight, the ball should fly at the same speed back to front as it does side-to-side if you slice or hook, then something is happening on the backswing that makes you slow down across your body and faster on the followthrough for just a second - usually because of wrist hinge.
Based on where the ball starts and finishes, here are some ways that you can hit a straight golf shot:
How To Drive A Golf Ball Straight
- If the ball starts in front of you, then you need to be able to accelerate without being restricted by your arms when you start swinging back - as long as you gently and smoothly accelerate both back and through, so that the clubhead gets there about when it's supposed to, it won't matter where you start.
- If you start low (below your waist), then you will tend to hook the ball even more than you might anyway - try starting a little higher and swing back on-plane.
- If you tend to hit against the wind or into the wind, then your body has to bend one way or another so that if it can do both of these things, the ball will start in front of you and finish on-target.
- If you have a lot of curve without wind or against it, then your body needs to bend just slightly - if you are hitting into the wind or with it, then don't bend at all - make a smaller swing.
- If the ball starts behind you, your downswing will tend to go faster than most people's, so if the followthrough is slower and more controlled, then the ball should finish in front of you.
- If you start high and work down into a low finish (which is sometimes called "casting"), then you need to make an extra effort on the downswing to get the clubhead moving again - this will generally create an early release of the wrist and arm, so make sure that your finish is controlled.
- If the ball starts perfectly straight in front of you, then you may be holding it on-plane too long - try starting high and accelerating into a slightly lower finish.
- If you start high and stay high, then the ball should finish straighter - if it starts lower, then the followthrough needs to be more controlled so that the clubhead gets there when it's supposed to be there.
- If you have a slice or hook in your game, stop trying for power - hit on-plane and use a little less weight transfer - you need to be able to accelerate from the top all the way into your finish.
- If you start pretty much straight, then make sure that the speed comes back when it's supposed to - if not, try starting a little lower or even higher in your swing arc, so that your followthrough is more controlled.
- If you are trying to hit the ball straight and can't see any of these things happening, then you may be making another mistake - your body does NOT follow through on a perfect plane - it bends upward after impact to get into position for the next shot.
- All of this gets even more interesting when you realize that you can hit the ball straight if you work on it in practice, but even a perfect swing will tend to curve slightly.
What's the simplest way to drive a golf ball straight?
Know your target, open your stance (the direction of the feet are 30 degree apart) and set up as if you're playing baseball. Aim for a spot approximately where you want to hit it instead of aiming at the hole since that may be too hard. Rather, set your club head to the ball at about hip height and then aim for that spot on the ground. When you swing, let your arms go straight back and forward while keep your body still. The cue is to keep hitting a line between an imaginary golf ball and its own reflection in the grass. If you do that, the ball will enter the hole.
You must get into position to avoid hooks and slices. One of the ways to do this is by shifting your weight and body around before you hit every shot. If you don't, then it's almost a guarantee that there will be problems.
Aim the club head at the golf ball and try to hit a spot on the ground between an imaginary ball and its reflection.
Continue swinging down, keeping your arms straight back and forward while making sure your body is still when you hit the ground. The result will be a nice shot that goes into the hole. This can be done even by beginners.
It is quite simple to drive a golf ball straight once you know that there are quite a few things that contribute to the swing motion and how it ends up affecting your game in terms of direction. You can find these things out by talking to experts, reading articles or even gaining knowledge by looking at professionals play golf on television or videos.
Practical knowledge is a valuable asset to have in golf and should be sought after.
Working on the "straight ball" will help you to create more control over your game... even if you are just a beginner. That is because, as you gain more experience and knowledge about this game, a driving straight ball will become a regular part of your game. You may even come up with other ways to drive the golf ball straighter than described in this article but it's always good to get a grip on basic things first before moving on to the complicated details of playing golf.
This is a guide to getting the most out of your golf skills and mastering driving the ball straight for beginners. Although this can be used by anyone who wants to perfect that part of their game, it has been created for those who have never had any kind of experience with playing golf but are interested in getting started since they want to learn how to drive a golf ball straight.