Here’s a clever trick to use the next time you’re struggling to hit the fairway

We’ve all had those days off the tee when you can’t hit a fairway to save your life. It may only start with one poor drive, but then it kicks off a sequence of events that ends with you standing over the tee, looking at a wide-open fairway, with absolutely no idea where your ball is going go.

All of which is to say that I enjoyed this tip from GOLF Top 100 Teacher Terry Rowles a lot.

You don’t have to do anything different with your swing. You don’t even need to change your mindset. All you need is three things, Rowles says:

  1. Stand closer
  2. Choke down on the club
  3. Tee the ball slightly lower

Do that, Rowles says, and something rather magical happens: you start hitting the ball off the heel of the club. Ordinarily that’s not a good thing, but in this case, it’s exactly what the doctor ordered: Hitting the ball off the heel will deaden the hit slightly, but will cause the clubhead to twist open, due to the gears effect. As a result, the shot will fly lower with a left-to-right fade shape. It won’t go as far — because you’re intentionally trying to hit it off the sweetspot — but it’ll be controlled. And, crucially, it’ll accomplish your goal of getting your ball in the fairway, and building some momentum.

Watch the full video below:


Luke Kerr-Dineen Contributor

Luke Kerr-Dineen is the Game Improvement Editor at GOLF Magazine and In his role he oversees the brand’s game improvement content spanning instruction, equipment, health and fitness, across all of GOLF’s multimedia platforms.

An alumni of the International Junior Golf Academy and the University of South Carolina–Beaufort golf team, where he helped them to No. 1 in the national NAIA rankings, Luke moved to New York in 2012 to pursue his Masters degree in Journalism from Columbia University. His work has also appeared in USA Today, Golf Digest, Newsweek and The Daily Beast.