With the week of weather we have just experienced, I thought a good topic for this week’s column might be waterproofing your golf bag or possibly an introduction to duck hunting…
Then it hit me! How many times have you been playing golf either after a heavy rain or after a week of weather like this? The ground seems so wet you think you may loose your shoes walking into the fairway to hit your next shot.
Wet turf grass presents many problems to the golfer ranging in no roll to heavy rough to even how the wet ground affects how solidly you can make contact with the golf ball. I am sure you have seen it, or possibly even done it, but you manage to hit your tee shot into the fairway on a soggy morning, get out to your second shot, take your stance, make a swing and then… a spray of mud takes off behind a golf ball that flies half the distance your were trying to get.
If this sounds familiar, then I have a couple of suggestions for you that will help eliminate those shots that ruin your score, not to mention your shirt after you spray mud all over yourself from a “fat” shot.
As we have discussed in almost every tip, our fundamentals are the key to the golf swing and a well executed golf shot. We can overcome any hazard to our conditions through minor adjustments in our fundamentals.
To play a shot from a very wet lie we first want to widen our stance a bit. This will make our golf swing a little flatter and thus produce a shallower angle of attack into the golf ball which will reduce the chances of hitting the shot fat.
I also recommend choking down on the club about a half of inch and moving the ball slightly forward of center. This combination will also allow you to hit the ball on your upswing, rather than the downswing and give you cleaner contact.
These simple adjustments will help you to eliminate the tendency to hit down too steeply on the ball and hit a shot that comes up well short of your target.
You will need to make a few additional corrections to your shot selections when playing from this type of lie. First, by choking down on the club you will hit the ball slightly thin and not produce as much backspin, so you will need to alter your intended landing target on the green. Second by moving the ball forward in your stance the shot will have a slightly lower trajectory than normal, so keep this in mind should you be planning on trying to carry a hazard or clear a tree.
Good luck with the new shot, until the weather improves!