Golf 101: Direction Control

Controlling the directions of your ball flight is more critical than any other part of your golf game. Most courses are fairly forgiving with wide fairways but don’t let that fool you into going for the gusto on every shot. The final LPGA Tournament of the year (CME Globe) is held at Tiberon Golf Club in Naples, FL. It’s not a long course but it is narrow and any shot into the woods is not forgiving. I’ve played that course a few times and I know what those ladies were going through. Without direction control you will never score low.

My game falls apart during the 3 or 4 holes where one of my shots decides to slice or duck hook. Every par 3 will tell you if you have control of your direction. If you aren’t hitting the green and 2 putting, that should be your wake-up call. I tend to lose my direction control when I try to put more power into my swing or when I feel a little cocky about may last birdie. It ALL comes down to mind control and swing tempo.

Your fairways may be wide but don’t let that fool you. Know how to control your direction and plan it for every hit.

How to Focus on Direction Control
Consistent Swing Tempo: Take control of your game when you find your rhythm at the driving range before your first tee drive. If your hips, shoulders and arms are moving correctly, you will control the direction of every shot. Every shot with each different club on different slope of the ground demands your attention for the right setup but don’t let that change your swing tempo.

Choose the Right Club: Changing wind direction can play with your mind. Commit to your shot when you chose the club that will reach your target with an 80%, controlled swing speed.

Find your Swing Speed: Swinging faster and slower for each club is the kiss of death. Consistent cadence allows you to keep your hips, shoulders and arms in a consistent timing sequence. If the wind gets a little stronger, don’t swing harder. Either wait for the gust to die down or make sure that you have 2 clubs to choose from to reach the distance that you want.

Test your clubs for three quarter and half back swing at the same Cadence: You will find situations where you have to swing with a limited backswing. Practice these swings at the practice range to see how they affect your direction control.

Adjust for your Short Shots: Slowing down your swing for any of you longer clubs will often lead to leaving the face of your club open (causing a push or slice). The same problem happens when you use your Pitching, Gap or Sand Wedge. Gripping down when you have too much club is always the best way to keep your consistent swing cadence. If you have to slow down your swing cadence then you should setup with an open stance with more pressure on your forward foot. This allows you to get your hips, shoulders and arms through the shot to a full finish (WITHOUT LEAVING YOUR CLUB FACE OPEN).

Why do the pros look like they are in control of every swing? You got it: They swing with the same pace and cadence for direction control. Sure they can hit further than you because their lag and release is more powerful. Remember: Control direction first and you will save a lot more stokes in every round of golf. Practice with GOLFSTR+ to learn your ideal cadence. Buy one today at www.golfstr.com

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