Control Every Shot

Friday December 21st, 2007
Hit ultra-accurate short-game shots by squaring your clubface with your body, not your hands.
Angus Murray

Knuckles Down is Good For...
• All full swings, rough escapes and fairway bunker shots

Knuckle down for power

For maximum speed and distance, gradually rotate your forearms (right over left) and turn your wrists through the hitting zone so that your left-hand knuckles and left elbow point toward the ground in your release.

Why it works

Maximum acceleration occurs when your hands give in to the force of your downswing and turn over to release your clubhead toe over heel. You know you've reached your power threshold when your left-hand knuckles and left elbow point down in your release.

How to do it

Through the hitting zone, sling the club smoothly past your left thigh by trying to "flick" an imaginary object off your left thumb. Or, think of how you'd turn your left hand out to hitch a ride.

Knuckles Up is Good For...
• Greenside bunker shots, chips and pitches, knock-downs, bump-and-runs and punch shots.

Knuckle up for control

For shots that require control over raw distance, keep your hands ahead of the clubhead at impact and the back of your left hand pointed up in your follow-through.

Why it works

You're basically holding off your release, which is the fastest part of your swing. While you'll lose distance, you'll gain extra accuracy because you're squaring your clubface with your upper body turn instead of your hands, and big muscles are easier to control than little ones.

How to do it

Through impact, cup your left wrist slightly and lift the back of your left hand toward the sky. This usually produces a scoopy impact, but if you set up with your hands ahead of the ball, your contact will be crisp.


GROOVE A SOLID STROKE
The can't-miss putting grip

Make this simple change to stop stroking off-line putts

The problem

You struggle with rolling the ball on target. The reason could be that you grip the handle in your fingers like you do with your irons and woods. This allows your wrists to hinge, which is good for full swings but bad for putting.

What to do

Arc your left wrist downward and grip your putter with the center of your left palm. Notice that the shaft and your forearm now line up. Do the same exercise with your right hand only, and then place both hands onto the putter.

What it works

This new grip position automatically stands the the shaft more upright, so that when you take your address your eyes will look straight down the target line, which gives you the best optical view of your intended line of putt. It also encourages your putterhead to remain square and release along the proper arc with a nice rhythm. All of this adds up to better distance control and accuracy on putts of all lengths.

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