Fix Your Slice Forever – Part 2
By Chris Foley
Slicing the ball would be the biggest ball flight error I see on the lesson tee and over the course of the golf season we will be sharing with you why you slice and how to fix your slice for good.
A slice is undesirable because it curves away from the target too much, generally doesn’t go as far, and the golfer has less control of the ball.
To correct your slice, you need to understand what causes the ball to curve in the direction that it does. The golf ball curves because of the relationship between the face and the path of the swing. Where the face is pointing at impact has the biggest influence on where the ball starts. The path of the swing is the direction of the swing in relationship to the target line. When the face is open in relationship to the path the ball is going to slice.
By knowing how to influence the path/face relationship you can correct your slice and play better golf.
This month we are going to focus on influencing the face of the golf club. The face of the club has by far the biggest influence on the initial direction of the ball. The best ball strikers have great club face control and awareness.
The two biggest influences on the club face are the position of the golfer’s hands on the golf club at address and the rotation of the club face in the back and forward swing.
The function of the grip is to bring the club face back to impact and get the golf ball started on the desired line. The trail hand has the biggest influence on the club face in the back swing and the lead hand has the biggest influence in the forward swing. To place the hands in a neutral (non-slice) position get in a good golf posture and let your arms hang relaxed from your shoulders. Place the lead hand on the handle of the club like it is hanging. The handle of the club should be placed primarily in the fingers. Next place the trail hand on the club so that the palms of your hands are facing each other. A good way to think of this procedure is to place the lead hand on top of the handle and the trail hand underneath the handle.
Beyond the grip where the clubface is at impact is affected by the following.
- In the takeaway has the toe of the club opened too much. Ideally the face would be square to the arc of the swing in the takeaway. If the toe opens too much the golfer will have to work harder to square the clubface in the forward swing.
- In the forward swing the lead hand has a big influence in squaring the clubface. The back of the lead hand and the clubface mirror each other. Where the lead wrist is facing the clubface is also. To square the face in the down swing the back of the lead wrist should start to rotate toward the ground right away and happen gradually to impact. If the back of the lead hand doesn’t rotate enough in the forward swing the face will be open at impact.
- Too much tension in the wrist and forearms during the swing adversely impacts the rotation of the face in the downswing. If the golfer has too much tension it is very difficult to bring the clubface back to square. Tension also slows down clubhead speed.
If you are slicing the ball, start with the grip. If the grip is in a neutral position look at what is affecting the rotation of the clubface.