Stop topping it and get your next shot airborne with this drill

Stop topping it and get your next shot airborne with this drill

By Greg DuCharme

I'll concede that nothing panics a golfer like hitting two or three shanks in a row. But coming in at No. 2 on the pop charts is a case of the tops. Hitting multiple shots that fail to clear the limbo stick is pretty unnerving. Even worse, the reason it's happening is clear to the patient—except it's not. Most golfers mistakenly think they're topping it because their club is skimming the top half of the ball on the way down. They think they're getting out in front of it when they swing. Actually, the opposite is true. -- with Ron Kaspriske

The club's low point is behind the ball, sometimes well behind, and the clubhead is catching the top half of the ball as it ascends. If you look at golfers who top it, you'll probably see their upper bodies drifting away from the target, and they're favoring their back foot in the downswing. That's why it's not uncommon to see a top off the tee, although it happens off the turf more frequently. Just know that if you're topping it, you've got to change the spot where your club is bottoming out.

There are many ways to correct this problem. I'll give you one to work on while you wait to play your next shot, and another you can use as a swing thought. First, find a downslope where you can get into your golf posture and make a practice swing. When you swing down the slope, step down the hill with your back foot as you follow through with the club. You'll start to feel how the body needs to move toward the target in the downswing to move the swing bottom forward.

Now it's go-time. Even after you work on the drill, you still might be a little worried about topping another one. Don't be. Instead, here's a swing thought that will reinforce those step-through practice swings: Shift your spine forward. Assuming you can stay in your address posture as you swing down, moving your spine toward the target will improve your swing bottom. You might have heard the advice of keeping your chest over the ball. This does the same thing. Give it a try. And if it's sunny out, make sure you're wearing shades. You're going to have to get used to looking up to follow your shots.

Source: GolfDigest.com

Tips About Golf Balls

Tips About Golf Balls

Written by: Bill Herrfeldt

When a golfer decides to buy a new set of clubs, he must make a number of choices. He must also deal with a variety of golf balls that have different characteristics so he can match his style of play with the correct one. There are balls that are made to give the golfer added distance while others will allow him to create more backspin. He must choose a ball that is right for him based on what he considers important.


All golf balls have dimples and they will affect the length of time a golfer can keep the ball in the air. Some balls give the golfer added distance more than others. So each golf ball manufacturer is trying to design a product that can lay claim to being the longest ball as a major competitive advantage. But that added distance comes with a lessening of accuracy. Proven false is the theory that how dimples are arrayed on a ball will affect the amount of backspin the golfer can impart on the ball.

Outside And In

In the past, the type of golf ball available was limited. There was the wooden ball that soon gave way to the “feathery,” a ball made of feathers encased in leather. In the 19th century, the game was revolutionized by the Gutta Percha ball, whose only drawback was that it tended to explode in flight. Now there are three types of balls. There are those that are made with only two elements, a center and a cover, and are appropriate if a golfer is looking to add distance to his shots. There are balls that have a center core that is wound with something like a tight rubber band, then are covered. Those balls allow the golfer to give it additional backspin and generally lets him feel the shot more. And there are balls that are made in a number of layers that will allow the golfer to hit it a bit farther, and allow him to feel the shot more and increase slightly the spin rate.



A lot was said in the past about how a ball's compression affects its distance. It was felt a ball rated 100 compression would travel farther in the air than a ball rated 80 compression. But through sophisticated scientific analysis, that theory was proven false. You can hit the ball just as far regardless of its compression. But compression will affect how the ball feels is it comes off the club head, particularly if you are playing in cooler weather or you have a lower-than-average swing speed.