Avoiding the scoop shot
August 1, 2002
Many golfers with otherwise good swings are inconsistent due to a tendency to scoop the ball.
This scooping of the ball leads to many poor shots, the most common being a high, weak shot that leaks to the right. A scooping motion in the swing also leads to an ascending blow resulting in a topped shot. A scooped shot is a shot in which the club head has passed the hands through impact; the correct striking motion is where the hands lead the club head into the ball. Simply put, the correct impact position is where the
hands are ahead of the ball at impact. This creates the desired striking motion in which the ball is being driven forward with a descending blow.
There are many causes of the scoop, the most common are hitting the ball with the weight on the back foot instead of the front and an erroneous desire to get under the ball. The loft on the club face is all that is needed to get the ball up in the air but there is a natural instinct telling us to get under it and lift it up.
To get a feel for driving the ball forward, select a pitching wedge and taking a full back swing, hit shots with only a half follow through. At the finish of this swing the body should have turned to face the target, the weight should be entirely on the front foot and the club head and arms should be no higher than belt high.
This drill trains the golfer to lead the club head through impact with the hands and not let it get ahead. After a short time you will develop a feel for driving the ball forward and not lifting it up.
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Terry Gingell is the Director of Instruction at Eagle Valley Golf. He’s now taking registration for adult group lessons. For more information, please call Terry at 887-7174.
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