You blast a drive past the 200-yard marker, but it slices right and comes to rest on the wrong side of a bush (or tree). You’re about 30 yards from the fairway with room to hit through. But hitting from your lie won’t be easy. The bush’s branches (or the tree’s trunk) stop you from hitting the ball right-handed. If you’re going to get back on the fairway, you’ll have to hit the ball opposite-handed.
Below are five keys to hitting this shot:
- Flip a lofted club over
- Take an opposite-handed grip
- Lean the shaft forward
- Take some practice swings
- Swing down on the ball
Your goal is to get the ball back on the fairway in good position for your next shot. You want to do it with one swing, so you don’t add more shots to your score.
Start by choosing a more lofted club, like an 8-iron or a 9-iron. Flip it over so you can hit the ball with the club’s toe. Now reverse your grip. If you’re right-handed, take a left-handed grip. If you’re left-handed, take a right-handed grip. Lean the shaft forward, squaring up the club’s toe to the ball.
Once you’re set, take a few practice swings, just to get the feel of the club and the swing. Make sure you hit the ground on these swings. Then, staying in balance and under control, make a nice smooth swing. Make sure you commit to swinging down into the impact zone.
Don’t try to hit a “miracle” shot. If you do, you may shank the shot off to the side and land deeper in the woods. Remember, your goal is to get the ball back in play, not hit the green.