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joekelly

How to hit low hooks

13 posts in this topic

Am playing this local course which has many trees...in the middle of the fairways. Great shot and oops, behind the tree. Frequently need to hit a low hook shot bending left and keeping low. Must be low to keep beneath the branches and then bend. Can't seem to find one that works. From 150 yards am using my 6i (my lowest iron) or if further 5w and in both cases looking for low fliers. Poor results.

Ideas?

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Ideas?

Take your medicine and punch it out.

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Move the ball back a bit in your stance and keep your hands well in forward to help deloft the club and promote a low flight.  Aim the face in the direction you want the ball to start, then ensure that your swing path is well outside (to the right for a righty) of that starting point.  The ball will start where the face is aimed, but the swing path outside of that is what will promote the draw.

Tough, low % shot for a higher hcp player though.......you're not likely to hit the green, so I'd take a hard look at what you can do to mitigate the damage by just advancing the ball as best you can.  Better yet, don't hit it behind that damn tree in the middle of the fairway in the first place.  Like it or not, if the tree's out there and you put it behind it, it wasn't a great shot! ;-)

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What David said so far as low percentage shot.  If you want to use it, spend some real quality time on the range working it out, that isn't a shot to practice on the course.  I try tricky shots on the range sometimes for fun, they don't often work for me.

Until then, try to hit a low straight punch past/under the tree and into the best spot you can proceed normally from, hopefully you can at least advance the ball some.  A straight forward pitch shot to the green is better than the shot from God knows where that a failed hook could buy you.  The low straight punch is also worth practicing on the range, but is pretty easy.  Four or five iron, played back in the stance, shaft well forward to de-loft it.  I use a strong grip to avoid my tendency to slice from not getting the face closed because of the unusual ball position.

They probably laughed thinking about people trying those trick shots while they placed that tree .

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Better yet, don't hit it behind that damn tree in the middle of the fairway in the first place.

I think this is what you need to be looking at. Re-evaluate your tee shot and what you are attempting to do with. Right now it seems like your committed to a tee shot that leaves you out of position and are now trying to work out a strategy to deal with that bad position rather than changing the strategy on the initial shot to be in a better position which would negate the need to use a low % hail mary type of second shot.

"Placing the ball in the right position for the next shot is 80% of winning golf." Ben Hogan said that.

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As everyone has said, the first objective is to put your tee shot in the correct spot to avoid the tree in the first place. Also, as everyone said, it is a low percentage shot for higher hcps which includes me. You have a double whammy here in that a higher lofted club is easier to hook, but also harder to keep low. That said, here is what I try; I like to use something like a 4 iron. Line up as mentioned with the club face where you want to start. I line my shoulders, waist, knees and feet to the right of that line. There is an old saying, swing slow to hit low. I try to make a smooth tempo swing about 50-60% of normal speed, about 50-60% of normal length, which gives me time to be aware of a definite rolling back and then over of my forearms/wrists. Someone called this the "hitch-hiker" move. For a right hander, make a gentle fist with your left hand, thumb straight up, left arm extended. Roll that thumb 90 degrees right, back to straight, then 90 degrees left. Imagine that move as you swing the club back and through the ball with the club head going low and slow. It is a low per centage shot. I can get the low part maybe 3-4 times out of 5, but the hook part maybe 2 times out of 5.
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Moving the ball back in your stance wont help much. Most of the time your hands will just flip and you'll loose inside swing arc.

Also strengthening the grip will help a bit more, because it does promote an inside to out swing path, but it also forces the clubface to be more open as well, so its kinda counter productive. Note that is just a general tendency, not law, some players can hit pull cuts with a strong grip, so its individually based.

If you want to hit a snap hook, or a big hook, speed up your arms in the downswing with out speeding up your body. Really focus on pushing the ball right. It sounds counter productive to think right to hit it left. Then all you need to do is just control the clubface to get how much curve you want. If you want to really hook it, close the clubface a bit and really swing to the right. The goal is to get a big degree of separation between the clubface and swing path to produce a hook spin.

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The old hero shot after a bad shot thing. Usually not worth attempting because more often than not it leads to more trouble. If it's me I punch out and try to save bogey and go for the bounce back on the next hole by staying out of trouble.

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I'd walk up to the pro shop, find out who designed that course, get his address, knock on his door and when he answers, punch him square in the face. THEN tell him to take out the Frikkin trees in the middle of a fairway! Who does he think he is, Nicklaus? Stupidest thing I've ever seen in a course design. Put a tree in the middle of the fairway? And I've seen a few of them. unless some rare Spotted Owl with epilepsy and one eye lived in the tree, get it out of the fairway.
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Trees are an obstacle just like water, bunkers etc. If it's part of the design it's supposed to make you think. Most of the in fairway trees I've seen play like a large fairway bunker, layup, play around or over it. Most are situated on short par 4's here. There is a local course with a 191yd par 4 with a tree in the middle with a layup area directly to the right of it.

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Yeah, most of the fairway trees I can think of around my area are placed near a mild dogleg to add a bit of danger if you think you're going to get cute and cut the corner, they add the risk to the reward.  I try to play around 'em. :surrender:

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adding a tree to a corner of a dogleg is fine. A couple that I've come across are at a nice driver distance or just beyond on a straight hole. Smack out the best drive of the day only to find your approach blocked by a bloody tree or it's branches with no wiggle room on either side of the fairway. I think at Nicklaus' Long Bay in Myrtle Beach, there is a huge tree in the middle of one of the fairways. BUT- the fairway is almost 100 yds wide at the landing area so you can play around it. Plenty of room. Designers forget that a tree can grow pretty quick. Like that commercial- "Yeah, but when I did it, the tree was only 15 feet high". Off the tee to a tree that is 225 on the FAR side of a dogleg corner is fine, too (Glen Brook GC in PA). Fade or slice and it's a 1/2 stroke to get back around. The shot is to keep to the left or with a draw. And even that one is just OFF the fairway.
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I'll ask my regular golf buddy.  He's hitting low hooks all the time lately.

And he doesn't even want to.

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