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Swing falls over on poorer fairways


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On my home course the fairways have invariably nice thick lush grass whick I can ping my wedges off and have em stopping dead on the green. Very rarely do I mishit fat or thin.
Last day we were on a course where the fairways were less than perfect. The grass was not very thick and cut very tight. 80 yrds out on the first fairway I felt nervous looking at my lie with very little grass under it and this nervousness fed through resulting in a monster fat shot that nearly broke my wrist. Next shot same type of lie again but this time I took it thin and bladed it 40 yrds the far side of the green. My confidence was now in bits and I came off with 90 something :( Now from 80 yrds out on my home course I expect to be within 10 ft of the hole and a max of 2 putts, fat or thin never enters my mind.
So what kind of swing thought do you have for these less than perfect conditions. I tend to play the ball back a little more in my stance but don't want to over do it incase of having too steep of a down swing but this made no diference anyways last day.
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My only thought is to hit the ball first. Regardless of lie, the ball will come out as it should. You can hit the ball off a wooden plank as long as you hit the ball first. I don't care if I take a huge divot, as long as I make contact with the ball first, and get good contact, the ball will come off like it should.
With the ball sitting tight, you have less room for error when getting under it. This is why many advice everyone to tee the ball up, always.

Find a short cut area, or press the ball down on the grass on the range so you get a similar lie to that you get at a short fairway so you can practice it and build confidence. You can try a more shallow approach to the ball. With a steep approach you have to be more accurate, less room for error. With a shallow swing you don't risk digging too far into the ground. You might risk hitting it thin, while a too steep will risk hitting it fat.
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If you stand in the woods trying to hit your rescue through a small opening - what do you think of in that moment? Do you imagine how the ball bounces back and smacks you in your groin and you lay down in agonizing pain or do you imagine how your ball finds the opening and finds the green?

Honestly, with todays groove technology no fairway can be that bad that it has any significant influence on your spin, unless, you think that way and try to alter from your normal game. Think positive!
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I would approach it the same as I would in the opposite case; a soggy, soft fairway. In both cases ball-first contact is crucial, and any deviation from that is magnified. So standing over these shots my only extra swing thought is to concentrate on keeping my weight forward through impact. It's easier to create lag and get that solid *click* that you want off the tight lie. Weight forward and engage the big muscles.
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I'm really trying to decide if this is a true posting, or a joke. A guy with an 8 HC is struggling to hit from tight lies? Is it possible to carry an 8 HC having never been confronted with less-than-perfect fairways?
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Hitting the ball first is crucial and I think you should generally not try to pick it which is the tendency when you see that tight lie. I have tight lies often because I don't play the highest qaulity golf courses all the time. You still have to hit down on the ball. Start trying to scoop or pick those tight lies all the time will result in thins and fats.
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I'm really trying to decide if this is a true posting, or a joke. A guy with an 8 HC is struggling to hit from tight lies? Is it possible to carry an 8 HC having never been confronted with less-than-perfect fairways?

No, it is impossible. The laws of golf do not allow such events from taking place. I love tight cut fairways. Much easier to control spin with less grass.

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I love tight lies, I wish my course had them. The fairways here aren't that great so you don't run across them very often.

You can have some from my course if you want them!!

Suffering badly from lack of rainfall in Southern England at the moment and my home course is bone dry. I hit a ball the other day and nearly broke my wrist the ground is that hard and bare. It would have been easier playing the ball from the floorboards in my dining room... Looking forward to playing again at the week-end but will play "away from home" on a course with a bit of grass on it.
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Personally i love mowed tight fairways,try to get out of the habit of picking the ball,with a wedge there should always be a divot.I know in Ireland a lot of the courses don't have tight mowed fairways so you wouldn't have that type of shot.When you have a lie that sits up the ball take a divot also.Don't try and pick it.
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jfrain2004,

Any chance you have high bounce on your wedges? If so, this could give you problems off of tight-lie fairways.

One course I play frequently has weird "fluffy hardpan" turf on some low areas. It got too much moisture during July, and remaining grass is coarse and not too thick. Often the ball - in the fairway - is sitting on the dirt with wispy grass around it.

A pro suggested I play a shot back in my stance, making sure I hit the ball first. Shot comes off lower, but it does have some check spin.

That ties into the marketing mantra of one high-end wedge maker - can't remember which. Have low-bounce wedges for spring and fall, and swap them out for high-bounce wedges for fluffy grass during summer! Great idea if you can afford to tie up $1,000+ in an arsenal of Vokeys.
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I'm really trying to decide if this is a true posting, or a joke. A guy with an 8 HC is struggling to hit from tight lies? Is it possible to carry an 8 HC having never been confronted with less-than-perfect fairways?

It is possible indeed, and that's with 4 wedges 5 irons and a driver, no woods or hybrids in my bag :( and a 5 iron that only goes 145 yrds.

The grass cut tight is not so much the problem as there being very little of it. The problem I have is hitting a ball off a fairway that is not much better than a rolled dirt track. If there is a thick covering of grass on a fairway which has being cut very very tight then that would not present a problem. Thick grass indicates the ground is not rock hard. So I know when I take my divot that my wrist will not snap on contact with hard ground. One tip I came across is to practice with an old club hitting off concrete but that sounds very risky :(
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Note: This thread is 4330 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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