The Truth About Lies
By Erika Larkin on 5/15/13
We are always at the mercy of our lie in golf especially around the green. Even if the situation calls for a certain type of shot (a high lob) we sometimes have to adjust and settle for a different trajectory or release (roll out) just to be able to make solid contact and give ourselves a chance at a putt. When golfers take their lie for granted and they assume, for example, that their favorite bump and run 7 iron shot should work well out of a thick lie in the rough, they are just setting themselves up for disappointment. We can't fit a square peg through a round hole ... so let's not try to force our shots onto a given lie ... you must understand how the lie dictates the shot.
Specifically talking about lies around the green here six scenarios and things to consider about adjust to that lie respectively:
Erika Larkin is the Director of Instruction at Larkin Golf Learning Community at Stonewall Golf Club in Gainesville, Virigina. She was named the 2012 Middle Atlantic PGA "Teacher of the Year" and the 2011 "Top Golf Pro" by Washingtonian Magazine... and she's oobgolf's newest columnist. She will be writing on a variety of topics including instruction, so if you have a question for her or an idea for a column, email her at ErikaLarkin@pga.com. Enjoy!
[ comments ]
Recently I had a ball in a "bird's nest" while playing #17, lying on bare ground surrounded by 3" rough. It was 10 yards from the edge of the green, and 20 yards from the pin. Really awful lie and I didn't know what to do. So I took a 56 SW and tried to hit a steep, wrist hinged "30 yd punch-pitch" (similar to your #5), but hit too hard and it sailed over the green, leaving me 15 yards on the other side, short sided with a downhill landing area. Another pitch and two putts got me a double bogey which was a real disappointment.
Any specific advice for "bird's nests"?
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Treat this lie like a bunker shot: play the ball slightly up in your stance, open the face of a lofty wedge, hinge up sharply on the backswing and work the club down and through that grass. A steep angle of attack with a good body turn and a "blocked" (open) clubface through impact is a key part of getting the ball out of this lie and landing softly on the green.
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