Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Butch Harmon on Topping

You may have seen Hunter Mahan top the ball from the rough this past weekend, sending the shot a blistering 10 feet or so... and still leaving it in the rough. It was one of those embarrassing moments (for Hunter) that gave millions of weekend hackers hope. After all, if even the pros hit one like that on occasion...

While it wasn't exactly the same problem that most of us face when we top one from the fairway, there are some similarities between the two. I found this recent tip video from Butch Harmon that deals with the problem, and I thought I'd pass it along.



I don't have much to add to this, but here's something for you to consider if you're having trouble "staying down" on your shot: Perhaps you simply need to think about your shot differently.

If you have too much up-and-down movement in your swing, perhaps your concept of your swing is too vertical. If you start thinking of your swing in terms of side-to-side movement, you may have better luck. I don't mean that you sway back and forth but simply that you think in terms of moves that are more rotary, which you may feel as being more horizontal. Think in terms of making a tennis forehand, or perhaps throwing a Frisbee. (You may remember Jimmy Ballard's image of backhanding the target; that works also.) Too much vertical movement can be a symptom of pushing up with your knees rather than turning your hips.

If you're struggling with "standing up" on your shots, look for a swing thought that's more rotary. Maybe it'll help you avoid leaving one in the rough as well.

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