It's All About The Lie

When teaching the short game, I am frequently asked what type of shot a student should be playing and my reply is simple. It’s all about the lie. If the lie is good, a golfer can play a variety of shots (hopefully one that they have practiced). If the lie is poor, then most of the time, a lower trajectory shot (bump and run) is the choice. The lower trajectory shot tends to be safer for many golfers because it requires that the bottom of the swing (low point) is in front of the ball. In most cases, this means that the clubhead will be moving downward or on a descending angle towards the ball (lower trajectory commonly referred to as the bump and run). When the clubhead is moving downward, contact is generally made with the ball first and the ground second. This is why it tends to be a safer shot.

The one secret that is not universally known to all golfers is that the toe of the club must get to the ball first in all shots. That is the way the golf club is designed. Even when hitting short game shots (low trajectory/mid-trajectory/high trajectory), the toe of the club must get to the ball first. When this happens, the result of the shot will be solid and square with a shallow divot. Practice this in all shots (especially the bump and run) and improvement will be made.