What adjustments can you make to correct scooping or flipping at impact and achieve a proper release?

10 Professionals Contributed |
Struggling with scooping or flipping your club at impact can severely undermine your golf game, leading to erratic shots and reduced power. To help you conquer this challenge, we've compiled a comprehensive roundup of tips from seasoned professionals, offering practical adjustments that can transform your swing and unlock a new level of performance on the course.

"Stop the Flip" for solid contact!

An age old problem of flipping the club through impact has a couple possible causes.

1. Most common cause is an off plane swing path. Typically, a swing path (plane) that is too steep (out to in) results in the shaft swinging in and up at impact = open clubface, loss of power and toe strikes. Less common is swing path that is too shallow (in to out) = right hand overactive in an effort to square the clubface at impact. This can result in loss of power, blocked shots, quick hooks, topped and thin shots.

2. A Strong right hand grip (trail hand) will allow the right hand to be positioned in “Hammer Mode” where left wrist is cupped (Dorsiflexion) and right wrist bowed (Palmarflexion) at impact that can result in quick hooks, topped and thin shots or high right shots.

Correct impact position = Left arm (lead) straight in line with shaft, left wrist flat.. right wrist bent back… both arms straight and extended in front of chest past impact.

Using the impact bag as demonstrated in the attached video is a great way to feel the correct impact position and “Stop the Flip”

Chuck Will Golf Academy
""Stop the Flip" for solid contact!" @chuckwillpga Click to Tweet

This video will likely fix your flip!

This video has 50k views. It has fixed a lot of flips!

PGA Golf Professional
"This video will likely fix your flip!" Click to Tweet

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Drag and Release

Release of the club is after you hit the golf ball, not before. If you release the club before, yes, you will scoop or flip the shot, causing bad shots to happen. Feeling the proper release is key to your improvement. You can definitely feel a proper release with my drag and release drill.

John Hughes Golf
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Wrists control the clubface angle

To correct scooping or flipping at impact and achieve a proper release in a golf swing, you can make the following wrist adjustments:

1. To Maintain a flat left wrist at impact, the wrists need a certain amount of ulnar deviation: Ensure that your left wrist remains flat (or slight flexion) at impact rather than cupped or extended. This will help you maintain a strong impact position and prevent flipping of the clubhead.

2. Having the correct grip pressure in the least three fingers of the lead hand and the two middle fingers of the trail hand through impact: This will help you deliver a more consistent strike and generate better ball flight.

3. Practice proper wrist hinge: Work on maintaining the correct wrist hinge throughout your swing, especially on the downswing and through impact. This will help you generate power and leverage while preventing any unwanted scooping or flipping.

By making these wrist adjustments and focusing on a proper release, you can improve your ball striking consistency and achieve a more efficient and powerful golf swing. Remember to practice these adjustments regularly to ingrain them into your swing and see improvement in your overall performance on the course.

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Proper release is a chain reaction

So if you struggle releasing the club to early or “flipping” do not try and correct it without realizing a few important aspects.

First, if your impact path is extreme in to out, and you do not “flip” to square the face, you will hit some shots that start right and curve right, which means trouble.

Second, if you have a “steep” transition and tend to early extend or raise up, you will need to “flip” your hands in order to get to the ball.

Finally, if you have trouble turning your hips slightly and rotating thru impact, the weight of the clubhead will pass your hands thru impact making it very difficult to hold the angles.
Compression happens when the swing is on plane and the downswing is in sequence and the golfer has the ability to shift momentum and turn.

Learn what the proper impact position feels like. Feel the angles in your trail elbow, wrist and waist, then practice getting there.

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Proper footwork can eliminate flipping & scooping

Flipping and/or scooping is generally caused by improper footwork. Fix your foot pressure, shoulder turn and pivot and you can begin to release the club properly. The ‘fix’ requires loading/transferring your weight to the heel of your trail foot in your backswing as you turn away from your target and then pivoting to your lead foot as you turn towards your target before you strike the ball in your forward swing. While hitting off your back foot can work, it is not the suggested method if you are capable of making a proper pivot. Whether you are putting, chipping, pitching or swinging, having your weight solidly on your lead foot prior to impact makes all the difference in making solid contact. This simple action will enable the leading edge of your golf club to strike the golf ball below the equator with a descending blow and eliminate the ascending blow.

Your golf clubs are designed to get the ball in the air and do not need to be manipulated. Get your weight on your lead foot and enjoy the effortless power of a proper golf swing. Practice turning your shoulders (helicopter drill) as you pivot from your front foot to your back foot and then back to your front foot to feel the proper pivot and weight transfer. Good news, practicing this motion could result in more distance and effortless power.

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Stick with a stick!

Leading with your hands may be easy when chipping and for small shots, but when it comes to full swing, it’s tough to know at impact if your hands are really in the proper position. Flipping or scooping is usually caused by a dominant trail hand wanting to take over, or not turning your body and getting out of the way for your hands to follow through.

To practice, try holding an alignment stick together with the grip so it rests on your lead hip, or pushing a stick through the hole of the grip, to create an elongated club. This stick will prevent flipping of the wrists through impact because it is blocked by your body. Take small or half swings, getting your body to turn out of the way so your hands can lead through impact. It will help with short game, and most importantly impact in general

PGA Golf Professional
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Club head lag…

It is imperative to feel a flat left wrist and a bent right wrist as a player swings the club. It is also important to feel the pressure point one the trail hand index finger (part of index finger that touches the grip).

It is essential for players to deliver the grip end of the club past ball line on the way to impact. (See Tiger photo sequence)

The club head should never pass the grip end of the club in a fundamentally sound full shot.
This point is elusive and a somewhat of a secret that good ball strikers understand.
1 feature of bad ball striking is hitting on the collapse with an un flexed shaft…a hallmark of WEAK contact.

Players should learn how to properly pivot into their lead side while still feeling the club setting at the top of the b/s. This creates separation of upper and lower body movements.

If you try to emulate the pictures attached below you will never hit on the collapse!

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Good For the Ice Cream Shop

Scooping is good at the Ice Cream Polar not in GOLF neither is Flipping. Sounds like people are trying to help the golf ball up in the air. So we need to look at where golfers have there hands and shaft at impact. At the range golfers can try hit PUNCH SHOTS, at home try to use a 2×4 with a line 7 inches from the back end of the board ( credit to Jeff Coston). This teaches to get hands more ahead or this credit goes to Mike Bender. Take a WATER Bottle with Cap end to base of wall make a backswing come down with club face at base of bottle and Top hand touching Wall.

Fox Hollow Golf Club
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Hit it Low!!!!

One of the things I think help players ‘flip’ or scoop the ball is to learn to hit low shots. Either using props or launch monitor data, the player can get ball to fly at a lower trajectory by getting lower body weight forward and hands forward at impact therefore reducing the loft of the club.

Arsenal Island Golf Course
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