Backswing RoundUp

What's the best technique for an amateur to intentionally hit a draw?

What's the best technique for an amateur to intentionally hit a draw?

Photo: Golf Digest Middle East | May 2020

Many golfers would love to get just a little more distance out of their swing. One great way to do that is by hitting a draw (a slight right to left shot for right-handed golfers). How can you hit this type of shot and what are good ways to practice and improve your draw technique? Check out what these top golf professionals have to say.

3 Ball Drill

The 3 ball drill will not only help a player hit draws & fades on demand but it can also help you make your swing more dependable.
Line up 3 balls in a triangle pattern with 2 balls on your toe line about a club length outside each foot and the point of the triangle will be the ball you hit. Let’s number the balls 1,2&3 starting with the ball furthest away from the target as #1, the ball you’ll hit is #2 and the ball closest to the target is #3.
To hit a draw swing along the line between ball 1 & ball 2 and shake hands with the target with your bottom hand. This gets the path of club moving in to out enough so that the face will be closed to that path. If you want to hit a fade, swing along the line between 2 & 3 and if you want to make your swing more neutral swing over ball 1, hit ball 2 and follow through over ball 3.

Senior Director, Academy Development U.S. Kids Golf, Longleaf Golf & Family Club

James Hardy

Senior Director, Academy Development

U.S. Kids Golf, Longleaf Golf & Family Club

Longleaf Golf & Family Club, Southern Pines, NC

Change Your Face

For an amateur swing more in to out is difficult. A lot of the time the bigger issue is an overly open clubface at impact. For the average golfer if you learn to square or close the face first you can still hit a draw without coming from the inside, you just need to aim right. So the recap is aim right and shut the face in the downswing to hit a draw.

Nick Duffy Golf

Nick Duffy

PGA Golf Professional

Director of Instruction

Nick Duffy Golf, Winter Garden, FL

Easiest way to hit a draw

The easiest way to hit a draw is to close the club face relative to the SWING PATH at impact. For most weekend golfers, this will result in a PULL DRAW where you would have to aim to the right of the target with your feet and body to get the ball to finish on target.

The easiest way to do this is with your grip first, and then your release. Leave the club square and rotate BOTH hands CLOCKWISE on the grip until the Vs between your thumbs and index fingers both point to the right of the right shoulder. Then aim your feet and body at the right edge of the safe zone. DO NOT aim where a straight shot will get you in trouble.

During the swing, focus on twisting the grip with your left hand like a SCREWDRIVER as you approach the ball. This will close the face to the swing path and curve the ball to the left.

Now for the harder, but correct way to hit a draw;
To hit the draw that you see the pros hit on TV, where the ball leaves to the right and comes back to the center, you will need to shift your swing path to the right or IN TO OUT. This is the better draw because the ball goes a lot higher and you can keep aiming at your target. Once your swing path is to the right (you will know because your straight ball will be a push), we still want to close the face to the path a little, but NOT the target. Adjust your grip as stated above, but not as much. The face still needs to point a little RIGHT of the target at impact. Aim directly at your target and focus on swinging IN to OUT. If you have adjusted the grip correctly, your ball should push a little right, then draw back to center.

This is harder to do because changing your swing path is a major swing change. I highly recommend finding a swing coach to help you make the changes the right way.

Nathan Morris

Director of Instruction

Center Manager

GOLFTEC Westminster, Westminster, CO

Close stance

The easiest way is to close your stance to the target line so it’s easier for your path to be more in to out . Just remember to make sure the face is somewhat closed to the path .

A good example would be path 4 degrees right of target at impact and the face 2 degrees open at impact . That would produce a easy five yards draw

Coronado Golf Course

Brian Smock

Head Golf Professional

Coronado Golf Course, Coronado, CA

Posture and pivot are the keys

The simplistic answer is to aim where you want the ball to start and close the face to where you want the ball to finish.

That won’t work with longer clubs it the golfer has a steep, outside -in swing. Short irons will be pulled and less lofted clubs won’t get up in the air

To hit a draw, the path must also change to be shallower and more from the inside. Posture and pivot are the keys. Tilting away from the target and taking club inside with your pivot will give better results

DragonRidge Country Club

Mike Davis

Director of Instruction

DragonRidge Country Club, Henderson, NV

A Few Different Ways

There are a few different ways to work the ball. Some golfers are conventional in their approach and others are not so conventional. The conventional ways (that I endorse) to hit a draw include strengthening your grip and closing the club face. But, I’ve found from my personal experience (which may be more unconventional) that I usually can draw the ball when I really think about covering the ball by swinging around the ball to the inside (in the forward swing) with a low finish.

Brian Powers

PGA Golf Professional

Master Golf Teaching Professional®

Tee Time Practice Facility, Carpinteria, CA

Aim right and turn hard!

Lots of misconceptions about how to actually hit a draw. I hear it all the time “just roll your hands over it.” Yes that will cause the ball to move right to left, but there is no constancy to this. In order to properly hit a consistent draw aim right of the target, swing the club inside and turn the upper body through the shot. The best example of this is Tom Lehman.

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Canyon Springs Golf Course

Zachary Abels

PGA Golf Professional

Canyon Springs Golf Course, Twin Falls, ID

Get the toe of the club to the ball first!

Anyone looking to hit a draw must first understand how the golf club is engineered to work. A person must be educated on getting the toe of the club around to the golf ball first. To hit a draw a person must feel like the toe of the club is wrapping around the golf ball. If the heel of the club gets to the ball first, the result will be a shot to the right. When teaching a person to do this, it all begins with a grip that allows the club face to square up so that the toe gets to the ball first. I always say “get the toe of the club to the ball first”.

Brian Kelly

Head Golf Professional | Ohio State Athletics

Ohio State Athletics, Columbus, OH

How to draw the ball

When you want to curve your shot from right to left, as a right hander, then you have a “draw shot” in mind. Here’s how: Aim your stance 5 yards to the right of your target line. Close your shoulders and your hips, so that they are also 5 yards to the right of the target line. Swing the golf club back, low to the ground, along the line of your stance. This is called, “swinging from the inside.“ On the downswing, swing back down on that same line (that you took the club back on), and swing out, as you finish, 5 yards to the right of the target. This is called “swinging inside – out.“ Most importantly, at impact, release the club face, (by using soft grip pressure), in order to shut the club’s face at impact, so that the face is aimed to the left of the target. This is known as “path to the right – face to the left.” Do not force the shot, use soft grip pressure, loose muscles and good tempo! That’s how you draw the ball! Now, send me an email if you have any questions: [email protected] Enjoy!

The Country Club of Virginia

Adam Smith

Head Golf Instructor

James River Golf Course

The Country Club of Virginia, Richmond, VA

Draw Shot

This is the Holy Grail for almost everyone. I will try and keep this as short as possible.

To understand the draw lets first discuss the slice.

The slice occurs when the club head is on an outside to inside path on the the forward swing. The club face is also open relative to the path the club is traveling on.

So to draw the ball we need to do the opposite.

The draw occurs when the club is on an inside to outside path on the forward swing. The club face is also closed relative to the path the club is traveling on.

To try and help this process along for the draw, you can close your stance slightly, front foot closer to target line than trail foot. This will aid in the club being able to approach the ball more from the inside.

This all sounds relatively easy, however, in my opinion the draw also requires more club face rotation through the impact zone.

You may be able to get on the inside of the ball, but if the face is not rotating properly the ball will just start right and stay right (for a right handed player). There needs to be a certain amount of face rotation (toe of club passing heal of club) through impact.

Because of this there is a lot more timing required to hit a proper draw shot, and why it’s generally a harder shot for most people to hit.

Flagler Golf Academy

Rick Flagler

PGA Certified Professional

Five Ponds Golf Club | Flagler Golf Academy, Warminster, PA

How to spin it!

To hit a draw the easiest way is to aim body to the right( for right hander) and pre-set club face pointing towards intended target. Then swing along body lines and the ball should curve. Move the ball back in the stance a bit to promote in to out motion. Be careful to give yourself plenty of room to get around any obstacles in your way as the initial flight of the ball will follow the face!

Topgolf Houston – Spring

Dan White

Director of Instruction

Topgolf Houston – Spring, Spring, TX

The inside path to better golf

As a golf instructor helping a “slicer” experience a hook/draw is very exciting for both the teacher and the player. It is critical for long term development of a player to learn to hit an intentional hook. Nearly every low handicap player develops this skill.

The ingredients for the hook/draw are simple. Through impact the club face MUST be closed in relation to the direction of the swing. How to do this is the “million dollar question”. My preference as an instructor is to help the player acquire a correct lead hand grip that will allow the club to behave properly. As well “if needed” I will help them learn the feel of controlling the club face through proper lead hand wrist and hand action coming into and through impact. Once the player can achieve impact with a club face closed relative to the swing direction ball will hook. Usually the ball will go much farther and way off line. To get the new ball flight into their target, I will then set up an obstacle course to help the player learn to get in charge of the forward swing direction. This new combo of swing direction and club face alignment will change their golfing life.

Rockville Links Club

Philip Cardwell

Teaching Professional

Rockville Links Club,

Swing the club at 1 O'clock...

Tell the student to imagine at the address position they are standing on a giant clock (right hand golfer)…The ball is at 3 O’clock…They need to swing the club pass the 3 O’clock position to the 1 O’clock position…Then tell the student 1 O’clock is are favorite time of day!

Frank Panetta

PGA Golf Professional

Teaching Professional

CordeValle Golf Club, San Martin, CA

Your Grip Controls the Clubface

Many ways are talked about in moving the golf ball left or right but it’s really pretty easy! By changing your grip your ball will curve, let’s talk about it! In right handed player terms, if you show more knuckles on your left hand grip, the ball will curve left! If you set your left thumb directly on top of the grip showing no knuckles, your ball will go right! Remember to alter your aim for the curve you will get and try this on the range before going on the course. Good luck and work that ball with your grip change!!

Barry Clayton

PGA Golf Professional

Director of Instruction

Westin Mission Hills Resort, Rancho Mirage, CA

Hitting A Draw

#1 Make sure you are in a neutral or strong grip setup position.

#2 one of the biggest keys is to take the backswing more around the body (taking the club inside) to get the ball starter to the right of the target (for right-handers).

#3 you need to roll the hands over in order to have a closed club face at impact.

Canyon Crest Country Club

Calvin Maranville

PGA Golf Professional

Director of Instruction

Canyon Crest Country Club, Riverside, CA

Swing out to the right where you'd like the ball to start

Take a little closed stance aiming a little to the right where you’d like the ball to start, and pull the right foot back little. Swing out to the right where you’d like the ball to start and let your forearms rotate to the left as you swing through the ball which gets the clubface pointing left of where you are swinging, if you swing 10 degrees to the right you’d like your clubface 5 degrees left of that, this is going to produce a gentle right to left spinning draw.

Links at Mariners Point

Gary Monisteri

PGA Golf Professional

Links at Mariners Point, Foster City, CA

Explain path and face

The most efficient way to help a player hit a draw is to explain how the relationship of path and face creates the shot. The next step through drills or the use of tech is to establish path. Divot feedback for irons and obstacle feedback for woods create feedback for the player. The final step is through positioning the club face at address (before the club is gripped), the player can then create different ball flights and “fine tune” his swing accordingly. This solution assumes a reasonably neutral grip.

Frederick Elliott

PGA Teaching Professional

NCPGA professional of the year 2006

Hidden Valley Country Club, Reno, NV

Aim your feet (toe line) and shoulders (for a right-handed golfer) to the right of the target and aim your club-face at the target.

When you need to intentionally draw the ball, simply aim your feet (toe line) and shoulders (for a right-handed golfer) to the right of the target and aim your club-face at the target. Your club-head path should parallel your toe line. Take your normal swing and you should see the ball curve from right to left. For left-handed golfers, the shoulders and toe line should be aimed to the left of the target and the club-face aimed at the target. Your club-head path should parallel your toe line. Take your normal swing and you should see the ball curve from left to right. While there are many ways to draw the ball, this is the simplest way without changing your swing. Perfecting this technique takes about 10-20 swings to get it right but once you do you will have another go-to-shot in your arsenal.

Ducky O'Toole

PGA Golf Professional

DNA Golf, Carmel, CA

No-brainer draw technique

Take a normal stance but aim right of your target. Rotate the grip so that the club face is pointed to the left and swing normally. You will need to practice with different clubs because the effect of closing the face will reduce the effective loft which will make it harder to get the ball in the air with a less lofted club. So please practice this shot before you try it on the course. Also, depending on your normal swing habits, angle of attack and club path at impact, results will vary from person to person and so it’s important to know the likely outcome before you try to hit the draw. Sometimes you just have to aim left and hit the fade and sometimes you have to lay up.

Balbi Golf

David Balbi

PGA Quarter Century Club

Balbi Golf, San Carlos, CA

Shot Shaping - Draw

It’s so important for players to understand what causes curve in ball flight. No matter what the player wishes for based on grip, stance, ball position, etc., the only way the ball will curve left (for right hander) is for the club path to be slightly right of target and the face to be left of that path. If the face is too closed it will hook and if it is the same or right of the path it will push or fade. I like players to align for path and aim club to square to produce the draw. Keep it simple!

Arsenal Island Golf Course

Todd Fowler

PGA Member

2015 Iowa PGA Professional of the Year. 2004 Iowa Golf Association Professional of the Year

Golf Galaxy, Davenport, Iowa

Grip the club so you can see 3 knuckles on your left hand(for Righties)

If your grip is strong enough(both hands rotated away from the target) its the best way to stop your slice. When you look down at your top hand you should see at least 3 knuckles!

Prospect Golf

Jeff DelRosso

Head Golf Professional

Prospect Golf, Prospect, CT

Hitting a Draw: The Easy Way

Need help hitting a draw? Here is how to hit a draw with purpose and power.

First, ensure that you are square to the target. Many folks aren’t lined up correctly and this causes errors in the path of the club. Secondly ensure that when you take the club back, that the club face matches your spine angle when the club is parallel to the ground. Most golfers open their club face as they take the club away. This is counter-intuitive and results in a face, rather than a draw. Lastly, in order to hit a draw, you have to swing out to first base (for right-handed golfers). If you hit a fade and want to hit a draw, you need to swing out with slightly closed club face.

If you are still having an issue hitting a draw, visit www.SwingEssentials.com for free golf content and a complimentary swing analysis. We look forward to seeing you. Have fun on the golf course!

AJ Nelson is the Founder of the Swing Essentials golf app

AJ Nelson

PGA Golf Professional

Swing Essentials Golf App, Centreville, VA

Play a low running draw around trouble

The three step answer is align yourself to second base, aim the club at the shortstop, and swing to the second baseman. You’ll need more loft, because you’re going to deloft the club when you close the face. You’ll think about making contact toward the toe, because closing the face not only narrows it, but brings the hosel into play. Finally, keep the ball back of center in your stance to facilitate the swing path toward the second baseman. Practice it on the range a bit to get the hang of it before you take it onto the course.

Moses Lake Golf Club

Owen McClain

PGA Golf Professional

Teaching Professional

Moses Lake Golf Club, Moses Lake, WA

Better Described with an Image

This image shows the path that the club head should take, the direction the club face should be pointing, and where the target line actually is. This is a great visual of how to hit a draw.

Bel-Air Country Club

Troy Arfsten

PGA Golf Professional

Bel-Air Country Club, Los Angeles, CA