Stop The Flippers!

Instruction

How To Stop The Flippers

 

One common problem I often see when I coach the short game is something I call the “flippers”.  As I often say, Flipper lives at Sea World, not on the golf course.  The flippers is a dreaded disease that sucks the life out of any good short game. 

What are the flippers?

I often see the flippers on both chips and pitches.  The flippers happen when you “flip” your wrist through impact and let your top hand break down, all of a sudden FLIP.  This causes the club head to pass the hands, the shaft gets too vertical, and you stand up through impact causing both fat and thin shots.

What causes the flippers?

I think the biggest reason people do this is a lack of acceleration through impact.  You MUST accelerate the club to get spin and control your distance.  This brings me to the other reason:  FEAR.  The fear of hitting the ball thin or fat automatically causes the flippers. 

How do you overcome these mistakes?

Well, first you must keep your hands moving in front of the club head.  Not, the other way around.  Next, you must “rip” your chips and pitches.  I mean hit them hard.  Most people that I coach don’t hit the ball hard enough around the green to make the ball spin.  Once you learn to hit them solid and hard, then you can control your distance through spin and height of shot. 

I hope these tips help you overcome your fears around the green.  NO MORE FLIPPERS!

Mike Fay

Mike Fay

PGA Director of Instruction

With over 25 years of teaching experience, it's easy to see why Mike has become a leader in the world of golf instruction. Everything from cutting edge social networking techniques to having his own podcast, Mike has helped to change the face of teaching golf.  He currently is the Director of Player Performance at the Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Email:  mike@mikefaygolf.com

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Should I Chip or Pitch?

Instruction

Should I Chip Or Pitch?

 

One question that I am often asked is:  what club should I use around the green for a particular shot.  Which is usually followed by me asking them this:  Do you think you should chip this shot or pitch this shot?  The following are some tips on what you should do in certain situations:

The difference between a pitch and a chip is this:  a chip is where the ball is on the ground longer than it’s in the air, a pitch is the opposite:  the ball is in the air longer than on the ground.

Now, here’s the question:  which do I do when?  There are a number of factors that determine this:

  • Lie-The worse the lie the more you should pitch it.  That usually means using a sand wedge or lob wedge.

  • Space-How much room do you have to land the ball?  Pitch if there’s less room, chip if there’s more room.

  • Landing Area-Determining the flattest part of the green where the ball will roll straight when it lands.  The closer to the pin that is, the more you should pitch, the less you should chip.

The backswing is the only difference between a chip and a pitch.  The backswing in a chip has no wrist cock because you want the ball to run when it hits the green.  The backswing in a pitch has wrist cock because you want to add loft to the shot.

I hope these tips help you decide what to do.  Picking the right shot will get you closer to the hole and help you get up and down.

 

Mike Fay

Mike Fay

PGA Director of Instruction

With over 25 years of teaching experience, it's easy to see why Mike has become a leader in the world of golf instruction. Everything from cutting edge social networking techniques to having his own podcast, Mike has helped to change the face of teaching golf.  He currently is the Director of Player Performance at the Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Email:  mike@mikefaygolf.com

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Improve Your Contact Around The Green

Instruction

Improve Your Contact Around The Green

 

 

 

One way to better your short game around the green is to hit the ball more solidly.  Once you learn to hit the ball solidly, then you will be able to develop a feel for how far your shots will travel.   Here are four ways to hit the ball more solidly.  Whether chipping or pitching, these are easy, simple and effective ways to improve your contact around the green.

 

  • Your club shaft is FORWARD with the butt end of the grip starting and finishing in front of the ball.
  • Your head should be OVER of the ball position and should stay there through out the swing and doesn’t move up, down or sideways.
  • The back of the LEAD hand should face the target and the club face should face the SKY when the swing is finished.
  • Your club head should finish BELOW your hands.
Mike Fay

Mike Fay

PGA Director of Instruction

With over 25 years of teaching experience, it's easy to see why Mike has become a leader in the world of golf instruction. Everything from cutting edge social networking techniques to having his own podcast, Mike has helped to change the face of teaching golf.  He currently is the Director of Player Performance at the Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Email:  mike@mikefaygolf.com

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How Your Sand Wedge Works

Instruction

How Your Sand Wedge Works

 

Let’s start with a little history….

The first golf wedge to be played was the pitching wedge, also known as a jigger. This was the best option golfers had for difficult shots until the invention of the sand wedge.The sand wedge was invented by Gene Sarazen after flying in Howard Hughes‘ private plane. He built his first prototype in 1931 and started carrying it in his bag in 1932. Before his invention of the sand wedge, many golfers had a difficult time getting their balls out of the bunker.

Gene Sarazen began to win tournaments in 1935 with a new club he had invented that was specialized for sand play. He is hailed as the inventor of the sand wedge. However, history goes about 3 years further back than that. “Spoon” clubs offered varying degrees of loft and allowed players to scoop their ball out of sand traps and deep rough. As manufacturers became more and more innovative with club design, new types of wedges appeared. Some had concave faces, others featured deeply grooved faces, but not all of these designs conformed to USGA and R&A regulations, and many were banned. With the concave-faced wedge having been outlawed in 1931, Sarazen designed his sand wedge with a straight face. Another modification that he made was to add extra lead to the front edge of the club face, allowing it to cut through the sand more smoothly. After he won the 1932 British and U.S. Opens with the help of his new club, its popularity quickly grew.

Well now that we have a little history on how Gene Sarazen changed the game of golf forever.  Lets move on to talk about what that plane ride showed Mr. Sarazen how a “rutter” on the bottom of a wedge would help golfers all around the world play better.

In golf, Bounce, or bounce angle, is a term used to describe the angle inscribed by the leading edge of a golfing iron (particularly a wedge), the sole of the club, and the ground. In plainer terms, bounce angle is an indication of how much the sole, or bottom-most part, of the club head lifts the leading edge. A high bounce angle (angles of 12-15o are not uncommon) indicates a sole which lifts the leading edge significantly, whereas a club with little or no bounce allows the leading edge to contact the ground without interference.

The purpose of introducing bounce into club head design is to control how easily wedges, with their steep angles of attack, penetrate the ground under the ball. A low- or zero-bounce club has a streamlined profile, and the sharp leading edge of the club will tend to cut into the ground readily. When this is undesirable, the use of a club with more bounce will cause the sole of the club to impact first, keeping the wedge from digging into the surface by causing it to “bounce” across the surface instead.

In practical terms, lower bounce wedges are advised for thin grass and tight lies, whereas those with more bounce are generally employed in deep rough or sand.

Now you know the bounce is on the bottom of your wedge.  How do you use it correctly-or-incorrectly?

Here are some key points about club address position that can help you:

  • The more the face is open, the more the bounce is exposed.
  • Getting the toe of the club off the ground and opening the face exposes the bounce even more.
  • The opposite is true for your heel of the club.  If the toe is in the ground, no bounce is exposed.
  • If the toe is in the ground with the face open, 50% of the bounce is exposed.

The above are the four different set up positions for your short game shots.  Here are some situations that might help you determine which position to do when:

  • In a bunker with a good lie, the face must be open to activate the bounce.  In a bunker with a poor lie, the leading edge of your club must be used to “dig” out the bad lie.  In extreme cases, lowering the heel towards the sand can be used.
  • In a closely mown area, bounce should not be used.  Instead use the toe in the ground method,  this acts like a knife to rip the ball off the turf.
  • In large rough around the green, put the club heel down and adjust for height of the shot.  Open the face more:  worse the lie and higher shot required.

I hope all these tips can help you with your wedge game.  A special thanks to wikipedia for our history lesson.

 

Mike Fay

Mike Fay

PGA Director of Instruction

With over 25 years of teaching experience, it's easy to see why Mike has become a leader in the world of golf instruction. Everything from cutting edge social networking techniques to having his own podcast, Mike has helped to change the face of teaching golf.  He currently is the Director of Player Performance at the Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Email:  mike@mikefaygolf.com

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Short Putt Drill

Instruction

Short Putt Drill

 

I started doing this drill back in 1998 while playing on the NGA Hooters Tour.  In fact I remember where, it was Sikeston, MO at The Boot Heel GC.  Ever since then, I always go back to this drill to keep my putting sharp.

Did you know that PGA Tour players make about 98% of their three footers?  Also, believe it or not, they only make about 53% of their six footers.  Amazing huh!  Most people would think way more would be made but as you know TV coverage only shows the players making putts, not the players who are not close to the lead.  With all that being said, here’s what I did to become a good putter.  Maybe it will help you too.

Set-Up

Here’s what you need:  putter, many balls, measuring tape, and 9-12 tees.

Take the measuring tape on the putting green and measure three feet from the hole on three different sides of the hole.  Try to make it and uphill putt, downhill putt, and a sidehill putt.  Next move back from the hole to six feet and do the same thing on three different sides.  If you really have time to work on it I went even farther out:  3ft, 6ft, 9ft, 15ft.

Next, take as many balls as you would like and putt from your tees.   I usually hit my shag bag of balls (80) from each location.  Even if you have a few minutes at each station around the hole you can find out some cool things about your putting.  Things like:  which putt (uphill, downhill, sidehill) do I make the most and least.  Then play games with yourself like:  how many balls can I make in a row and so on….

I hopes this helps you make more putts

Keep Rollin’ The Onion

Mike Fay

Mike Fay

PGA Director of Instruction

With over 25 years of teaching experience, it's easy to see why Mike has become a leader in the world of golf instruction. Everything from cutting edge social networking techniques to having his own podcast, Mike has helped to change the face of teaching golf.  He currently is the Director of Player Performance at the Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, Michigan.

Email:  mike@mikefaygolf.com

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Dustin Johnson Victorious Despite Rules Controversy

  After several near misses, Dustin Johnson finally closed the deal and won the 2016 US Open at Oakmont Country Club.  Added to the pressure of trying to win the US Open was a possible penalty lingering over his...

Does Your Ball Marker Size Matter?

Does Your Ball Marker Size Matter? A current fad in golf is to mark one’s golf ball with a poker chip or a poker chip sized ball marker. This brought up an interesting question with regards to “size” or “type” of...

What Is A Caddie’s Responsibility Under The Rules of Golf?

In this post we discuss what a caddie's responsibility is under the rules of golf.  Rule 6, The Player, is one of the Rules that deals with a players responsibilities during a stipulated round of golf.  Rule 6-1...

The Origins of The Masters Theme Song

The Origins of the Masters Theme Song So where did the Masters theme song come from?  That iconic music you hear every year around Masters time.  So soothing and peaceful. Makes you think of azaleas, beautiful green...

Anchored Stroke

For those using the anchored putting stroke, it is getting to the end of the line for you to use this type of stroke. As you may remember, when golf's ruling bodies, the USGA and R&A, announced the ban on anchored...

Better Distance Control On Wedge Shots

Better Distance Control On Wedge Shots   One of the things I am often asked is:  "How do I get better distance control on wedge shots?" At Boyne Mountain Resort we have installed Northern Michigan's first Wedge...

Play Faster Golf

Play Faster Golf   A movement across America in the last several years has been finding ways to play faster golf.  One of the main reasons why golf has been on the decline lately is because people don't feel they...

Refusal To Look For Original Ball

While working a stroke play tournament this summer I was called over by a  player to make a ruling.  At a par - 4 hole, Player A hit his second shot into a dense thicket behind the green.  Since the ball may be lost,...

Use The Tee Drill For Better Chipping

Better Chipping |  Use The Tee Drill   In this video Mike Fay shows you a great drill to help you with your short game.  This video was featured on Mike Fay Golf Live. Bad short game shots could be the most...

Hitting The Center Of The Golf Club Face

Hitting The Center Of The Clubface   Until the past several years we really didn't know how important hitting your golf ball on the center of the golf club face really was.  Through the magic of technology, we now...

Club Replacement & Normal Course Of Play

Club Replacement and Normal Course of Play During the second round of play of the 2015 WGC - Cadillac Championship a frustrated Rory McIlroy hurled a golf club into the water in anger, playing the remainder of the...

How To Take Relief From Immovable Obstructions

How To Take Relief From Immovable Obstructions In the Rules of Golf an obstruction is a movable obstruction if it can be moved without unreasonable effort, without unduly delaying play and without causing damage. ...

The Use Of The Provisional Ball Rule

  The Use Of A Provisional Ball This is the next in the Playing By The Rules Video Series.  Mike and Frank discuss the proper way of using a provisional ball.   We discuss what the rule states and how to go about...

What Is Meant By Testing The Conditions of a Golf Hazard?

In this latest article Frank discusses the dos and don't when pertaining to golf hazards.  Rule 13-4 Ball in Hazard; Prohibited Actions states: "Except as provided in the Rules, before making a stroke at a ball that is...

Where Does The Term Birdie Come From?

Where Does The Term Birdie Come From? We all love making birdies.  Who doesn't right?  But did you know the origin of the term?  Well, in golf history standards the term birdie isn't that old at all. Atlantic City...

How To Repair A Ball Mark

How To Repair A Ball Mark   The USGA has released a great video about repairing ball marks we wanted to share with you.  In the following video, find out why it's important to fix a ball mark and why doing it...

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