Hitting Under the Bough of a Tree

November 1, 2015 3:15 pm

By Jon Woodroffe

Not that this is a situation you will get into too often, but if your path to the green is blocked by the overhanging branches of a tree as in the picture, then here is how you play this.

Firstly, take your least lofted iron club, making sure not to use a hybrid as they are designed to maximise height, just what you do not want in this position.

I would suggest a 5 iron is best. You need to position the golf ball in the middle of your stance or even slightly further back than centre to keep the ball low. Then lean the end of the shaft of the golf club ahead of the ball so it is in line with your left thigh, this will then put most of your body weight onto your left foot.


During the backswing be careful not to transfer your body weight onto your right foot or you will spoil the whole reason for having your weight on the left foot in the first place. You should also ensure that you do not turn your shoulders; you are aiming to just swing your hands and arms and thus create quite a steep backswing. From here, then hit into the back of the ball trying to keep the feeling that your hands are staying ahead of the clubhead into impact.

As for follow through, this should be severely curtailed as the angle that your golf club is attacking into the ground you will struggle to complete a follow through and it would actually be more effective if you allowed the swing to stop soon after impact as this would not allow the wrists to hinge and thus stop you from trying to scoop the golf ball up into the air.

The ball then should come squirting out under the overhanging tree and make some serious distance up the fairway as it is coming out like an exocet missile. Do bear this in mind when selecting to play this shot, you do not want to end up careering through the green into the trees over the back.

The only problem with this shot is where to practice it as it is not an ideal one for the golf range as underneath your bay is concrete, so try a couple and see how they go.

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