How to stop scooping
When an amateur player is faced with the need to play a lofted shot from off the green, a common error we see, is the player trying to ‘help’ the golf ball up into the air. This is a mistake. A wedge or sand iron is admirably designed to perform this function without the need to add a scooping motion. Let the club do the work is the perfect mantra.
Whether you are popping the ball over a little bunker with a wedge, or even using a 7 iron to roll the ball up to the flag, an overpowering desire to flick the wrists often kicks in. The bottom hand scoops the ball and allows the clubhead to rapidly overtake the hands. Unfortunately, all this does is cause the clubhead to reach the bottom of its arc too early. By the time it makes contact with the ball it is already on an upward arc. This means it is far more likely to hit the top of the ball, than the bottom, thus failing to gain any height at all. Totally counterproductive.
Practice this tip on the range and before you play the shot out on the course. Hold the club quite a bit down the grip and place the exposed amount of golf grip up the sleeve of your jumper or jacket. This is a great time of year to do this as it is still cold enough to be wearing your woolies. Then play the shot. If you flick or scoop your wrists, you will pull the sleeve of your garment. However, if you play the shot correctly, no damage will be done to your favorite golfing jumper.
I highly recommend you practice the tip wearing the most expensive cashmere outerwear you have. It’s a remarkable incentive to ensure you get it right.
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By Jon Woodroffe, Master Professional – World of Golf London