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Ball Position

Matt Brady – Chicago

Ball position is considered a fundamental for many instructors, including myself. But, there are conflicting schools of thought. Let’s clear the air and see which one works for you and why. I was taught as a kid that wedges through 7 iron are played in the middle of your stance, 6 iron through 3 wood is played a ball or two more towards our left foot and the driver is played just inside your left foot or left knee. Other instructors emphasize more of a singular ball position in line with your left ear or the logo on a golf shirt. There are benefits to doing either method. The first method is the variable ball position. Benefits would, this can help ensure more of a downward strike into the ball in the middle of your stance using shorter irons which could help create better and cleaner contact. On the other hand a stable ball position means its a constant in your swing and requires less thinking with one less variable to be conscious of. This could help if you’re still in the learning phase. Now my favorite method or way of thinking was made famous by Jack Nicklaus and republished in Golf Digest in 2010. He thinks about keeping the ball position just left of center with the only adjustment being the width of his stance. It may look like he’s playing the ball in different spots but it’s only because his feet are closer together for short irons and progressively wider as the club he’s using gets longer. These are three very distinct methods of ball position, all have pros and cons. I would encourage any new player or even scratch golfers to play around with these and see what you have the most success with. After all, it’s your golf game, your swing, and your puzzle to put together.

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