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While you might never master the power fade ala Jack Nicklaus, the ability to "work" the ball is much easier than you think.
While you might never master the power fade ala Jack Nicklaus, the ability to "work" the ball is much easier than you think. (Getty Images)

Curve your ball, control your golf game

Les MillerBy Les Miller,
Contributor

During a round of golf, most golfers experience a number of shots where they need to be able to curve the ball. The ability to "work" the ball is much easier than you think, but most golfers have no idea how to perfect this part of their game. They think they will have to make a major swing change to hit draws and fades.

The following tips will teach you how to work the ball "on demand" by simply changing your grip and setup. (These tips are designed for right-handed golfers. If you are left handed, just reverse the process.)

Working a draw into your golf swing

* Aim the clubface at the target.

* Close your stance by aligning your feet and shoulders to the right of the target.

* Modify your grip by turning the "V" formed by your thumbs and forefingers toward your right (back) shoulder.

* Take your natural swing.

* These changes will automatically guide you to swing the club on a flatter plane (creating an inside-out swing) and allow your hands to turn over (release faster) through the shot. This motion will create a draw or hook.

Working a fade into your golf swing

* Aim the clubface at the target.

* Open your stance by aligning your body to the left of the target.

* Modify your grip by turning the "V" formed by your thumbs and forefingers toward your left (front) shoulder.

* Take your normal swing.

* These changes will coerce your hand to be less active during the swing (slowing down the release) through the shot. Another result will be a more upright swing path. This motion will create a fade or slice.

A word about grip pressure

A final tip: Change the grip pressure for each shot. When a draw is required, try to grip the club more softly. This will allow your hands to rotate (release) through the hitting area. When hitting the fade, grip the club tightly, especially with the left hand, as this will slow down the release through the hitting area.

Practice these tips and you'll begin to see how easy it is to curve the ball on command.

Les Miller was a longtime Golf Writers of America member who covered golf instruction for several newspapers and golf publications. His many years of experience as a golf professional, director of product development and tour relations for several major golf companies gave him a unique background and ability to help golfers increase their enjoyment of the game.

 
Reader Comments / Reviews Leave a comment
  • Curve Your Ball

    Denny wrote on: Mar 20, 2012

    Good tip for a simple curve ball. I try to remember to aim my stance where I want the ball to start and my club face to where I want the ball to end up.
    http://lefthandedgolf.us

    Reply

  • Fades and Drawss

    Denny wrote on: Mar 21, 2011

    Adjusting your stance and grip to hit a fade or draw is good advice. I read Nicklaus' tip outlining the same proceedure and it works well.

    Reply

  • grip pressure

    Jake wrote on: Jul 26, 2010

    for changing the grip pressure i have found that to draw it i stiffing the pressure in my left then right for fade. that's what Ive been doing and works every time as long as i strike the fundamentals as well.

    Reply