A clever little trick that pros pull off on the golf course is putting backspin on a golf ball. This is a dicey maneuver which enables the ball to move backward after hitting the ground. The backspin comes in handy when the pin is right behind a sand trap or the pin is near the front boundary of the greens. This way, if the golf ball overshoots the pin, it can scramble back to its destination all by itself. When professional players do it on TV during tournaments, it feels like a cakewalk. But a practical repetition is almost akin to pulling a rabbit out of your golf hat.
Of course, that’s why we created this tutorial. It not just teaches you this wicked trick, it also tells you when to put backspin on a golf ball. Using the backspin concept judiciously is important, otherwise it could be counter-productive. Pulling off backspin requires you to master its technique. It also depends on other factors like length of grass on the greens/target area, type of golf ball and type of golf club. If those things work out fine, this simple technique will make your golf ball slink back for an easy birdie putt. It is equal parts cool and useful!
What You Will Need To Follow This Tutorial?
1. Golf Ball:
Not duh! We are talking about the type of golf ball you should choose for practicing the backspin on a golf ball. As we explained in the ‘best golf ball for beginners and seniors’ post, the high-compression balls will have more backspin. You need to choose golf balls of compression 90 or more for getting the backspin right.
Also, choose balls with softer covers. They will make better contact with the clubheads, creating more backspin. It helps to use the urethane balls compared to Surlyn balls. Usually, these balls are more expensive than the Surlyn and low-compression balls.
2. Golf Club:
In our ‘How to chip a golf ball’ post, we explained which clubs to use for chip shots. Usually the close shots should be taken using lofted clubs like pitch wedge and sand wedge. Such clubs including lob wedge are easiest to practise backspin with, because they introduce backspin to create loft in the shot. We would avoid long irons over 7-iron.
It is also important to check the integrity of your golf club. Make sure that it’s not dented or unbalanced by grass or mud stuck on it. Any other damage like scuffs and blemishes can alter the performance of the club. Backspin is a strategic tactic and it requires care.
3. Grass Condition:
When you are willing your golf ball to backspin, it should have the right surface for that. You can control the practice environment if not your actual play field. Find greens which have properly groomed grass. They will offer less resistance to the ball which should roll back on its own volition. Longer or unruly grass would hinder the movement of the golf ball.
Backspin is not completely impossible in areas with long grass. Once you get practicing on the closely-cropped grass, you can graduate to other terrains.
Step By Step Instructions :
The key to putting backspin on a golf ball is striking it at a downward angle. Your swing mechanics and the environment of the golf course should be well-suited to that.
- Stance: For driving straight you usually hold an open stance. But for putting spin on a golf ball, your feet should be closer than usual. To assess your stance, place your feet parallel and check if you are able to stand straight. Whatever distance between your feet straightens your body, that stance is correct. This allows the club to hit the ball at a downward angle.
- Ball position: To put a backspin on a golf ball, the ball should be hit before the club hits the ground. So you should place the ball deep in your stance. It should be approximately an inch towards your backward foot from the center. This allows the ball to be hit before the lowest point of the downswing. Usually, when the ball is placed at the center of the stance, it is hit at the lowest point of the downswing.
- Lie of the course: Another consideration for putting backspin on a golf ball is the lie. You need to be taking the shot from evenly mow fairways. The backspin requires a clean contact between the ball and the club. If you hit from the rough, grass is bound to get between the ball and the club. This will take the friction off strike.
- Long shot: For getting backspin on the ball, it needs to travel some distance upwards. This is only possible if you are taking a long shot. It’s difficult to get backspin on shorter shots. It might be possible with practice though. But start off with the long shots and gradually move to the shorter ones
- Golf ball: As mentioned before always choose a high-compression golf ball for practicing backspin. Possibly a multi-layer ball with urethane cover will do the trick.
- Golf swing: The aim is to hit the ball downwards with a strike on the lower face of the ball. Impact at this point will propel the ball forward at an upward angle and introduce backspin. The wedges are the best clubs to get loft. Backspin requires a more upright swing plane, which is why we ask you to stand straighter.
- You should take a higher upswing. During the downswing, the arms and hands should swing in front of the body. Never slow down the club before impact if you are trying to bring backspin on a ball. Wrist movement should be minimal.
- You know you have got the shot right if you take a shallow divot. A deep divot will indicate that the downward angle on the ball was too steep..
- Follow through: The follow through is important to how the ball flies. The wrist movement should be especially restricted here. The wrists should remain straight. Do not let the divot deter you. Keep the hands going straight.
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Although backspin is a relatively less-used weapon in a golfer's arsenal, it could be what clinches you the trophy. Getting a backspin on a golf ball is the matter of adjusting your swing. You also need to have the nature by your side at the golf course. The condition of grass on the swing spot makes a difference too. Altogether, it might look like the scope of backspin in limited in a round of golf. But in the right situation it could fill the chasm between you and your title.
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