The other night I stood over my ball on the 16th tee getting ready to “Grip It and Rip It.” It had been awhile since I had played the back 9 at the Pine Beach East course at Madden’s, and the 16th is one of my favorite holes because it is a shorter par 4 that is reachable with a good drive. As I lined up my shot, I glanced out towards the green. Unfamiliar thoughts came into my mind, “Don’t go right, but don’t go left either. Don’t go long, but don’t be too short!”
If you haven’t played the East course this year, you’ve got to come see the new look. The shimmer of golden brown fescue exaggerates all of the mounds on the course aligning the fairways and greens. The tall grass looks great, but will force you to play more defensively and will surely be penalizing for any golfers who’s ball strays.
If you do hit into the fescue, here are a few important keys to remember:
- Swing Steep – this is one of the few shots that actually favor higher handicappers because you have to swing at a steep angle. Keep the ball positioned in the middle of your stance, but pick the club up quickly by hinging your wrists in the back swing. On your downswing unhinge your wrists and deliver a sharp crisp blow at the ball.
- Open the Club Face and Grip Tighter – the club face will try to close and twist as it gets caught up in the grass. Opening the clubface at address will help keep the ball from going left.
- Bigger Swing – you can develop feel the more you hit these shot, but generally speaking you will need to make a bigger swing (sometimes even a full swing) to get the ball out. Your main priority with this shot is to get the ball OUT. Getting your next shot on to the green and close to the hole is a bonus.
The next time you’re out, try a couple from the tall grass. If nothing else it makes for a fun shot that you don’t always get to try.
Good Luck! Glenn, Head Golf Professional at Madden’s