Having an uncontrollable slice can be one of the most demoralizing things when playing golf. There is nothing worse than walking down the right side of the course while your mates are all down the middle, plus slicing the ball makes your shots go considerably shorter.
I just want to clear a few things up before we dive into some tips on how to fix your slice. Yes slicing the ball can make you lose distance, however a fade and a draw will go the same distance if when struck the launch, spin and ball speed are the same. The reason why the fade shape tends to go shorter for amateur golfers is because more often than not you cut across the ball causing poor ball speed and loads of spin. Dustin Johnson hits a fade, and trust me that ball goes miles.
Correcting some swing faults and getting your launch conditions optimum can see you gaining massive distance even if you are still hitting a slight fade.
Start with Equipment to Fix Your Slice
Before we dive into some swing tips, let’s start off with your equipment. Do not be afraid of technology, there is a reason why every tour pro is fitted into his clubs, it is there to help.
If you are slicing your driver, firstly make sure it is not set on a fade setting, and secondly set it onto a draw setting if it is not already. You will be able to find all golf club manufacturer club settings on their website.
Another fix is using a draw type driver, most manufacturers make draw bias drivers.
Lastly is the shaft, going lighter, more flexible and less torque are all ways that you can try to eliminate your slice.
Alignment And Set Up Is Key
The way you stand and align yourself is going to be one of the main factors to hitting a slice or draw.
Let’s start with your posture, standing in an athletic position is extremely important, this means having your pressure in the balls of your feet.
Most amateurs have their shoulders and feet aiming left of the target, this is the perfect recipe for hitting a slice. Start by putting a club or alignment stick on the ground. Stand in your posture, drop your right shoulder slightly lower than your left, and tuck your right elbow in, this will naturally straighten out your shoulders.
Next place your feet parallel with the alignment stick or club and then place your right foot about an inch further back, this will help you swing more from the inside, creating a draw swing path.
Lastly is aiming, this is the hardest part. The further you aim left the further you’ll hit it right, your brain will subconsciously open the face more to try to hit it straight, and when doing that your slice becomes more exaggerated.
The furthest left you want to aim is the left edge of the fairway.
How To Grip The Golf Club Correctly
The natural position for most high handicap or beginner golfers is to grip the golf club in a weak position. This does not refer to the pressure but to the hand position. A weak grip presents the clubface open at impact and a strong grip presents the clubface closed.
So, to prevent a slice, strengthening your grip could be the answer.
Take your left hand and grip it in your fingers, this will help get your grip in a strong position, now feel like your hand and thumbs wrap around the top of the grip. Do not grip the club in your palm. Gripping the club in your palm will naturally put it in a weak position, it also limits your rotation in your wrists.
While gripping the club stand in your address position, looking down at your hand you ideally should see 3 knuckles on your left hand, if you see one you have a neutral grip, if you see none your grip is too weak, this causes a slice.
Lastly place your right hand on the club either interlocking or overlapping your right pinky and left index finger, there is no preference. Try to feel like your right hand is slightly under the grip, this will also help with drawing the ball.
Use The Bottle Drill To Correct Your Swing Path
One of the biggest causes of hitting a slice is a swing path that is out to in. What this means is that the path of your club is traveling from outside the line of your target to inside the line. This makes you cut across the ball, putting left to right spin on it causing you to hit a slice.
The only thing you’ll need for this drill is an alignment stick/club, bottle and some range balls. Set down an alignment stick or club and put a ball down. Place your club behind the ball. Now place the bottle about 6 inches behind the ball just outside the line of your club.
Now swing away, if you swing out to in, you will hit the bottle. This will naturally help you swing from in to out.
Extra tip: if your ball starts right and slices that’s great, your swing path is on the right track. Try using the stronger grip mentioned above and rotate your hands through impact. You are subconsciously leaving your hands open because you are so used to cutting across the ball.
Clubface Control To Prevent A Slice
It is as simple as this, if the clubface is open at impact the ball will curve left to right, and if the clubface is closed at impact it will curve from right to left.
A big mistake high handicap golfers make is over rotating the clubface on the backswing. Take your address position and grip the club.
Take the club back so that it is parallel with the ground. Have a look at the clubface. If the toe of the club is pointing straight up or past vertical then it is too open, from there you will have to really rotate your hands to get the club back to square at impact.
Now, do the same thing but try to get the clubface to point more towards the ground. This is a trick I like to teach the amateurs that I play with. Instead of thinking about the face, think about your glove. If the strap of your glove is facing the sky when the club is parallel to the ground your clubface is too open. In your take away try to keep the strap of your glove pointing more towards the ground, once you get to the parallel position you can rotate naturally.
This drill will help you keep the clubface more closed on the backswing, so you do not have to over rotate it on the downswing.