How to Add 20 Yards to Your Irons

By Steve Silverman

Iron play is one of the most overlooked aspects of golf. Most players would love to improve their drive and bomb the ball 260 yards or more down the center of the fairway. After that, most golfers spend their time working on their short game and their putting. However, with more attention to the development of their long and middle irons, golfers could cut five strokes or more from their final scores.


Difficulty: Moderate
Step 1
Address the ball properly. Your left shoulder (for a right-handed golfer) should be facing the target squarely and your left foot should be directly underneath your left shoulder. Many golfers tend to open up their stance when playing with a long iron, and this will almost always send your ball off track.
Step 2
Play the ball midway between your front foot and back foot when playing from the short grass of the fairway. Many golfers play the ball closer to their front foot because they are planning to sweep the ball up into the air. That's a mistake that costs golfers distance and accuracy.
Step 3
Hit down on the ball and make clean contact when the ball is on the fairway and you are using your long and medium irons. To promote this, go to the practice range and take an iron and lay it on the ground about three inches from the ball. Take a swing and make sure you hit the ball without hitting the iron on the ground. Go slowly at first but then add pace to your swing. This is the swing you need when hitting the ball with a long iron from the fairway.
Step 4
Don't hit behind the ball with a long iron. In order to get maximum distance and keep the ball straight, you must hit down on the ball with force and then follow through. If you are taking a divot before you hit the ball, you are not hitting the iron the way you are supposed to.
Step 5
Go to the practice range and spend at least half your time working on iron play.

About The Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.


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