How to Hit a Golf Ball High

By Steve Silverman

Golf Ball just before rolling into the hole
Hitting a ball higher in the air allows you to capitalize on some tricky situations:
- When you are close to the green, you can use your short irons and wedges to get great loft in order to have the ball land softly on the green.
- When you are behind trees, you can land the ball softly on firm greens and minimize the roll.
- When you are playing from the fairway or light rough and there is an obstacle (hill, tree, bunker or water) in front of you, you can get the ball high enough to get over it.
- When you are driving off the tee with the wind at your back, you can hit it high to take advantage of that tailing breeze.


Difficulty: Moderate
  1. Play the ball more forward in your stance when you are hitting a driver off the tee or one of your fairway woods. Instead of playing the ball midway between your front and back legs, play it two ball lengths closer to your front leg. It will create a steeper loft angle at impact.
  2. Adjust your shoulder plane so your forward shoulder is slightly higher than your back shoulder. This will also move your head and center of gravity slightly behind the ball.
  3. Shift your weight so slightly more weight is on your back foot. Try a ratio of 60/40 toward your back foot.
  4. Play your irons one ball length forward in your stance than your normal placement. Turn your front foot at a bit of an angle in order to get excellent hip rotation leading to impact. This will allow you to get the ball up in the air quickly.
  5. - Take your pitching wedge when you are less than 100 yards from the hole and you want the ball to fly high and land softly on the green. The pitching wedge has a loft angle of 45 to 49 degrees and will get the ball high in the air quickly. This is the ideal club to use when you have to fly your shot over a tree or over a hazard.
    - Use your gap wedge when you are 60 to 80 yards from the hole if you want a high shot that will land softly. A gap wedge has a loft angle between 49 and 54 degrees and will get the ball up in the air quickly.
  6. Make sure to bend your knees slightly when you want to get the ball up in the air. Standing straight up will create less of an upward angle at impact. A slight knee bend is all that is needed to change that angle.

Tips & Warnings

  • Tee the ball up higher when you want to get your shot high in the air. Most tees are about 3/4 of an inch tall. Use the 1 1/2-inch-tall tee when you want extra height on your drive.

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.