Hit from Downhill Lies

By Milo S

Golfer holds driver behind back

Hitting from a downhill lie requires a couple of simple adjustments.

First, understand the ball will come out lower than usual and also your swing arc will bottom out sooner relative to your stance line.

Like a lot of challenging situations, hitting from a downhill lie requires you to throttle back on expectations and not compound your problems.

Try and set your shoulders with the slope of the hill. Depending on its severity, this may be difficult and you don't want to topple down the hill. But setting the angle of your shoulders to that of the ground, at least somewhat, will help you to approximate a level swing.

Given the ball will come out lower, you may need to go with one less club length. Your 9-iron, for example, may play more like an 8, so you may need to consider your wedge because the slope will deloft your club.

Play the ball a bit farther back in your stance because you will contact the ground sooner given the slope of the hill. Take a practice swing or two and note where your clubhead contacts the ground.

Take a normal swing and if the slope is severe, swing to a three-quarter finish so you don't fall down the hill.