Success from the Rough Starts with a Plan
Tommy Fleetwood of England plays his second shot from the deep rough on the par 4, 10th hole during the second round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at Arnold Palmer Bay Hill Golf CourseGetty Images
- Start by choosing a realistic club. Fairway woods don’t work from the rough. Unless the ball is sitting up on the first cut, let’s put those clubs back in the bag.
- When we do choose the correct club, make sure it has enough loft. If the lie is thick and deep, that may be some kind of a wedge. Even if it won’t go far enough to reach the green, this is still the best choice. If you don’t use enough loft, you’re guaranteed the next shot will be from the rough as well.
- Shots from the rough cause us to pull the ball. Once the clubhead enters the grass, the hosel gets snagged by the long blades and shuts the face down. When aiming your shot from the rough, make sure you take the pull into account.
- Place the ball further back in your stance than usual. This is very important. It will create a steeper angle of attack on the ball. Since it is sitting below the top of the grass, we need to strike down more. By moving it back, we accomplish that goal without changing the dynamics of our swing.
- Follow through! You can pretty much apply this to all golf shots, but from the fairway we can sometimes get away with a halfhearted attempt. From the rough, you must commit to completely turning through the shot with your entire body (watch Fleetwood Tweet again).