One of my favorite pastimes is reading golf books over the winter and trying to find a nugget to put into play the following season, and this year is no exception. Two years ago, I made the mistake of reading both the Stan Utley short game book and putting book and putting mechanical changes in place without sufficient runway to practice before implementing in the spring. Come March, my short game was in ruins.
This year, I am determined not to make mechanical changes but have landed on a practice tip I just love and think will be very beneficial. Has anyone heard of the 9-shot? I’m currently reading The Big Miss by Hank Haney, and 9-shot is the drill that he introduced to Tiger Woods to improve his confidence in ball striking. The drill is to take nine shots with each club in the bag and vary the curve and height pattern on every ball. Basically, you hit three fades, three draws, and three straight shots and try to hit them with a low, medium, and high trajectory. My driving range sells buckets of about 50 balls and the thought is to try the drill by warming up with five balls, then hit the remaining 45 in five groups of nine using a PW, 8-iron, 6-iron, 4-iron, and Driver. I’ve noticed that on days when I warm up well, I’ll try to work the ball on the last few shots and it infuses me with tremendous confidence to be able to curve it on demand. This drill seems like it will help with concentration and focus on every club in the bag. Anyone tried the 9-shot?
It’s going to be in the high 50s on Friday and I’ll give it a go and report back. Gotta love the opportunity to bang some balls outside in the winter. By the way, a full book review is coming on The Big Miss so don’t miss it!