Stop the slice – quickly and for good!

Cutting out the costly tee shots is one of the best ways to lower your scores and cut your handicap.

At TG, we understand that ultimately we all want to enjoy the game as much as possible. We also understand there are few more enjoyable experiences in golf than playing well. How good it would be to take your game to the next level this year. But where do you start?

This apparently tough question has a simple answer: you start by taking double bogeys and worse off your card. Data from shot-tracking specialists Shot Scope shows us that an 8-handicapper averages 0.8 birdies a round, while a 20-handicapper averages 0.2 – basically just half-a-shot difference. But when it comes to doubles or worse, the 8-handicapper averages 1.9 while the 20-handicapper typically makes 5.5. Even if they are all just double bogeys, that’s a difference of more than seven shots!

Make no mistake: It’s the big numbers and not the small ones that differentiate handicaps… and if you want to cut yours, it’s the only place to start.

One of the biggest issues comes from tee shots. Shot Scope identify a specific golfer most at risk here: a 12 to 21-handicapper who drives the ball between 240 and 270 yards. This golfer lacks some control but has the power to find the neighbouring field. They will drop on average four shots per round due to lost balls/out of bounds from tee shots, and see plenty of doubles on the card.

Straighter driving is about aligning face and path to take curvature out of the shot. This two-step plan will give you a swing path and clubface that produce better tee shots, time after time.

Use guides to help you train an in-to-out swing path


1. Retrain your attack

Among club players, by far the biggest path error is across the ball from outside to inside the target line.

Of course, it leads to slices and pulls. So work on this by developing an in-to-out path. Use sticks, tee pegs, balls or range baskets to build an in-to-out gateway, one obstacle behind the ball and slightly outside the ball-target line, and the second forward of the ball and slightly inside the line.

2. Inside delivery

Very simply, all we are going to do here is get used to delivering the club through the gate – the clubhead missing the back and forward obstacles. As you swing down, the presence of the rear obstacle, just outside the ball target line, will encourage you to attack the ball more from the inside… and on a shallower angle.

3. Exit right

Similarly, the forward obstacle works to stop you pulling the club left through impact (for right-handers).

Retraining your path will not happen in five swings, but spend some time with this drill – swinging over a tee peg – and you will start to develop the mechanics that will help you straighten out that old, cutting action.

Getting the clubface square is key to stopping a slice


1. Change your grip to square it up

If you slice across the ball, you’d better open the face to stop it going well left. It’s this divergence of face and path that starts to create the side spin. At its best, it’s a soft fade; … more often, it’s a wicked slice.

So as we square up the path, we also need to square up the face.

For the right-handed golfer, turning your hands clockwise on the grip – gloved hand more on top of the handle, lower hand more underneath – will help you do that. Use your thumb/forefinger crease as a guide; make sure it is pointing up towards your trail shoulder – as indicated by the tee peg – when the clubface is square.

2. Throughswing: Seek closure

With your grip in place, practise rotating your forearms and clubface through impact. Work on getting the clubface to look down at the ground as the club shaft swings through horizontal. As the move becomes more comfortable, experiment with blending this closing face with the in-to-out path… and see that expensive slice disappear.

This slice fix is part of a Total Game Improvement Plan that will help you play your best-ever golf this year. You can access the full plan on the Today’s Golfer Members’ Website.

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