How to Hit Straight Iron Shots

by Timothy Bodamer
    Keeping your golf iron shots on a straight line are important for your short and long games.

    Keeping your golf iron shots on a straight line are important for your short and long games.

    Matthew Lewis/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

    Hitting an iron straight has been a challenge for many golfers, no matter their skill level. It's crucial to maintain a straight trajectory, whether hitting off off the tee or shooting at the pin with a short iron. By keeping the ball on a straight path, you're shortening the course and lowering your score. Learning the proper techniques and mental approach is key to succeeding on the golf course. Once you learn how to hit your irons straight, you'll be able to draw the ball and add backspin to the shot.

    Step 1

    Place the ball in the correct position. Doing this allows you to strike the ball properly and giving you control for a straight iron shot. Place the ball relative to the irons used. For middle irons, like a 5-iron, place the ball an inch beyond the middle of your stance. This placement ensures that when you hit the ball, the club will provides power. Place the ball in the middle of your stance for your short irons, such as a 9-iron. By placing the ball in the middle of your stance, you're striking the ball on your downswing, with your follow-through lofting it towards the pin. Hit with power and control with your long irons (for example, a 3-iron) by placing the ball 2 inches beyond your center point in your stance. This will ensure you get the power behind the shot.

    Step 2

    Keep your arms straight during your iron shot's downswing. By keeping the right arm straight (or left arm if shooting left-handed), your performing a necessary shoulder turn to keep the shot going straight. Bending your arm may cause your shoulders to open up and push your shot to the right. Also, turn your hips through the shot to also bring your arms through the shot.

    Step 3

    Descend on the ball. By coming down on the ball, your weight is moving towards the direction you're trying to hit to. By staying back on the ball, you're not shifting balance and that may cause you to move your lower body during the shot, causing a mishit and the ball going off trajectory.


    • Practice your form. Take two clubs on an open practice area and place the shafts in the ground parallel about 8 feet beyond the ball and 4 feet apart. This will serve as a window to hit the ball. Stand behind the golf ball to make sure your ball is centered in the middle of the window. This will force you to hit the ball straight an in front of you and prevents you from worrying about hitting a pin or green.

    About the Author

    Tim Bodamer is a freelance writer based in Seminole, Florida. He attended Edinboro Univerity of Pennsylvania where he studied journalism. He has 15 years of writing experience and specializes in sports, business and general interest topics.

    Photo Credits

    • Matthew Lewis/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

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