Golfsmith's Fair-Way: Try Before You Buy, Low Price Guarantee, Custom Fitting, Bring It Back.

How to Put Backspin on a Golf Ball

by Bill Herrfeldt

    This article is one of our editor's top picks this month.

    Imagine your golf ball landing about twenty feet behind the pin--and then as if by magic, it draws back near the cup. The ability to make a golf ball back up is especially helpful when the pin is close to the front of the green or right behind a sand trap. You probably don't make the golf ball back up as often as the professionals do on television, but practicing these easy steps will add backspin to your golfing arsenal.

    Step 1

    Use a short iron or wedge. It is difficult for most amateurs to get enough height on the ball, which is a requisite for backing up the ball. For that reason, you should not try to impart backspin on shots with clubs longer than a seven iron.

    Step 2

    Start practicing this shot with a lob wedge. It will give you confidence as you hit longer shots later. Position the golf ball more toward your back foot, rather than in the center of your stance as you would on a regular shot. That will force you to hit down on the ball, which will create backspin. Swing down hard and hit the ball first, taking a divot in front of it after the ball is struck.

    Step 3

    Hit this shot if your ball is resting in a clean lie on the fairway. Making a golf ball back up from the rough is difficult, even for the most talented professionals.

    Step 4

    Choose the right golf ball to help you create backspin. Generally, a golf ball with a wound center will improve your ability to impart backspin, rather than one with a hard center. A golf ball with a 10 compression is used by golfers who hit the ball hard and far. However, if you are into both backing up your golf ball as well as distance, you may find a 90 compression ball more to your liking.

    Step 5

    Try adding backspin to your golf ball only if you are hitting into the wind. Even the professionals do not try it if they are hitting downwind. By hitting the ball into the wind, it will travel higher and most likely have maximum backspin.

    Warnings

    • If you hit the golf ball only a short distance, you probably do not have the ability or the strength to make your ball have backspin. Since such a shot will not be in your bag of tricks, make up for it by having a great short game or by working on your putting.

    About the Author

    Bill Herrfeldt specializes in finance, sports and the needs of retiring people, and has been published in the national edition of "Erickson Tribune," the "Washington Post" and the "Arizona Republic." He graduated from the University of Louisville.

    Photo Credits

    • Golf Legs image by Vanessa van Rensburg from Fotolia.com