Imagine standing on the 18th tee that is a reachable par 5… well, assuming you can pull off a great tee shot to set up a good second shot.
You know that a great drive sets you up to hit the green in two and maybe end the day with an unlikely eagle. Or, hopefully at the worst case, a short birdie putt to finish the round and still end on a good note.
The problem is that the tee shot requires a 10 yard draw to cut the corner and give you a perfect angle into the hole.
Can you pull the shot off? Do you know how to hit a draw?
Or, are you plagued with swing thoughts and things you’ve thought about doing but never actually pulled off on the range (or on the golf course)?
Here’s the thing, most amateurs can’t pull off this shot.
Every golf magazine and instruction tip makes it too complicated of a method for most. But I’m here to tell you that you absolutely can. As I’ve written about extensively, most amateurs struggle to hit a draw because of an over the top motion that causes the ball to slice.
But, if you can learn how to hit a draw, you can begin to make some serious improvements in your game and you’ve mastered the first step of shotmaking. By the time you’re done reading this post, you’ll have everything you need to start curving the ball right to left.
Why You Need to Love A Draw
For some, the concept of a draw feels foreign, despite doing a ton of research on the method because most people are cut players.
But a draw is especially nice to see because most everyday golfers don’t hit the shot. It’s amazing to see the ball take off right and bring it back to the middle of the fairway or attack a tucked left pin.
The draw is powerful, crisp, and the ball seems to stay in the air forever with the longer clubs. While some pros play the power cut as their go-to shot, a lot of PGA Tour players favor hitting a draw.
So why do you need to learn how to hit a draw?
A few reasons…
The first is that hitting a draw, especially with your driver, can add 5-15 yards of distance, depending on the speed of the fairways. If the fairways are rock hard like the British Open, roll out could be even further!
Not only do you gain distance as it carries further but it rolls out further too. Draws produce more top spin and thus, more roll out once it hits the ground. The longer you can hit off the tee, the shorter clubs you’ll hit as approaches and typically lower scores you can post.
The other main advantage is that hitting a draw gives you more options throughout the round.
Even if you don’t play it on a consistent basis, if you know how to hit it can help save you strokes all around the course. Whether it’s hitting a punch draw around a tree to get out of trouble or playing one against a left to right wind.
But this is the shot that most amateurs can’t pull off because of a few mistakes that can easily be fixed. If you learned how to hit a power fade from a different post, then you can learn how to hit a draw as well.
Here’s how to fix the common mistakes so you can finally learn how to hit a draw consistently. And no, you don’t need to visit a bunch of teaching professionals or learn some complicated method to start drawing the golf ball.
Setup Position To Hit A Draw
Before even addressing setup, let’s first revisit the new ball flight laws (click to read). To hit a draw you must have a closed club face at impact to turn the ball right to left. It’s impossible with an open club face as the ball will fade left to right.
Most of this golf swing starts with the setup and is the exact opposite of a fade setup. Please note, this method is geared toward a right handed golfer so if you’re left handed, please adjust accordingly.
How to Grip For a Draw
Before even setting up to the ball, we need to first talk about your grip.
If you have too weak of a grip (with either or both hands), hitting a draw very challenging. In general, we recommend having a neutral grip (not strong or weak) so that you can hit both types of shots. Plus, when you have a neutral grip, it makes it easier to shallow the golf club and attack the ball from the inside swing path.
Your path plays a huge role in pulling off a draw shot. Since the ball is going to curve from right to left in the air, you need your path to be in to out so it starts right. If it starts straight at your target and turns, then you will miss long and left most likely.
Every golfer is different but you might need to change your grip slightly and get more in a neutral or slightly strong bias.
Here are two easy ways to adjust your grip to make it easier to draw the ball.
- Rotate your right hand away from you. By rolling your hand more underneath the club, you are strengthening your grip. This will allow your wrists to roll over easier and curve it properly. Think of hitting this as a baseball type motion where your hands are turning over at impact.
- Grip the club as normal with more pressure on your right hand. This doesn’t mean you should weaken your left-hand grip though. But adding more pressure to this hand it will also help roll the club over at impact.
Some teaching professionals teach a specific grip idea while others teach another method. Regardless of which grip method you choose, please don’t go to the course and try them during a round before testing on the range. Spend time on the driving range working on both grips and see what feels more comfortable for your own swing.
To give yourself the best chance to draw it you need to grip the club correctly and align your body properly. Remember, since the ball is moving right to left, you need to get the ball started out right of your target.
The first action to take is to step away from the ball slightly at address. Don’t crowd it! This gives you more room on your backswing and downswing to create an in to out swing path.
The opposite is true for a fade. With a fade, you want to crowd the ball to pinch it, get a little steeper, and help the ball go left to right.
But, for a draw you want to feel like you have more room to come into the ball from the inside. This small shift will allow you to have enough room to get the ball started to the right of the target.
Next, close your stance by dropping your right foot back an inch or two at address. The more you drop it back, the more it should sweep so don’t overdo it.
Drawing a Driver
If you’re using a driver, you also want to adjust a few things differently than with irons. The first is tee height and tee it up slightly higher than normal.
Remember you want to come from the inside and hit up on the ball to allow the ball to start out right. Conversely, if you want to hit a cut or punch tee shot, you want to tee the ball lower.
The second thing you want to do is put the ball slightly further up in your stance. A good spot is directly off your left heel. Moving it more forward will help you also hit up on it and allow you a little more time to rotate your face angle through impact.
How to Hit a Draw With Irons
For irons and shots off the deck, you need to make a few adjustments as well.
Unless you’re trying to hit it really high, you want to move the ball slightly further back in your stance. Moving it slightly back will help you compress the ball and make sure you make impact on the downswing.
The last part of the setup is all about your alignment.
If you are able to hit a draw and are aimed at your target or even left, you will have some big misses. The longer the club, the more it should draw so make sure to aim accordingly. A draw for a wood might be 10-15 yards, for a 5 iron it might be 5-7 yards and a 9 iron might only be 3-4 yards.
Be very specific with your alignment and make sure your feet and shoulders are right of the target. Proper alignment will allow you to swing along the path of your feet and shoulders to hit a perfect draw.
3. The Easiest Way to Hit a Draw in Golf
Now that you have the proper setup, the hard work is done. Most golfers skip these steps and instead try to flip the wrist as impact. Instead, start by building a great setup and everything will become a lot easier.
Thanks to the new ball flights, with my method you actually don’t need to do much else. The main thing you need to do to make sure the club face is closed at impact. Don’t try to manipulate the club by swinging right of your target or taking it way inside on your backswing.
Instead, at the address position, before you grip the club, simply turn the face closed. The more you want the ball to draw, the more it should be closed at address. Then, take your normal swing.
Simply turning the club face closed will allow you to not have to do much else to your swing. Because you probably know, too many swing thoughts, especially in the middle of the round can make it impossible to execute a shot.
More Tips to Hit Draws
If this feels simple and easier than you hoped, that’s a good thing for your golf game. So many golfers make it much more complicated than they need to which leads to confusion and overwhelm.
Instead, keep it simple so you can repeatedly hit a draw on command. Here are a few more tips to set yourself up for success and curve it both ways.
1. Check Your Equipment
You can do everything right and still not hit a draw. Why?
Your equipment plays a huge role in helping you shape shots, especially with hybrids, fairway woods, and drivers. Since so many clubs are adjustable and have sliding weights, it’s vital that your club doesn’t have an overly fade bias. While it’s still possible to hit a draw with a fade bias, it’s a lot more difficult for the everyday golfer.
Start by checking your fairway woods and 1 wood to make sure they are at a neutral or a draw setting. If you cut the ball a ton and want to draw it, you might have to adjust a little more than a standard setting. If you want to be able to play both a draw and cut, make sure to set the club back to a neutral position.
2. Pick Your Target First
Remember, if you want to hit a draw, your club face has to be slightly closed at impact. If it’s square, you’ll hit a straight shot and if it’s open, you’ll hit a fade or slice.
To get face closed at impact, this requires you to pick a target based on what club you are trying to hit a draw with. Remember, longer clubs will draw more and tend to carry farther than hitting it straight or playing a cut shot. Choose your club and spot in the distance accordingly!
Make sure you are 100% committed to picking a target before you start taking practice swings. This will allow you to take a few practice swings imagining the ball turning over. You want to rehearse the club coming from the inside and think about swinging more out, toward the right.
Visualization is a great way to prime your mind for success and a trick that is known by the best players in the world. As the Golden Bear Jack Nicklaus once said, “I never hit a shot, not even in practice, without having a very sharp in-focus picture of it in my mind.”
Use the Ball Flight Laws and visualization to set yourself up for success. That all starts with picking a spot in the distance and a clear shot shape.
3. Tee Up on the Left Side of the Tee Box
The last part is to make sure you have the proper tee box strategy. Most golfers think that if you’re hitting a right to left shot you should tee up on the right side of the box. When in reality, it’s the exact opposite.
When playing a draw, you want to actually tee up the ball on the left side of the tee box. This gives you more room to aim right and allow the shot to turn back left. David Leadbetter talks about it more in this video:
Finally, make sure that you are aware of where you can miss and where you don’t want to miss. The last thing you want is to hit a straight shot and end up in trouble. Never penalize yourself for hitting a straight shot!
4. Practice on the Range First
While I mentioned it earlier, I want to reiterate that you shouldn’t take these ideas straight to the course. Instead, you need to hit dozens of golf balls on the range before attempting this shot during a round.
After warming up on the range, pick targets and hit different shots drawing the golf ball. Try out different clubs, different trajectories, and different targets.
Maybe the biggest thing to do is put down a few alignment rods for your feet and start line. This will help you feel what it feels like to aim right and setup properly.
After successfully hitting a few, take a short break, hit normal shots, and then curving it again. By taking a break it allows you to recalibrate and keep testing your mind and body.
Also, don’t be afraid to try and hit big hook shots too. By overdoing it, you’ll get the feel for what you need on your backswing and setup position.
Draw Golf Drills (2 Drills)
If you’ve played a cut (or slice) your entire golfing life, a draw might take some time getting used too. But just because it doesn’t happen instantly, doesn’t mean you can’t. Instead, put in the work and find what works best for you.
Here are some of my favorite drills to help you hit a draw:
- Alignment Drill: This simple and easy drill will help you feel what it feels like to aim far enough right and swing along the path. Too many slicers of the golf ball don’t aim right enough which makes it nearly impossible to succeed. This is a great drill to understand face angle, body position, and alignment.
- Trap the Arm Drill: This drill is great to isolate your left arm so you can feel the correct takeaway to create a tight draw.
Next time you’re at the practice range, give these drills a try!
5. Have A Single Swing Thought
Once you’ve practiced this shot and feel confident to take it on the course, choose a single swing thought. This will be different for every person but will help you eliminate overwhelm and just focus on one thing. Having more than a single idea makes it nearly impossible to succeed as you’ll get overwhelmed on the golf course.
Instead, choose something that makes sense to you on range and stick with it.
Some examples could include:
- Think draw.
- Keep a good tempo.
- Pick a spot in the distance and commit to it.
- Commit to a good pre-shot routine and rotate club face at setup.
Try to avoid making it overly technical and instead think of a more broad swing thought. This will help you stay focused on a single thing at a time and not overthink it on the golf course.
Bonus: How to Hit the Low Hook in Golf
Now that you know what to do, let’s take it a step further. Another great recovery shot to have in your bag is the low running hook shot.
If you end up drawing it a little too much and find trouble on the left side, you might need to have this hero shot to get you back in play.
That’s where the low hook (aka power draw) comes in.
Start by using one or two fewer clubs as a hook will close the clubface even more and produce even more topspin. It will also roll out even further once it lands on the turf.
Start by choosing the right setup position and target, depending on the shot. To hit it low, make sure the club is in the middle to slightly back part of your stance. But don’t go too far back as it’ll make you have a steep downswing and actually work against you.
Next, adjust your clubface by slightly closing it slightly at address. If you’re trying to hit a 15+ yard draw/hook then you will need to adjust your swing path more to the inside.
Then, you want to take a shorter backswing and shorter follow through. The lower you want it to go, the shorter the follow through. All these components should lead to a low, piercing right to left ball that will roll out and get you back into position.
One disclaimer, don’t try this shot from deep rough as the club face already shuts in the deep stuff this and won’t help! Instead, take your medicine, punch out, and use your short game to give yourself a chance at making par.
Final Thoughts on a Draw Shot in Golf
Anyone can hit a draw – when you follow these steps and trust the advice!
The draw is an elusive shot for most amateurs, but any player can do it with these simple adjustments. Don’t overcomplicate things by trying to take the club inside or roll your hands too much at impact. Instead, trust the ball flight laws and methods above.
Instead, grip it properly, adjust the club face at setup, and swing toward your target to create the proper flight path. You need to first set yourself up for success with a great setup and grip so the ball curves properly.
- Picking your target and club.
- Aiming right of where you want the ball to finish.
- Making the necessary adjustments depending on if you’re hitting a driver or iron.
Once you set up properly, everything becomes easier. You won’t have to consciously think of your swing path and can instead hit the ball with confidence.
Hopefully, you can start hitting a draw, add distance to your drives, and start impressing your buddies on the next round!