Left-handed golfers have all heard the same tired advice. “It’s just like the righties, but you flip everything!” If only it were that easy, right? Lefties have always gotten the short end of the golf club. Everything from clubs to gloves to training courses are designed with the right-handed golf game in mind. But don’t let this hold you back – if you’re a lefty, you’re in good company with the likes of PGA stars Bubba Watson and Phil Mickelson. Let’s go over some of our best left handed golf tips to help improve your game.
Follow Through the Swing With Your Left Hand
When you’re learning your golf swing, you’re typically taught that your front hand leads the motion in your arms. While this is somewhat true, you can’t rely fully on your right hand for all of your power. Your left hand needs to push through evenly, combining with the power of your right hand. Don’t let your left wrist or forearm become loose and disengaged (but don’t tense up, either!)
Rotate your Body and Hips Through Your Swing
It’s typical for inexperienced golfers not to get the full upper body rotation that they need to maximize their swing power. The body tends to twist easier to the right than the left, so lefty golfers need to pay even closer attention to their upper body motion.
Your back swing should bring your front shoulder nearly perpendicular to the ground in front of you. Make sure you don’t bring your driver too far around – if you can see the club head in the corner of your eye, you’ve twisted back too much. If you don’t get your shoulder all the way forward, then you haven’t gone far enough. If you’re having trouble lining up, you can take videos of yourself to get a better idea of how you look.
Use a Strong Grip for More Power
Left-handed golfers tend to have weaker grips. Your grip strength directly impacts your swing power and control, so it’s critical that you develop a strong, firm grip. Make sure each finger wraps fully around the club handle and that they don’t dangle.
Additionally, a firm golf grip doesn’t mean a tight grip. Make sure you have good control over the golf clubs, but don’t squeeze the life out of them. If you can see the veins in your forearms or if your hands are turning red and chaffing, you’re probably squeezing too hard.
Use Left Handed Golf Clubs
Seems like a given, right? But many newbie golfers don’t understand that left-handed golfers have their own entire sets of equipment. You don’t want to line up with righty clubs and stand on the right-handed side and try to hack away with your weak hand.
Lefty clubs, when held in front of you, face towards the right side of your body. Check out the different club selections available at your local shop to find the set that feels best for you!
Strike Downward With Irons, Up with Woods
You’ll get the most power out of your shot if you strike the ball with the club still moving downward. The arc of your swing should reach its lowest point just past the point of contact. This will help give you the power and the loft you’re looking for to launch the ball out of the grass.
Your tee shot, though, works a bit differently. You want to address the ball from slightly behind, so you can make contact just after the lowest point of your swing. This will lift it off the tee with the best launch angle and maximum power.
Develop Your Draw Shot
An unfortunate reality for left-handed players is most courses are designed by righties, for righties. Many dog-leg holes veer off to the right. This means that while a right-handed golfer will be trying to fade, you as a lefty need a strong draw.
A proper draw shot has a slight in-to-out swing path so that the ball will spin back towards the desired flight path. Adjust the angle of your stance and your club face to find the alignment that pulls the ball back where you want it to go.
Practice with Other Lefties
There’s no better way to hone your golf skills than by playing more, and playing with others. Playing golf with other lefties will help you improve your game far more than solo play. You can share tips and tricks, and you can mimic the behaviors of players who are better than you.
Golf is an endlessly difficult game. For a left handed player, golf is even more daunting because the game seems stacked against you. However, many of the best golf pros in the world are left handed – could you be the next left-handed PGA champion?