May 262009
 

Scoring By Bob Ford, with Ron Kaspriske , Illustration By Jim Luft July 2008

Lew Worsham, winner of the 1947 U.S. Open, was one of the biggest influences on my game. Just spending time around him and watching him teach, I really learned a lot.

One thing I took away from those lessons was that no matter what short-game shot you’re hitting, you need to accelerate into the ball. With many shots around the green, it’s a lot like striking a match: You can’t ignite a match unless you increase speed as you drag the tip across the matchbook. I’ve found that mental image helpful to amateurs who are afraid to make an accelerating swing.

Breaking 100

I keep it simple when I teach 100-shooters the greenside bunker shot. The sand can be intimidating to higher-handicappers, but they have to overcome that fear. READ MORE >>

I can understand why so many amateurs struggle with pitching. When you’re only 30 yards from the green, it’s hard to convince yourself to make a full swing and accelerate through the ball. But that’s exactly what you need to do to execute this shot. Set up to the ball with an open face. READ MORE >>

Breaking 80

No short-game shot better emulates the action of striking a match than hitting out of greenside rough, especially when the pin is close. For this shot, make a longer backswing but very little follow-through.READ MORE >>

Bob Ford is the head professional at Seminole Golf Club, Juno Beach, Fla., and at Oakmont (PA.) Country Club.