Why Do Woods Slice More than Irons?

Scott Sackett
Director of Instruction
McCormick Ranch Golf Club
Scottsdale, AZ

More Information

When a student comes to me for the first time, it’s very important that I have a crystal clear concept of what their game plan and goals are. After asking several questions about their game, such as: how often do you play, how much do you get to practice, what are some strong points about your game as well as weak points, what is your overall goal that you would like to reach when the series is completed, what are overall tendencies with ball flight.  Those are just a few things that help me to create a starting point.

When asking the question about overall tendencies of ball flight, the response seems to be almost always the same. (What would you say, if I asked you that question?). The #1 response is, “I pull my irons and slice my woods.”  That is a scary thought because it tells most people that they have two different golf swings. 

What you must understand before reading any further is at least 85% of all people that play golf slice the ball. If you are one of those 85%, it is a real good chance that you are swinging out to in through impact. For a right handed golfer that means they start the ball left of their target. (Instead of inside, square, back to inside which would start the ball at the target).

If the clubface, (iron), hits the ball below the equator at impact, there will be a tremendous amount of back spin put on the ball. Even if the clubface is open to a degree, the ball will still start left and stay left. FACT: Back spin on a golf ball offsets side spin.

If the clubface, (wood), hits the ball in the center of the equator at impact, there will be a tremendous amount of side spin put on the ball. The more the clubface is open at impact, the more the ball will slice.

REMEMBER: A perfect path at impact doesn’t guarantee anything but it allows great things to happen.

Scott Sackett, GOLF Magazine TOP 100 Teacher since 1997, teaches full time at McCormick Ranch Golf Club in Scottsdale. To get more information on lessons, visit Scott’s web site at www.scottsackett.com. To contact Scott personally, e-mail scottsackett@cox.net.