Hitting a driver off the tee may be the best way to hit the ball as close to the hole as possible to have a shorter second shot but it is not always the best option. Depending on the layout of the hole, you may want to play the safe shot away from trouble like bunkers, water hazards, and waste areas and give yourself the best opportunity to score. Let’s be honest, hitting the long ball is a fun and in some cases super rewarding but the reality is, that may put you in the most trouble. In this Play Better Golf segment, Cobra staff member, Jeff Fisher, gives us some tips on how to play smart, avoid trouble off the tee, and put yourself in the best position to score.
Jeff Fisher: Hi, I’m Jeff Fisher, Director of Instruction at the Fisher Bryan Golf Academy here at Longbow Golf Club in Mesa, Arizona. I want to help you today with something that I think is going to help you save a few shots on the golf course. I’m on a par 4, it’s 420 yards long, the wind is in my face a little bit, I’ve got a deep face bunker on the right, trouble further right, and desert left. Now because it’s a longer par-4 most people are automatically going to pick their driver as the club for their tee shot, but if I hit driver, I’m going to have to challenge that bunker on the right. If I don’t clear it I’m in a deep face bunker and making par just became a whole lot harder than it should be. Also, there’s more trouble to the right. Even success with that driver clearing that bunker leaves me with a downhill sidehill lie to a tough green. But if I hit my driver to the left, I’m also in trouble because I’m going to reach the desert over there. If I instead of taking driver take 3-wood, now I take all the trouble out of play. I hit away from the bunker on the right, I can hit at the desert on the left, but I’m not going to reach it because I took less club. I have a shoot down the middle of the fairway and now I’m going to be left with a hundred thirty yard shot from a flat lie to a wide-open green from that angle. If you go ahead and go a little deeper in your thought making process, make a little better decision about what’s a risk and what’s a reward with what club you hit off the tee even on a long par-4 or par 5, I believe you’re going to save yourself a few shots through the course of your round.