The million dollar question that all golfers strive for, how to tee off straight, right? Not really, most new golfers wish they could tee off straight but in reality, this is the hardest shot you can hit. That’s one of the reasons professionals play a draw or a fade, I can’t think of a single person on the tour that plays a straight shot as their go to play.
When you tee off if you imagine a straight line going from between your legs and through the middle of the ball. When your club face makes impact with the ball, the club face should be in parallel with this line. If your swing path is on plane and there’s no swinging over the top (slice) or no swinging under the plane then the ball has the best chance to go straight. So clubface at impact along with swing path is how to tee off straight.
The question “How To Tee Off Straight” is a question that if you were to ask a professional how to do this, they might not even be able to tell you. They might just say “Pull the club straight back and when you reach the top of your swing, bring the club straight back down and this should result in a straight tee shot”.
Huh, that’s it you say? Well yes, but there are so many other variables that affect the golf ball after you hit it. Even if you make the same swing every time you would probably get a different result from the golf ball.
That’s why pro’s on tour prefer to hit draws or fades, they know every time the ball will have a curve to their shot. That is very predictable when you’re tired, sore, angry, wet or happy, still going to get that curve on the ball.
Think About It
Why would you want to try and make the ball go straight every time? Most fairways are curved or angled in some way that makes a straight ball flight useless. Now don’t get me wrong, you can totally play a straight shot on a lot of holes but if that’s all you have in your bag, you need to practice the draw or fade.
I think if you knew how to hit a small baby fade and a small baby draw, this would benefit you more than a straight shot down the fairway every time.
If you’re a right-handed golfer and there’s a crosswind of 5 or 10 mph coming from left to right. This could turn a little baby draw into a straight shot down the fairway. Vise versa for a baby fade.
Now, if you had a crosswind with a straight shot down the fairway, most likely it will be pushed off either side depending on which way the wind is coming from.
Can Teeing Off Straight Benefit Me?
Yes, teeing off straight can benefit you and hitting a straight tee shot is a beautiful sight to see when the ball leaves the club face. Most times though, that’s hard to replicate because of all the variables that are at play.
- Dry Conditions
- Wet Conditions
- The Way You Tee Up The Ball
- Your Pre Shot Routine
- Your Golf Swing (biggest variable)
Wind is a big deal especially if you don’t have a shot in your that can fight against it. Obviously, if there’s a headwind then you can’t do anything about this except play a low stinger shot.
I’ve played in nasty wind, 35 mph – 45 mph gust that would make you want to pull your hair out. When I had the baby fade that I use to play, the wind would destroy me sometimes. I remember some nasty gust of wind that turned it into a serious looking fade like I was trying to take a shortcut or something.
Don’t mess with the wind, it’ll get you every time!
Temperature can affect your ball, your body, the course and so on. I’ve played in below freezing conditions before, my birthday is in December and I wanted to play. I can’t remember the exact temp but hitting the ball off the fairway was like playing on hardwood floors and when the ball landed it bounced like it was on hardwood floors.
My buddy and I definitely didn’t think that day through well enough but it was a good lesson. I won’t ever play in temperatures that low again but temperature changes everything, my story was the extreme.
Playing on a hot 80-degree day, and yes that’s hot to me for those who can only play in 80+ temps. Playing in these temperatures can make the golf ball really soft and I’ve noticed that the ball comes off the head much better in these temperatures.
Hot temps also affect your body greatly, you need to drink more water, wipe the sweat off your face, eat more, wear sunscreen. The sun can drain your body, when I walk 18 holes in the summer I’m usually exhausted and have a headache when I finish.
Meaning, low moisture in the air.
This playing condition doesn’t really bother me and I don’t know if it really affects how I play generally. Someone that needs to put chap-stick on their lips because they can’t tolerate peeling skin. I could see this would affect them in a negative way.
If you need to put lotion on your hands every hole because you can’t stand the dry cold air or dry warm air, that would be disruptive to me. I don’t think I could swing a golf club with lotion on my hands. It wouldn’t feel right and I would be afraid the club would fling out of my hands.
I think overall, dry air conditions just play a role in how it affects your mood.
I live in the Pacific Northwest so I know a lot about playing in these conditions. I’ve learned to deal with the wet conditions though, because, what other choice do I have other than moving?
This is one of those conditions that affects everything you can think of. I honestly believe if you can shoot a decent score while it’s raining then you have a strong mental game. Depending on the severity of the rain, you could be completely wet from head to toe. Or you could just be damp, it all depends.
If you’ve never played in these conditions before, it’s not always a good time, especially when a storm sneaks up on you in the middle of your round. If you choose to go out in those conditions and play like I have before, that’s a different story, you’re more prepared.
Good luck hitting a straight shot in a torrential downpour, actually, good luck making any good contact at all. If I have all my rain gear on like this outfit on Amazon, it’s a different feeling, this rain suit on amazon looks much better than my rain suit. My rain suit throws me off most times and I find it difficult to make a normal swing. Check out some of my rain gear here Golf Wear.
The Way You Tee Up The Ball
It’s pretty common for new golfers to tee up the ball without giving it a whole lot of thought. I use to tee the ball up funky, my playing partner still tees it up funky.
Teeing up the ball plays a big role in how well your tee shot actually is, if you tee it up too high, you become vulnerable to a sky shot. If you tee the ball too low, you could top the ball or snap hook it if your club catches the ground first and that’s the last thing you want to do on the first tee.
Teeing up the ball is totally relative to the golfer. Knowing how high or how low to tee the ball up comes with plenty of practice.
But also, teeing up the ball isn’t really needed all the time. If I’m hitting my irons on a par three or my hybrid, I don’t even use a tee. I have my own reasons for this and I suspect they’re similar to Henrik Stenson’s (I’m not trying to compare my skills to his) it’s merely a comfort thing.
Pre Shot Routine
This is something I didn’t start doing until I started to study the game and how the pros play golf. Your pre-shot routine is what sets you up for success. It’s meant to erase the last hole and focus you and your thoughts on the shot at hand.
It doesn’t really wipe your memory but it’s the one thing that stands between your +3 on the last hole and the next tee shot you need to take. This is extremely important if you want to attempt a straight shot every single hit of the ball, you need a pre-shot routine.
Your Golf Swing
Unless you’re a pro golfer, this is a major variable in hitting a straight shot every time. Having a consistent swing is the one variable that affects the ball the most. If you can hit the ball the same way every time then the results of what happens to the golf ball is affected by the other variables, you can’t do anything about that.
So even if you practiced a straight shot in the optimal conditions at the range, it still doesn’t matter sometimes how good you swing the club. The other variables will mess with the ball regardless.
Reconsider Your Swing
If you are really wanting to hit a straight tee shot every time, great, go practice. The reality is, your hard work and practice can’t be the blame for your fade off to the right or your fade off to the left. You could slightly miss-hit the ball and there she goes, off to the left…blame it on the wind.
I would suggest developing a draw, you get the most yardage for your efforts from this ball flight. If you work on developing your draw over a straight shot than you will have figured out how to manipulate the ball to your liking.
Listen to me or don’t, up to you but whenever I play with people and I see them smack a draw on the golf ball, I know that they’re probably going to shoot between 70 and 80. Not guaranteed but if you have a consistent draw or even a nice fade, you’re probably shooting lower scores than the majority of golfers.
I hope this article helps you and I hope you consider learning to hit a draw instead of a straight shot every time.