How to Put Backspin on a golf ball – Hitting down on the ball explained

Ever hit what, at first, looked like a perfect shot, right onto the green only a few feet away from the hole, only to watch it roll and roll, further and further away, off into the rough and require a great recovery shot or another up and down to finish?

Don’t worry, we all have!

If it’s the case for you, you’ve definitely wondered how to put backspin on a golf ball, and we have the answers!

Golf is no easy feat, and putting backspin on a golf ball takes a tremendous amount of practicing and trial and error.

Hitting a great backspin shot can have you feeling like a celebrity on the golf course, but it’s also an important technique to have in your toolbelt for a successful day out on the links.

Learning how to put backspin on a golf ball can really save your scorecard, so keep on reading as we get stuck into how to put backspin on a golf ball.

how to put backspin on a golf ball. A golfer watches her shot in the distance while another golfer watches.

How to Put Backspin on a golf ball

What is backspin on a golf ball?

Backspin on a golf ball is when the ball spins backward, in the opposite direction to where it is traveling.

In other words, when you put backspin on a golf ball, it spins toward you.

It spins backwards and moves forwards.

There’s not much more to it than that!

Why put backspin on a golf ball?

There are a number of reasons to put backspin on a golf ball, the common denominator of all these reasons being that it helps you control the ball.

If you hit your ball with a good amount of backspin, it will actually travel backwards after it’s landed.

It’s a skill used by plenty of professionals to hit some truly amazing shots.

But it’s not just to show off and bag some impressive wins, hitting a shot with backspin can actually help you get more loft on the ball.

The dimples on the golf ball actually help create loft on the ball as it flies through the air, if you’ve put enough backspin on the ball.

Being able to hit the ball with backspin is also very important for your short game. It’s imperative for a good up and down or for your chip shots.

A golf club colliding with a golf ball.

How to Put Backspin on a golf ball

There are many different steps to putting backspin on a golf ball, you can try each one individually but to get the best results, we would recommend using all of them together.

It’s up to your judgment just how much backspin you intend to use on each shot you make, we can’t make every shot for you!

So, let into how to put backspin on a golf ball!

1. Hit Down on the ball

The most important, and essential, first step to putting backspin on the golf ball is hitting down on the ball.

This step is definitely the most difficult to get right as it takes altering your swing path.

Usually, a swing thought that is taught to golf beginners is ‘low and slow’, as it can help a lot with a consistent downswing.

However, you want to go completely against that advice if you’re looking to put backspin on your shot.

What you need to do is ensure that your downswing path is steeper than it would normally be.

You don’t want to go too steep though, as this could mean you just hit the top of the ball and risk topping it.

You still want to get underneath the ball, so your swing path shouldn’t be so steep that you make getting underneath impossible. That being said, you don’t want to scoop the ball either.

Scooping the ball is going to lead to a much weaker shot that does nothing more than adding another shot to your scorecard.

In one motion, you want to get underneath the ball with a smooth swing plane, you want your backswing to be the same as you would normally use, and only change your downswing.

That means maintaining your spine angle, getting your feet in the right position, and getting your takeaway right.

This also means that you want to make sure there is a good amount of lag in your swing.

The best way to ensure that you are hitting down on the ball is to make sure your hands are in front of the ball as it makes contact with the club.

A golfer makes a shot, spraying turf into the air.

2. Clean your Clubs

While you should make sure that your clubs are clean anyway to play well, having clean clubs is essential for putting backspin on your ball.

You might not know it, but the grooves on your club face actually help you achieve a backspin.

So if the grooves on your club face help you with your backspin, having grooves that are clogged with mud isn’t exactly going to perfect your shot.

Having clean clubs is also essential for playing any shot consistently. Dirt or mud affects the club face and can cause your shots to be unpredictable.

So if you want to put backspin on your shots, clean your clubs!

a golfer hold his club behind his head after making a shot.

3. Square Club face at impact

The angle of your club face impact has so many different purposes for your game. It can help you hit a draw or a fade, it can help you out of a sand bunker, and it can help you stop topping the golf ball.

But for our purposes right now, it can also help you put backspin on your shots.

You want to hit down on the ball with a square club face in order to hit the ball straight with a good deal of backspin. Sounds easy! unfortunately, it’s very tricky.

A square club faces at impact is going to give you backspin, if you hit down on the ball with an open or closed club face, you’re going to get side spin, or a diagonal spin. These aren’t the most useful outcomes, but they’re not the end of the world.

Making sure you have a square face at impact is no easy feat though and many golfers struggle with this. A dodgy angle of impact with your club face can cause a shank or a thinned shot, things that many golfers struggle with, and the chances are, you find it tough to get right every single time.

One way you can troubleshoot getting your angle of impact correct is with your grip strength.

The way that you grip your clubs is also important, but gripping your clubs too tightly can affect your wrist set, which is very important in ensuring you have a good angle of impact with your club face.

a golfer prepares to make a shot on a cliff.

4. get your clubs right

A big part of how to put backspin on a golf ball is making sure you have the right clubs.

You essentially want a club with a lot of loft, so attacking the ball with your 3-iron won’t be ideal, especially as you’re most likely to get a good amount of backspin if you hit the ball with your full swing, rather than holding back.

For example, it’s much easier to get some backspin on your shot with your pitching wedge, as it is the club with the most loft.

In essence, your best bet is to go with a 9-iron and your full swing, using the rotation of your body and your wrist set to create a decent amount of lag in your swing.

The loft on the club, meaning the angle of the club face, is important in creating backspin as it helps hit down on the ball. It’s therefore much more difficult to put backspin on a ball if you’re hitting it with your driver.

A golfer holds a club over their shoulder after making a shot.

5. Use a narrower stance

A narrower stance has many different uses and, while it may not necessarily be creating backspin in your swing, it does help you maintain control throughout your swing.

If you’re having trouble with creating backspin in your shots, try a narrower stance to control your swing more. A narrower stance should also help you hit down on the ball.

In fact, a narrower stance helps you with every single step so far on this list. Once you’ve got the backspin down with a narrow stance, it’s worth widening your stance, as a wider stance is useful for creating more power and loft in your swing.

So, that’s our guide on how to put backspin on a golf ball!

As far as golf techniques go, it’s definitely one of the more difficult skills to master, but don’t let that deter you!

The backspin can be an invaluable skill when you need to hit a good up and down or a cheeky little chip. Or, it can just be a shot to impress your golf buddies. It’s up to you how you use it, just use it wisely!

Keep on reading to find out how to use your pitching wedge!

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