Learn a Partial Shot

If your 7 iron is 165 and PW is 120, be able to hit them 120 and 80 respectively.

It is a good drill to learn to link your arms/hands, and thus the club face to the rotation of your body…and a valuable shot in many instances to boot.

Quite literally every lesson I give, I will have someone with a club and I will ask how far they hit that club and ask them to hit it 2/3-3/4 of that distance. They hit it full.

I ask them to end their backswing, lead arm parallel to the ground and the same 2/3-3/4.

I get another full backswing and full shot.

I point out a target about 70 yards away and ask for lead arm parallel and to that target.

Full backswing and full distance.

This is not reserved for high handicappers and beginners. It goes all the way down to scratches and this is appalling.

Not because they can’t do it, but because no one ever told them they needed to, so they don’t know how. Golfers don’t know how to have a shorter backswing and control their arm speed.

When I was a touring pro I didn’t know how…for the same aforementioned reason.

Let’s change this.

Because if you learn to control your arm speed…you will also be able to speed them up and hit it farther, as well, when need be.

Longer drives anyone?

PS-The way I finally get them to do it is to tell them they will be charged double if they hit it past a shorter target. Most decal and lay sod on the first attempt.




  1. Roger Kramer

    Experienced this first hand in a very windy round recently. Full swings were havoc. On punch shots ball went almost regular distance and trajectory. Have to feel wrists cocking right off ball. nice post Monte.

  2. Miss Cleo

    I see a video coming in the future.

    It’s all in the cards.

    (Call 1-800-MISS-CLEO for more life changing prognostications)

  3. Bob

    Hah. I remember that lesson with you. So damned hard to hit partial shots, especially with longer clubs.

    I used to be able to stick a 56* 80 yards every time. Lost that skill through lack of practice.

  4. olwin

    Cool post. Makes me remember an old (really old) instruction video with Greg Norman where he demonstrated hitting a 2-iron the same distance as an 8-iron. All with a “no worries”-attitude.

  5. Ira

    Yeah, I could have used this info Tuesday (today is Thursday) I hit several great approaches–all too long. Ended up back of green. Guess they were not that great.

  6. David Edwards

    Is this because of US style “target”golf courses. Any Scot on a links course worth his salt would be an expert on these shots. That’s why people like Norman, Faldo, Seve, Langer, Olly etc were so superior back in the day. They played all over the world in varying conditions so had to learn the half and quarter shots. fair play to Tiger he learned the “Stinger shot”, one of the reasons he was so great in his prime.


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