Golfers seem to have two ambitions above all others: they would like to be able to drive as long as the pros and to be able to stop their approaches on the greens the way the pros can. Much sensible instruction has been provided on how to gain length off the tee, but it has been my experience that the average golfer is quite confused on the business of backspin.
First, let me tell you how, contrary to popular belief, one does not achieve backspin: you don't get it by over-emphasizing the down motion of the downswing—that is, by simply driving the ball into the ground as forcefully as you can.
Backspin, to some degree, depends on the relationship of the power of the blade to the power of the shaft. You must have the right equipment first. Then—it is all very unmysterious and painstaking—backspin is produced by contacting the ball absolutely cleanly, striking it a quarter of an inch or so above its base as you hit down-and-through the ball. This takes plenty of time and some skill to master, but it is this precise striking of the ball that creates the spin in flight that in turn creates the backspin action when the ball hits the green.
from JULIUS BOROS, pro at the Mid Pines Club, Southern Pines, N.C.
NEXT WEEK'S GUEST PRO: GENE ANDERSEN ON CURING SHANKING