Worst iron slump ever...

I bought a new set of AP1 712 irons last month. I live in NY, so I couldn't get out and swing them until about two weeks ago. The first two days I hit them (4-9, as well as my SM4 wedges), I was striking the ball better than I ever had. Compressing the ball well, taking nice, chunky divots and hitting the ball pretty much any way I wanted to. Literally effortless. Now, I am confused to say the least. I'm now suddenly almost never making clean contact, and when I do, I push the ball, and it fades even further right. If I took 20 swings, maybe once I would hit the ball straight and clean. Nothing feels right- my grip, stance, posture, takeaway, balance, downswing and follow through. I feel like I am unable to lift the club after making contact with the ball. I've had slumps before, but going into the season with problems like this is making me absolutely NUTS. I'm wondering if I should just put the clubs down for a few weeks and start over later...I'm also considering lessons from a PGA pro, but I am not a fan of the pro at my local course.

What have you guys done to help break yourselves out of such hard times?!

If you normally swing solid, I would try to take the ball out of the equation..Try your swing without the ball on your mind. Think of the target and swing too it...let the ball get in the way of your swing...Did you possibly injury yourself and your compensating for it in your swing?I'm in NY also and found a heated range in Elmsford...Good luck

Keano26

What have you guys done to help break yourselves out of such hard times?!

This past fall, I've hit every bad shot imagineable. What I do is break everything apart and make sure that each aspect of my swing is correct. Start with making sure you are not reverse pivoting. That will kill contact.

Ron, I will look into swinging without a ball. And no, I haven't suffered any injuries. I hit yesterday, and shot a little better at first, but still wasn't getting that launch or accuracy I saw a few weeks ago. I hit my 52*-6 iron alright, but I couldn't hit my 4 or 5 if my life depended on it. If I do make clean contact with the 4 or 5, I push it way right, and it just keeps fading, or, I will hit a low, hooking screamer that probably goes 100 yards. I don't know what the heck it is I'm doing, but it definitely aint right! I've moved ball position, aimed right, left...Tried different grips..Different takeaways- steep and sweeping.. I've already invested good money into these clubs, and a lot of people blame the clubs on their performance, but the fault is on the person swinging the clubs in my mind. I know that I am capable of hitting the ball well. With that said, I am just going to continue to work things out.

Sure sounds like a reverse pivot.  If you aren't loading up on the inside of your right foot and your hips either slide too much or your left knee is bending too much and your weight starts to load on the front leg before starting your downswing, it is hard to remain stable to keep the club on the same plane/path to consistent ball striking.  Reverse pivot is easier to feel than see since it is being out of balance.  Practice a slower swing and transitioning weight only to start your downswing and gradually increase the speed to about 80% to grove yourself with a more consistent swing.

I was sinking into that morass and wondering if I could even hit a 6I.  Now I'm not sure I can tell if I used a 5I or 5H by the ball flight.  The direction is now close to where I was aiming.  From the TPI site I've incorporated a medicine ball to better feel weight transfer. Good luck.

Your last statement is perfect, you just need to work things out.  I've found myself in a similar position recently hooking everything and feeling uncomfortable over the ball.  I started the season playing the best golf I ever had, but just recently lost it.  Last night when I was working in my room and watching The Haney Project I heard Hank say try a shorter faster swing.  Wow!  I tried that, and it felt a whole lot better.  Of course I couldn't hit the ball inside, but the swing felt so much better.  Just try a shorter swing and progressing from there.

Well, I just got done hitting today, and I hit so well. It was my grip! My right hand before was grasping the side of the shaft, and my thumb was along the side of the shaft as well instead of the top..I also made sure I loaded on my right foot, and hit my pw-5 iron great. My 4 iron was still iffy, but eh...I will get that. BUT, I couldn't hit my driver or 3H for the life of me. Couldn't lift the ball at all, and when I did with the driver, I'd push and slice it, and pull and hook the hybrid. So thanks for the advice..My iron game is going to be fine....Now I just need to start hitting the woods...

Christian , I watched that also and tried it at the range tonight...I was amazed at the results..The flight was lower and more penetrating...also the distance was longer (around 10 yards) ...Was hitting 8 iron over the 150 green :) ...

Hey,

One thing...just be sure on the downswing your head is not drifting past the ball before contact. When I push or block it's usually because I am not keeping my head behind the ball.

Good to hear.  Friday I should be able to get out to the course and I'm going to to try it.  Just from swinging, it feels a whole lot better than it used to.

Keano,

I am no expert (HC 12) but I do know I have experienced the same as you.  It creeps in when I lay off for a while.  I find that I either address the ball too close or too far from my body.  Too close is a pull for me to the left.  Too far is a push to the right.  I would not change my swing too much, just mess with the ball position a bit and check to make sure you are not coming over the top - big fade for that and big hook if the face is shut at impact.  As you practice try to relax the hands a bit.  When I get up tight due to not getting the ball where I want it, I tend to tighten up the grip.  A lot of bad stuff happens when I do that.  Contrary to what I read on this forum, I do better with a full swing down to the PW.  I leave the GW and high loft wedges for the short finesse shots but each his own and of course not everyone's swing is the same!  Good luck,  I how this helps.  DougW

I had been playing some great golf up until about May this year.  I pulled a bicep muscle and couldn't play for almost 2 months.  I started out fine and was hitting OK (first round out with the 910F 19 and 910H 27 I was hitting greens and just really nailing the ball - my total score for that day was +6 at the short course for 18).   Then, for some odd reason I started developing an occasional snap hook and a lot of my wood and hybrid shots were low pulls that would just barely miss the green.   I was also occasionally pulling pitch shots.  I felt like I was fighting my grip because my left hand was turning over. 

Bottom line is check your setup.  If too close to the ball, you will shank or go over the top.  If too far, you'll fall over and lose your balance.  What corrected the problem with the pulling and snap hooks was ball position relative to the head (should be looking at the ball) - my hands felt fine with a neutral grip.  

Check your fundamentals too.   My basic fundamental is quiet lower body on the backswing and quiet upper body on the downswing.   I also play a pretty vertical backswing normally and what had been happening is I was taking it too much inside on the backswing and swinging left on the follow-through.

Golf is pretty much normal now.  I played my best round ever on any golf course about a month and a half ago (+1 at National City).   Been really hitting the fairways well and everything else in general.  Score is back to 43 on a par 37 course. 

One thing I did change was taking the 21 hybrid out and putting a 9 wood back in.  No looking back.

Also back to a similar wedge setup to 2009 (which was 47PW 55SW, SM2 60-07 and 64-07): AP1 PW (46), SM4 56-11 and 60-10 (both bent 1* strong) and 64-07.