South Florida has experienced some rare extensive rainfall this winter season. Extensive rain changes the conditions out on the golf course. A lot of amateur golfers do not realize what adjustments to make out there on the course when the ground is wet. A few things to remember out there that are important:
· Keep the ball in the air off the tee
· Catch the ball first, then ground on approach shots
· Control your spin on the greens with lower lofted club
When you are teeing off, the goal should be to launch it higher and carry it longer. When the ground is wet, once the ball hits the ground, it will slow the ball down immediately causing a lack of distance. This can cause you to have to hit longer irons or woods into the greens which is always a tougher task for golfers of all skill levels. Use a higher tee height then normal, and adjust the ball slightly farther up in your stance to promote a higher launch. (unless you are a high-ball hitter already!)
The number one priority when playing in wet conditions is ensuring that you making good contact on the ball. The goal is to connect with the ball first, and then take a divot on the target side of the golf ball. Don’t be scared, divots when wet will be larger than usual, that is fine! (Don’t forget to fill in your divots with sand!)
The greens when wet will be softer and more receptive than usual. Not only might they roll slower on the surface, but will catch the ball out of the air and will promote a lot of spin on the green. When hitting your approach shots or chip shots around the green, try using less loft and lower trajectory to control the spin. Sand and lob wedge shots that you would normally use might cause too much spin on soft greens which will hinder the ball’s roll out to the hole. Try using a pitching wedge or 9 irons around the green to roll it up to the hole. Get ready for your round by practicing a few of these shots on the chipping green and driving range before you play to get used to the wet surfaces. Jack Nicklaus always said, “Accept the challenge of the day” no matter the conditions. This is a great mindset for any day on the course! Good luck and embrace the wet conditions this season!