Symetra Tour professional (New Britain, Connecticut) returns for Episode 10 of her weekly instructional series, “Staying Sharp with Sheary.” The Wake Forest University alumna and past Symetra Tour champion at the W.B. Mason Championship in 2016, gives advice and drills to keep your game sharp—both physically and mentally—while at home and in practice at the course.
This week, Sheary provides strategy on how to approach hitting out of thick rough. The most important step is choosing the proper club. Sheary suggests selecting one with more loft, such as a wedge, to help provide rapid elevation in ball flight and avoid the long grass in front of the ball. Other key components include playing the ball farther back in the stance, allowing for a steeper swing pattern to cut through the grass. Furthermore, keeping the club face slightly open will help prevent the tendency of the ball to come out left of the intended target.
— Natalie Sheary (@NatSheary) June 18, 2020
“Long native grass, or thick rough, will always have a tendency to slow down club head speed at impact. Keeping up speed by making an aggressive swing will help counteract this factor,” said Sheary. “First and foremost, the goal is to get the ball back to short grass. Acceleration on the downswing will give the best opportunity to pick the ball out as clean and straight as possible.”
To make sure the club spends very little time in the grass, Sheary mentions the only time it should catch the grass is immediately behind the ball. She also advises against making a full backswing or complete follow through, aiming instead for a sharp, descending swing that maintains acceleration. “We've got to stay aggressive throughout to get this ball out,” Sheary adds.