Welcome to Golfer to Golfer, where we tap into the insights of one avid player in hopes that the rest of us can take away something that might improve our own games.
Watching the way Cam Smith plays around the greens is hard to describe. He’s some combination of a magician and an artist, one who exudes such a quiet, steely confidence that you can’t help but suspect he’s about to hole whatever shot is in front of him — just like he does in this video, which I watched with delight as it came across my Instagram feed over the weekend.
Oh, and did we mention he hits the shot one-handed?
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Smith doesn’t explain how he does it, but look closely, and you can learn a lot…
1. Open the face
Smith isn’t hitting this shot to show off (well, he’s not hitting this shot only to show off). It’s a drill, one that you should try yourself!
But first, look at his setup. The handle is low and close to him, and the clubface is splayed open. This is going to help him hit the ball high.
2. Quick hinge
As he makes his backswing, notice how much he has hinged his wrist. It’s a relatively short arm-swing, but his wrists mean his club has moved quite a long way by this point. This move allows him to generate enough speed for this shot, while imparting lots of spin with a steep blow into the ball.
3. Club releases past hands
Notice how the club has passed his hands at this point? He’s fully released all that hinge he’s stored up in his backswing, and used the bounce on the club as it was designed, so there’s no digging into the turf.
This motion allows the speed he’s generated to whip through the ball quickly, leaving it with just enough spin to grab onto the green, slow down and trickle into the hole. Well, hopefully.