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13 Tips on How to Hit a Golf Ball Straight Every Time

Does your golf ball go anywhere but straight? If so, you aren’t alone.

Unintentionally hitting shots left and right of your target just gets frustrating.

Over the years, I’ve developed some proven ways to hit the ball straight and keep things in play.

I can tell you that it’s not always easy to hit a golf ball straight every time, but it’s possible to hit it straight most of the time. Here are my top 13 ways to get it done!

Hitting a Golf Ball Straight (Key Takeaways)

Here are a few of the most important takeaways about how to hit a golf ball straight.

  • Ensure your feet are aligned correctly with the target line using alignment sticks.
  • A neutral grip with appropriate pressure is crucial. Too strong or too weak can lead to hooks or slices, while the right grip pressure allows natural club movement.
  • Correct wrist positioning is vital for delivering the clubhead square at impact.
  • Regularly check your backswing length, as both too long and too short can impact your shot’s accuracy.
  • Ensure your clubs are properly fitted.
  • Maintaining a consistent tempo in your swing helps in making cleaner, straighter shots. Practice with a metronome to improve your swing tempo.
Take a 2-minute Quiz and Step Up Your Game!

1. What do you want to improve in your full swing?

The 13 Tips on How to Hit a Golf Ball Straight

Feet Position Square to Target Line with Toes Flared

Golfers like to swing it.

They don’t always like to take the time to get a club into the right positions or feel more confident about the different positions in the swing. Instead, we want to step up and hit it.

I encourage you not to do this.

When you can take just a bit more time to set up and be sure that your feet are in the right position, you’ll hit more straight shots. Incorporate aiming and a setup check into your pre-shot routine.

Check the Grip

With all the tips to drive a golf ball straight, the most overlooked one is the grip.

I get it; the grip is boring to practice, and it doesn’t feel fun to sit there and work on moving your fingers over a few centimeters.

However, practicing the grip and getting the position right can be a complete game changer.

strong vs neutral vs weak grip in golf

A neutral grip position is where your hands are not too strong or too weak on the club. In addition, you will want to ensure that grip pressure is not too high.

A strong grip is suitable for correcting a slice; a weak grip helps when fixing a hook.

The weak and strong grip are good to know. Neutral is where your hands should be if you want to hit a straight shot.

Pressure in the Hands

Did you know that having too much pressure in your hands when you swing can impact the ability of the golf ball to go straight?

Grip pressure should allow for the club to feel as though it rests in your hands instead of you holding the club as if you are wrangling it!

Use HackMotion to create a consistent grip. With the HackMotion measuring wrist angle at setup, you can see if your hands are positioned on the club the same way each time. Consistency in the grip helps promote more consistency at impact.

Then, work on lowering grip pressure so you are able to rotate the golf club through impact.

Know the Correct Wrist Positioning

One of the more common mistakes that amateur golfers make is not knowing the correct positioning for their wrists.

Although we like to use larger muscles like the core and, shoulders, and legs to control the golf swing, there are still positions that the wrist needs to get in for the club head to be delivered square.

The wrist controls the clubface.

HackMotion is a feedback tool and training aid for golfers that allows for proper positioning of the wrist at the beginning, middle, and end of the swing.

With more than 1,000,000 golf swings analyzed, the HackMotion wrist sensor will give you wrist patterns and movement that can help you make instant improvements in your golf game.

We know that the best amateur and professional golfers have a neutral or slightly flexed position at the top of their backswing.

wrist position at the top of the backswing and hackmotion app

Is the Swing the Right Length?

I know that when I struggle with hitting the ball straight, sometimes it’s because the backswing is not the correct length.

Everyone thinks this means the backswing is too long, but that is not the case. Sometimes, the backswing can be too short, and it doesn’t give you enough time to square the clubface up at impact.

Checking the length of your backswing from time to time can help you get the ball moving down the fairway a little straighter.

I like to take a video of my swing at least once a month and check on positions.

Most of the time, a longer backswing results in a shot that is longer. Adding more length to the backswing requires good rotation and awareness of the golf club.

One of the best ways to practice your backswing length is to use the three swings drill.

Pick one target and hit a full swing shot, a ¾ shot, and a ½ swing. Learn to control ball flight and distance based on backswing length and then choose another target and complete the process with another club.

Most golfers find that what feels like a ¾ length backswing is the easiest to repeat and to hit consistently.

golfer hitting wiht iron golf club on the course

Equipment Upgrades and Enhancements

Golf clubs currently fitted to you as a golfer with the recommended specifications will give you a better chance of hitting the ball straight.

The biggest mistake I see amateur golfers make is the incorrect shaft placed in their golf clubs.

With the wrong shaft, it doesn’t matter if your swing is perfect, your setup is perfect, etc. You must do a lot of work to square up the clubface and hit a great shot.

Therefore it makes sense to get fitted every few years. Take a look at the equipment you have in your bag and try to determine if it is still properly suited to your golf game.

Most of the time, the equipment upgrades and enhancements will be minor tweaks, but they can help you hit the ball straighter.

Tempo Check

The tempo of your golf swing is critical.

Tempo is not necessarily how fast you swing but how long it takes you to complete your golf swing from the start to the end.

The amount of elapsed time and how you divide that time will work to create your tempo.

Golfers with a smooth tempo tend to take about two counts to swing the club back and one to get through the ball and to their finish position.

If you have a great tempo in your golf swing, there are fewer unnecessary movements, making it easier to hit the ball straight.

Here is a great tempo drill you can practice that Payne Stewart would use.

Set the Club Down Straight

This tip for hitting a golf ball straight every time seems all too simple. However, you would not believe how many golfers make this mistake in their game.

So many players will take their golf club, set it down on the ground, and expect that it is square and aimed towards the target.

To find out what square looks like, hold your club up against a 90-degree angle. For this situation, I recommend experimenting with the driver on the driving range and seeing what position gets you the best results.

The bottom line here is that the way the club is set down needs to make sense before you take the club back.

Relax the Arms

Arms are helpful in the swing; they can encourage straighter shots at times, but only when combined with the proper rotation of the hips and legs.

Therefore the arms need to be relaxed so they can move properly.

Body and arms working together are the keys of the swing. Legs and hips can generate power, and the arms will help keep everything headed toward the target.

Try to keep your arms relaxed; I feel it the most when I relax my back, neck, and shoulders. In addition, I focus on using my hip and leg rotation to generate power.

Take a 2-minute Quiz and Step Up Your Game!

1. What do you want to improve in your full swing?

Pay Attention to Your Head Position

We already talked about the clubhead position and where that needs to be when hitting a drive; however, now it’s time to talk about the position of your actual head, the one that holds all those swing thoughts.

One of my favorite swing tips, and one that I go to on tough days, is to keep my head still as I swing.

Not only do I want very little movement laterally, but I also don’t want much of an up-and-down movement with the head. Each of these movements with my head makes it much more challenging to return the clubface to square.

As your head moves up and down, it can impact the angle of the clubface. Take a video of your golf swing and look at how much head movement you have. It may surprise you and motivate you to work on keeping it a little more still throughout your golf swing.

Learn How to Hook and Slice

f you want to hit the ball straight, it can help to know how to hit a slice and how to hit a hook.

The concept here is that if you know how to hook it and you know how to slice it, then you may be able to fix those things if they should pop up while you are out on the golf course.

The clubface gives us the most insight into which direction the golf ball is going to travel.

golf ball flight laws

The more you know about how to control the golf ball, the easier it is to hit a golf ball straight every time. With the use of golf launch monitor data and technology, we have learned that the wrists are directly in control of the angle of the clubface.

If your wrist position is correct, the clubface is square at impact. Use your wrists and the HackMotion to learn to control the clubface of your golf shots.

Practice Putting with Lines

When talking about how to hit a golf ball straight, we can’t leave out the putting green.

One of the best ways to learn how to hit your putts straight is to use lines on the putting green when you practice.

There are ways to do this with chalk lines if your course allows, but you can also use alignment sticks.

Practicing putting lines in place makes it easier to visualize what you need to do and how to get the club back to square on each stroke.

In addition, you can wear your HackMotion device to check on the consistency of your putting stroke. All golfers have some differences from one stroke to the next. However, the best players keep the most consistency in their stroke.

There are so many inconsistencies on a putting green. Using lines and technology to increase the effectiveness of your putting routine is essential.

golf player doing putting drills

Make Your Practice Worth Your Time

Practicing without purpose is more like an exercise.

Use HackMotion to create a practice routine that effectively fixes your faults and gets you back out on the golf course with a straighter ball flight. You have likely spent too much time working on the swing plane and path when your wrists were in the wrong position all along.

Investing in your golf game is part of learning to hit a golf ball straighter. Once you gain these skills and the feel of what it takes to hit a golf ball straight, you will see your golf course play start to change.

Learn to decrease the amount of extension in your lead wrist at the top of the backswing and then get yourself to a flexed position at impact.

Take a 2-minute Quiz and Step Up Your Game!

1. What do you want to improve in your full swing?


Here are a few of the most commonly asked questions about hitting a golf ball straight every time.

Why don’t my golf shots go straight?

Your golf shots do not go straight because you are not delivering the clubface to the impact position when it is square. If your clubface is open or closed, the golf ball goes right or left and not straight.

Why is it so hard to hit a golf ball straight?

Hitting a golf ball is like trying to take a spot the size of a quarter and hit it on something the size of a dime. Now you must try and swing at nearly 100 mph of speed.

It’s hard to do, and there are many moving parts that make it much more complicated.

How do you straighten a shot?

In order to straighten a golf shot, you need to find which area of your swing is causing the issue. It is set up, clubface control, the swing plane, the path, etc.

Is it better to hit straight or draw?

Many golfers prefer a draw ball flight as it goes a little further and can feel more natural. If you know the golf ball is going to draw each time you hit, then it’s perfectly acceptable to use that.


With these 13 tips on how to hit a golf ball straight every time, you should be well on your way to becoming a better player.

Try to remember that hitting a golf ball straight does take some practice.

Work on making sure all the basics are in place, and then move on to the more complicated things, such as the swing plane, path, and correct wrist positioning.

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Brittany Olizarowicz
written by Britt Olizarowicz

Britt Olizarowicz is a golf professional who has played the game for more than 30 years. In addition to loving the game of golf, Britt has a degree in math education and loves analyzing data and using it to improve her game and the games of those around her. If you want actionable tips on how to improve your golf swing and become a better player, read her guides.