Welcome to Golfer-to-Golfer, where we try to learn from all different kinds of avid players out there, in hopes that the rest of us can take away something that might improve our own games.
Tiger Woods can hit just about every shot, but there’s no shot more synonymous with the Big Cat than the stinger. With a low, penetrating ball flight that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is useful, Woods’ stinger is one of the most iconic shots in the game.
Beautiful as it is to watch, the stinger isn’t the easiest shot to pull off. Getting the ball to come out low and hot on command is a skill that takes tons of practice to learn, and even more fine-tuning to execute on the course. If you want to hit Woods’ stinger, you’ll need to have total control of your swing.
Luckily for us, it is possible to learn how to hit this signature shot. And thanks to a video from TaylorMade, we get to learn it straight from the source.
Step one in hitting the stinger is to play the ball a little farther back in your stance. However, you don’t want to play it as far back as you would for a punch shot. Woods says he moves it just a single ball back in his stance.
“I try to keep it as simple as I possibly can,” Woods says.
The key for this shot is stopping your hands just after impact. For a full shot, Woods would fully release after impact and make a complete follow through, but for the stinger, he wants to stop his hands as quickly as possible once he hits the ball.
“So how do I brake?” Woods says. “For me, I like to soften my arms up and speed up my hips. I try to get my hips moving as fast as I possibly can so my hands can stop as soon as they can post-impact.”
Woods says it’s absolutely crucial that you keep your body moving at a consistent speed so you can brake your hands. If you can get those two things working in sync, the ball will come out low and hot, emulating Woods’ famous stinger.
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