Where should my divots start?

If you are struggling with fat or thin contacts it is worth asking the question: where should my divots start? Golf Monthly Top 25 Coach Clive Tucker offers some simple advice

Great ball-strikers all deliver the club on the ideal angle of attack. Steep enough to catch the ball first without being too steep and killing the flight. It's a tricky balance. If you are looking to improve your ball-striking it is worth asking - where should my divots start? By concentrating on this element with your mid-irons you should be able to make major strides with the quality of your contacts.

where should my divots start? ball position drill

A great drill is to place a tee in the ground where the ball would usually be in your stance - with a mid iron, you can place two balls inside your left heel to help you mark the spot. Now make a swing taking a normal divot. The tee peg acts as a marker in the ground and the divot should start 1/2 an inch past it.

Where should my divots start?

This is the perfect, ball-first, ground-second contact. If you are striking too close to the tee there are two factors to check - ball position and weight transfer. Try moving the ball back in your stance a fraction and ensure you are moving your weight towards the target through impact.

Is your angle of attack right?

If you are catching shots thin with the divot starting more than an inch past the ball, move the ball up in your stance a fraction. Also check that your hands are not too far ahead of the ball at address - leaning your hands too far forward can cause thin strikes and low flighted shots.

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Even if your divots are spot on, head to the practice ground and use the tee peg drill. This is a great way to focus your mind on creating the ideal angle of attack. The more consistent your divots are, the more consistent your overall ball-striking will be. So if you are asking yourself; where should my divots start? - use this process to become more precise. Better strikes are guaranteed!

Neil Tappin
Neil Tappin

In his current role, Neil is responsible for testing drivers and golf balls. Having been a part of the Golf Monthly team for over 15 years and playing off a handicap of 3, he has the experience to compare performance between models, brands and generations. For 2022 he thinks the main trend in drivers is: "In a word, consistency. Whilst all the brands are talking about ball speed (and the new drivers are certainly long), my biggest finding has been how much more consistent the ball flights are. Mishits don't seem to be causing the same level of drop-off or increase in the spin numbers. This means that more shots seem to be flying the way you want them to!" As far as golf balls are concerned the biggest development is in the, "three piece, non-Tour, urethane-covered section. For regular golfers, these models offer superb performance at both ends of the bag without denting your wallet quite as much as the premium Tour-played options."


Originally working with the best coaches in the UK to produce instruction content, he is now the brand's Digital Editor and covers everything from Tour player interviews to gear reviews. In his time at Golf Monthly, he has covered equipment launches that date back well over a decade. He clearly remembers the launch of the Callaway and Nike square drivers as well as the white TaylorMade driver families, such as the RocketBallz! If you take a look at the Golf Monthly YouTube channel, you'll see his equipment videos dating back over a decade! He has also conducted 'What's In The Bag' interviews with many of the game's best players like Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm. Over the years, Neil has tested a vast array of products in each category and at drastically different price-points. 

Neil is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade Stealth Plus Fairway Wood: Titleist TSi2 Hybrid: Titleist TS3 Irons (4-9): Mizuno JPX 919 Forged Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 46˚, 50˚, 54˚, 60˚ Putter: Odyssey Triple Track Ten Ball: Titleist Pro V1X