How to Fix a Hook in Golf by Understanding the Cause

Learning how to fix a hook in golf can be a maddening and difficult process.  There are few things worse than watching an uncontrollable hook snap off out of bounds.  And as Lee Trevino so accurately opined, "you can talk to a slice but a hook won't listen!"

Trevino found out what Ben Hogan knew years prior.  That a hooking golf shot could destroy a round because they are so hard to keep in play.  A slight draw is one thing, but a hot hook shot heading for the water or O.B. stakes just won't work over the long term. They just keep going left and seem not to stop until they are unplayable!

A draw can be very powerful, but when you start overdoing it, and a hook results, you will have a very difficult time controlling your golf shots.  Hogan only became the legendary player we all know when he turned his violent hook into a controlled fade. 

The first thing to do if you want to fix your hook is to understand what causes the hook in the first place.  If you know why, and you understand that this is the ONLY way to hook a ball, you'll have a chance to fix it.

You Learn How to Fix a Hook by Knowing Why it Happens

Remember this:  a hook will occur when the club face is pointing too far left of the path the club is swinging on.  So if your club face is pointing 3 degrees left (for a right handed player) as you approach impact, and your club is swinging 3 degrees to the right, you have a face to path diversion of 6 degrees. And that face it just going to keep on shutting throughout the shot.

So if you really are hooking your golf ball, the club is swinging inside out and the club face is pointing in the opposite direction!  Make sure you understand this if you want to fix your hook.  See the image below and make a mental note of this, because this is exactly what causes a hook in golf!

To fix a hook in golf you have to match the face and path angles

Here's the other point you need to take away.  A pull is NOT a hook.  When you pull a ball straight left, the club face and path are pretty much on the same line.  You're club is swinging left and the face is pointing left.  Confusing your pull with a hook, and trying the information below will not help you.   A hook will have a clear curve to the shot.  It will move from right to left (right handed player) with a clear curve and the ball bounces hard and further to the left when it lands.  The reason this happens is the gear effect of the club imparts a wicked right-to-left spin on the golf ball.

So now that you have some information about what it really is, how do you fix a hook in your golf game?

The information below is for right handed players, but left handed players can assume the exact opposite.

  1. You have to get the path and club face more closely aligned.  So you have to get your swing path more to the left, and/or get the club face pointing more to the right at impact.  How much you need to change each will take some range work, but you have to get those two elements working together and not opposing each other.
  2. I'd recommend fixing the club face first.  Try weakening your grip a little, or perhaps feel like your hands roll over slightly less at impact.  Try some drills where you hold the club face more open through impact to get a feel.
  3. Once the ball looks like it's curving less, then look at the path that your club face swings on.  Is the golf ball going straight out to the right now?  If so you may have improved the club face angle in terms of matching the path, but are still swinging too far right.  So try to feel like the club exits more left through impact.  This will get the path and club pointed more down the target line as you swing into the follow through.

Ben Hogan employed a very weak grip to keep his club face from closing too fast and pointing left of his path.  It was a key to his game.  It may not be a key to your game, but try some different grip strengths and see if it changes your hook.

If you want to read about Hogan, and all the changes he made in his swing to become a hook-proof machine, buy the book at Amazon. This is a great book, but make sure you understand that Hogan was doing everything to eliminate a hook shot from his golf game.  Some of his fundamentals may work for you, some may not!

Ben Hogan adopted a very weak golf grip to fix his hook

The key to fixing your hook is definitely getting the club face and path more closely aligned and pointing towards the target.  How you do that will take some range work, and trial and error, but that is what you must do.

We will post some drills and information below that may help.  Work on the drills and experiment a little, no great player ever got better without trying some different things to find out what worked best for them  And don't listen to everyone, take in the knowledge, understand why the hook is occurring and get on the range.  You can find a cure if you work at it.

If you are interested in keeping track of your progress as you work through these tips and drills, feel free to create a FREE account and use our golf instruction software.  You can create a team to help you, keep track of notes and chipping keys and much more.

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