Golf Digest April 2019

Golf Digest empowers the modern golfer, delivering monthly content on how, what and where to play. Golf Digest provides "how-to" articles by an unparalleled team of the game's top professionals, the most in-depth equipment rankings, the Hot List and is the No. 1 authority for golf course rankings.

United States
Conde Nast US

in this issue

4 min
wait for the twist ending

Chairman and Editor-in-Chief We present Golf Digest’s Greatest of All Time Invitational. IT’S THE AGE-OLD BARROOM DEBATE: Who’s the GOAT—the greatest of all time if every player competed against each other in their prime? The golf version will be played out over the next three issues and on as writers Dan Jenkins, Guy Yocom and Mark Frost deconstruct a qualifying stroke-play tournament at Augusta National through 30 historical 18-hole matches culminating in a final at Pebble Beach, where the U.S. Open will be played this year. The idea was inspired not by last year’s Thanksgiving Pillow Fight known as Tiger vs. Phil, but by a much more ambitious project in the late 1960s called The Super Fight. Back then, a radio producer broadcast a series of fictional boxing matches to determine the…

3 min
undercover tour pro

When an old 5-wood isn’t enough. A TEACHING PRO at a country club takes the day off and drives two hours each way to work with a player at a tour event. For the teacher, it’s a welcome break from his daily lesson book and exciting to handle an athlete who is uncannily capable of following physical instruction, to say nothing of the thrill of being in the high-stakes theater of the PGA Tour. Now, this teacher and player are acquaintances, but there’s nothing official about their relationship. The player might’ve just as easily asked his caddie or the next guy down the range to have a look at his swing. But he didn’t. He called this particular teacher, who came running. Who’s to say what the actual value of the lesson…

3 min
becoming a complete player

“Short-game confidence will free up your long game, too.” PEOPLE TALK ABOUT my driver a lot. It’s fun to hit it far, and my driver does put me in a lot of good positions on the course. But golf isn’t just about how far you can hit it off the tee. Scoring and winning tournaments happens a lot closer to the green. About three seasons ago, I realized I needed to take my wedge-game practice a lot more seriously. Though my coach, Butch Harmon, will give you an analysis of my driver swing (pages 16-17), I want to talk about my short game. It has made me a complete player. My World Golf Ranking has mostly been somewhere in the top 10. But I wanted to get better, and one area of…

3 min
life in the fast lane

If you were to build the perfect power player, he’d look a lot like this guy. Tall and flexible, with long arms and wonderful rhythm, Dustin Johnson is built for speed. And now that his go-to tee shot is a controlled fade, he’s hitting more fairways, too. Says Butch Harmon, Johnson’s coach since 2010, “When D.J.’s driving it well, he’s the favorite to win every week.” Johnson might seem like a physical freak, but Harmon says there’s plenty for average golfers to learn from his driving. For one, Johnson doesn’t restrict any part of his body during the swing. His hips make a big turn going back, and his head swivels freely with the momentum of the swing. So forget what you’ve heard about limiting hip turn or keeping your head still.…

2 min
my anti-slice solution

“Don’t look at the trouble right. Look where you want to go.” WHEN I MEET GOLFERS who’ve been struggling with a slice since day one, I know I’m going to have some fun. Why? Because I can straighten their ball flight, even teach them to hit a draw, in a matter of minutes. Getting in the correct positions is easy. Beating a slice is ultimately about commitment and good habits. If you’re like most slicers, the first fix you need is in the setup. Close your feet, hips and shoulders so they’re pointing to the right of your target. This takes some faith because you’re shifting in the direction you want to avoid. But a closed setup does two things: First, it makes it easier to turn back and complete the backswing.…

2 min
launch it higher

“At impact, is your weight still on your back foot?” THE QUICKEST WAY to improve accuracy with your irons is to develop a consistent ball flight—preferably one that flies high and lets the ball land soft. But even if your flight is usually a little lower, there’s no way to really predict where the ball is going to end up if you can’t get the same trajectory time after time. Let me show you how I’ve grooved the high-and-soft iron shot for my game. If you follow my advice and try my favorite drill to raise your trajectory, you’ll be holding more greens in no time. “Ball position will help change your trajectory.” The first step is to check your ball position. If you play the ball too far back in your stance,…