Common Swing Flaws: Scooping or Flipping

 Scooping or Flipping


“Flipping” the club is the bane of many amateur golfers.  The “hands forward” impact position is fetishized by every line-drawing golf announcer, and regular golfers long to copy it.  Why is it so hard for some and how can you get it?  I’ll explain in this lesson.

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Whether you call it scooping, flipping, releasing early, or something else entirely, what we’re talking about is letting the club head pass your hands too early.


If you tend to hit a lot of shots thin and fat, you may be a flipper.  Thankfully, this is an easy problem to diagnose with video.  Take a video from a face on perspective, and see where your hands are at impact.  The higher the frame rate, the more reliable the images will be.


Like most swing flaws, there are a handful of possible causes.  Here are three of the most common.

1) Trying to help the ball into the air.
2) Trying to square a very open club face.
3) Poor sequencing – starting the swing with your arms instead of your body.

 Flipping Lesson_0014


If you are flipping at the ball because you think you need to help it into the air, the first step in fixing this is getting the right picture into your head.  Even with your hands well in front of the club head, there is plenty of loft to get the ball airborne.  Additionally, by getting your hands even with or ahead of the club head, your contact will be better which should lead to higher ball flight.

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If you’re flipping at the ball to square an open club face, work on getting the club face closed earlier and/or squaring it with wrist rotation.  Practice hitting shots way left to teach yourself the feeling.

Flipping Lesson_0041

Finally, if you have poor sequencing, work on hitting “freezers.”  Swing to the top of your back swing and take a long pause.  Then, start your downswing with a little weight shift to the left, hip rotation, chest opening up, and finally swinging your arms.

If you’d like a training aid to help you with fixing your flip, there isn’t one better than the original Tour Striker.

Matt Saternus


  1. Poor Charles Barkley…

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