Hitting a Straight Drive to the Fairway

Jimmy Hanlin shows co-host Carling Nolan how to set up an approach and ball position in order to hit the ball consistently in the fairway at Chambers Bay, the home of the 2015 US Open. In the video, Carling comments that it’s a hard drive and it’s absolutely imperative to hit the ball straight—a perfect scenario for this tip on hitting a straight drive to the fairway!

Ball Position

Jimmy starts off by saying that you must set up your stance right every time to get consistent drives. He sees so many people who get the ball way too far up in their stance, causing them to swing over the top of the ball. Make sure you’re positioned so that the ball is in line with the inside of your left heel.

Shoulder Tilt

Jimmy sees a lot of people who make their shoulders level with the ground, causing them to tilt the wrong way—toward the ball—in their swing and ultimately end up slicing. Shoulders should be tilted slightly back and away from the ball so that you become level in your swing. This shoulder tilt will help you hit into the ball rather than over it.


The last step in setting up the perfect stance is keeping good balance. In order to do that, you want to keep your weight “over top of your shoelaces” as Jimmy says.

If you’re still slicing the ball, Jimmy recommends practicing level swings by pointing your club straight out in front of you and swinging it around your body. This will help give you the feeling of keeping a level swing and getting rid of that tilt that often happens during the swing.

Take a look at how Carling adjusts her stance in order to achieve a level swing, ultimately getting her a straight drive to the fairway.