Why Does My Golf Ball Curve Left? (Complete Overview)

We have all struggled with a golf ball that curves too much.

For right handed golfers, over-curving your golf ball to the left is a sign of a more advanced player. 

Many of us fight this same battle.  

Does this sound familiar? It is the middle of a round and all of a sudden our draw has turned into a hook or an over drawing of the golf ball.  We try to make corrections, but the problems only become larger.

When this is going on, all we want to do is hit one solid shot that flies somewhat straight or even with a slight draw.

We are here to help!

Below we will help you understand why your golf ball curves to the left and then provide 3 tips to help you straighten out your shot and get back to your stock shot draw or fade shot.

Why Does My Golf Ball Curve To The Left?

A golf ball curves to the left when the club face is to the left of the swing path.  It is a rather simple ball flight law that the ball will curve away from the swing path.  For example, if your club face is to the right of the target line the ball will still curve left if your swing path is even further right.  Or your clubface could be left of the target line and if the swing path is right of the face it will start left and curve left.

So if your ball is curving to the left, your swing path is right of your clubface at impact.  Wherever your face is aiming, whether that is right or left at impact, your swing path is right of that.  The quick fix is to get your path moving more to the left and your club face more to the left.

Oftentimes when someone that draws the ball starts to hit a hook, they try to aim more to the right or swing more to the right, which just makes the problem worse.

Let’s  jump all the way in and get a full understanding and grow your knowledge of the game to help find your own solutions, maybe even on the golf course and have the ultimate feedback tool, the golf ball!

Below we will take you through the following topics to provide greater clarity and then give you 5 tips to help you start to straighten out your ball flight and maybe even hit a draw.  The topics include:

  • Understanding the ball flight laws
  • Understand the fundamentals of golf
  • 3 Tips to Get Better Today
    • How to build a stock shot.
    • Recognizing common swing faults
    • How to make on course corrections.
On this shot above, a perfect push draw is ideal, but if you over draw it, watch out!

Understanding The Ball Flight Laws

Why? If you understand the ball flight laws you can start to become your own swing instructor and make corrections on the range or the course by reading the flight of your golf ball.  Too often golfers turn to the video of their swing when everything you need to know can be read off of your ball flight.  Did you know that your ball flight can tell you the following:

  • Where your club face was at impact.
  • If your swing path was left or right of the club face.

Once you know these two items you can make the corrections by checking out our 2nd Tip on understanding what swing thoughts can help you get the proper matchups.

So let’s dive into the ball flight laws:

  • Generally speaking, the golf ball will start where the club face is aiming.
  • The golf ball will then curve away from the swing path.

There are two different lines that we must understand.  The target line and the start line.  The best golfers start the ball left or right of the target line and then curve the ball back towards the target.

Let’s go over some examples to help you better understand the ball flight laws.

Example 1:  

Let’s say that the club face is 3 degrees right of the target line and the swing path is 5 degrees right of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start right of the target line and draw back towards the target.  This is known as a push draw.

Example 2: 

Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees right of the target line, same as in example 1, but the swing path is only 1 degree right of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start to the right of the target line and will fade to the right.  Keep in mind that the ball will curve away from the swing path.  In this example, both the club face and the swing path are to the right and the ball will curve away from the path.

Example 3: 

Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees to the left of the target line and the swing path is 5 degrees left of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start to the left and curve to the right.  This would be a pull fade or pull slice.  Keep in mind that even though the face is closed to the target line, it is open to the swing path and the ball will curve away from the swing path.

Example 4: 

Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees to the left and the swing path is only 1 degree to the left.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start left and curve left.  This shot would look like a pull draw. 

Hopefully, these examples help you understand the club face and swing path correlation and how they match up.  Once you understand these ball flight laws, it will help you read your own shots and possibly make in round adjustments.

The shot the person who curves the ball too much to the left as too large of a gap between the clubface and the swing path.  Here are some matchups that would cause the ball to over curve to the left.

  • Clubface 1 degree right, swing path 7 degrees right.
  • Clubface 1 degree left, swing path 5 degrees right.
  • Clubface 5 degrees right, swing path 11 degrees right.
  • Club face 3 degrees left, swing path 3 degree right

We ultimately have to find a way to bring the clubface and swing path closer together to reduce the over curve in either direction.

Understanding the Fundamentals of Golf

The Stack and Tilt Instructors said it best when they described what they believed were the fundamentals of golf.  They explained it somewhat similar to this:

  • The first fundamental is the golfer’s ability to control the bottom of the golf swing.  The best golfers will hit the ground in the intended spot, close to 100% of the time.
  • The second fundamental is the golfer’s ability to control the curve of the golf ball. The best golfers are able to start the ball to the right or left of the target line and have the ball curve towards the target without the ball over curving past the target.
  • The third fundamental is the golfer’s ability to have enough power to play the golf course.  This means they are able to hit the ball far enough to play the course in regulation.

They explained that among the greatest golfers of all time there were different grips and different aim points. The fundamentals in golf are not grip, and alignment.  Ben Hogan played with a weak grip, while Lee Trevino had a strong grip.  Lee Trevino and Fred Couples aimed way to the right, while Sam Snead and Arnold Palmer aimed well to the right.

We explain all of this to help understand the importance of controlling the curve of the ball.  Read your ball flight and start to get better today.

Tip #1: How to Build A Stock Shot

Working on this drill below helps you keep your path and clubface in the direction you need it without getting too large a gap between the two. If you start over drawing or over fading, returning to this drill is a good idea as it can help you tighten up the shot pattern.

A stock shot allows you to control your start line and your curve, which is the 2nd fundamental in golf.  I would recommend the stock draw shot.  Here is a drill you can practice at the driving range:

  • Setup an alignment stick about 7 to 10 yards in front of you on the target line. 
  • See how many shots out of 10 you can start to the right of the target.
  • Track this data over time and continue to work on your start line.

The goal here is to get the club face pointing in a similar direction as many times out of 10 as possible.  Once we get the ball starting the right spot, we can then move onto the curve of the ball.

If your ball is starting to the right and curving to the left too much, let’s work on getting your swing path more to the left, which will straighten out your shot into a draw.

Practice this every range session you have for at least 20-30 golf balls.  Don’t just stand at the range and aimlessly hit golf balls.  This drill can be a game changer for many golfers.

Complete Post: How to develop a stock shot

Tip #2: Recognizing Common Swing Faults (Overdraw)

There are several issues that most golfers who struggle with the overdraw might want to consider:

  • Hips are sliding too far forward, causing an inside path.
  • Body is stalling, causing the hands to flip and taking your clubface left.
  • Too much tilt behind the ball, causing you to drop to the inside.

With these issues there are several ways to make corrections.

  • The first option is to try to hit a fade on the course. (this helps if you are over closing the clubface through impact, possibly from stalling your body rotation).
  • Speed up your arms and keep your body more quiet (this helps when you have a sequencing problem).
  • Get your upper body moving sooner through the shot (this helps when your hips are sliding)

Tip #3: How To Make On Course Corrections

When you hit a bad shot, make sure you watch the entire flight and know what the ball actually does.  Too many golfers turn in frustration instead of connecting the feel or the swing with the result.  If you hit a pull hook, did you feel your hands and your body come through too much?  

Do you need to feel like you are swinging left to straighten out your swing path?  

Read your ball flight!  Know what feels get your start line to be hit and control that club face.  Awareness of the face and the path will help you become more consistent and make on course adjustments. 

One thing that has helped me greatly is my SkyTrak Launch Monitor.  

It provides instant feedback on club speed, club face, spin axis and spin loft.  When playing in my golf simulator in my garage, I am able to work on my start line and club head control.  This helps me make adjustments when I actually play on a course.  

The simulator golf has helped me reduce 4-6 shots by working mainly on tips #1 and #2.  The game of golf doesn’t have to be complicated, work to keep it simple and to read your ball flight!

Many of our worst shots are caused by our fears of certain misses and we get in our own way.  Let’s all commit to work on Tips 1 and 2 and use positive vision before each shot where we see our stock shot and imagine it being the most perfect shot.  Let’s then commit and step up and hit the shot!

9 Common Swing Faults

The perfect space to improve your game. Game like situations with feedback after every shot. The perfect formula when you add the stock shot drill into the mix.

BONUS TIP: How to Increase Swing Speed

We know that fundamental #3 is to have enough power to play a course.  Did you know that with SuperSpeed Golf you can see a 5-8% increase in swing speed in your very first session.  This could be 20-30 yards for some golfers.  

Even 10 would be great for most, right?  This system is based on three different swing clubs all of different lengths.  The training takes place every other day and the entire protocol only takes 10-15 minutes.  

The science behind the increase is built on overspeed training and training our minds and bodies to be able to safely swing at these increased speed.  One of the great benefits is that it also helps improve your mechanics!

My average swing speed used to be between 98-101 and now I am swinging between 104 and 109 miles per hour.  The increase has been noticeable on the course, not only with my driver, but with my approach shots as well!

Check out our full SuperSpeed Swing Review Here

Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better

What does this mean for you?  I believe in the following recipe to get better:

1 – Improve your motion in the golf swing by identifying a golf instructor.  Here are some options:

Here is a list of golf instructors that we have reviewed:

2 – Train to swing faster and improve your swing speed.  Here are some options:

Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:

3 – Understand course strategy and work to break through your next barrier.  Here is a series on breaking through:

We have provided guides on how to break 100, 90, 80 and 70. Check out more below, if interested.

4 – Practice Frequently

Did you know that I build a golf simulator in my garage and have played over 500 rounds of golf on my SkyTrak system?  It has been a game changer and one worth checking out. Here are some of my other posts on golf simulators frequently asked questions:

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