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Golf Lesson: How to Hit a Golf Ball From a Downhill Lie

SL Updated

In previous golf lessons I discussed how to hit a golf ball from an uphill lie and how to hit a golf ball from a sidehill lie with the ball below your feet.  Here is a golf lesson on how to hit a golf ball from a downhill lie. 

When you face a downhill lie, the ball lies below your feet.  The address position relating to the ball and clubhead positions should be the same as a level lie.  Ball position should be in the center of your stance.  Because of the downhill lie, your body will need to bend more at the hips to reach the ball.

Because the excessive bending is uncomfortable when finishing your backswing, golfers have a tendency to straighten their posture similar to a level lie.  The straightening of the posture results in thin shots and in some cases…topping the ball.  To alleviate this problem, widen your stance slightly.  The wider stance will make it easier to reach the ball.

Keep in mind, a wider stance will restrict the length of your swing.  A longer club should be used to compensate for the restricted swing.

Because of the slope, the ball has a tendency to go to the right of your target line.  Align to the left of the target to compensate for the left to right ball flight.

Unusual golf shots can be mentally challenging for golfers.  With most driving ranges offering only level lies, golfers rarely practice these shots.  Tip:  play a late twilight round on a hilly course.  This provides an opportunity to hit a few extra shots that will make all the difference during your next round of golf.


Teaching since 1995, Scott has taught 1,000+ golf lessons (private, semi-private, group).  Scott has served as the PGA Head Professional at MetroWest Golf Club and the PGA Director of Golf at Hunter’s Creek Golf Club prior to his role as President of Golf Orlando Florida.

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