Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Golf tips for Par 4 holes

Par 4 holes, need 4 strokes for par; they can range in distance from 250 yards up to a potential 500 yards. As such, there can be quite a big difference in distance from the largest to the shortest. Careful club selection and some strategy may come into play on these holes.

To begin with, off the tee you need to aim for a good spot on the fairway, that will leave a better approach shot to the green. Of course, you might just be tempted to use the longest club in your bag, but if the fairway is smaller then some accuracy may be needed. Opt for a shorter wood or iron if greater accuracy is needed as opposed to distance. For example, a 4 wood or even 7 wood on a par 4 may be appropriate.

After making this first tee shot, then hopefully a shot to the green will be required. It may be the case that a lay up could be needed. If you are not well placed to shoot for the green, consider a shot for better position. Of course, if you end up in the longer grass then a pitch shot might be needed onto the fairway.

The shot towards the green could likely involve a number of possible clubs as dependent on distance. For a longer shot, then a fairway wood or shorter iron like 6, 5 or even 4 would be suitable. Alternatively, if it is a shorter shot then maybe a shorter iron like an 8 or 9 iron. A very short shot to the green of less than 75 yards might only need a pitch shot. However, unless you can hit the ball far on most pars 4s you will probably fall a little longer.

A word of caution, if the flag happens to be close to a bunker then aim more away from the bunker. It is the safer shot, which is usually the better shot.

  (Beware of fairway bunkers on par 4 holes)

At any rate, if you miss the green for some reason, a chip or pitch should be enough to get onto it. Chips from within 50 yards are possible, but also consider using a putter if you are close enough to the flag. A pitch to the green will be better from the longer grass.

When you are on the green, a longer lag putt may be required first, then a shorter putt into the hole to finish the hole. Be wary of the slope of the green, and you can clean the ball before a putt by using a ball marker.

Overall, playing a par 4 will for most be more like playing a par 5 (even shorter holes). You cannot really go for the green from off the tee on a 350-yard par 4. So, appropriate club selection will ensure better scoring.