The Struggle of Pushing Iron Shots to the Right: Causes and Corrections

Hitting solid and controlled iron shots is one of the biggest challenges in golf. Even experienced golfers frequently struggle with pushes – shots that start left of the target and curve slightly right. Pushing your iron shots can lead to missed greens, difficult chip shots, and high scores.

What Causes Pushing Iron Shots to the Right?

There are several common swing flaws that can cause you to push your iron shots to the right:

Over the Top Move

One of the most common causes of pushed shots is coming too steeply into the ball on the downswing, also known as an “over the top” move. This causes the clubface to be open in relation to the swing path, resulting in shots that push to the right. If you imagine swinging over an imaginary bar that extends from the ball out to the target, coming over the top of that bar can certainly lead to pushing iron shots right.

Swaying Off the Ball

Swaying or sliding your hips away from the target during the backswing can also lead to pushed shots. As you start the downswing, your body gets ahead of your arms and hands, forcing you to come over the top into impact. This opens up the clubface and sends shots off target to the right. Staying centered over the ball in your swing is essential to compressing iron shots.

Early Wrist Release

Rolling your wrists too early on the downswing is another mis-hit that causes pushed shots. Your wrists should be hinging and releasing in sync with the rotation of your body. If your wrists release too soon, the clubface opens up at impact and pushes shots off target the right. Holding off releasing the wrists can help to square the clubface.

Grip and Alignment Issues

Sometimes overly strong grips or poor alignment practices can cause a push shot as well. If your stance, feet, hips and shoulders are aimed left of your target at address, it can certainly lead to pushing shots as your body clears out towards the target on the downswing. An incorrect grip like the stronger left hand below the right can also open the face.

How to Fix Pushing Iron Shots to the Right

While pushing iron shots can be frustrating, there are solutions to get you flushing your irons again. Here are some helpful swing tips:

Keep Your Backswing Tight

Focus on making a tighter, more compact backswing, as overswinging can cause you to push shots on the downswing. Think about brushing your trailing forearm against your chest in the backswing to prevent swaying off the ball as well. Keeping the backswing small prevents over the top moves.

Maintain Proper Alignment

Set up each iron shot with proper foot, hip, and shoulder alignment aimed just left of your target. Visualize railroad tracks extending from your toes, hips and shoulders directly down your target line. This alignment makes it easier to swing back down the line.

Control Wrist Action

Pay attention to how and when your wrists are hinging and releasing during the swing. Try holding off releasing too early on the downswing. Soft hands allow you to square up the face as you strike each iron shot.

Make Solid Contact with Irons

Returning the clubface squarely to impact is also essential for curing a push slice. As you swing down, imagine there is a ball sitting just in front of your golf ball that you need to hit solidly first. This helps shallow out the swing plane and compress each iron shot.

Get Evaluated and Take a Lesson

If you continue fighting a consistent push, it’s wise to schedule a coaching session with a PGA teaching professional. They can evaluate your swing mechanics and grip issues in person, offering the best tips for curing this common error quickly. A trained set of eyes identifies swing flaws leading to pushed shots.

Pushing iron shots can be highly frustrating when trying to hit more greens in regulation. However, paying attention to swing mechanics like over the top moves, wrist action, swaying, and grip pressure can get you back on track quickly. Consistently square contact leads to that satisfying pure iron shot we all strive for!

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