Ever hit a shot that just seemed to pierce through the wind, staying low to the ground, rolling for days, and ending up exactly where you wanted it to? Chances are good you were hitting a stinger.
In golf, a stinger is a low shot meant to be hit with control in order to keep the ball in the fairway or to keep the ball out of the wind when you're facing a strong headwind. Not only is this a shot with a piercing ball flight but with its low trajectory and reduced spin it hits the ground running.
In this article, we'll discuss everything you need to know about stingers, including when to use them and how to execute them properly. So read on and learn how this simple golf shot can help you take your game to the next level!
When to Use a Stinger
As we mentioned above, stingers are typically used from the tee box when faced with a long hole and/or strong headwinds. However, there are other situations in which a stinger can come in handy. For example, if you find your ball in the rough and need to punch it out onto the fairway, a stinger can be an excellent choice. Or if you're approaching the green and need to keep your ball below the tree line, again, a stinger can be an ideal solution.
In general, stingers are most useful when you need to hit a low-flying shot with plenty of control. That being said, there are no hard-and-fast rules about when to use this shot; ultimately it's up to you as the golfer to assess each situation and decide whether a stinger will help you achieve your desired result.
However, a few things to keep in mind about using the stinger. Remember the rollout can be significant. We've seen stingers roll for over a hundred yards. So, if you're trying to avoid trouble and reach the green, plan for the extra yards to make sure you don't roll through the green.
And another beauty of the stinger is you can use it to hit a draw, fade, or keep it straight.
How to Execute a Stinger
Now that we've gone over when you might want to use a stinger, let's discuss how to actually execute one. Here are some key tips:
1. Choose the right club: As we mentioned earlier, stingers are typically played with long irons, fairway woods, or hybrids. Selecting the right club will depend on factors such as wind speed and direction, lie angle, and desired trajectory.
2. Grip the club differently: For a stinger shot, you'll want to choke down with a lighter grip.
3. Set up slightly forward: When setting up for a stinger shot, position the ball in the center of your stance or a ball or two back.
4. Aggressive hip and body rotation: This is the key to the stinger. You want your hands ahead of the ball at impact so the club is delofted.
5. Loose arms: Some call them noodle arms. Make sure they are nice and relaxed.
6. Follow through low: Finally, be sure to finish your swing low and around your body.
If you prefer a video lesson, then let's have the master, Tiger Woods show you exactly how he made this shot so famous.
Stinger shots can be tricky at first but with some practice (and by following these tips), you'll soon have this essential golf shot mastered! And once you do, we guarantee that you'll find yourself reaching for it time and again out on the course—especially when faced with tough conditions like windy weather or long holes.
A stinger is a great tool to have in your golf bag—but it’s not going to be useful in every situation. By understanding when and how to hit a stinger, you can start using this shot to your advantage and take your game to the next level. Practice makes perfect, so get out on the driving range and start working on your stingers today!
And if you need help practicing at home here are a couple of brilliant training aids to help you master the stinger. See below.