What is a Draw Shot in Golf?

Silver Wedge Golf Club Beside Ball

Golfers use a draw shot when they need the ball to start to the right of their target line and curve slightly to the left, ending up in line with the original target. This shot is especially useful in situations where obstacles, such as trees, need to be navigated to get the ball to land where they want.

A draw shot has several benefits, including adding distance to a player’s shot. It reduces the loft on the club head, resulting in lower spin rates and, as a result, more distance. Lowering the loft and closing the clubface at impact also causes a lower ball flight that can cut through the wind and land near the target, increasing distance.

To hit a draw shot with a driver, a golfer needs a closed clubface. The swing path should be inside-out, aiming between one and two o’clock on a clock face for right-handed golfers. For a left-handed golfer, the aim is between ten and eleven o’clock. With irons, the inside-out swing still applies, and the goal is to aim to the right of the target.

A draw shot differs from a slice, which has an exaggerated arc from left to right and is a common problem among amateur golfers. Most beginners and amateurs tend to hit a fade or a slice, resulting from a natural swing with an open clubface that points away from the center of the target. A draw is the preferred shot for golfers because it produces a rolling, forward spin on the ball, while a fade often has a side spin that eliminates some distance and affects accuracy.

Hitting a draw shot can be challenging, as it requires closing the clubface and swinging in an inside-out path, which is difficult for most players who naturally hit the ball with an outside-in path with an open clubface. Over 85% of golfers have a natural fade or slice, making it challenging to learn how to hit a draw shot.

Most professional golfers on the PGA Tour hit a draw, but it’s a matter of personal preference. Some may prefer a fade that allows them to control their accuracy better, particularly if obstacles are in the way. Draw and fade shots make little difference to a pro golfer when hitting short shots or chipping as the ball’s trajectory is low, and the type of shot played does not impact it significantly.