A fade is a golf shot that curves slightly to the right (for a right-handed golfer) in the air. It’s a shot that many golfers try to hit because it offers a deliberate shot path and can help you navigate difficult holes where you need higher, softer ball flight.
In this guide on how to hit a fade, we’ll dive deeper into creating the proper foundation for hitting a quality fade with a natural shot shape that works from left to right.
4 Important Mechanics for Creating a Fade Golf Shot Shape
For right-handers, if you want to hit a fade in golf, you’ll want to grip the club with your right hand slightly lower on the handle with more pressure than you normally would. Your left hand, or weak hand, stabilizes the club path when you are playing a fade or power fade.
This is called a “weak” grip, and it will help you produce a closed clubface at impact, which is necessary for producing a fade. To do this, simply rotate your dominant hand on the grip so that your knuckles are slightly lower than they would be in a normal grip.
It’s essential to experiment with your grip, especially during your practice sessions, to find a position that feels comfortable and natural to you. This will help you make a consistent, accurate golf swing.
2. Ball Position
When hitting a fade golf shot that you want to curve to the right, the ball’s placement should be slightly forward of neutral position, laying closer to your front foot. Having this open will help you to make an outside-in swing path, which is necessary for producing a fade.
Additionally, having the golf ball in this position will help you make clean, crisp contact with the open clubface, which will adhere to the left-to-right ball flight laws necessary for a fade.
It’s important to experiment with the placement of the ball to find a spot that feels comfortable and delivers immediate feedback. This will help you create a consistent shot pattern you can count on when sitting in the fairway or on the tee box.
When hitting a fade in golf, your foot alignment should be slightly open and aligned left of the target. The foot line should be even with your shoulders as your front foot pointing slightly to the left of the target line for a right-handed golfer.
This position will create a slightly outside-in swing path, which is necessary for producing a fade.
Additionally, having your feet positioned this way will help you maintain your balance and control throughout the swing.
It’s essential to experiment with your foot positioning to find a stance that feels comfortable and natural, as this will help you make consistent, accurate shots.
4. Swing Path
When it comes to the club’s path, you’ll want to create an outside-in motion on the downswing.
This means that you’ll start the downswing by swinging the clubhead out to the right of the target line (for a right-handed golfer) and then swing it back towards the target on a slightly inward path.
This club path will create the left-to-right spin necessary for a fade. It’s essential to focus on making a smooth, controlled swing and to avoid swinging too hard or trying to muscle the ball. This will help you to produce a consistent, accurate fade.
Pro Tip: Drills to Hit a Fade
Another good drill for learning how to hit a fade in golf is to set up a series of cones or other markers in a straight line, each one a few feet apart from the next.
Then, take a position and grip that promotes a fade, and hit a series of shots trying to make them curve slightly left the target line.
This will help you develop the proper outside-in swing path and clubface control necessary for creating a fade-like flight shape. Also, by taking practice swings that emphasize a slightly left exaggerated alignment, you can hit shots that swing left before moving back to the right.
This drill can be difficult at first, but with concentrated practice, you’ll be able to hit fades or even a power fade easily.
5 Tips for Hitting a Power Fade
A power fade is a golf shot that curves to the right (for a right-handed golfer) with a strong ball flight while in the air.
Popular with players like Lee Trevino, Dustin Johnson, and Jack Nicklaus, hitting the power fade can help your golf ball hit more fairways and find your target with more regularity.
Here are some of our best tips for creating a fade:
1. Set up correctly.
You need to make sure that your lower body is aligned properly. Each foot should be slightly open, with your left foot (for a right-handed golfer) slightly forward of your right.
Your hips should also be somewhat open, with your weight evenly distributed between each foot. This will help you swing along the correct plane and ensure you hit the golf ball cleanly.
2. Use a slightly stronger grip.
You’ll need to grip the club slightly stronger than you would for a normal shot. This means turning your hands slightly more to the right on the grip to leave the clubface slightly. This will help you open the club face slightly at impact, which is crucial for producing fades.
3. Adjust your aim.
You’ll need to aim slightly to the left of your target. This might feel counterintuitive, but it’s necessary to compensate for the right-to-left curve that the golf fade shot will produce in the air.
So, if you’re aiming at a target that’s 150 yards away, for example, you might want to aim about 10-15 yards to the left of it before your golf swing.
4. Focus on a smooth swing.
You’ll need to swing the club smoothly and rhythmically, taking a nice, easy backswing and then making a smooth downswing to hit a controlled fade.
The key is maintaining your balance and keeping your arms and hands relaxed throughout the golf swing while keeping the clubface slightly open.
5. Use the right club.
These clubs have a slightly shorter shaft and a more lofted club face, which will help you produce a subtle amount of fade. The last thing you want to do is hit a big slice if you are aiming to create a fade shape with your shot.
Pro Tip: Drill to Hit a Power Fade
One simple drill that can help you learn how to hit a fade in golf is to set up a few tees in the shape of a triangle near the ball, with one tee directly behind the golf ball and the others on either side of it.
Then, go through your normal pre-shot routine, and try to swing the clubhead so that it passes over all of the tees without hitting any of them.
By developing the proper outside-in swing path, you can create more distance, curve, and the instant feedback that lets you know you’ve got the golf ball starting left of the target.
How to Hit a Fade FAQs
Is it easier to hit a fade or draw?
It is generally easier for an amateur golfer to hit a fade than a draw. This is because a fade is essentially a controlled slice, and most amateurs naturally slice the ball to some degree.
An amateur golfer can simply focus on making a smooth, controlled swing and adjusting their grip and stance to create a fade.
To produce a fade in golf, you’ll want to adjust your grip and stance slightly. Start by gripping the club with your dominant hand slightly lower on the handle than you usually would. This will help you close the clubface at impact, which is necessary to create a fade.
Next, adjust your stance so that your feet are slightly open, much like the club face, with your front foot pointing slightly to the left of the target (for a right-handed golfer).
Finally, focus on making a smooth, controlled swing and making contact with the ball on the inside part of the clubface. This will help produce the slight left-to-right spin necessary for a fade.
Do more pros hit a fade or draw?
It is generally more common for professional golfers to hit a draw than a fade. Since the draw is more powerful and a more accurate shot than a fade, it can be easier to control the distance and direction of the shots with a draw.
Additionally, many professional golf courses are designed to be challenging for most golfers who hit a draw, so being able to hit this shot consistently can give a player a significant advantage.
However, it is essential to note that every golfer is different, and there are many successful professional players who prefer to play a straight shot with a direct target on the course.
In our final thoughts, hitting a fade is all about making small adjustments to your setup, grip, aim, swing, and club selection. It’s a shot that takes a bit of practice to master, but it can be a valuable tool in your golfing arsenal.
Just remember to be patient and focus on making smooth, controlled swings, and you should be able to hit some great fades in no time.