Luke is an avid weekend-warrior golfer from the East Coast who plays golf more than he cares to admit.
When you start to play golf, there’s an awful lot of terminology and information you have to learn incredibly quickly in order to keep up with the rest of the crowd. Let’s start with the draw vs fade.
Even more important than the terminology is the need to learn some of the techniques used on the course, which will help you to develop and refine your golf skills as quickly as possible.
Two pieces of terminology you may hear out on the course are the words “draw”, and “fade”, if you’re unfamiliar with these terms you might be slightly confused as to what they mean.
Thankfully in this guide, we here at OurGolfClubs.com will explain what both of these terms mean, and the differences between the two.
Draw Vs Fade Golf Ball
Draw and Fade are both types of shots that you are able to take using a golf club, and both shots help to put a small amount of sidespin on the ball once it has been first hit straight.
Ultimately, this type of shot will lead the ball to land slightly off-center, and whilst too much sidespin is a bad thing, both draw and fade shots provide a slight side-to-side type of movement that can actually be rather beneficial, and is sometimes better than hitting it straight altogether.
When starting off, it is likely that you’ll notice that your natural straight swing actually has a degree of a draw or fade shape in it, but it is actually possible to practice this to the point that you can hit a drawn or faded shot intentionally, which is something that we’ll explain further on.
Perhaps the biggest difference between these two types of shots is the direction in which they move. As a right-hander, a draw shot will go from right to left, whereas a fade shot will travel from left to right, and of course, this is inverted for those who play left-handed.
Explaining A Fade Shot
As previously mentioned, a “fade” fade golf shot is when the golf ball travels left to right slightly once it’s been hit.
The ball “fades” as a result of the spin that is placed upon the ball upon being hit by the clubface, which remains open just slightly, relative to the path of the swing.
For a fade shot, it’s important that the club face is open relative to the swing path, but the club head is not open relative to the target line. In fact, if anything, it should actually be slightly closed to golf swing and relative to the target line.
If the clubface is open relative to the target line, even ever so slightly, it will cause you to slice your shot.
Fade Shot Tutorial
That explanation may have made zero sense whatsoever, which is fine, it is slightly hard to wrap your head around at first.
If you want to try and learn how to fade your shots, here’s an easy tutorial, which will also hopefully help you to understand how they work too!
- Aim your club’s face at the target, perhaps even closing it off slightly.
- Open your body relative to the target you’re aiming for (This means towards the left), and keep your front foot open too (which will mean that your foot is now pointed forwards). This will mean that a line from your right toe to your left toe would point just to the left of your target.
- Finally, swing your club along the path created by your body, ensuring that you keep your clubface pointed towards your target all the way to impact.
Explaining A Draw Golf Shot
A draw shot is simply the opposite of a fade shot, meaning that once the ball is hit, the ball moves right to left due to the clubface being closed relative to the swing path, but only slightly.
Is it Easier to Control a Draw or Fade?
Both shots can be effective when executed properly, but they require different techniques and have a few degrees of different characteristics that can make one easier or more difficult to control for certain golfers.
For many golfers, it may be easier to control a fade shot than a draw shot. This is because a fade shot tends to be more accurate and produces less curve than a draw shot, which can make it easier to hit the ball on the intended line.
A fade shot also tends to have a more predictable ball flight, which can make it easier to control in windy conditions or when accuracy is more important than distance.
That being said, some golfers may find it easier to control a draw shot, particularly if they have a natural draw bias in their swing.
A draw shot can be useful for hitting the ball farther and producing a higher ball flight, which can be helpful when trying to hit the ball over obstacles or onto a green.
Draw Shot Tutorial
Whilst it might seem like it’s just a case of doing the same steps for a fade shot but inverted, it’s still important to pay attention to these steps to ensure that you’re getting your draw shots perfectly.
- Begin by aiming your club’s face at your intended target (Or just slightly open, not too much though).
- Close your body relative to the target by keeping your body to the right hand side of the target, this will mean that a line from your rear foot to your front foot will end up pointing left of your target.
- Once ready, swing along the path and make sure that your clubface remains aiming at the target through impact.
As a tip, some people find this much easier if they place the golf ball slightly further back than usual once they’ve assumed their stance.
Pros And Cons Of Using A Draw Vs Fade In Your Golf Game
Using a draw or fade shot in your golf game can offer several advantages and disadvantages. Here are some pros and cons of using a draw versus a fade in your golf game:
- Can help increase distance and trajectory of the ball
- Good for hitting around obstacles and bending the ball to the left
- Ideal for hitting approach shots to the green as it lands softly on the green
- Offers a larger landing area, particularly for right-handed golfers
- More challenging to control as it requires precise execution
- Increased chance of hooking the ball if not executed properly
- More challenging to hit accurately in windy conditions
- Risk of losing control of the ball and ending up in trouble if not executed properly
- Offers more control and accuracy
- Less side spin on the ball, so less likely to go out of bounds
- Easier to hit in windy conditions
- Good for hitting approach shots to the green
- Less distance compared to a draw shot
- More challenging to hit over obstacles
- May not work well on holes that require a fade shot
What Are The Benefits Of Shot Shaping on the golf course?
There are many benefits to shaping your shots, so if you want to provide some serious competition on the course, then it’s a technique that is worth learning.
For example, on a dogleg left hole, using a draw shot technique will allow you to get much closer to the left pin more than you usually would, and that’s all thanks to being able to bend your own golf draw the ball slightly around the curve.
Even if you end up hitting it straight by accident, it still wouldn’t be a bad first shot. Using fades and draws is also a great way of dodging hazards too!
You can also use fades and draws to position yourself better when aiming to get onto the green, avoiding hazards on the fairaway and allowing you to get closer to the pin than you usually would with a straight shot.
Why is a fade better than a draw?
here are some reasons why a fade may be considered better than a draw in certain situations:
A fade shot tends to be more accurate than a draw shot. This is because the fade has less sidespin than a draw, which can cause the ball to curve more and potentially miss the intended target. For golfers who struggle with accuracy, a fade shot may be a better option.
A fade shot can be more effective in windy conditions. The fade shot produces a high ball flight with a left-to-right spin for right-handed golfers (or right-to-left for left-handed golfers), which can help the ball hold up against the wind and avoid being pushed off course.
A fade shot can be helpful in getting out of trouble. For example, if a golfer’s ball is positioned behind a tree, a fade shot can be used to curve the ball around the tree and back towards the fairway.
Some golf courses are designed with a fade shot in mind. For example, a course with a lot of dogleg right holes may require most golfers to hit a fade shot to keep the ball in the fairway.
Does Tiger play a draw or fade?
Tiger Woods is known for his ability to hit both a draw and a fade shot, depending on the situation and the conditions of the course. Woods has been known to favor the fade shot in the past, as it tends to be more accurate and is well-suited to his aggressive, attacking style of play.
However, Woods has also demonstrated a mastery of the draw shot, which can be helpful in certain situations, such as hitting around corners or in windy conditions.
Woods has often emphasized the importance of being able to hit both types of shots, and his ability to do so has been a key factor in his success as a professional golfer.
Ultimately, the shot selection that Woods uses on a given hole will depend on a number of factors, including the course layout, the wind conditions, and his own personal preferences and confidence on a particular shot.
What is a cut vs fade vs draw?
In the a professional golfers’ game, a cut, fade, and draw are all types of shots that describe the ball’s trajectory and spin. While they may appear similar, each shot has its own unique characteristics and can be useful in different situations.
A cut shot, also known as a slice, is a shot that curves to the right (for right-handed golfers) and has a lot of sidespin.
This can happen on tee shot when the clubface is open at impact, causing the ball to spin to the left hand right. A cut shot typically produces a lower ball flight and less distance than a fade or draw shot.
A fade shot is a shot that curves slightly to the right (for right-handed golfers) and has a moderate amount of sidespin. A fade shot is created by a slight left-to-right spin on the ball and typically produces a straighter ball flight than a cut shot.
A fade shot is often used for approach shots or when accuracy is more important in natural shot than distance.
A draw shot is a shot that curves to the left (for right-handed golfers) and has a moderate amount of sidespin.
A draw shot is created by a slight right-to-left spin on the ball and typically produces a higher ball flight and more distance than a fade shot. A draw draw in golf or fade shot is often used off the tee or when a golfer needs to hit a long approach shot into a green.
In conclusion, fade shots and draw shots are somewhat difficult techniques but when used correctly can provide you with a great advantage over some of your competitors.
So hopefully with our easier guide you’ll be able to master these two shots, in no time at all!