How to Hit Fairway Woods

We’ve gotten several emails recently asking about how to hit fairway woods.

And so I put together this short video for you with a couple of easy tips that will get you hitting the ball more solidly.

Hope you enjoyed it! And if you did go ahead and click the button above to share it on Facebook 🙂

Here’s a quick recap of what we covered:

First you need to make sure you have the right lofts on your fairway woods. For many amateur golfers, the 3 wood is too low of a loft and they’d be better off swapping it for a 4, 5, strong 4, or strong 5. If you aren’t able to get the 3 wood up in the air you are much better off taking a club with more loft.

The 2nd thing you need to do is assess the lie.

If the ball is sitting up nicely, you are in good shape and can go ahead and swing away.

If the ball is sitting down, you need to be a little more careful. You might still be able to play the fairway wood, but you need to be aware of a couple of things.

The ball is of course much harder to hit when it’s sitting down and you should expect it to come out lower, flatter, and it is likely to fade off to the right. Something to be aware of if there is trouble looming off to the right! If a miss to the right won’t kill you, you can feel more comfortable playing from this lie. If there is trouble on the right, consider leaving the fairway wood in the bag and playing a safer iron shot.

From there, a good idea is to swing it “like a wedge.”

By this I mean focus on tempo and balance.

And the final piece is do NOT try to HELP the ball up into the air. You want to sweep the ball off of the grass and allow the club to get the ball up in the air.

A great drill to work on this last piece is to place a tee a few inches in front of the golf ball and take swings with the thought of hitting the ball and then sweeping the tee off the ground after impact. This will teach you the proper sweeping motion.

Give that a try and you’ll be hitting better fairway woods in no time!

11 Responses to How to Hit Fairway Woods

  1. Bruce Russell June 16, 2015 at 6:28 pm #

    Very useful instruction…clear and easy to understand…good work guys and thanks…

    • Tom Stickney June 16, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

      Thanks Bruce! Glad you enjoyed it!

    • Anonymous June 21, 2015 at 4:34 pm #

      Very helpful, both in tips on how to hit fairway woods and whether you should, or not!

  2. Harry Young June 16, 2015 at 8:14 pm #

    I particularly like the “sweep the tee” swing thought. Just curious… How far down the line (3-iron, 4-iron, etc.) do you think that will work for as well? I’m always looking for a “unified theory” of golf swing. That’s the kind of thing I particularly like about your instruction; it gets me thinking about things in ways I haven’t thought of before.


  3. jim June 16, 2015 at 10:41 pm #

    thanks for the lesson
    i had a 4wood for a long time but i got into some bad habits and blamed it on the wood
    i`m looking to giving it another chance

  4. Dave Schulz June 17, 2015 at 1:21 am #

    Thanks for the great video. I have only been using this program for two weeks and it has been excellent with helping me with my game. I was planning on giving up the game until I found your program. On the fairway wood…. I used to have one but got rid of it… for the very reason that I couldn’t hit it. I am now thinkng of getting one back… at least after I get more consistent with all my other clubs. One question… you say to hit it like a wedge. So should the ball be played more in the middle of your stance or bit more forward as the long irons? Thanks, Tom!


  5. Anthony M. June 17, 2015 at 2:27 pm #

    Very good video, Tom. I never thought about swinging my fairway woods like a wedge. Good advice.

  6. Anonymous June 18, 2015 at 1:28 am #

    So what loft in degrees would a strong 4 wood be….strong 5 etc????

  7. Jeff C June 22, 2015 at 10:48 pm #

    As usual your instructions are clear and easily understood. I think you program is excellent and money well spent.

    I have recently bought a new 3 wood and 5 wood to match my driver. Both are also adjustable. However, if I carry both the 3 & 5 I have to limit my wedges to 3 as I also carry a 3 hybrid instead of a 3 iron. My wedges would then be 44, 54 and 58. Not sure about this gapping but I do like having 3 wooods in the bag for distance shots.

  8. PAT GATES October 2, 2015 at 10:37 pm #




  9. James S October 14, 2015 at 4:19 pm #

    When you say swing it like a wedge…are you referring to a shorter backswing and long follow through?

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