NED HALL ON HITTING THE FLOP SHOT OR LOB SHOT:
"Although we all realize the flop shot is risky, there are times during the course of a round where it can be very useful. Typically, it is only to be used when there is a bunker between you and the pin, or there is minimal green to work with, and you need to stop the ball quickly. Think of this as a last resort to getting the ball close to the hole.
"Setup: Open the clubface and aim it toward the target while also taking an open stance. The clubface is still going down the intended target line. The ball should be forward, off your left heel (for a right-handed golfer), with a forward press of the hands at least even with your left knee.
"Takeaway: Keeping the weight on your left side, keep your right elbow at your side and abruptly swing the club straight back and up.
"Follow through: You then pull down hard with the left side and hold the angle so the back of the left hand is facing the sky (as opposed to releasing the club in the full swing) after impact.
"Common errors to avoid: Many times, players decelerate through the shot or try to manipulate their hands in order to get under the ball. You have to trust the loft of the club and your swing. Make sure you apply the clubface to the ball. Although this is a high-risk shot, it is one you have to have in your bag."
_ Ned Hall, 41, has been the teaching professional at Clearwater Country Club since September 1996.