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Beginner Golf Series Part 3: Give it a Shot: Types of Shots in the Game of Golf

 For our third installment in our series, we’ll take a look at the various types of shots you’ll need to master to have a great golf game.

Let’s start with the basics; what are the most common types of shots in golf? Tee shots (also called drives), fairway shots, bunker shots, putts, and approach shots are generally the types of shots you will need to master. It is true that there are many more types of golf shots and slang that designate different shots, but for this purpose, we will only be going over the most commonly used shots.

Tee or Drive Shot
The tee shot, most commonly known as a drive, is the first shot a golfer takes when teeing off on each hole. Generally, a driver is used to tee off for long holes, although on shorter holes, an iron is often used.

Fairway Shots
Fairway shots are similar to tee shots, in that they generally require a golfer to shoot for distance. However, since the ball is already in play, a tee can’t be used, which is the major difference between a fairway and a tee is shot. Fairway shots can be more difficult depending on the ball lies.

Bunker Shots
Shooting out of a bunker can be extremely challenging. Sand traps can cause all sorts of problems for golfers. A sand wedge is generally used when shooting from the sand.

Putt Shot
A putt is played on the green. The ball is played on the ground using a putter. Putts are usually the final shot played on each hole.

Approach Shot
When a golfer plays their ball onto the green from outside the green, usually from a short to intermediate distance, this is considered an approach shot. There are three different types of approach shots a golfer can utilize: pitch, flop, and chip.

A high approach shot, a pitch is usually done with a wedge and makes the ball fly high and roll very little. The ball will stop more or less where it hits the ground.

Similar to the pitch, a flop shot is actually an even higher approach shot that will have the ball stop shortly after it hits the ground. Generally, a flop is utilized when there is an obstacle on the green that the golfer needs to play the ball over.

A chip shot is a low approach shot performed with a wedge or high-number iron. They are a low approach shot which has the ball make a shallow flight with the ball rolling out onto the green.

As we said, these are just the basics when it comes to golf shots. Master these and move on to more challenging shots that can take your golf game to the next level.