Tuesday, May 1, 2007
Add yards with our long drive secrets
2006 RE/MAXWLDC Quarter-Finalist
Take a deep breath and relax. My secret for longer drives doesn’t come from tensing up the muscles, but instead in keeping the arms soft and the body fluid. Remember, “relaxed muscles are fast muscles.”
The Longest Lefty In The World
I think balance is critical for more yards, which is why I encourage folks to have a strong lower-body base to allow the upper body to release through the downswing. To achieve good balance, I make sure I shift my weight to my back foot on the backswing. Once I set my weight on my back foot, there’s nowhere to go but forward and into the ball. Better balance produces better drives!
Predator Steve Monroe
Swing thought? What’s that? I’m self-taught, so I don’t really think about much over the ball. Instead, I just like to keep my mind clear to encourage a smooth swing. I also adjust my left hand and make sure it’s strong. A weak grip will only produce weak drives. To make a strong grip, point both Vs formed by both hands behind the right shoulder. Now rip it!
Fifth at 2003 RE/MAX World Championship
A lot of instructors say the feet should be shoulder width apart for distance. Well, in my native New Zealand, we do things a little bit differently. Try situating your feet according to the width of your hips, not your shoulders. This narrower version of the stance allows your body to make a bigger, longer coil. And the bigger your coil, the more room you have to unwind and explode into the golf ball. I couldn’t coil like this if I had a wide stance. That ball just got smacked!
Australian Long Drive Champion
For me, tempo and weight shift are key. Look at photo 1 (far left), and you’ll see that a few inches into my backswing I’ve already shifted my weight to my back foot. In photo 2, I’m fully set, ready to unwind with my weight still on my back leg. In photo 3, I’ve cleared my hips and my weight is almost completely on my left leg. The secret is to get your weight back (photo 1) as soon as possible. By the way, better balance and tempo means you’ll hit the sweet spot more often. That’s an absolute must if you want to win a long drive contest!
2004 RE/MAX Junior World Champion
To hit the ball really hard, you have to understand how to get your body’s energy transferred from one side of your body to the other (and hence, into the ball). To do this, simply stay behind the ball. Check out my sequence (lower left). Despite my huge swing, I don’t shift my weight beyond my back knee on the backswing or beyond my forward knee on the downswing. Thus, my power is directed at the ball!
2005 Super Senior World Champion
A quick and easy way to hit it long is to concentrate on your shoulder turn. On the backswing, your left shoulder should be under your chin, and on the downswing, your right shoulder should turn and take the place of where your left shoulder was at address. Make sense? The shoulders help to initiate the necessary rotation of the body and they’re also easy to visualize when it comes to improving your swing. Remember, the golf swing is a turn, not a slide.
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