Getting the most distance and accuracy out of your driver swing means taking advantage of the proper angles. This drill is designed for the player who hits pull shots and slices. Often I see players get the club too steep in the downswing, which means they need to alter their body rotation and weight shift to reconcile poor angles. For consistency and distance we need to get the club head behind our body and rotate. The drill below will show you what if feels like to deliver the club properly.
Start by taking the club to the top of the swing, as I am in Photo 1. There are many ways to get there but we will primarily focus getting the club shaft to point in the direction of the foot line. If the shaft is short of parallel to the ground, it would point a little left, as mine does; if it is a little past parallel, the club would point to the right. Each of these positions is perfectly functional.
Next we will lower the club until the lead forearm (left for me) is close to the chest and the shaft points outside the ball. Pausing at this point you will feel the trail (right for me) elbow on the rib cage. See Photo 2 to see what I mean.
Also, notice my lead wrist is bowed or flexed (Photo 3). This prepares the clubface for proper alignment at impact and points the club more behind my body, allowing for the generation of more speed and stability in the downswing (Photo 4).
Once you are in this position you will deliver the club head to the ball by rotating the body out of the way. Photo 5 shows how the hips and torso open to the target, generating the speed and alignments needed for long, straight shots.
It helps to do this as a rehearsal motion to the ball before attempting to strike it. Do this a few times to get the feel of the club head coming from behind the hands. The result is a better delivery that is more characteristic of a straight shot or a draw depending on the degree to which the drill is done.
As with most drills, this will be difficult at first and quickly become easier as you practice it. Often, a tremendous amount of progress can be made with just practice swings, with no ball. Once it becomes more comfort-able, move on to hitting balls at a slow speed and gradually increase speed as you improve.
Billy Ore is Lead Teaching Center at the PGA Center for Learning and Performance in Port St. Lucie, Florida. Reach him at [email protected]