Clear The Way

Clear The WayYou can’t hit big drives if your body gets stuck. That’s why I make a

point of rotating my hips completely open on the downswing. This allows

my arms to fully extend through the hitting area. Not only do my hips

clear, but they remain level, which is key. By rotating through on a

level plane, my right shoulder, arm and hip are able to continue adding

power through impact. This prevents my body from getting stuck, which

would limit the potential for clubhead speed by forcing me to hit only

with my hands.

Alter Your Focus

One of the first lessons most golfers learn is to “keep your eye on the

ball.” I’m here to offer a better suggestion: Move your eyes behind the

ball. Heresy, you say? I don’t think so. That’s because when a golfer makes

his or her backswing with a full turn of the shoulders and a proper

shift of weight, the center of his or her chest, or sternum, will be

well behind the ball. (Exactly how far behind the ball depends on an

individual’s suppleness and flexibility.)

Coil And Load

There are many keys to a powerful swing, and my number-one focus is to

establish a powerful backswing coil. Notice how my left arm is parallel

to the ground while the shaft is perpendicular to it. This position

indicates a massive turn away from the ball and not a simple lifting of

the club to the top (you can see my entire body stretching and

straining to get turned). The coil is further enhanced by my left foot,

which is firmly on the ground. This limits the amount I can turn my

hips while still allowing me to rotate my shoulders as much as

possible.

Focus On The Finish

Many amateurs are so consumed with anxiety about the incremental parts of the golf swing (grip, alignment, posture, setup, etc.) that they lose sight of the overall objective, which is to strike the ball squarely and forcefully. Let me suggest a method to alleviate this anxiety: Focus on the finish.

Squat For Power

To begin the downswing, I squat to create leverage. The squat disappears as my left leg straightens, however. This move creates tremendous power and speed.

The Secret To Speed

For more clubhead MPH and more yards, turn to your hips

If there’s an absolute truth in golf, it’s that the faster you can move

the clubhead, the greater the potential for extra distance. Granted,

you still need to make solid contact in the center of the face and with

the club moving on the proper plane, but all other things being equal,

more speed definitely means more yards. The big question is: Where does

speed come from? Your hands can move fairly quickly, and there’s no

faster part of your body than your fingers. But where the golf swing is

concerned, a fast clubhead almost always results from fast hips moving

correctly and in the proper direction.

Hip Work

The three components for proper hip movement–a critical component of a fundamentally solid downswing–are weight shift, a slight lateral slide and hip whip (the explosive rotation just before impact that generates power). Good players know how to mix these components in the proper proportion to achieve both maximum power and outstanding accuracy.

Drive With Control & Power

Serious advice and drills for big, big hits

Each of my students completes a pre-instruction questionnaire,

indicating wants, needs and goals. I’ve used this questionnaire for 20

years, and easily the most oft-noted goal is “more distance with more

control.” Many of these golfers own sound fundamentals, solid iron

swings and good short games, but nonetheless lack the skill to

consistently produce pure and powerful drives. In your own attempts to

improve, does it seem like the harder you try to gain distance, the

worse it gets? Trust me, you’re not alone. I’m confident that learning

from four typical driving faults and comparing those to the moves of

golfers who hit it forever with a seemingly effortless flow of motion

will help you do the same.

Three Needs For Speed

Like a high-performance engine that stalls when it leaks oil, water or fuel, a golf swing comes to an idling stop when the potential energy created in the backswing is emptied well before impact. Here are three tips to help keep power from leaking out of your game and also add horsepower to your motion.

Three Keys To Longer Drives

If your driving suffers from inconsistency and a lack of distance, you may be tied up with too many thoughts about swing mechanics. Free your mind at address and focus on a specific target in the fairway where you want the ball to land. Then let your natural instincts take over. Swing the clubhead to that target, making an athletic move through the ball.