In the last issue of Golf Tips, I showed you how to use the edge of a wall to help improve your chipping. This month, I'm going to show you how a simple household item, such as a doorjamb, can help you hit the ball farther.
It's not uncommon for me to see students who have too much lateral motion on the backswing causing them to sway and loose stability. When this happens, the golf swing also loses power and consistency—two things every golfer strives to have in his or her swing. To avoid a power leak, a doorjamb, otherwise used to hold a door open, can serve as a useful tool to help prevent the body from sliding and swaying on the backswing. (Now, some have advocated using a golf ball under the foot, but that's both uncomfortable and unstable. A doorjamb like this one is more effective.) The good thing about this drill is you can do it anywhere, whether it be at home or on the practice range. To utilize this device, place the doorjamb underneath the heel of your back foot (my right foot), with the thick end of the doorjamb underneath the outside of your foot. Initially, the doorjamb will do two things: It will first help you retain some flex in your back leg on the backswing to prevent swaying, and two, it will help you better push off the inside of your back foot on the downswing.
Better players know that shifting weight means shifting as it relates to turning on the backswing; hence, it's not a lateral slide or a forced move from side to side. Instead, as you make the backswing, the weight should shift as a result of coiling your upper and lower body above your right side. The doorjamb in this case will help you keep that weight centered over the inside of your foot, as opposed to over the outer side of your foot when you sway. This is critical, since like a track runner pushing off the runner's block, the golf swing requires the back foot to be positioned securely so the golfer can push off the inside of the back foot as the clubface passes through the impact area on the downswing. The doorjamb will help you do just that! _Ê_Ê
After a few swings with the doorjamb, remove it and feel the difference. You should immediately feel a greater source of power as you coil your backswing and on the downswing as you leverage your back foot against the ground.
A 15-year veteran of the LPGA Tour, Pam Wright teaches at We-Ko-Pa Golf Club in Arizona. To learn more about Pam, visit our newly redesigned Website: www.golftipsmag.com/instructors.