I saw 3 great Tips for Longer Drives last week from Jeff Richmond in the Consistent Golf blog. It was loaded with a lot of detail but I love to find the meat and dump the potatoes. Upper body rotation, smooth transition and delayed wrist release are all critical for longer drives. You need to work on all 3 for great results.
Distance comes from club head speed but it only counts at the point of impact. Accelerating slowly in the transition with a powerful wrist release in the bottom half of the swing will give you longer drives.
Upper Body Rotation:
You want to coil your back by rotating your shoulders more than your hips in the back swing. Holding a weight in your hands, simply rotate your upper body from one side to the other while shifting your weight and balance. Try to increase your turn on each side for each rotation, but be sure to do this in a controlled manner and use common sense. Don’t rush this to start with, but as you get used to the motion then you can increase the speed and rotation. You can do this exercise every day if you wish, for up to 20 repetitions. This will help you to make a bigger turn in your golf swing for longer drives.
Your driver needs to accelerate throughout the swing but the peak speed is only reached at the point of impact. There is no need to rush in the back swing and transition but it must be a continuous motion. Your hips will start your forward swing as your club reaches the top of the swing. Just think about Ernie Els, “big easy”, with that smooth change in direction. It looks effortless because the club head speed is only increasing at the bottom half of the swing. Your hips lead your shoulders and your shoulders lead your straight leading arm and your cocked wrists are the last to release in the bottom half of the swing.
Delayed Wrist Release (Lag):
Shoulder Rotation and Transition allow you to control the initial acceleration of the club for a powerful release with your wrists. Never cast or release your wrists from the top of the swing or you will lose all of the club head speed. Just pull down with your straight leading arm and let your wrists whip the club head through the ball (in a whip snapping action) as your weight shifts through to your forward balanced finish. Our training pro likes to call it your “Photo Finish”.
Now watch this slow motion video of Rory McIlroy [CLICK HERE] to see that the wrists never release until he reaches the bottom half of the swing. All pros do it and you should too.
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