Do you like hitting bombs off the tee? Most golfers do. Even beginners get a thrill from hitting bombs. It’s hard to blame them for that. Bombing one is among the game’s great pleasures, especially if it’s long and straight.
But hitting the ball long and straight off the tee is a challenge. Too often, golfers swing too hard when trying to hit it long. Swinging hard seldom works. In fact, it usually does the reverse: it sacrifices clubhead speed for solid contact. That hurts direction. To maximize power off the tee, you must combine clubhead speed and solid contact.
Below are six golf tips that teach you to combine clubhead speed and solid contact in one swing. Gleaned from some of my golf instruction sessions, these six tips eliminate swing flaws that can sap your power and cause mishits. The first three tips focus on making solid contact. The last three focus on increasing clubhead speed:
1) Keep your body in check: Swaying is a common swing fault. In fact, weekend players with high golf handicaps tend to do it a lot. Swaying leads to all sorts of poor contact, including topped shots, fat shots, and thin shots. To boost power, you need to keep your body in check. It should be behind the ball as you swing. That ensures that you make solid contact as the clubhead starts to pull up.
2) Adopt a “reverse K” setup: Adopting a reverse K setup at address promotes solid contact. A reverse K setup has the front side straight and your backside kinked a bit at the waist. From there you can load onto your back foot and then return to your front foot on the downswing.
3) Stay under control: Some golfers swing too hard when trying to hit one long. Swinging hard encourages you to come from too far inside, leading to mishits. To overcome this tendency, hit some balls with your right foot pulled back a few inches. It teaches you to get your right side out of the way. Then gradually move your foot forward until it’s in its normal position.
4) Create a tight coil: Poor body action can sap power. You need to create a tight coil down to your feet to boost power. Next time you’re at the range, imagine your body turning in a 2 to 1 ratio. If your left shoulder turns 90 degrees, your left hip should turn 45 degrees. That creates a tight coil ready to explode with power.
5) Extend your arms: Good drivers extend their arms going back, increase their wrist hinge on the downswing, and extend again through impact. That’s called a wide-narrow-wide swing. To get a feel for this swing, stretch your arms on the backswing then hinge your wrists. Now pump the club in front of you. Maintain the wrist hinge and flex in your right arm as you pump.
6) Add hinge to boost clubhead speed: Hinging your wrists boosts clubhead speed significantly. To take advantage of the hinge, you still need to hit the ball with a square clubface. To get the feel for this move, make some swings with only your left arm. Go back halfway with your driver, hinging your left wrist as you do. The angle of the clubface should match the angle of your left forearm. If it does, you’ve done it correctly.
Work on these six golf tips next time you’re at the range. They teach you to combine solid contact and clubhead speed. That boosts power off the tee.
Hitting them long and straight—something every golfer loves to do—will help you break 80 and chop strokes off your golf handicap.