Do you use your body or your arms to power your golf swing? If you are or were a hockey player, you probably use your body. That’s because hockey players use their bodies to hit shots when on the ice.
Using your body is more practical than using your hands. It’s also easier and safer. So when hockey players start playing golf, they tend to use their bodies to power their golf swings.
But if you’re not a hockey player, you probably use your arms to power your golf swing. This approach allows you to use your hands to manipulate the club when your mechanics are off to save your shot. But this approach costs your power and consistency. To take your game to another level, you need to use your body to unlock both power and consistency in your golf swing.
Below are six golf tips on how to use your body to create a consistent, power-laden golf swing:
1) Bow your knees when driving: Many weekend golfers kick their knees in at address to stabilize themselves. It does the opposite. To stabilize yourself, you need to bow your knees. Bowing your knees engages your glute muscles in your butt, which are some of the bigger muscles in your body. Using these muscles not only boosts power through the swing but also helps stabilize your body—a proven formula for igniting your power and consistency in your golf swing.
2) Extend your lower body: Another way to boost power on your drive is to “extend” your lower body when swinging. In other words, you need to extend your ankles, knees, and hip joints fully through impact without moving towards the ball. You can do this by squatting down slightly as you start your downswing, then coming up. Doing so gives you the triple extension mentioned above but also helps you straighten your left arm at impact—one of the secrets to great driving.
3) Make a steep turn: One common mistake golfers make when hitting middle irons is making a flat turn on their downswings. I see golfers make this mistake all the time in my golf lessons. A flat turn saps power from your swing and boosts stress on your spine. Instead, rotate your shoulders so that they’re perpendicular (or as perpendicular as possible) to your spine. Practice this move on the range and you’ll add yards to your middle irons.
4) Get your sequencing right: Another common swing flaw with middle irons is reversing the sequence in your downswing. Good ball strikers create the following downswing sequence: feet, knees, pelvis, torso, hands, and club. This sequence produces an on-plane swing and helps you compress the ball on the ground, which helps produce a penetrating ball flight. Use the Step Drill to work on sequencing in your golf swing.
5) Keep turning through: A major mistake with short irons is failing to rotate your body throughout the swing. Instead, the golfer’s body stays frozen and the arms and hands power the swing. Keep your body turning through the golf swing even when hitting short irons.
6) Shift your weight forward: Shifting your weight backward when hitting a pitch shot can lead to “falling back,” which saps power from your swing. When you then try to use your arms and hands to save the shot, you chunk it instead, costing you a stroke. To eliminate this swing fault, try this drill:
Set up with your weight on your front foot. Draw your right foot back about 12 inches. Now hit some balls. Making this move forces you to pivot around your front leg, producing a downward blow and increasing ball-turf contact. That adds power to the shot.
These six moves will help you boost power to your golf swing no matter what your level of play. They’ll also help you increase consistency. Boosting power and consistency will take your game to a whole new level. And it all comes from using your body to power your golf swing and not your hands.