So much is written about the importance of managing and controlling your club’s FACE to get better ball strikes. This is certainly worthy of your attention! You might remember previous articles where we simulated impact by hitting into an Impact bag to see the alignments that occur. But, sometimes changing focus can add a new dimension to your understanding. So, let’s get a “handle” on that.
Instead of thinking about the clubhead and club face, let’s give information to the other end of the club…the handle. The benefit is your hands, in conjunction with other body parts, will come to understand their critical role in producing great contact. You might have been given false information when “they” told you to keep your hands out of the golf swing. Even Tiger Woods has said it’s about educated hands…and your hands are pretty clueless!!
When the clubhead contacts the ball in an efficient way, the HANDLE of that club is actually AHEAD of the CLUB HEAD. And, as the handle moves through impact to parallel to the ground, it actually RAISES UP as the arms continue to straighten. If you think you’re not getting enough “bang” for your buck, especially with your driver, have someone video you on your phone in slow motion. If you notice that the butt end of your handle doesn’t rise, you will definitely see how much your arms are bent, especially just after impact. This is a huge power loss!
The drill that will help is to hit punch type shots, abbreviating your finish. Swing the club ONLY to where it is parallel to the ground and evaluate your finish. Pay attention to the movement of the handle, finishing with EXTENDED straight arms, EXTENDED straightened legs, and EXTENTION in your spine. Are your arms rod straight? (If you top the ball, your elbows have bent and your arms got shorter) Has your handle moved several inches up? Are you standing TALL with eyes locked onto your intended target? Practicing this way is fun. You’ll feel more like you’re “hitting” rather than swinging. The extra distance you’ll gain is a benefit I know you can “handle”!