(Also see Part 2 of our Golf Tips to Improve your Golf Swing )
Have you ever thought about what your hands and forearms are
actually doing at the moment of impact? If not, please give this a try
because it's one of the most important parts of the swing.
Try to get into the impact position, like you are about to make solid contact with the ball. Now flip your trailing wrist like you were casting a fishing pole. This is referred to as a wrist break, and it's not a move that you want to make in golf. So if you are trying to "flip" your hands through the ball at impact, this tip may help you understand the correct way to make this happen.
If you put a wrist watch on you'll be able to visualize the correct moves to make. As your leading arm approaches impact the watch face should be getting close to pointing exactly down the target line, or to the flag. Now simply ROTATE the watch face so it's pointed at the ground. With a club in your hands, you'll see that this move makes your trailing wrist and forearm "flip" on top of your leading wrist and forearm.
You also see that this will help to "close" the face of your club nicely, that will both reduce your slice, and add distance. This is the correct move to be completing through impact.
It's important to note that your forearms should be working together as well. Try to keep your forearms as close to each other as possible through the impact zone. If you can master this move, you'll find increased distance and it will also do wonders for your slice.
Many golfers let the left knee collapse toward the right on the backswing. This causes your shoulder to drop, and makes your hips sway and overturn. To fix this, imagine your left knee going out toward the target on the backswing. You should feel tension and stability in both knees. Can't quite get it? Try this: Imagine that you're holding a basketball between your knees. Give it a try, you'll be amazed!
Here's a good image to keep in mind during your backswing: Think of placing your right hand in a "hitchhiker" position. This means that when the club is at waist height, you should be able to look back and see your thumb pointing to the sky. Here's another trick: Imagine that your hand is in a handshake position, with the palm facing neither up nor down. These simple thoughts will ensure the beginning of your swing is correct!
Swinging too quickly is a common mistake. I'm not saying you shouldn't swing with power and acceleration — but rather, that you need to maintain a rhythm. The best way to accomplish this is to imagine a slight pause at the top of your backswing before changing direction and beginning the downswing. Do this and you'll find your ball in the middle of the fairway more often!
On the backswing, it's crucial to keep weight on the inside of the right foot, and maintain a slight bend in the knee. Failure to do this can mean poor contact and a loss of power. As you take the club back, imagine that the right knee is braced and solid like a wall. This helps your upper body coil behind the ball, so you can make an aggressive move through it--and really send it flying!
Golf isn't a wrist game. To achieve a powerful swing, you need to employ the big muscles of the legs and trunk. The common instinct of many amateurs is to hit at the ball with only the arms and wrists. Every once in a while this may connect, but for real consistency and power, use the whole body, not just part of it. Muscle it!
Many players feel that they need to hit it harder into a breeze, but this causes them to put more spin on the ball and hit it higher. To hit it lower and more controlled, put the ball back in your stance a few inches and keep your hands forward. Use a longer club than you would otherwise, and swing easy. Remember the old saying, "Swing with ease into the breeze."
When trying to get the ball airborne, hit down and through it. By allowing the club's loft to do the work, you'll achieve good contact, resulting in a natural flight path. Remember, golf clubs have loft for a reason--use it to your advantage!
When you're playing in the wind, a simple but very good thought is "swing with ease into the breeze." This thought helps keep you from over swinging in the wind and, in turn, prevent your ball from sailing too high. Greg Norman said he used this one on his way to winning the 1994 British Open.
A consistent golf swing requires a smooth tempo and good balance. Just as a house needs a solid foundation, so does your golf swing. Practice hitting some shots with your feet close together (about six inches apart). This forces you to maintain better balance, tempo, and rhythm and will prove effective when you go back to hitting from your normal stance.
Consistent, powerful swings usually have one thing in common--extension through the ball after hitting it. A good way you can learn to perfect this is to put a tee about eight inches in front of the ball you are hitting. Make an effort to hit not only the ball but also the tee. This will help to train you to swing through the ball, not at it.
Go to Part 2 of our Golf Tips to Improve your Golf Swing
NOTE: If you have trouble hitting your clubs correctly there is a good chance that your clubs don't suit you properly.
The reason for not improving your game may well be is due to badly fitted clubs. Think about it: people come in all different shapes and sizes, but most golfers simply buy their clubs off the rack in the golf shop.
Unless you are completely 'standard' and 'average' you should consider custom fitting for your next clubs. This can be done online, and it is free, quick and easy (and doesn't hurt a bit). Visit this great website for free online club fitting, just follow the instructions given there:
'Club Fitting Wizard' at Pinemeadow Golf