|Watch your drives fly straighter and longer|
By, Rob Stocke, PGA, The Golf Club of Georgia
Are you struggling with slicing your driver? Hitting pop-ups and big pulls? Losing distance off the tee? I’ve seen them all, and many times they can all be fixed with a simple, fundamental setup adjustment! One of the biggest problems I see with amateurs is getting their upper-body out of position – addressing the ball with their front shoulder (left shoulder for a right-handed player) in front of the golf ball.
When the front shoulder gets in front of the ball, the spine tilts towards the target and the shoulders are open! If the shoulders are open, there is a really good chance that the path is going to be steep and out-to-in – not good if you want to hit it far & straight! When you see a great driver of the golf ball at impact, their front shoulder is behind the ball and they deliver the club with the force of their body rotating and swinging their arms – much like a baseball player hitting a homerun.
Great drivers of the golf ball setup with their front shoulder slightly behind the golf ball, and their spine is tilted away from the target with the back shoulder lower than the front. Your bottom hand is below the lead hand, so your spine needs to tilt to match the hand being lower on the club.
If you’re struggling with your driving, do this simple drill to get the proper spine tilt – this drill will work with all clubs, so make sure you feel your spine tilted away from the target with all your full-swings. Start by assuming your golf posture and hold a club against the buttons of your shirt and your belt buckle.
Now tilt until the shaft hits your thigh closest to the target (left thigh for a right-handed golfer). The amount of tilt away from the target will increase as your stance widens, so there will be slightly more tilt with your driver than with a wedge. You will notice that this allows you to tilt your spine but keeps you from shifting your hips away from the target, so you have a stable lower body! Once you are comfortable with the setup, you can always check your tilt on the course by holding a club off the outside of your front shoulder (left shoulder for a right-handed golfer); the club should hang down just inside your front foot
Get your body in the proper position, and watch your drives fly straighter and longer!