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|Good players use lag to create the power in their golf swings. (PGA of America)|
Many good players have very different looking golf swings, but they all have two things in common during their impact position:
Good players retain wrist-cock through the impact zone, as well as maintain a strong solid base during the hitting area. These two areas of the golf swing set the good player apart from the high-handicapper.
Strong solid base upon impact: To create power during a golf swing, golfers need to have a solid base as they strike the ball. In all sports, a solid base creates power.
When a boxer throws a punch, it starts with the power in the lower body. As they start to punch, they step off their back foot and throw their weight into the direction of the punch. The legs are slightly bent, but there is tension within them, which helps keep the lower body in a powerful position.
The same tension in the lower body should be maintained during the impact position in the golf swing. Currently we hear this concerning Tiger Woods upon his return from reconstructive knee surgery. Before his recent surgery he could not maintain a sold base as he moved to his left side during impact. Golf analysts now describe his lower body action as much improved because of his solid leg action.
Proper wrist-cock maintains lag, increases power: To create lag, the left wrist needs to be bowed upon impact allowing the hands to be slightly ahead of the ball upon impact. This causes a late hit, or "lag," which all good players use to create the power in their golf swings.
High-handicapper golfers tend to do the opposite by releasing the hands early instead of having the hands ahead of the ball upon impact. They collapse the left wrist causing the club head to move past the hands before impact. This scooping action creates a tremendous loss of power resulting in loss of distance with the driver and miss-hits with the irons.
To create a late hit, your hands need to arrive at impact before the club head. The best way to achieve this position is to practice hitting balls with a heavy club.
The heavy "practice club" forces your hands to lead the club head through the hitting area. It also is a great way to build up your strength and swing speed, creating additional power. Try it. It works!
July 10, 2009
Les Miller was a longtime Golf Writers of America member who covered golf instruction for several newspapers and golf publications. His many years of experience as a golf professional, director of product development and tour relations for several major golf companies gave him a unique background and ability to help golfers increase their enjoyment of the game.
As kids around the country head back to school, you, too, can continue your education—on the golf course. Before you play your next round, follow some of these helpful video tips from Golf Channel Academy.
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