11/30/2016

Do you remember during the late 90s when Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds & Sammy Sosa were crushing home runs at a record pace? (Never mind the doping allegations). Nike came up with an ad campaign with the tagline, “Chicks dig the long ball.”

What’s true for baseball in this case, is also true for golf. Power rules the game. Fans aren’t often seen crowding around 10-deep on the course or the practice range to watch Zach Johnson or Jim Furyk hit nice, controlled 7-irons. They want to see Bubba Watson, J.B. Holmes and Rory McIlroy crush 350-yard drives right down the center of the fairway. That’s what makes fans whistle oohs-and-aahhs and high-five their buddies.

You need to increase your distance and hit longer drives. How does an extra 30 yards off the tee sound? Yes, it’s possible and there are several ways it can be achieved.

One of them is to do what former PGA Tour pro Grant Waite does. Here’s a video where Grant explains:

When Grant sets up to the ball, he mimics his desire position at impact. He does this by moving his hips forward, his left knee is flexed forward and his right foot is banked forward.

Let’s talk about that right foot for a second because that’s the key to solid impact.

When Grant is swinging through impact is focus is on pushing off the ground with his legs and feeling the driver rise through impact. This allows his drives to go higher and with less spin on the ball. Amateur golfers can be obsessed at times with trying to spin the ball, but spin on your drives is bad. A ball with side spin is going to cost you a lot of distance off the tee. Hitting the ball too high or too low is going to impart more spin on the ball than you want and it will rob you off ball speed and distance.

The key to more power and increased distance isn’t swinging harder. The key is to swing better. Maximizing your smash factor and your launch angle will maximize your distance off the tee.

Remember, your smash factor is ball speed divided by clubhead speed. Ideally, your smash factor would be 1.50. Swinging fast doesn’t translate into longer drives if you aren’t making solid contact on the ball. Hitting the ball in the sweet spot is going to achieve a much better smash factor rating. The more ball speed your putting on the ball, the longer your drive will be. An extra 10 mph of ball speed can equal 20+ yards of distance.

Staying in shape this off season and strengthening those core muscles will also aid in your quest for more distance off the tee. There are plenty of simple and effective exercises you can do at home every day to have you looking and feeling your best.

You have the power within you to increase your power on the course!