What is the most important aspect of striking the ball straight and with power?
This is the point in the swing where the ball is struck.
Where the clubface is pointing - combined with the path of the clubhead and the angle of descent of the clubhead and the speed of the clubhead at the moment will very much determine the outcome of the shot being played.
There are many differing thoughts about impact and especially how to achieve it. Let me show you what I know and how I believe through my own experiences it releates to 100% of the best players who ever played the game.
The golf ball can ONLY do what it is told to do - so the better we get to impact the greater the chance of a successful result.
Quality of strike is the number one goal initially for a golfer. IF we can strike the ball solidly time and time again then we open up a full playing field of improvements that will eventually work into our game- being but not limited to direction of the shot and distance of the shot and importantly hitting each club the same distance each time we swing it.
Quality of the strike is ALL about releasing the club onto the ball in a manner that produces a square face and a descending blow. Lowpoint of where the club strikes the ball and THEN strikes the ground fractionally after is paramount and the greatest goal to strive for when your game goes south.
So how do we learn to hit the ball first and hit the ground second without just throwing the hands and clubhead down at the ball and removing the body from the equation in that effort to strike?
Well its a tough one because we honestly cannot truly think of doing something in a golf swing. We all know this to be true when we film ourselves swinging the club and hitting the ball. We try to do something different in our heads but when we watch the playback of the swing itself it looks no different!!! Why??? It is because to make the swing change we really need to alter the muscles - or golf muscles as I call them- that we use. Then and only then will the swing begin to alter and that step in the right direction will be visible. Our brain wont allow our body to do what it cannot handle. However once the particular muscles have been worked to a degree- then the brain will accept and allow and we will see the changes we are so desperately trying to enforce.
Here are two quick videos I made relating to the drill work I get my students to work on. They both work on strengths and range of motion of the "golf muscles" to provide a late hit and a continuation of the body.
The first video- or drill if you may call it that- relates to impact. It may not be what you think or feel happens but this is the ultimate way to guarantee flush solid strikes time and time again.
In reality the left arm and shaft WANT to form a straight line so the later that occurs the more the strike is improved. Thats the downward strike without even having to try do it.
Its why we work on the strength and range of motion in particularly the wrists and forearms early on- so the left arm and shaft line up and hit as the right arm is providing force and speed. When we build up the muscles belonging to this occurrence then we dont even have to try do it or think about it- it happens on its own.
And not only does this guarantee a compressed strike of impact it sets us up to then be able to use the rest of the body into the follow through to increase the compression put on the ball at impact as a result of still having speed through and beyond the strike until we cant go any farther or faster.
IF we are keeping the club moving faster beyond the strike- IF we are keeping the clubface more neutral to us throught the strike by not distorting the clubface by flicking it at ball or leaning the hands at the strike then for all intent and purposes that club is going to be squarer and be moving faster AT impact. We are letting the ball get in the way of what is coming rather than trying to make impact an event. Impact is a time in place that happens... it is NOT a goal.
These two things discussed in these videos alone are what have brought about the biggest change to my students games.
Once they get the workings and strengths of the two things shown here then they ALL understand the backswing is to create space- and then that space becomes a load down... then from working the main components in the videos the HIT HAPPENS on its own. Combine that with the understanding that the hit has to continue well beyond impact - because everyone is ball bound and have too much focus on the ball itself- then their handicaps and quality of game go through the roof.
Want to learn more? Come see me in person at Holly Tree CC near Greenville SC or take advantage of my online lessons and drill series if logistics dont allow you to visit me for a lesson.
Bradley Hughes Golf- Where Experience Counts