In my opinion the driver is the most important club in the bag.
A good drive makes all things possible. Your chances of making a birdie or even an eagle increase enormously when you crush a long straight drive. It seems when you are swinging well with the driver the irons tend to be good as well.
The most common error I see is sliding your hips laterally away from the target on your backswing. When your hips slide back away from the target on the backswing you are in a position where you have to slide back toward the target on the forward swing just to hit the ball. This is a movement that's very difficult to time properly and will decrease your power dramatically.
To make the proper body rotation, visualize your lower body and torso inside a barrel with a few inches of room on each side that prevents you from sliding your hips.
Now simply turn your shoulder that is nearest to the target at address under your chin at the top of the backswing. The rotary motion in your hips and shoulders is much like loading a giant spring. By the time you reach the top of your backswing your hips and shoulders are primed and ready to unload with tremendous speed.
Not many of us are as gifted as players like Tiger Woods and have the ability to swing at very high speeds and still maintain control. Most players would be much better off to swing a little easier so they are able to make contact with the ball in the center of the clubface. Remember, we have all made those easy swings where the ball goes a long distance.
Use these thoughts to improve your swing with the driver.
BRIAN ERICKSON, Legacy Course at Cragun's PGA professional, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 825-2800.
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