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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Blair O'Neal and the Power Fade

Ah yes, another of Golf Digest's Sexiest Shots in Golf instructional videos. This time Blair O'Neal demonstrates how to turn a slice into a power fade, which is probably one of the most desirable fixes you can make to your golf swing.

Note what Blair says: A power fade is a draw hit with an open face. Do you understand what that means? It means that you aren't lining up to swing out-to-in; you want to swing in-to-out. That means your stance is a little bit closed, NOT open. Let's look at the steps Blair gives and I'll help you get this part right.
  1. Line up your feet on the line where you want the ball to start. Align your feet for a straight shot toward the side of the fairway -- the left side if you're a rightie, the right side if you're a lefty. (Try this on the range and use a club or alignment stick to help you do it.) Now pull your trailing foot back from that line a bit. You should still be aimed to the left center (or right center) of the fairway but you'll be able to make an in-to-out swing.

    If you don't understand how to aim for a draw, go to the Some Useful Post Series page; there are a couple of series there on how to hit draws, one for lefties and one for righties and they have diagrams. Use the 3rd option and aim your alignment stick down the "dotted aim line" in the diagram -- only this time, that aim line won't be down the center of the fairway because we want a power fade and not a draw.
  2. Aim the club face where you want the ball to finish. This will be more toward the center of the fairway, at least until you feel comfortable aiming for a power fade. Note that this is not the way you aim the face to hit a draw, as described in the posts I mentioned earlier. This is a power fade! The club face is OPEN to the draw swing path, not closed as shown in the diagrams.
  3. Stand a little bit closer to the ball. That will help you swing more in-to-out.
  4. Make an inside-out swing for a draw. Just swing along your foot line.
This may take a little practice on the range because you're probably going to pull the first few shots while you learn how to aim your body, but don't give up. This will give you a much better angle of attack on the ball, and that means you'll hit it more solidly and get more distance.

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