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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Kaylin Skovron and Michael Breed's Driving Tips

Golf Digest posted a couple of articles with simple driving tips that you might find useful.

The first is from an article by instructor Kaylin Skovron called 5-Minute Clinic: How to Make Swing Adjustments for Different Shots. It has a number of different tips but the driving tip is simple.

Kaylin Skovron driving setup tip

She recommends a change to your driving setup to get more distance. As she puts it:
To get the best launch and spin with a driver, play the ball forward in your stance and hit up on it. But if you have it aligned with your front heel (above, left), and you're still hitting it too low (and often crooked), play it even farther forward so the ball is lined up off the toes of the front foot (above, right). Address it with your feet together, and then step away from the target with your trail foot. Now you're set up to launch it higher—and hopefully straighter.
It won't work for everybody; it depends on your swing mechanics. Still, it's worth trying out.

Once you get set up for more distance, you need to get a bigger swing. Michael Breed has a short article called One Driver Swing Thought for Longer and Straighter Drives... and it's a simple one. Just keep your trail arm straight for as long as possible in your backswing.

I'd better explain this one a bit.

Michael Breed halfway into takeaway

This photo looks like a pretty stiff-armed takeaway, doesn't it? It's misleading. It just LOOKS that way because Michael hasn't bent his trailing elbow. If you try it with a club, you'll find that you can stay pretty relaxed for quite a long time as you make your backswing, even though your elbow isn't bending.

"Keeping your trailing elbow straight for a long time" is one way to keep the club farther away from your head at the top of your backswing. Players like Annika say this is a primary swing thought with them.

Bear in mind that your elbow WILL bend at the top of your backswing. Michael probably can't get much farther than the photo shows without bending his elbow. But at the top, instead of a 90° angle, it'll be more like 75° or so. IT'S STILL BENT, just not as much. It bends a bit more as you start down, which helps you keep your wrist cock later into your downswing, and that gives you more distance.

Don't overdo the bend on the way down. It always feels as if your trail arm is straighter than it actually is, so if you try to feel a right angle bend you'll probably smack your shoulders with the club shaft! If you stay relaxed and just feel as if your trail arm is staying at about the same angle, you'll probably get the result you want.

And between these two tips, you may be able to pick up some extra distance without too much effort.