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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Denis Pugh on More Consistent Ballstriking (Video)

Francesco Molinari just won the Open, so of course I have a video from his coach Denis Pugh. In this video Pugh is trying to help a player hit the ball more consistently.

Pugh wants -- as I do -- for you to learn how to turn without sliding. When you slide too much toward the target, you do all kinds of crazy things like change your spine angle, change your body position relative to your ball position, and throw your balance off. If you want more consistency, you need to stop that!

As you can see from the video, what Pugh tries to get this student to do is open his legs as he turns through the ball. (That's why he sticks the club shaft between his legs and holds it against the inside of his trailing thigh.) However, you can't hit balls with someone holding a club between your legs, but you can learn this move by using a drill.

Fortunately I have one for you. It's been on my blog for over seven years, and here's a link to it. It's called the Basketball Drill, and it's very simple. You hold a basketball between your knees, and you try to drop the ball during your downswing by moving your lead knee forward -- that gives you the hip opening move that you try to create when you slide -- while your trailing knee doesn't move so much. It minimizes lateral movement toward the target while still letting you unwind your hips as quickly as you can.

I think you'll find this drill actually lets you create more hip speed than the slide does because you don't waste energy pushing your body forward. But -- and this is important -- it DOES allow you to create a weight shift, which moves you toward the target a little but not enough to change your body's position relative to the ball. As a result, you get more consistent contact.

A simple but very effective drill. It may not turn you into Francesco Molinari (that's a matter of practice) but it will teach you the basics of a solid move into the ball.