More Distance and Increased Power without Flexibility
Golf power and distance are one of the primary limitations for senior golfers and golfers without a reasonable amount of flexibility. Distance affects so much of the game. Shorter drives lead to longer approach shots, longer approach shots lead to fewer greens hit, which leads to higher scores and a lot less fun unless your short game is seriously good. Who wants to hit long irons onto greens all day when you can be hitting shorter irons? Golfers need to adjust their mechanics to make up for what has been lost with age or decreased flexibility. Frans Strauss, our Golf Operations Manager, has put together a couple of tips to help you squeeze more power out of your game and hopefully more greens in regulation.
Turning your right foot out to prevent swaying (right handed golfers):
This is a tip that is very specific to golfers with a lot of stiffness. If you have good hip flexibility, you should not turn your right foot out.
To break this down; if your foot is facing forward, then your hip is in a neutral position. During the back-swing when your body is turning, you need to have good hip flexibility to keep the hip in a neutral position. If due to stiffness or pain, you are unable to keep the hip neutral, your body will typically compensate by swaying to the right. See the picture below:
Swaying in the back-swing is when your body weight moves to the outside of your right foot instead of staying on the inside and will lead to inconsistent ball strikes and flights. A golfer that sways in the back-swing is going to lose a lot of distance, accuracy and consistency.
By turning the right foot out, you will have increased lower body rotation away from the ball in your back-swing. In the picture above you will see a much better hip turn with the weight on the inside of the right foot. One of the great power generators in golf is torque, also known as the “X-Factor”. The more you can separate your lower body turn from your upper body turn, the more power you can generate. If you don’t have enough hip flexibility to build up torque in your body, you will end up with lost power.
By allowing the right foot to turn out and allowing the left heel to come off the ground, you will allow the whole body to rotate and build up torque against the ground. It is not as effective as torque in the mid-body but it will give you much more power than swaying will with additional accuracy.