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Power Movement
Keith Williams

Bearing in mind the actual physical weight of the human head, the brain's effect on co-ordination and the influence this has over a player's sense of balance, it would appear naive to believe the role of the head position does not have a significant effect on your golf swing. As this article will explain, a well-balanced and neutral head position improves both the power and the consistency of your swing.

The reverse-pivot

Only one of the following pictures shows a good backswing position, and clearly this isn't it. The head has failed to rotate in tandem with the shoulders, and the weight is languishing on the left side. As a result of poor head movement, the entire backswing motion is fundamentally flawed.

The reverse hip tilt

Another example of how a poor body motion leads to a poor backswing position. In this case, the hips have shifted in the direction of the target (a slide as opposed to a turn), while the head again has failed to rotate in conjunction with the shoulders. Absolutely no effective coil or weight transfer.

Upper and lower body in sync

This is more like it - the hips, shoulder and head working in sync for the good of the swing. The shoulders have turned through a full 90 degrees, the hips through about half that amount. At the top, the majority of the weight is clearly supported on the right side, the right knee braced to support the turn.

To maximise your power potential, let your head rotate with the spine

The expression 'keep your head still' has caused more harm than any other maxim in golf. Common sense tells you that the head should rotate in sympathy with the spine. The two are attached, after all. A sympathetic head movement clears the way for the shoulders to turn fully and easily, and encourages the weight to move behind the ball.


Get the upper body turning

Bearing in mind the importance of letting your head go with the flow of your swing, work on this exercise to strengthen your pivot motion -the very heart of a good swing.
Hold a club across your shoulders, take your normal set-up position, and simply work on the quality of your turning motion. Feel the flex in the shaft as you turn back and through, and sense the coiling and unwinding sensations derived from this simple dynamic drill.]

Separation from the top maximises recoil and power

Loading up the backswing is created in your backswing, you important, but the job is only have to unwind your body in half done. To maximise the sync.

Good players speak of the
delivery of the power you have 'separation' they enjoy at the start of the downswing; a sense of the left side pulling away from the right in the split-second you change direction.

Study these pictures to get a good image of this power move. Starting from the ground up, the left side of the body pulls away from the right side as you start the downswing, the left foot replants itself, and the left knee, hip and shoulder work towards the target. Then, once that separation is underway, the right side can fire the club through impact.

Split-hand drill for sense of width and coil

After a few minutes rehearsing the pivot motion, give this drill a try to add a sense of swinging the club in relation to your body action. Hold an iron as I have here, the hands about 12 inches apart. Then, having assumed a good posture (start with the club parallel with the target line), swing to the top, turning your shoulders through 90 degrees.

Once you get there, look in a mirror for positive signs of a backswing made in plane: clubface at around 45 degrees, in line with the left forearm, back of the left hand slightly cupped. Rehearse a few times, then hit balls normally.

Split hands give sense of power approaching impact

To familiarise yourself with the sense of power-delivery approaching impact, unwind the split-hands drill from the top and feel the forces at work as you swing down. Try to sense that the left hand is pulling the club while the right han resists for a moment starting down.

Then, as the hands reach a position waist high (as you see here), you should let go with the right hand and release the clubhead through impact with the left. Repeat this exercise several times, then look for the same sensations as you hit balls with your normal swing.

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