The Marti Golf Academy at Evergreen Point Golf Club

Grip It and Rip It!

If all else fails, there is always one other method of hitting the golf ball – grip it and rip it. And if you want to hit it long and straight, make it simple!

As a young man growing up, I never had a problem with distance. My problem was accuracy. I was fortunate enough to get instruction from some of the best teachers around. I learned that if you want to hit it long and straight, simplify the swing and break it down to its simplest components.

Power in your golf swing comes from your big muscles. It’s about staying under control with your big muscles and not swinging your smaller ones faster. Some of your biggest muscles are in your legs, back and your core (stomach), while some of your smallest muscles are in your fingers and hands. The more movement you have with your small muscles the more room for error you create. Swinging the club with your larger muscles allows you to generate more power from your core, and when you eliminate your hands you minimize your wayward shots and create a straight and long ball flight.

As you complete the backswing, the hips and core start turning out of the way creating some separation from the club, or the lag you hear about so often on the downswing. Then once the club is in “the slot”, release the arms through the ball and continue to turn out of the way. Many amateurs misinterpret the release as a slap with the hands, causing a breakdown with the left wrist for right-handed golfers. Actually, the release is a rotation with the left forearm, which allows the right hand to finish on top of the left.

Grip It and Rip It!

As I noted, you must limit the use of the small muscles in your hands throughout your swing by locking your hands in your address position and retaining that position throughout. The more lag you create by turning out of the way and retaining your address position with your hands, the more centrifugal force you create, which generates more clubhead speed.

Imagine a giant wheel. To generate motion, you must turn the axle at the center of the wheel. The center of the wheel does not move as fast as the outer part, so if you speed up the center (the core of your body) the outer part of the wheel rotates much faster (the subsequent increase in clubhead speed). If you break down with your hands or slap at the ball, you also break down the arc of the swing and lose clubhead speed.

With these simple adjustments and a developed sense of how to make your large muscle groups work dominantly in your golf swing, you will improve your body control, simplify your swing and rip it.

Chad Marti is the head golf professional at Evergreen Point Golf Course in Baytown. He can be reached at 281-837-9000 or at cmarti@comcast.net.

 

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