In our never ending search to hit the ball farther it is imperative that we consider every piece of the distance puzzle. It easy to focus on club head speed and draw the conclusion that the hands will be the key to increasing this, but there are other, just as important factors to consider.
The arms play an important role in helping to generate maximum club head speed and thus overall distance. Firstly they allow for width in the golf swing. We often hear of the need for width in the golf swing, as the longer the lever the greater the potential for a fast moving club head. Thus during the backswing it is important to keep the lead arm softly extended as the body coils into the back swing.
The second role of the arms is to take the speed generated by the body and transfer it to the club. In the address position the arms hang in front of the body to take the grip, forming a triangle with the chest. As you turn into the backswing, this triangle should be maintained in front of the body as it allows the club, arms and body to work together. As the downswing is begun the arms react to the motion of the body, and if the tension levels can be kept low, you will create a whipping motion which will generate the speed you are looking for.
A great drill to get the feeing of the body pulling the arms and then the arms pulling the club into impact in to take baseball swings. Stand upright with the club in hand and using your golf grip. Turn into a back swing and then turn back through so that the club head passes in front of you at hip height. You are looking for the arms to be soft enough that you feel the upper left arm compress the left chest as you change directions. I would also expect you to have a feeling of the club being dragged into the hitting zone rather than thrown.
Try this exercise at home and then as you feel more comfortable with it, slowly lower the club first to knee height, then ankle height and finally make swings with the club touching the ground. Only when these feel comfortable, would you then add a ball on a tee. At this stage you are simply trying to reproduce the motion and see where the ball goes. DON’T try to hit the ball farther. Just make the swings the same as the drill and see what happens. You might be surprised at the results.
I hope you enjoyed this post on the arm swing. As always comments are welcome and appreciated.
PS. If you really enjoyed this post, please consider helping me out and spreading the word below. Thanks!