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With a driver in hand, you want to create optimal launch conditions to hit it as far as possible while retaining an element of control. Sadly, many people are unable to achieve this as they are plagued by the dreaded over-the-top move that causes a slice. That’s why in the video and article below, PGA pro Gareth Lewis is on-hand to share his top tips on how to shallow your driver swing…
Why do we want to shallow the driver swing? Well, because it’s different to an iron swing. With an iron, the shaft is shorter, the swing plane is more upright, and the angle of attack is descending to squeeze the ball into the ground.
With a driver, the ball is on a tee, so you want to approach impact with the club low to the ground in order to sweep the ball away on the up. That’s how you get maximum launch and carry distance.
The benefit of shallowing your driver swing is that, as you come through, you’ll be encouraged to use your lower body, rotating your hips for more power as part of a proper downswing sequence that will help you create speed and get into an efficient impact position.
In addition, a shallower swing tends to be one that attacks the ball from the inside, which also gives golfers more time to square the face up for an excellent combination of power and control. But how do you shallow your driver swing? Here’s a great drill to help.
First, take your perfect address position before making your driver backswing. From the top, the feeling you want is to get the lower body moving first - sequencing is key. This means your hands and arms stay in place as you begin to open your hips.
The next part of the drill involves a headcover. If you’re a right-hander, stick it under your left arm (opposite for lefties). Alternatively, you can use a glove or the material of your shirt, but the idea is that you want to keep the headcover in place as you transition into the downswing, feeling like you squeeze it into your chest.
So as your hips clear first, squeezing the headcover will shallow your swing, getting the shaft and the clubhead moving more behind your body. From there, keep turning your hips and you should notice that you’re able to get the driver nice and low to the ground approaching impact so you can hit the ball on the up.
The great thing about this drill is that you’ll know if you’re not doing it correctly as the headcover or glove will fall out of place. It'll also help you increase your swing speed and create more lag. So, give it a go the next time you're heading to the range and look forward to longer, straighter drives.
Gareth is a well respected professional with over 20 years experience. Gareth has previously worked at various high profile and world-renowned facilities, the most recent being Royal St.David's Golf Club in Harlech, North Wales, where he held the position of Club Manager and Head Professional.
He has a passion for coaching, custom fitting and retail and also enjoys regularly competing and playing socially. Gareth has had success coaching players of all abilities from a Welsh Professional Champion and Welsh Amateur Internationals to the absolute beginner. Gareth's passion for all sports and enthusiasm to continue learning makes his coaching style very adaptable and relatable, which is why he also has a good track record of coaching elite athletes from other sports. More details can be found at www.lewygolf.co.uk