PHOTOS: Seven ways to see and feel the perfect swing
1 of 7Matt Salacuse
1. Picture three planes for easy power
Picture three discs encircling your body: one around your chest, one around your hips and a third resting on the plane established by the shaft at address. Paint each disc a different color (the brighter the better) and tilt them in the same direction. Your goal? Keep each part in its assigned disc, and have the discs run parallel to one another from start to finish. This safeguards against errors such as lifting your torso, swinging down too steeply, or thrusting your hips at the ball. Instead, you create seamless rotation—the secret to effortless power.
2 of 7Matt Salacuse
2. Open a wine bottle to boost speed
As you start back, picture your right leg twisting into a cork. Push down hard with your right heel and literally “crank” your right foot clockwise into the turf. Done correctly, you’ll feel your right glute tense, a sign that you’ve loaded sufficient energy into your right side. Now the fun part: As soon as your right glute tenses, yank the cork out of the bottle—hard! Imagine the cork is slightly stuck, and that it takes a full-body, upward thrust to “pop” it out. I like to feel as if my left hip is pulling up and back through impact—that’s a huge key for accuracy and power.
3 of 7Matt Salacuse
3. Lose your marbles to hit it straight
As you swing though the ball, imagine where a handful of marbles would land if you let them go right at impact. The goal is to toss them straight down the target line. If the marbles shoot out to the left or right, do what I do and keep tossing—eventually your swing will find the right plane. It also improves your attack angle. With driver, the marbles should shoot out horizontally. With irons, you want the marbles to hit the turf a few feet in front of the ball.
4 of 7Matt Salacuse
4. Square the shaft for squarer strikes
Unless you’re rolling you're rolling your arms a lot in your backswing or breaking down at the top, there’s never a need to “close” the clubface. It’s far more important to square the shaft. What I mean is getting the shaft to line up with your left arm at impact and just after. Instead of “rolling” your wrists through the ball, unhinge them, moving the shaft from angled to straight up and down. Notice in the photos here how the face never stops pointing at the target.
5 of 7Matt Salacuse
5. Paint the target to split the fairway
As you stare down the fairway at address, draw in your mind’s eye a line from the ball to your target. Next, pretend you’ve dipped the clubhead in a bucket of paint, or that you’re holding a paintbrush instead of your driver. As you swing through impact and into your follow-through, use the sole of your driver (or your brush) to paint a streak of color from your right to your left. Start on your target line and at about the angle shown here. Give it a try, and start making masterpieces on the tee box.
6 of 7Matt Salacuse
6. Cast a line for max ball speed
As your swing nears impact, your right wrist is (I hope) still significantly hinged, like mine. The key now is to release that hinge. I liken it to casting a fishing line. Through impact, picture casting the line across your body, getting the lure to fly straight at your target. And since big fish like deeper water, see the lure flying out as far as possible. To match this image, unhinge your wrists at top speed. The trick, as in fishing, is to continue swinging your right arm as you unhinge your right wrist. If you only unhinge, the lure (and the ball) will fly way to the left.
7 of 7Matt Salacuse
7. Turn left, look right to fix a slice
As you settle into your stance, picture your shoulders rotating so far left of the target in your finish position that you have to turn your head to the right to see the ball fly down the fairway. This image helps keep my swing on-plane so that I catch the ball square and with the club on the proper path. Your new mantra: “Turn left, look right.” Not only does this guard against pushes and slices (assuming you square the face). It just looks cool! Of course, you’ll look even cooler as you pipe drives and pound greens.
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