A swing thought for better ballstriking: Get heavy, then light

November 30, 2019

Many players I coach are overly fixated on where the ball goes. Yes, that’s important, but while fixating, they unintentionally make themselves less athletic in their movement, robbing their swing of key ground-force reactions and body alignment that fuel good, solid strikes. Here’s one of my favorite drills to regain innate athleticism, which in turn improves clubface stability and body alignment at impact.

To improve your ballstriking, swing a four-to-six-pound medicine ball to increase your "load" against the ground.
Scott Cook

Check the left-side photo above. While holding a lightweight medicine ball (four to six pounds), I’ve coiled into my backswing, pivoting around my trail leg. This gives me the sensation that I’m “heavy” into the ground in the backswing, much like a corkscrew being pressured into the top of a wine bottle.

From here, the goal of the drill is to chuck the medicine ball through the floor at the exact spot where you’d take a divot on a well-struck shot (right-side photo). Do it correctly and you’ll feel the ground pressure (and then some) created in the backswing segment of the drill begin pushing back at you, forcing your left side to “spring” up and making you feel light.

When your lead side springs up like this, you’ll notice that your left shoulder, hip, knee and ankle joints form a straight line — what instructors refer to as “hitting against a firm left side.” Your reward? A stable clubface through impact and straighter shots. If you want to be a more explosive ball-striker, this drill is for you.

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