Rickie Fowler: My Free-Swing Speed Move

1 of 5 Angus Murray
The transition from backswing to downswing is where amateurs make the most mistakes, usually because they're thinking about what to do instead of just doing it. My move at the top is simple, so it's easy to repeat without having to think about it. Hips Lead, Arms Drop I use my shoulders on my backswing to power the club back. Once I get to the top, however, my lower body takes over. Notice how my belt buckle and the Puma logo on my pants are slightly hidden in the first photo, but that you can plainly see both in the second. Also notice that everything from the waist up has remained the same (the Puma graphic on my shirt below the collar hasn't moved). I've turned hard with my hips and left everything else behind.
2 of 5 Angus Murray
Get Separated When I start my downswing with my hips, notice how I automatically create separation between my upper and lower body. This is the true source of power in any golf swing. notice how my driver shaft has responded to the separation by dropping down and onto what most golf experts would call the ideal plane with the clubface rotating to square. This is what makes any swing ultra-accurate. I accomplished all of this by simply turning my lower body. Easy.
3 of 5 Angus Murray
Copy This! As I get deeper into my downswing, the shaft continues to drop in response to my hip-first move at the top. This is the ultimate power-producing path, with the shaft bisecting my right forearm and the clubhead approaching the ball from inside the target line.
4 of 5 Angus Murray
Power Practice As I mentioned, I never use video or photos to look at my swing. I'm only concerned with ball flight. Some guys on Tour change their swings to get a specific shot shape — I let the shot shape change my swing. If you watch me hit practice balls, you'll see me hitting nine different shots: low straight, low fade, low draw, mid-height straight, mid-height fade, mid-height draw, high straight, high fade and high draw. I do this with each of my clubs. If I'm having problems with a specific ball flight, I'll stay there until I find a way to produce it consistently. And I'll do it without worrying about positions. If I'm trying to hit a high draw, for example, and I'm hitting it low and straight, I'll just tell myself to release the club a little earlier. The secret to this game is to hit golf shots, not positions. Try practicing this way. You'll be surprised at how much your ball flight can teach you and, more important, how easy it is to teach yourself to make the adjustments you need to change direction and trajectory and add power.
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Fearless Thoughts This year is my first year on Tour, and I'm proud to say that it hasn't been as nerve-racking as I thought and that I've actually had a few good chances to win in my rookie season. The reason why is that I honestly play without fear. I have confidence. If you tend to fret over your swing or where the ball ends up, remind yourself of the following on every swing you make on the course: 1. You've hit this shot before — there's no reason you can't hit it now. 2. You've made your decision on club selection and shot shape. It's a good decision, and you'll accept the consequences, good or bad. No second-guessing. Ever. 3. My setup is solid—half the battle is won. Just pull the trigger. 4. If you hit a poor shot, big deal! Golf is meant to be fun, even when it's your living. Plus, you can always make up for a bad shot on your very next swing.