More Distance for Golfers Over 50
Golf power and distance are one of the primary limitations for senior golfers and golfers over 50. Distance affects so much of the game. Shorter drives lead to longer approach shots, longer approach shots lead to fewer greens hit, which leads to higher scores and a lot less fun. Who wants to hit long irons into greens all day when you can be hitting 8 and 9 irons in?
Our programs at Age Defying Golf (Click Here) focus on and affect the root causes of power loss in golfers over 50. And sometimes, golfers needs to adjust their mechanics to make up for what has been lost with age. So we put together these quick and simple tips so you can squeeze more power out of your game, hit more greens in regulation, lower your scores and be able to puff your chest out a little more.
1. Turn Your Right Foot Out to Prevent Swaying
This is a tip that is very specific to golfers with a lot of stiffness. If you have good hip flexibility, you don’t have to and should not turn your right foot out. To break this down: if your foot is facing forward, then your hip is in the neutral position. During your backswing when your body is turning, you need to have good hip flexibility to keep the hip in this neutral position. If, due to stiffness or pain, you are unable to keep the hip neutral, your body will typically compensate by swaying to the right. Swaying in the backswing is when your body weight moves to the outside of your right foot instead of staying on the inside. This will relieve the responsibilities of your hip but is very bad for your golf game.
A golfer that sways in the backswing, is a golfer who is going to lose a lot of distance and a lot of accuracy and consistency. Test yourself Take a backswing and stop at the top. Do you feel your weight on the inside of your right foot or has it rolled to the outside of your foot. If you sway, you can’t play good golf. Try turning that right foot outwards instead.
Why this is not as effective for golfers with flexibility
By turning the right foot out, you will have much more lower body rotation away from the ball in your backswing. One of the great power generators in golf is torque, also known as the ‘X-Factor.’ The more you can separate your lower body turn from your upper body turn, the more power you can generate. However, if you do not have the flexibility in your hips to build up torque in your body, then you will end up with lost power.
By turning your right foot out, you are allowing your whole body to rotate and are building up torque against the ground. It is not as effective as torque in your mid body, but it will give you much more power than swaying will…and better accuracy too. If you don’t want to “settle” for lost power, you can begin to improve your hip flexibility by signing up for the free exercises in the box below.
2. Strengthen Your Golf Grip
These last two tips are all about increasing power by improving your ball flight. If you are stiff and need more power, you can improve your power by strengthening your grip which will help you draw the ball a little more. Strengthening your grip is easy to do, but sometimes tough to get used to. All you have to do is SLIGHTLY rotate your hands to the right on your golf club (for right handers). This will help you rotate the clubface through the ball to promote a draw spin.
3. Move the Ball Back Slightly in Your Stance
When you setup with the ball slightly back from your normal setup position, you have a greater chance of hitting a draw. This is pretty common advice but I want to add a caveat. I would setup to draw the ball only when conditions are warm and the ground is dry and hard. Usually when you hit a draw, the ball will come out a little lower with shorter ball flight. However, you get a big boost in distance with the roll.
If you are a golfer over 50, you may already be struggle with low ball flight. When the ground is softer, you will probably gain more distance with a higher golf shot that carries in the air a little bit longer. (If your swing is slow, you might want to refer to this article on how to pick the right shaft and driver to maximize your distance with a slow swing speed: Click here). Of course, we think you will be a lot happier with your game if you tried one of our programs to improve your flexibility and distance naturally. But these are 3, easy to implement techniques that will can help you out today.
QUESTION: HAVE YOU TRIED ANY TECHNIQUES OR METHODS THAT HAVE HELPED YOU OVERCOME STIFFNESS TO GAIN MORE DISTANCE? LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW TO HELP OUT YOUR FELLOW GOLFERS!
Thanks for reading,
Dr. Ryan York,
DPT CGS Doctor of Physical Therapy
Certified Golf Performance Specialist