Senior golfers need to try and hit their drives with a combination of long carry and roll. If the ball is flying a short distance through the air, the senior will not be achieving the maximum amount of distance they could.
A short ball carry through the air could be caused by the driver which may not have enough loft or a very stiff shaft - both could cause a short carry distance. Another reason the ball may not fly very far through the air could be a lack of club head speed at impact. Club head speed is important because it creates the power needed to fire the ball into the air with enough power that the ball’s dimples lift the ball skyward. Here is a way for the senior golfer to create more club head speed and carry through the air.
The air whip
One reason for losing club head speed through impact involves the early release of the wrists during the downswing, which means power is lost before the club head reaches the ball. To stop this from happening use the following drill:
1. Take a stance with the feet just outside shoulder width apart.
2. The ball should be positioned just inside the left heel.
3. The left shoulder should be higher than the right (for a right handed golfer).
4. Place more weight, about 55%, on the back foot to help strike up through the ball.
5. Once set up, take the driver and flip it round so the senior golfer is holding on to the shaft just below the club head and the grip is pointing at the ball.
6. The idea of the air whip drill is to make a ‘swoosh’ sound with the shaft. However, this sound must come just after the ball. If the senior golfer can accomplish this it means the wrists have stayed hinged during the downswing and only released through the ball. If they can hear the swoosh before the ball they have released the wrists too early.
Once the senior golfer has become accustomed to the swoosh occurring after the ball they can flip the club over again and try to repeat the same motion. If the wrists stay hinged for long enough and the club accelerates through impact, the ball should begin to fly further through the air as club head speed increases.
This drill can be practiced at home or incorporated into a pre-shot routine on the course before hitting actual shots.