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Golf Question: Should My Back Swing Be Faster In Order To Hit The Golf Ball Further?Generating speed throughout the swing is something that most amateurs struggle with because rather than using their bodies, they try to generate speed and power by using their arms.

First a golfer must learn which aspects of the swing create speed and power and then put their energy into these aspects.

The back swing does not require speed in order to hit the ball further. It requires a good coiled movement from the shoulders, hips and also hinging of the wrists. How fast this is done is totally irrelevant because it is the range of movement, flexibility and speed of the down swing where the swing creates power to hit the ball a long way.

Golfers often fall into the trap of using their arms on the back swing to increase the speed, however, through this movement, they are actually sacrificing shoulder turn, speed and power! A player swinging the club through coiled up power in comparison to a player swinging with just their arms and limited rotation, will hit the ball much further as the club is travelling further and bigger muscles are being used to move the club, therefore it has more force.

To put this into practice, you should practice making a 90 degree shoulder turn with a 45 degree hip turn. This torque between lower and upper body creates the resistance needed for a well coiled and powerful back swing. The speed in which the back swing is made is not important so long as the best possible positions are created for the most consistent, powerful and repeatable down swing to send the ball its optimum distance.

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A fast back swing may destroy any rhythm that could be created during the back swing and good technical positions become harder to maintain. Swinging fast can lead to extreme circumstances during the swing such as:

a) An over rotation of the lower body due to a lack of physical control over yourself, leading to potential lateral movement, loss of distance or erratic strikes
b) A total lack of body rotation which is caused when the swing is so fast that the player just uses their arms to move the club as fast as possible, ironically generating less power, control and accuracy.

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To get good distance on the ball, the swing needs to be well balanced, ideally with a smooth back swing coiling up to the top and then a gradual increase in velocity on the down swing as the swing begins to uncoil to the golf ball. If the back swing is too slow then the transition between back swing and down swing becomes flawed and the body will get out of position. Work on creating a tempo to your swing which helps get into the best coiled top of the back swing position but allows the transition to be slightly faster generating as much power as possible but not sacrificing accuracy.

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Not hitting the ball far enough? The usual advice from your friends would be to change your clubs. New technology apparently equals an extra 20 yards! If only this was the case or we would all be hitting it out of sight.

To hit the ball further, look at your golf swing on camera, identify its strengths and weaknesses, maintain the strengths and correct the weaknesses. This will lead to more consistent strikes and better distance. Combine these changes with a smooth rhythm and controlled acceleration through the ball to increase your overall distance. Only then look at getting custom fitted new clubs.