By Paul Myers
Many gains in your golf game come slowly, over time. Most need to put in many hours of practice time to see significant improvements, and it can take years to drop several strokes off of your handicap. One of the things golfers enjoy about the game is constantly striving to improve and shoot lower scores – and that is a pursuit that can literally last a lifetime.
Of course, we as golfers aren’t always patient enough to wait for those improvements to come along. If you would like to see some quick developments in your game, you can try the three methods below to increase your swing speed. While adding some miles per hour to your swing speed won’t necessarily make you shoot lower scores, it can help you get a little closer to reaching your scoring goals. Also, who doesn’t love hitting a tee shot further down the fairway?
#1 – Relax Your Grip Pressure
Tight grip pressure can be an instant killer of swing speed, so try working on relaxing how much you squeeze the club during the swing. It may take some practice to get comfortable swinging with less tension in your hands, so this is something you definitely need to work on during a practice session before taking out onto the course. Start with small, short swings with a wedge to get the feel of using a lighter grip pressure before moving on to hitting your long clubs. Essentially, you want to hold on to the club as tight as needed to maintain control, and no tighter. Starting with short shots can help you to find this balance.
#2 – Widen Your Stance
Swing speed can’t be maximized if you are off balance during your backswing or downswing, so consider making your stance another inch or two wider to stabilize your base. You might feel like your legs are engaged at address and ready to support the turning of your upper body. Be careful, however, because a stance that is too wide can actually hinder movement and hurt swing speed. Try placing your feet about shoulder width apart (with a driver) and see how that feels. You can make minor adjustments from there until you are comfortable and feel that your stance is keeping you on balance and supporting an aggressive swing through the ball.
#3 – Adjust Back Foot Position
When you take your stance, try turning your back foot (right foot for RH golfer) out and away from the target. Instead of having your toes pointed straight ahead of you, they will be turned open a few degrees to the right (again, for a RH golfer). This stance will help make it a little easier to turn back away from the ball, and could add some length to your backswing. As long as you are able to stay on balance and make quality contact with the ball, the added length in your backswing will hopefully translate into more speed at the bottom of the swing. If you find that this position is comfortable for you during the driving swing, try putting it to use with all of your clubs.
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