August is “Long Drive Month” on Golf Channel, capped off by the network’s live prime time coverage of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship from WinStar World Casino & Resort in Oklahoma, Aug. 30-Sept. 5. Here’s a quick, easy set-up tip from Golf Channel Academy lead coach Jason Birnbaum to help you instantly add 10-15 more yards to your drives.
Tilt Your Upper Body Behind the Ball
To launch the ball high with less spin, and maximize distance, you need to hit up on the ball—2-3° up is optimal for most recreational golfers. One of the best ways to groove this ascending hit is to practice from an upslope, as it helps you set up behind the ball and stay behind it through impact. To get my hips and shoulders relatively parallel to the slope, my body is going to have to form a reverse-“k” look, with my spine tilted away from the target and upper body mostly behind the ball. This is the ideal position to launch it from. The visual of the hill also encourages you to swing the clubhead more upward to match the slope. Swing too steep and the clubhead will crash into the hill.
Jason Birnbaum is Director of Instruction at Manhattan Woods Golf Club in West Nyack, N.Y. For more information about the Manhattan Woods Golf Academy and to book a lesson with Jason, click here.