Swing Tips for Women to Generate More Power

Tips for women

Nearly every player wants to hit the ball farther. It is no secret, that, on average, women tend to hit the ball with less distance than their male counterparts.  What then happens is that women are often forced to place an emphasis on their short game and, in fact, often have very strong skills around the greens. However, distance can really help in several situations on the golf course, so rather than give up on hitting the ball farther there are a few simple techniques you can try first. In general, this requires a focus on swing fundamentals to ensure maximum energy is transferred to the ball at impact.  Swinging without creating excessive and unnecessary movements will almost always lead to more distance.

Check Your Set Up

The proper fundamentals are extremely important in an effort to hit the golf ball farther and straighter. Pre-swing fundamentals include the grip, aim and set up. The golf swing is dependent on doing the previous move correctly. Therefore, focusing on setting up to the golf ball correctly promotes creating an efficient and powerful swing

Strengthen Your Grip

strong-grip One sure way to lose distance is to start off with a weak grip. In a weak grip position, a player will only see one (or none) knuckle on the left hand. In addition, you form a “V” between the index finger and thumb on both hands. A neutral or stronger grip will allow you to see at least two knuckles on the left hand while the “V’s” on both hands will point in the same direction toward the right ear or right shoulder. The weak grip will make it extremely difficult to square or close the close the club face through impact. Results will generally be a weak slice. However, a neutral or strong grip will offer the ability to square or close the club face through impact, which should lead to longer and straighter golf shots.

Golf-Stance-Wide-Base

Create a Wide Base

Many lateral movements are compounded by standing with a narrow base where your feet are too close together. Set up with the insteps of your feet at about shoulder width apart. The golf swing is a rotational movement that is supported with a wider base. Notice in our photo of the golfer at left.  If you were to draw two vertical lines up from the insteps of both feet, those lines would pass straight through the outer part of each shoulder.  This wider set up will help support the rotational movement of the swing and cut down on lateral movement. In addition, it will improve stability and balance in your swing.

Maintain Your Posture

posture Set up to the ball with the correct posture. Allow your knees to bend slightly and bend at your waist to create your spine angle. The golfer at the right is in a perfect setup position as just described.  Once in this position, it is critically important to maintain your spine angle throughout your swing. One of the most common swings faults is where a player stands up from their original spine angle throughout the swing, which incidentally leads to inconsistent shots. Topped golf shots are not the result of picking your head up. Rather, a topped shot usually occurs when a player stands up from their original posture at impact. Stay down, try to maintain your spine angle and swing through for more consistent hits.

Keep the Lower Body Stable

lower-body-stable
During the takeaway, stretch your arms away while maintaining your hips and knees in their original position. The idea is to prevent the lower body from over rotating. Since many women are flexible, overturning can potentially destroy the ability to uncoil, thus preventing a powerful downswing. Try to keep the left knee from completely collapsing toward the right knee for more stability and power.  As you’ll see with the golfer in our photo, her arms are extended and shoulders fully turned with a lesser turn of the hips and lower body.  Her left knee has turned slightly but not fully collapsed to put her in a position to generate a lot of speed and power.  She will likely hit the ball with excellent distance assuming solid contact.

Try these simple keys and remember to swing within yourself — swinging harder often can compromise solid contact.  Hope these tips help.

-Matt Keller, PGA
Matt Keller is a PGA Golf Professional with over 15 years of experience. Matt is a graduate of the Penn State PGM Program. Throughout his career he has worked at courses in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Florida and Delaware. Matt has conducted thousands of golf lessons to players of all ages and ability levels. Currently, he is a PGA Professional at Cripple Creek Golf and Country Club located near Bethany Beach, DE.

Master the Takeaway for Better Shots

The Takeaway

Watch any elite player and notice how effortlessly they swing the club. This results from an efficient swing and smooth tempo. The takeaway is considered the beginning of the backswing. Therefore, the swing starts with the correct set up and every movement that follows.

Start the club head back “low and slow.” Low and slow is a very common phrase used to describe the takeaway. Jack Nicklaus is famous for stating the takeaway is the most important 18 inches of the golf swing while Bobby Jones said, “It is not possible to take the club back too slow.” Begin the takeaway by keeping the club head as low as possible for as long as possible. Many amateurs severely complicate their swing through excessive movements before the club reaches waist high. A common mistake occurs by picking the club up too quickly.

Allow the swing to begin with the left shoulder and arm pushing the club back while avoiding any movements with the hands and wrists to start the backswing. Also, keep the lower body, specifically the left leg and foot, stationary until the hands and club reach waist high. There should be very little movement at the beginning of the swing. The body will create rotational movements once the club extends past waist high.


Start the swing “low and slow” by keeping the club head as low as possible for as long as possible.

Tempo is also a major concern for a repeatable swing. A slow and smooth start helps keep the correct sequence of movements. A quick takeaway can potentially pull the club and entire body out of position. Since you never hit the ball going back maintain a slow start and promote setting the club in a good position at the top of the backswing. This increases the likelihood of the club head returning to impact in a good position.

Several drills allow you to practice the correct takeaway either at the golf course or in the comfort of your own home. Without a club, begin by taking a normal set up position and allow your arms to hang down. Extend your left arm and hand back as if you are about to shake hands. The left thumb should point up toward the sky while the outside of the left hand points in front of you. The lower body should remain stable and not move throughout the drill. The drill positions the left arm and hand in the correct position approximately waist high and parallel to the ground.

Practice the “low and slow” takeaway by a tee approximately 20 inches behind a ball. Set up in a normal position to the golf ball and swing the club back, focusing on striking the tee by extending the club head back low and slow. The goal is to swing the club back as low as possible for as long as possible. The club head should hit the tee to assure you are starting the backswing correctly. In addition, if the club head misses the tee to the right or left then the swing path is incorrect. If the club head swings over the tee then you picked the club head up too quickly. Focus on swinging the club head straight back the target line low enough to hit the tee.

Matt Keller is a PGA Golf Professional with over 15 years of experience. Matt is a graduate of the Penn State PGM Program. Throughout his career he has worked at courses in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Florida and Delaware. Matt has conducted thousands of golf lessons to players of all ages and ability levels. Currently, he is a PGA Professional at Cripple Creek Golf and Country Club located near Bethany Beach, DE.

Where It Starts: Setup and Ball Position

The golf swing is dependent on completing the previous move correctly. Therefore, the swing starts with the correct set up. Everything you do before you swing the club will have a positive or negative consequence on the golf ball. Setting up correctly to the golf ball addresses many problems and corrections to the golf swing.

Similar to many other sports, the golf swing starts with an athletic set up. Begin by standing with your feet approximately shoulder width. Bend your knees slightly and bend at your waist to create the proper spine angle. The goal is to produce a swing that will move around your spine. The arms and club swing around the spine, which should remain fixed throughout the swing. The correct posture creates less knee flex and more bend in your waist (stick your butt out). A common fault occurs by bending too much in the knees and not enough at the waist. This creates an upright posture. Allow your feet to get wider when setting up with a longer club. For example, you will set up slightly wider with a driver than a pitching wedge. A wider base will provide more stability throughout the rotational movements of the swing.

Setup - Head On and Down LineThe arms and shoulders will form a triangle when you set up to the golf ball. This positions your elbows close to each other. This part of your set up is important because you try to keep this triangle intact as you swing the club.

The right hand is lower than the left hand when you place your hands on the grip. Therefore, your right shoulder should be slightly lower than your left shoulder in your set up. This is known as “shoulder tilt.” Shoulder tilt promotes a downward angle of approach to hit the ball in the air.

Ball position is a variable that changes depending on club selection. The correct set up and ball position will have a direct effect on the outcome of the shot. Better players are well aware of ball position and how can potentially affect the distance, direction and trajectory of the golf ball. If the ball is positioned to far forward players might create thin or topped golf shots. If the ball is positioned too close the hosel will strike the ball producing shots that go sideways to the right. The ball should be positioned so it gets in the way of the club head traveling down through the hitting zone.

Ball position starts in the middle of your stance with a short iron. The swing is slightly steeper with a short iron. Steeper swings will create a bigger divot. Ball position moves slightly forward as each club gets longer. Each club should be a half inch longer than the previous club. Essentially you start with the ball in the middle of your stance with the shortest club, and move ball position to the inside of the left foot as each club gets longer. This is an incremental movement to adjust for the half inch in length.

The driver is the longest club in the bag and should be positioned of the inside of the left foot. Longer clubs produce a slightly flatter swing. That is why long irons, hybrids and fairway woods produce a very small divot, if any. It is basically a flatter, sweeping motion through the ball. However, it is still important to swing down and clip the grass to produce a shot that travels in the air.Ball Position-short iron and driver

Matt Keller is a PGA Golf Professional with over 15 years of experience. Matt is a graduate of the Penn State PGM Program. Throughout his career he has worked at courses in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Florida and Delaware. Matt has conducted thousands of golf lessons to players of all ages and ability levels. Currently, he is a PGA Professional at Cripple Creek Golf and Country Club located near Bethany Beach, DE.