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Original Issue

Maximum speed at impact

Shortest definition of a golf swing: feel the weight of the clubhead and swing it to produce maximum speed at the moment it hits the ball. If maximum speed has not been reached at impact one is not hitting the ball.

Since the speed of the clubhead at the hit results finally from the wrists unbending and releasing, golfers should learn to delay this wrist action by pulling the hands into the ball on the forward swing with the wrists cocked until the last moment. This is the mark of a good swing.

Don't get ahead of yourself on the way down by throwing the clubhead away from the body, straightening out the wrists and the right arm. This is hitting too soon. Correctly, the hands should pull the clubhead to the ball. If you pull, the hands lead, and this keeps the wrists cocked and the right elbow folded up. It also preserves the greatest angle possible between the extended left arm and the club. On your pull, use all your strength, even your back muscles. The more pull, the more speed at impact and the more distance.

The transfer of the weight to the left foot and the unwinding of the body are tied in with the pull of the hands. Practice both at the same time. You can feel the resulting centrifugal force which hits or propels the ball. When you are playing, just swing and time this hit. You will be pulling to create maximum clubhead speed at the split second you make contact with the ball.

BLANCHE SOHL, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio