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Wailea Golf Academy Pro Tips

Pro Tips by Eddie Lee, PGA Golf ProfessionalEddie Lee PGA

Compression Drill
Having trouble getting your golf ball airborne? Here is a simple drill that will help. This drill is coordinated with 3 key setup positions and 1 movement sequence.With a 7 iron, establish your address position.

The Setup

  1. Position #1 - Lean your body weight on your forward leg, approximately 80 percent
  2. Position #2 - Lean your hands forward toward the target side, maintaining a straight / slanted angle between your lead arm and club shaft
  3. Position #3 - Press your body weight down on your club shaft, at this setting, you should see a slight bowing / bending of the shaft. This is imperative.
The Movement Drill

Drag the club face against the ground, while maintaining your setup positions. Compress the ground and follow through to your finish. Do not swing back, this drill starts at the impact position. The effect of this drill will enable the individual to internalize sensations of:

  • The correct impact position
  • Proper sequencing through the golf ball
  • Feeling the bottom of the swing arc
Remember...The club face is designed with loft. Lay a golf club down and look at the club face, it may look like a spatula, but please do not treat it like one.

The Wind
If you're on vacation, the last thing you'll want is a complete swing overhaul. Here's some breezy advice to get you around the golf course with your normal swing motion and still have fun.

Treat the wind as a friend, not a foe. The breeze can add up to 30 yards to your drive depending upon your ball flight, so use it to your advantage. Here are four typical wind situations and some strategies for riding them successfully:

Left to Right Wind: The Slicer's Delight
I've seen countless golfers add 20 to 30 yards to the tee shots when the cross breeze is blowing from left to right. This phenomenon is due to the player's natural out-to-in swing path. The golfer's stance is slightly open to the target line, and their toe-line, in relation to the orientation of their hips and shoulder, is entirely left of the intended target line. Combined with a slightly open clubface position, the golfer has established the ideal position for a left-to-right shot pattern. Align a litte to the left and let it go.

Right to Left Wind: The Hooker's Heaven
Where slicers tend to have an open body postion, the opposite is true for golfers who tend to hook the ball. In this case, the player's toe line in relation to where their hips and shoulders are pointed is entirely right of the intended target line. This set-up causes the club shaft to drop a little to the inside during delivery, and the clubface strikes the ball at the 4 o'clock position. This is a good set-up when the wind is coming from the right.

Tip: Know the difference between alignment and aim. In both of the above situations, it's critical to align left or right, and not aim left or right. Alignment is all about your body. Aim is about your clubface. Always take dead aim at your target.

Downwind: Nice and Easy
All golfers love this situation. This is the one time we can hit one comparable to those of the Tour players. So what do we do? Many of us will grip the club a little tighter, widen our stance, take a deep breath, and swing as hard as humanly possible. The result is often the worst shot of the day. It was our one chance to challenge John Daly and we blew it. As in all windy conditions, a good mantra is: When it's breezy, swing easy; if you don't, you'll be dizzy. Take an easy swing, and the helping wind will take a lot of the spin off the ball, creating an effect similar to a knuckle ball. The launch angle will flatten, and your ball will go out, not up. You'll gain distance without the aggravated effort.

Into the Wind: Where's that Pain-Killer?
This shot gives players more headaches than any other situation. To understand why, let's look at the behavior of the ball. Headwind golf shots impedes additional spin on the ball, creating a reverse spin effect that generates tremendous drag.  This sends the ball into a vertical upward tilt. Bottom line: you lose yardage. Before you rummage through your bag for an aspirin, try this tip:
  • Play your ball position two to three inches back from your normal set-up. Widen your stance for stability. As you swing back, focus on maintaining a good sense of rhythm and balance. The key to this shot is the downswing. Through the hitting zone (approximately 10 inches before and 10 inches after you hit the ball), keep the clubhead low to the ground. Your hands should lead the clubhead, causing it to hit the ball on a lower trajectory.