Golf Tips on Swinging a Wood

By Steve Silverman

golf ball four inches from hole
When playing golf, learning to swing a wood with consistency takes some time. Swinging a driver, a 3-wood or a 5-wood tests a golfer's skill and his mental makeup. The wood clubs are the ones that hit the ball the farthest, and only the most disciplined golfers can swing these clubs without anxiously picking up their heads to admire their shot or swinging overly hard. The club will do the work and the golfer must learn patience when swinging a wood.

Addressing the ball

Stand about 20-to-24 inches away from the ball. You want to play the ball about one ball length closer to your front leg than your back leg. Your left shoulder should be facing the target and your left foot should be directly underneath your left foot. As you prepare to take your backswing, lean to your right slightly. This is called the "power lean" and will give you a few yards of added distance.

The swing

Your first move should be the rotation of your hips to the right. As you begin your turn, you bring the club backwards until it is in the launch position. Once you have turned your hips as far as they will go, begin turning them in the opposite direction. Your arms will follow. As your hips clear the hitting zone, your hands should follow at the same rate of speed. You should be looking at the back of the ball throughout this process.

The followthrough

You want to keep your ball straight and get maximum distance. The way to do this is to follow through to completion of the swing. After you have made contact, continue to keep your head in the same position until your club has reached hip level. Finish the swing up high by your shoulder. This will bring maximum backspin and keep your ball moving as straight as possible.

About the Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.