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In this week’s show, Mark helps golfers understand the importance of spin rate with their driver, and how to change it to add more distance and control.

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Mark Crossfield has been coaching golf for more than 20 years, and has enjoyed shaping the digital golf world with fresh, original and educated videos. Basically, I am that guy from YouTube. You can connect with Mark on Periscope (4golfonline) and Snapchat (AskGolfGuru), as well through the social media accounts linked below.

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. snowman

    Aug 10, 2016 at 4:47 pm

    As a “High Spin” Player, I can attest it is your swing/delivery that makes the difference. You really cannot buy a driver that will fix a spin rate that is significantly too high. Believe me I’ve tried.

    • Philip

      Aug 10, 2016 at 5:23 pm

      I wish I didn’t spend the dollars looking for one either!

    • Urstoopid

      Aug 11, 2016 at 4:47 pm

      It’s definitely possible to reduce spin with a very low spin head. Believe me, it’d been done, no trying.
      The problem is, guys like you can’t get the ball up with such heads because you’re driving the ball into the ground from the tee and the low-spin head will drive the ball down also.

    • larrybud

      Aug 15, 2016 at 12:13 pm

      I’ve had driver heads reduce my spin by 1000 rpm, so it certainly can be done to a degree. Granted, if you’re spinning it 4500 rpms, it will only get you partially there.

      After all, this is a big part of a good driver fitting.

  2. Steve S

    Aug 10, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    Mark, love the segment. You showed what I’ve discovered on a launch monitor earlier this year. Tried every driver and set-up the shop had and it didn’t make much difference from my gamer. I have been working on hitting the ball on the up stroke and (when I don’t over swing) gives me the most consistent direction and carry. My spin numbers are 2200-2500 with a swing speed of 92-95mph. When hit in the center of the clubface I get 220-230 carry. Someone needs to develop a driver that has half the face as a sweet spot and I’ll drop my handicap 10 strokes(grin).

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Instruction

Clement: Find big power in the flying elbow!

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Matt Wolff, Bubba Watson, Jack Nicklaus, and so many more have been criticized for their golf swings and the flying elbow has been a subject of those criticisms.

When you watch a baseball hitter, a baseball pitcher, a tennis player, a lumberjack and so many more sports and disciplines, you realize they were all good to go all along!

This video will hopefully nudge you to experience this power for yourself too!

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Clement: Smash your fairway woods!

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This video is chock full of fairway wood wisdom that will allow you to understand several things including why a low spinning 5-wood would go much farther and what to focus on feel wise and sound wise with the SOLE of the club through the turf and ground. At least four solid nuggets throughout this video that will be sure to sharpen your fairway woods and hybrids!

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The Wedge Guy: Chipping away strokes

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I’ve always admired golfers who can really chip the ball well. Through my years in golf, I have seen players of all handicaps who are excellent chippers, and all tour professionals are masters of chipping it close. But for such a simple little stroke and challenge, chipping seems to be a part of the game that eludes many of us.

A good short game just cannot be achieved without a commitment to both learning and practicing. In watching the best chippers, it seems that their technique or chipping “stroke” is very similar to their putting stroke in style, form and pace. I think that’s because both chipping and putting are primarily “feel” shots. Yes, technique is important, but I’ve seen good chippers with all kinds of form and fundamentals.

This brings to mind two of my golf buddies who are both good chippers of the ball while employing totally different styles, but each one closely resembles their individual putting style. One uses a more stiff-wristed technique and quicker pace and tempo — just like his putting. The other, who is a doctor with a delicate touch, uses a more rhythmical pace not dissimilar from his syrupy smooth putting stroke.

Now let’s talk about techniques.

I personally prefer to use two different chipping techniques, depending on the chip I am facing. If I simply have to carry a few feet of collar and then get the ball rolling, I’ll choose a mid-iron or short iron, depending on the balance of carry and roll, and grip down on the club so that I can essentially “putt” the ball with the club I’ve chosen.

In employing this technique, however, realize that the club you are “putting” with weighs much less than your putter, so you want to grip the club much lighter to make the club feel heavier. It takes just a little practice to see what different clubs will do with this putt/chip technique.

On chips where the ball has to be carried more than just a few feet, I prefer a chipping technique that is more like a short pitching swing. I position the ball back of center of my stance to ensure clean contact and set up more like a short pitch shot. I usually hit this kind of chip with one of my wedges, depending on the balance of carry and roll needed to get the ball to the hole.

On that note, I read the green and pick an exact spot where I want the ball to land, and from there until impact, I forget the hole location and focus my “aim” on that spot. Your eyes guide your swing speed on chips and short pitch shots, and if you return your eyes to the hole, you are “programming” your body to fly the ball to the hole.

So, while sizing up the shot, I find a very distinct spot on the green where I think the ball needs to land to roll out with the club/trajectory I envision. From that point on, my complete focus is on that spot, NOT the hole. That loads my brain with the input it needs to tap into my eye/hand coordination. I think many golfers chip long too often because they focus on the hole, rather than where the shot needs to land, so their “wiring” imparts too much power. Just my thinking there.

One of my favorite drills for practicing chipping like this is to take a bucket/bag of balls to the end of the range where no one is hitting, and practice chipping to different spots – divots, pieces of turf, etc. – at various ranges, from 2-3 feet out to 20-30. I do this with different wedges and practice achieving different trajectories, just to load my memory banks with the feel of hitting to a spot with different clubs. Then, when I face a chip on the course, I’m prepared.

I’m totally convinced the majority of recreational golfers can make the quickest and biggest improvement in our scoring if we will just dedicate the time to learn good chipping technique and to practicing that technique with a purpose.

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