Mike Bender on How To Create Maximum Clubhead Speed | Golf Lessons | Golf Digest

Golf instructor Mike Bender shows Golf Digest how to create maximum clubhead speed.

You know when it comes to creating speed,
most people have the concept
that from the top of the backswing,
you really have to use, rotate your hips,
or rotate your shoulders very fast and very hard
to create the club head speed,
but in reality you have to accelerate and brake.
Just like this example here with the ball.
If I take this ball and I move it,
the ball has no energy of its own, just like the club head.
So a ball has no energy of its own,
but if I move it across here,
and then I brake it, in other words I stop,
that stopping motion transfers the energy
from my hand to the ball.
That's the same concept that we need
to have in the club head when
we're trying to create maximum speed.
I'll give you an example.
If we take an alignment rod and I take it back,
and here's what I'm gonna do, I'm gonna rotate hard,
I'm putting a lot of effort into this.
Okay, and you can hear the sound.
Now watch what happens if I take it back and I brake.
Okay, and you can see there,
I accelerated it as hard as I could.
My shoulder stopped, that transferred energy
to my hand and my arm, my arm stopped.
That transferred energy into the tip.
That's what you need to do
if you want to create maximum club head speed.

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Mike Bender on How To Create Maximum Clubhead Speed | Golf Lessons | Golf Digest

12 thoughts on “Mike Bender on How To Create Maximum Clubhead Speed | Golf Lessons | Golf Digest

  1. I tried this and the ball didn’t go very far at all. Also had a hard time stopping the club . The club would always go past the ball. How come pros don’t swing this way

  2. Been playing for 58 years. PGA class A for 15. I never understood hitting against a firm left side. I understand the leg and shoulder brake. Makes complete sense. Watched the video, bought the book, on Thursday night. Played Friday afternoon. Hit it great! Quiet shoulders was my swing thought. I've got a couple points to shave off my handicap to get to scratch. Hope this helps.

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  4. Yes and no. This is NOT maximum clubhead speed. You would need to hit the brakes(on the top end of the club) before you reach your trail hip with your arms. It pivots the club head forward. Zach Johnson is below average in distance for a reason. He has grip speed NOT club HEAD speed. They are opposites.

  5. Around here, Dante wrote that the hands and arms slow down (I believe only because the body pivot, especially the core slows down because of center momentum is less) and we have to trust that the effect of C.O.A.M. will force the club head (lagging behind) to catch up with the hands at impact automatically. In other words, the arms slow down due to slowing down of the body pivot when the hands get farther from the body axis reaching the bottom of its path and the momentum transfers to the arms according to C.O.A.M. law. The left arm is connected to the left pec and doesn’t move independently away from the left pec at least until impact. This slowing down of the body pivot together with the bracing of the firm left side, i.e. bracing of the left foot and leg by pressing the left foot hard into the ground forces maximum momentum to transfer from the body pivot to the arms and then abruptly to the clubhead. This momentarily bracing is what Mr Bender was trying to demonstrate. It’s like suddenly braking the stool axis. The energy/momentum must go somewhere and in the case of a golf swing it goes to the clubhead. When maximum momentum goes to the clubhead which has the least mass compared to the golfer’s arms, it has to speed up like the small end of the bullwhip. This is how we create clubhead speed due to C.O.A.M. alone but external/additional force can be applied and that’s the hit with the right hand but must be done at the right time.

    At or near impact, the right wrist is bent, the left wrist is flat or bowed if you follow Mr. Hogan while the right arm still have some angle. Here is just about the right time to slam the brake hard by pressing the left foot hard and hit with your right hand like Mr Hogan said he wished he had 2 right hands.

    How to slam the brake.

    Let's get back to the man on the spinning stool. If we can brake the spinning stool axis immediately to complete stop, the stool's momentum becomes zero.
    C.O.A.M. means the momentum must goes else where and that is going to the man sitting on the stool who would be thrown away and may even injure himself because of energy transfer. If we can glue the butt of the man to the top of the stool, when the axis of the stool is suddenly stopped, all the momentum would go to the arms.

    When it comes time to impact the ball, we brake by firmly planting our left foot and press the foot as firm as we can on the ground while the left leg is straightening. This is done with the left arm tucked to your left side. This feels like your left side, left arm and hand and your belt buckle stop momentarily like braking the stool. All the momentum has to go to the end and that is the club head. The club head's mass is fixed, constant. Therefore, when all the momentum is forced to transfer to the club head it must accelerate and that is how to build club head speed using proper technique.

    If the left foot slips. You slip. You spin out. You can’t keep your balance. Your swing center and swing axis move all over the place. You consume momentum in this case. Less momentum goes to the club head not to mention miss hit.

    I think that's why we were taught to hit into the firm left side but nobody told us why.
    I think that's why modern teaching are using pressure pad to measure pressure of each foot and now there is additional concept called using ground force where you squat at the top and starting down by pushing your left foot into the ground and then straighten your left leg like you try to stand up on your left leg. It’s like squat and jump to shoot the basketball. That’s how to put the brakes on.

    I think this is why we see Lexi swinging and posting on her right leg and while her left foot was slipping all over she still hit it far because her right foot at least the toe side was still pressing hard on the ground to provide momentarily braking so that all the momentum would go to the club head.
    Bubba Watson's right foot also slipping wildly but he still hitting it far for the same reason.

    Rory McIlroy.
    I noticed long time ago that his belt buckle stop momentarily around impact and to me that's the sign that he apply the brake hard while his right leg also looks firm, something unique about him. This belt buckle stop can be seen in some golfers. Not all of them have this.
    Looking at LPGA Korean players, most of them have this belt buckle stop momentarily.

    At impact, the right hand and arm come into play as well. The left side provides the brake, the right hand and right arm provide the hit through.

    In Dante's book, he was mentioning a Scottish golfer who hit it far but with short follow thru that looked like no follow thru. He didn't know why. It's just the way he hit and he hit it really far according to Dante this Scottish golfer was hitting it so far that people tried to copy this man's swing.

    If my memory serves me well, Mr Dante said Babe Sahariz practice drill is to swing to impact and stop.
    To my knowledge, this swing to impact and stop is the signature drill of Leslie King of England, the founder of "Swing Factory" golf academy in London. King taught Julie Inkster when she was about 20 years old.

    Note: you can buy this book via Amazon in e-book format. I have both hardcopy and e-book. This book was first published almost 50 years ago and became out of print. It was reprinted again few years back. I’m not sure if it’s still available. May be. But this book is golden for me not only on C.O.A.M. but because of other classic explanation of the hand action and wrist action as well as how to move properly to create lag and delayed release which is rare on today’s book.

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