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Class Continues June 7, 2011

Q: I'm 16 and recently broke my arm skiing, just as I really started getting into golf. I have lost so much muscle in my arm, and I was just wondering if there were any golf-specific exercises that would help me regain my strength so that I can get back out on the course? Thanks!

-    Nathan R.
A: The muscles in your upper arms that have the most significant influence on your club are the triceps.  These are the ones to be strengthened and as simple a way as any is just to do push-ups.  My understanding is that three sets in groups of 10-15 reps would be great to start and progressively try to do more with time as you get stronger.  Also, anything you can do to strengthen the forearms will be very beneficial to your golf.  Get fit and good luck.

Q: Hi, I’m 14-years old and I want to know how does follow-through affect your shot?

-    Roman
A: A scientist will tell you once you have hit the ball nothing you do will influence what the ball does.  A teaching pro with 30 years in the trenches will tell you that what I see after impact and the intent to do something at the finish of the swing will almost always improve a golfer’s game.  I would suggest that you watch the world’s best players, watch how they finish and try to emulate.  It is much easier to do something at the finish of the swing than to try and control impact.  A good balanced, stylish finish puts the odds in your favor of getting the result you want.  Good luck.

Q: I am desperately trying to improve my golf game and I watch this show religiously then head to the range to use the ideas! Golf is now a passion and I am trying to get all of my friends excited about the game. Do you have any tips specific for ladies?

-    Debbie W.
A: For the most part, ladies are not usually as physically strong as men and this influences their ability to get the ball in the air.  Too many women use a driver and fairway woods with insufficient loft and in fact, many ladies would hit the ball further by using a 3-wood to drive; same thing in the fairway with using a 7-wood or some hybrids to hit their fairway shots.  Very few will have the speed to get the 3-wood off the fairway and up in the air with some carry.  I recommend not even trying that one.  Also, for most ladies the lighter the clubs you can find, the better you will play.  Good luck.

Q: I have a fairly straight drive but what can I do to get more power out of my swing?

-    Jason G. (Facebook)
A: On the assumption that you hit the ball on or near the middle of the club face then the only way to get more distance is to increase your club head speed.  This should not be done with just a wild lash from your hands and arms.  The correct downswing sequence for power is hips, shoulders, arms, hands and club in that order.  Swinging weighted clubs might be good for flexibility but doesn’t seem to do much for increasing club head speed.  Actually, it would be better to swing something lighter rather than heavier.  Also, strength and flexibility have a lot to do with how far you hit the ball.  Strong glutes, strong abs and flexible hips are key to being able to make the club go faster.  Good luck.