The Loop

Change directions like Cristie Kerr to fix your driver

April 17, 2017

Christian Petersen

You probably can't do what Wesley Bryan does with your golf swing. But if you copy Cristie Kerr's top of the backswing move, you can get more power and consistency in your tee shots by tomorrow.

Kerr won for the first time since 2015 with a remarkable finishing weekend -- shooting a course-record 62 in the third round and following it with a closing 66 to beat Lydia Ko by three at the Lotte Championship in Hawaii. Kerr made 16 birdies and no bogies over the weekend, and missed only three greens while averaging 257 yards off the tee.

"Everybody wants to swing faster, but most of the things amateur players do to try to get that speed actually makes them swing the clubhead slower," says Golf Digest Best Young Teacher Michael Jacobs, who is based at Rock Hill Country Club in Manorville, NY. "Cristie Kerr does an important thing that lets you transmit real swing speed into the ball, and it happens during her transition."

When Kerr gets to the top, her body stays quiet while she then pulls the handle wide, away from her and away from the target, Jacobs says. "Most amateurs are moving their hands hard down toward the ball and moving their bodies toward the target. The key move is to avoid letting your right hip rotate toward the target too early as you move your hands and the club away."

This outward pulling motion is what creates "lag," not any active hand or wrist action.

"She's played great golf for a long time with that move, and it's one anybody can copy right away," says Jacobs.