This tip appeared in the June 2009 issue of Golf Magazine.

This easy drill fixes a major power-robbing mistake: crossing the line

This story is for you if…

• You try to swing back as far as you can to generate power.
• You often feel your right elbow flying out in your backswing.
• You can actually see the clubhead veering out at the top of your swing.

The Fault
You don’t feel like your backswing is long enough to give you the yards you need, so you lift your right elbow to bring the club back even farther. This causes your arms to swing way past the point when they should naturally stop. Now you’re officially across the line (clubhead pointed right of the target at the top), and headed for inconsistent contact and those misses that go way high and to the right.

The Fix
Many players would benefit from stopping at what they think is three-quarters in their backswing. If that doesn’t work, practice your backswing with a Nerf football wedged between your elbows. Try to keep the ball from falling out by keeping your elbows together. Make sure you complete your backswing with a full wrist cock. That’s what gets you parallel at the top, not your arms.