There are basically three ways to hit a driver - slightly on the downswing (as tour pros do), level or, by far the best option, slightly on the upswing.
Hitting it on the upswing launches it higher with less spin and normally sends it slightly further, assuming a good solid centre strike on the face.
In the first picture you will clearly see that my guest Joan Shankland is on final approach to the ball with her trusty new Callaway driver.
Note how the club shaft is correctly in line with her right forearm - this is always a very good sign that the club head will be slightly behind the hands, tracking into impact say at roughly three/four degrees from the inside.
When this happens, and the club face is say half that, at two degrees open to the target line, then you have a lovely recipe for a soft draw shape on the ball.
The face should ideally be half of what the path number is when you require a fade or a draw. If the face number is greater then the ball will not fade, or draw, as much as you would like it to.
I would then refer to this as a face fault, rather than a path fault.
In the second picture, this time Joan has just struck the ball.
It would appear that her hands have allowed the face to slightly twist open, resulting in a ball flight slightly to the right of her intended target.
This is often a result of simply holding the club too tightly and basically stopping the release of the club face, at the point of impact.
My old catchphrase saying is “when you hold it tight, you are off to the right”. Relax, and release, is a better way to think about squaring up the face at the point of impact!.
Joan has also nicely kept her right heel down, until the moment of truth - this simply allows the attack angle to be less steep, ideal when using the big stick.
In the next frame her body will continue to clear out of the way, as the club tracks back on the inside and up, into the correct follow through position with good balance being the norm, in this good driver approach type of swing.
NEXT WEEK: Yellow and blue path.