Power tips from Oliver Wilson

After seven years on the European Tour I have competed against the best players in the world. I have also played in hundreds of Pro-Am events with amateur golfers of all abilities, and so have a good appreciation of the big differences between a full-time golfer and an amateur.

Often amateurs are amazed at how far professionals hit the ball, particularly when compared directly next to them in Pro-Am tournaments.

Years of dedicated practice will obviously improve the quality of strike and professionals have very good technique, but there is one thing that all amateurs can do to get the most out of their power.

One of the most common faults I see in the long game is the arms and body not staying connected during the swing.

Many people tend to swing back with just their arms, which results in a narrow golf swing and no weight transfer, meaning potential power is lost.

This also results in all kinds of compensations and bad habits on the downswing. It is vital your arms and shoulders work together throughout the swing to improve both power and consistency.

Golf Monthly reader Phil Parkes was the perfect example of someone who lost power as a result of not staying connected.

I suggested that he simply feels like his left shoulder is under his chin at the top of his backswing. This is a great swing thought for anyone who wants to focus on finding added distance.

This is a problem that professional golfers also struggle with and in the past I have practised with a glove under each of my armpits.

This helps to keep the arm swing and the body turn connected, and will really improve timing as well as power.

Improving this connection will help all parts of your long game by getting you into a strong coil position at the top of the swing.