To be blunt, if you can’t hit your driver over 200 yards, you are casting. What is casting? In short, it’s the early release of your wrists into impact. This early release will rob you power into the ball resulting in bunts off the tee, and on the fairway. It’s called casting because the motion is very similar to the motion you make when you cast a fishing line. Most players who cast, do so not on purpose, but because they have to. There are many swing faults that basically force you to cast to make it to impact, such as an over-the-top swing.
On a perfect swing, a player’s arm and club will make an “L” like position when the player’s arms reach 9:00 on the downswing. The club can only point at the sky like this if the wrists are fully cocked. If you cast the club however, this “L” levels out and the club almost makes a straight line with your arms. Keeping the “L” retains the power of your cocked wrists and releases it right before impact. Casting releases the power well before impact, and this power producing opportunity is lost.
The opposite of casting, known as creating lag, is more efficient in creating power because it uses the power in the larger muscles, and then transfers it to the smaller quicker muscles right before impact. The club speeds up tremendously in the last two feet before the ball. Take a look at these two pictures of my downswing. Now look at how far my wrists have traveled compared to how far the clubhead has traveled.
Lag is the secret to more distance, it’s how an effortless swing can pound a ball 300+ yards. Take a video of your swing, and slow it down at this 9:00 position on the downswing… where is your club pointing?