3 Simple golf swing tips

Backswing & Follow-through tips

For years we have been taught that the golf ball is the target.  But in reality, the
ball should just be an object that we use to  play the game. That’s the theory behind
a teaching philosophy known  as “throwing the club.” This natural reaction of
throwing develops  natural rhythm as well as proper weight shift, the correct angle
of  your left arm and club shaft, a full body turn, and extension and  release.

The target becomes a point away from the ball, and the  ball becomes simply a point
at which the club passes through during  the throw. Students also experience a
“letting-go” sensation, which  results in a softer grip necessary for an accurate and
repeating  golf swing.

Once the student develops this throwing sensation, then  we work on setup, grip and
posture. It’s fascinating to see how  quickly students adapt to the concept of
“throwing the club.” They  will eventually become their own coach and correct their
own  mistakes.

Lifting Your Heel?

Lifting your left (or right heel if you are left handed) is a tip that is taught
differently by different teachers.

The rationale is that if you let your left heel lift naturally as you complete your
back swing you will allow your body to make a full turn to set up for the swing.

If you don’t lift your heel (as some suggest) you will find some strain on your arms
and trunk as you try to make a full turn to set up for the swing,  The result — you’ll sacrifice power.

Look at some of the great golfers.  Jack Nicklaus will allow his heel to rise on the
takeaway.  Same with Ben Hogan.

I saw a recent picture of the famous teacher, David Leadbetter and his heel was
firmly planted on the ground.  He did, however, have a full turn on the takeaway.

My advice is for us weekend warriors is to allow your heel to rise if you need to.
If not, if you can make a full turn without it, then keep both heels on the ground in your swing.

Take this simple tip to the range or to your next round.

Cure for Slicing tips

The slice is one of the most dreadful shots in golf. The golfer who  slices tends to
aim to the left so the ball will curve to the  right. This poor alignment is
difficult to correct, but it is the  only place to start. First, lay two clubs on the
ground, one at the  target and the other parallel left of the target. Now align the
club face at the target and your feet and shoulders parallel left.  You will feel
that you are aiming to the right, but the clubs will  serve as visual aids to help
cure the uncertainty. The ball should  be positioned forward in your stance just
inside your left heel.

Grip the golf club lightly and allow the right elbow to relax, keeping  it close to your
side. On your backswing, start the club back low  and slightly to the inside, again
keeping your right elbow relaxed  and close to your side. On your downswing, focus on
keeping your  right elbow close to your side and allow the clubhead to swing to 1
o’clock. It takes patience to cure a slice, but follow these simple steps  and you’ll be
headed in the right direction.

How to play better golf

3 Ways to Develop Consistency, Score Lower, and Play Better Golf

As I played a round of golf this weekend I was struck by how inconsistent play can affect your enjoyment of the game.

You play a hole well and score a nice par then follow with a six on a par 3 — and wham, there goes your smile.

Here are some small corrections you can make during a round to ‘get it back’

Check Your Grip

During a round it is easy to stop thinking about having the same grip each shot.  Other things on your mind.

I understand.

But one mid-course correction you can do is to double check your grip hasn’t become ‘strong’ or ‘weak’ as the round goes on.

You may not know but a weak grip can promote a open clubface and that can promote a slice.

A weak grip is when your trailing hand (right hand for us right handers) is turned counter clock wise (over the club).

The neutral grip can help you get it back.  You will know a neutral grip if the V made by your thumb and finger point to the inside of your right shoulder.

Take a look when you are hitting well.  What grip are you using?

Remember for when you aren’t hitting so well.

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Check Your Alignment.

Funny thing.  In golf, the ball is not moving when you hit it.  I can’t think of any other sport where that is the case.

How hard can it be then, to aim square to the target?

First, you must have a target.  I talked about this earlier but dont’ forget to see the exact spot the ball needs to land.

Then stand directly behind the ball and face the target.  Now you know that angle.

When you set your feet they should be square to the target.  So should your shoulders and hips.  Avoid the temptation to adjust your stance to compensate for your slice or adjust your stance to compensate for your swing.

In order to improve, you need to be able to hit the ball where you intend to more often than not.

If you are square a basic swing will give you a basic (straight) shot.  And that, you can repeat.

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Introduce Yourself to the Three-Quarter Swing

If you really are hitting wildly this adjustment might come in handy.

Prepare yourself to give up some distance.  It’s ok to be on the fairway and 20 yards back rather than in the creek and 20 yards further.

This adjustment will allow you to swing smooth and follow through.

Your goal is to limit the off-center hits and straighten them out.  Widen your stance a wee bit.  Take the club away and don’t think about breaking your wrists.  They will hinge at the top naturally.

Then take a smooth swing and make sure you follow through properly.  Your club will be more likely to start the swing path on the proper plane and this is what will minimize mis-hits.

How to play better golf comes in many shapes and forms but these tips will get you going again when it seems like the wheels are falling off.

How to make a perfect golf swing weight transfer

Weight Management

As I mentioned, 75 percent of the body weight is transferred to
the  back foot during the back swing. Through the downswing and finish,  the weight
transfers from the back foot to the front foot.

Too often, amateurs force this shift in weight by sliding and  swaying from side to
side during the back swing and downswing. This  is not necessary! With correct
footwork, you should automatically  make the correct amount of weight shift.
To get a feel for using your legs and correctly transferring your  weight during your
swing, try the following drills.

Brace Drill

Practice with your right leg butting against an object to get a  solid
feel for bracing your right side. In this case, we’re using a  bench. As you simulate
your back swing, you should feel your knee  pressing firmly against the bench,
creating torque and building energy.
If your right knee isn’t touching the bench during the back swing,  it means you’re
not shifting your weight correctly to the right  side. Keep making practice swings
until you feel consistent  pressure between your knee and the bench.

Drop Down, Choke Down

When you need to keep the ball low, use the Drop and Choke
technique. Pros can make setup and swing adjustments as conditions  change because
they have the luxury of practice.
For most golfers, the best adjustments are the least adjustments,  which is why the
Drop and Choke technique works so well.

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Eliminate Topping & Skying Shots with a proper swing weight transfer

The tee shot is the key to good golf. But two common mis-hits can  ruin your chances
for a good score. One is the skied shot, which is  caused by a steep downswing.

Position the ball forward in your  stance, just inside your left heel. Your right
elbow should be  relaxed and tucked close to your side. Your right shoulder will be
lower than the left and your weight slightly on your right side.  Start the club back
low, slow and slightly to the inside.

Now let  the club swing around as you turn.
Golfers often lift the club up  vertically, causing that steep downswing.

Finally, as
you swing  down, keep your right elbow close to your side and sweep the ball  upward
off the tee. Another frightful shot is the topped shot that  does not get airborne.

This is usually caused by a poor transfer of  your weight.

On your backswing, your
weight should shift gradually  to the right. On the downswing, it must shift back to
the left.  Your goal should be a balanced finish with your weight on the left  side
using your right tip toe as a balance point. Try these  pointers, and next time
you’ll find yourself in better position off  the tee. Isn’t golf grand?

 

Tips for how to improve your golf swing

Stance & Posture

Every well-built structure starts with a good foundation. And
that’s what you need to develop a good golf swing. Your stance and  posture set the
stage for everything else that follows. To develop  a good stance, line your feet
apart about the same width as the  outside of your shoulders and keep your body
relaxed.

Your weight  should be evenly distributed on both feet, and planted firmly
on  the balls of your feet to the heels. This will give you the proper  balance while
swinging. Next, you need a relaxed posture so there’s  no tension in the back and
shoulder areas.

Make sure you stand  tall, with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend
at your waist and  slightly flex your knees. A proper bend will put your spine at the
correct angle for a good swing plane. When you address the ball,  your shoulder on
the side facing the target should be higher than  the other shoulder.

Once you find
the correct posture, practice it  over and over until it becomes second nature. And
if you do, you’ll  have a solid foundation for a solid golf swing.

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Here’s a great article submitted by one our readers on how to improve your golf swing

My theory of golf is that to score low you have to do two things: Keep out of trouble
on the tee shot and make putts. I now use a stripe on the ball to line up putts and
that really helps. I have also, finally, figured out a way to keep my drives in the
fairway. Maybe this will work for you.

Choke up.  Shorten your club length by an inch and stand closer to the ball. You
won’t lose distance because the added control will give you more solid hits.
Slow back. I have trained myself at the ball range to take the club back slowly as a
prelude to a relaxed easy swing. Never mind your “natural rhythm.” Do what I did: Go
to the range and focus only on swinging 80 percent of your strength until it becomes
habit. Start with slow back.

Vertical back, flat forward. To get the inside-out swing plane, I have learned to
take the club back with a fairly vertical swing and then to downswing with as flat a
swing as I can manage. To get from one plane to the other, I make a loop at the top
of the swing to bring the club head inside. I need to drop the club down at the
beginning of the forward swing to get the flatness. I can’t do the perfect circular
or same-plane swing, and I don’t try. The slow backswing helps to control the loop
and drop.

Slow forward. This is the hardest part, staying at 80 percent on the part of the
downswing after the drop. In the moment that I am slowly dropping the club, I
consciously remind myself to swing easy. It works.

Left shoulder at target. When I first started hitting most drives with control, I
would still occasionally pull hook one. A local pro, Chuck Lonabough, pointed out my
mistake. On the bad shots, I was setting up with my left shoulder turned left of the
target. My efforts to swing inside-out from this twisted position resulted in a
closed club face. Setting that shoulder straight was the last thing I learned, and
now it’s the first thing I do in my set up routine.

William Murdick

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And here’s another one:

3 Keys To Better Ball Striking Around, Under & Through
by Tom F. Stickney II
 
In the golf swing, there are three basic parts that plague most golfers — the backstroke, the transition and through the ball into the finish. In this article, I will refer to these areas of the swing as “around, under and through.”
 
Amateur golfers often complain that when they practice, it seems as if there’s too much to think about, making it almost impossible to control the different parts of their swing at the same time. They wonder how the pros do it.
 
The truth is the pros break down the swing into smaller sub-segments, master them and then move onto the next segment. They retain a small “reminder” word or phrase to keep them focused on the first part while they work on the second. You would be wise to do the same.
 
With this technique in mind, we will focus on the three areas of the swing that will help you finally master your backstroke, your transition and your motion through the ball into the finish. By using three simple words (around, under, through) at the correct time or together, you will be able to control each segment of your swing and hit shots like you know you are capable of hitting consistently.

Free Tips for Golf Swing

Free Tip 1. Straight Talk

Even the best players sometimes forget the first step to hitting any successful golf shot. You have to know where your target is. To drive the point home, I’ll interrupt students after they’ve set up to the ball and ask them to point at their target without looking up.
You’d be surprised how many times the fingers point right or left. Try this drill yourself to make sure you’re keeping your mind connected to the target on each shot.

Getting your shots to fly on line is the next step to success. Once you’ve started hitting your shots on line, you need to be able to control how those shots curve. And when you can do that, it’s time to learn how to make trajectory work for you. One of the fundamental concerns for golfers trying to break 100 is getting the ball started on the right line. Often, the problem is a poor swing path. Before you worry about fixing golf shots that are curving too much, get your ball started on your intended line. That makes the next steps to lower scores simpler.

Tips 2. Iron Play

A lot of golfers try to reach or use their hands to hit the ball  with their irons. What they don’t realize is that you need to  maintain a natural, free shoulder tilt or angle throughout your swing.  This angle is created because one of your hands is lower than the  other when you grip the club. So if you move your hands to reach or  catch the ball, you’ll change that angle and mis-hit your shot.

Concentrate on making a balanced movement forward to the target  with your body. As you move forward with your swing, feel your body  turn and face the target while keeping your balance. It’s as easy  as walking forward, and the golf club will naturally stay out in front  of you. By not reaching, your shoulder tilt will remain at the same  angle throughout the entire swing.

Try this drill and then take a  look at your position when you finish. You’ll see that your balance  has improved, and you’ll begin hitting crisper and more accurate  shots to the green. Free tips for golf swing will take easy when you try !

Tips 3. Swing through the Ball

An all-too-common mistake made by golfers is To let up on the swing after impact. It is essential  to maintain a firm grip and swing through the ball With good extension toward the target.

Tips 4. Golf Swing Myths

One of the biggest myths about the best golf swing is that you must keep your head down during the swing. Actually, what’s more important is keeping your chin up as you swing. This is so your shoulders can pass freely under your chin, allowing your head to remain still and focused on the ball. Another myth is the so-called swing to right field. This is to help some golfers achieve a square-to-square swing path. Instead, you should concentrate on not bringing the golf club inside of your target line too fast. Think of your swing as a ferris wheel, not a merry-go-round. Finally, make sure you follow through with your right shoulder over your left foot to complete the swing.

How to find your balance in the golf swing

GUEST Column: Scotty McDougal, Golf Pro – Maintaining Balance

Swing High, Swing Low, Swing Wide, Swing Around.  Everyone’s swing is different.  Even the pro’s have VASTLY different swings.  Look at Jim Furyk.  What an awful swing to win a Major Tournament!  I’d take those results.  The one thing every golfer MUST have in common is BALANCE.  If you are not balanced (and I don’t mean mentally), you are losing so much in your distance and accuracy that it will make you cry.

OK, how do we get proper balance?  Well, we started off by saying everyone has a different swing.  And we all do.  However, we ALL have the same balance point.  Imagine if you could swing around a fixed point consistently. You’d hit the ball the same spot each time, and you will have mastered the most elusive part of this game: Consistency!!!!

Here it is:  You ready?  This is going to be the biggest revelation, since, well, since I realized that I wasn’t good enough to golf on the PGA circuit (I never got my card, whoa is me!!)

Your point of balance is….. The middle of your collarbones, 3″ down. BINGO!!!

Turn and swing around that center of balance.  If you had somebody videotape you, you would notice (if you got it right) that the center of balance never moves!!

Actually, the ideal training aid is to get a video camera with a laser pointer mounted on it.  The laser will point to the center of balance.  You will note on the perfectly balanced swing that the laser point NEVER MOVES.

Balance, using a soccer ball. Naturally    

If you lack power or can never achieve
balance when you finish your swing, try this drill.

Place a soccer or beach ball between your knees and simply squeeze it and keep it
there as you coil your upper body on the back swing. This will help to remind you of
the sensation  of keeping the distance between your knees constant all the way up to
the top of your  swing, and encourage strong leg action and a powerful coil.

Once you complete the back swing, initiate the downswing with your lower body by
moving  your forward knee toward the target. Your legs should take on a squat or
sit-down look,  and the ball should fall from your knees. As your arms drop, simply
push off of your right  foot and swing to the finish.

If you perform the drill correctly, you can’t help but finish in balance. Use this
drill  to help remind you to create a gap between the knees on the back swing and to
close the  gap on the downswing. That’s what the pros do.

Golf swing tempo tips

Balance and Tempo, Michael Lamanna

All great players have the ability to swing every club at a consistent tempo
and with great balance. Rhythm and balance are linked. Some players, like Tom
Watson, exhibit faster tempos. Some, like Ernie Els, exhibit a slower tempo. Yet
all remain balanced. The key to consistency is to maintain your balance and use
a smooth rhythm.

If you rush your swing you will loose your balance and the end result is
inconsistent contact and poor ball flight. Outstanding ball strikers are rarely
off balance at impact and their rhythm is the “glue” that bonds their positions
and movements. Often their swings seem effortless and they, as Julius Boros
described it, “swing easy and hit hard.” Great rhythm allows you to properly
sequence your body motion and arrive at impact in a position of leverage and
power.

Ten-time PGA TOUR driving accuracy champion Calvin Peete says the three keys to
straight driving are “Balance, Balance and Balance.”

If you want to be a more consistent ball striker, you must understand how the
body should be balanced in four key positions. Setup

Although your spine is tilted away from the target at address, you should have
your weight evenly balanced between your right and your left foot with your
middle and long irons. Also, you should feel your weight evenly balanced between
your heels and your toes, roughly on the balls of the feet.

Top of the Backswing As you pivot to the top of the back swing, your weight
moves into the inside of the back foot. You should feel approximately 75-percent
of your weight on the back foot and 25-percent on the front foot. The weight
must never move to the outside of the back foot.

Impact By the time you arrive at impact, approximately 70- to 75-percent of
your weight should be shifted onto the front foot. Your head must be behind the
ball and your hips must shift forward approximately 4 inches past their starting
position. This increases the spine tilt by at least double.

The Finish At the completion of the follow through, you should have the
majority of your weight – about 90-percent of it – on the outside of the front
foot.

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Developing good tempo not only leads to better balance, but it also sets off a chain
reaction of good things throughout your golf swing. Your goal should be to swing each
club in your bag at the same pace for all full shots.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s
your driver or a short iron. The goal is still the same: Tempo and balance. First,
work to develop a smooth, one-piece takeaway. Let your arms and shoulders start the
swing with a consistent and coordinated movement. Next, focus on achieving balance by
transferring your weight properly from your rear foot to your forward foot.

The great
Sam Snead developed a drill that can help you develop good tempo and balance. Swing
the club like you’re listening to a waltz — one, two, three, four. Work on your
balance at the same time by lifting your forward foot at the top of your backswing
and your rear foot at the finish. Practice this over and over, and you’ll find that
developing a good swing tempo is as easy as one, two, three — and four.

How I used video to improve my golf swing

Have a Video Camera??  TAPE YOURSELF!! You will be AMAZED at how  bad you look
swinging the clubs, and very impressed with yourself  that you can pick out the
flaws!!  WARNING:  WE are our own worst  critics.  You will find a lot that can
be improved.  Work on one  area at a time (i.e. follow through, backswing,
keeping head down,  etc.)

A GREAT trick I once tried was rather simplistic in nature.  As  mentioned, I
get a lot of practice on the course.  One day, I  brought my neighbors video
camera (you didn’t think I would take  mine, did you????)  I fastened with
bungee cords the video camera  to the front metal frame that holds the
windshield on my cart.  Whenever I came to my ball, I turned the camera on.
After my  (mis)hit, I turned the camera off.  I was kind enough to also do  that
for my partner.

I found out MORE during that 15 minutes (yes, the tape was ONLY 15  minutes.
Think about it) then I had learned in the previous five  years.  Try it, let me
know if it works for you.

Speaking of Videotapes, Below find a reader (anonymous) who  videotaped
himself, and saw a slight imperfection (oh, that  my  swing was only slightly
imperfect!!)

I videotaped my swing today and while it looks pretty good overall  there was a
MAJOR problem with my impact position.  It looks like  I’m in the same position
as I was when I addressed the ball: square  to my target, both arms in front.
(Unlike my address, however —  where the handle of the club is near my body —
at impact my arms  are extended and straight, at roughly the same angle as the
club.)

Do you have any tips, drills, or “thoughts” to help me get into the  *PROPER*
impact position?  (I’ve seen dozens of pictures of good  golfers and they all
look pretty similar at the moment they strike  the ball.  They are turned
slightly towards their target and the  right arm is tucked in.)

Well, “BOB”:  Sounds like you are TRYING to keep your arms in front by pushing
the right arm, instead of letting body turn pull the arms.  The  straight-line
extension of your left arm and club IS ABSOLUTELY NOT  A FAULT – it is a
consequence OF GOOD STRONG RELEASE – the pull of  the club head being so massive
that it pulls the left elbow  straight, the left wrist flatter than address, and
the shoulder  blades inward.

It also sounds like you are swinging with a pivot around the SPINE,  instead of
a pivot around THE LEFT LEG/HIP.  OUCH!!! you are  turning like a revolving door
instead of a side-hung door.

Stand on left leg alone and do 1,000,000 (or less, if you are not a  serious
golfer) swings of a Sand or Lob Wedge with your left arm  alone and videotape
THAT – and you will discover your impact  position in these no-ball swings to be
ABSOLUTELY AS GOOD as what  you see in pictures of pro swings.

Because it changes the pivot for rotation to where it belongs and  eliminates
muscling in some mis-perception that you should be  facing the ball at impact.
No, you do not face the ball: your hips  get there FIRST (your tummy), your
torso NEXT, and finally a bit  later, your arms, FOLLOWED BY an instantaneous
catch-up of the club head.

Inside out golf swing drill

This  drill works especially well if you have an inside out swing.

Here’s how to do it:

Square Your Club At Impact to Hit Straighter, More Consistent Golf Shots –

One way to guarantee that you hit straight shots is to make sure that the
clubface is square to your target at impact. Yes, we are full of common sense.
We also realize this is harder to do then say.  Soooo…. here is a drill to
help yourself out:  It’s an offshoot of Natural Golf, which I am NOT a proponent
of (for a full game.  It does come in handy in spots).

Here is how the drill works:

1. First, hold the club horizontally in front of your face with the right hand.

2. Add your left hand to the club

3. Turn your left arm and shoulder while folding your right elbow (be sure to
keep the right elbow in close to your body for a compact, powerful swing)

4. Return your arms to the starting position so that the right arm straightens

Now, the important part:

Bend your spine slightly so that the head of the club is now between the ground
and the horizontal position you were just in and repeat these 4 steps.

Now, tilt your spine again until you ground the head of the club behind a tee
marking where a ball will be in the next step. Repeat the 4 steps again.

Now, place a ball on the tee. As you follow the same arm-and-shoulder moving
step, keep the backswing abbreviated. Your hands should go no higher that your
hips.

As the ball leaves the clubface at impact and the arms straighten, it is very
important that you “freeze” your arms-extended position for a full five-second
count. You should perform the four stages of this drill at slow, and half and
three-quarter speeds.

This drill will teach you to become acutely aware of the clubface’s square
relationship to the target. Do 10 repetitions of this drill without
interruption. If possible, have a son, daughter, spouse, friend or a sucker
re-tee the ball for you between repetitions.

This will make the repetition automatic and learned.

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From our Readers:

I thought your newsletter was great, because I can really use
some tips. I have a question. No matter what I do, my drive
always goes to the right. I’ve turned, I’ve turned my club face,
but it still goes to the right. Do you have any tips that I can use?

Thanks,
Devin

There are a few reasons this could be happening. Most common,
is that you are taking an ‘inside to outside ‘ swing. OR you are
taking an outside to inside swing: You start correctly, but then
bring the clubface ‘in’ towards your body, not through.

The easiest way to correct this is to take your normal setup
(ball on the left heel, if you are right handed), and aim for
a spot that is 3 inches BEYOND the ball. You must swing,
essentially, through the ball, forcing you to make a correct swing.

Oftentimes, one’s hands ‘get ahead’ of the club. This will cause
the same effect. Make sure your backswing is slow, left are
straight. Do not try to ‘kill’ the ball, that will cause
everything to go out of whack. Swing with 75% speed. You’ll be
amazed at how much distance you can get by slowing the swing down,
and hitting correctly.

Golf backswing tips

Swing tips: Your Backswing Is A Clock

For many golfers, one of the most difficult things to do is to visualize
different aspects of your swing. One “technique” however, used for years to
teach golfers distances is a clock.

Golfers, imagine that your backswing is a clock, starting at 6 and going to 12.

Example:  Use your Pitching Wedge.  Start by hitting at noon. Then slowly work
your way down to 8 o’clock.   Keep track of the distance the ball travels.  You
now know what “time” to swing when you are 60 yards out, and have a protected
green!

It seems that by picturing the dial of a clock and associating distances with
various times, golfers tend to learn how to control their distances quicker.

How Hard Should I Swing?

Better players know that solid ball striking and low scores result when every
swing is made with the same amount of effort. A good standard is 85 to 90
percent of maximum speed. However, suppose you need to add an extra 10 yards to
your shot to carry a hazard? Do you swing harder at 100 percent? Absolutely not.

Swinging harder can easily throw off your rhythm and leave you in worse shape.
You’re better off thinking about ‘swinging longer’ when you need a few extra
yards. Make your usual backswing, but for that extra boost, focus on making your
upper body turn just a bit fuller. Then, stay relaxed on the downswing and let
your body unwind and swing the club as you normally would. The longer swing will
produce more centrifugal force with the same 85 to 90 percent effort you’ve
grooved. In most cases, this will be enough to give you the extra distance you
require.