Imagine this: a golfer’s on the range, they have their body all stretched out and warmed up, they have all the tools they need, but—at the end of the day—do they actually have what it takes to hit a golf ball correctly? From the basic setup, grip, posture, stance, and ball position alignment, this article will highlight one of the sport’s most complex concepts: the golf swing.
There are a couple of ways a player can grip a golf club. The most basic is the ten-finger grip, where both hands simply hold the club with all fingers touching. Next is the overlap grip, in which the dominant hand’s pinky finger goes in between the groove of the other hand’s pointer and middle finger.
If a golfer really wants to up his or her game, and/or follow the footsteps of someone like Tiger Woods or other professional golfers, the interlock grip is the way to go. It is used by some of the world best golfers—including the aforementioned Tiger Woods—as they have more control over the club, considering their dominant hand’s pinky finger interlaces with the other’s pointer finger.
These three are interconnected in such a way that when one goes awry, often, everything follows suit. With ball position, for instance, a player wants to have it slightly forward of center. He or she can use alignment sticks when practicing, as they want to correct their position and swing plane right from the get-go.
Once they have their ball position in check, the next thing to consider is their stance. A player wants to have his or her stance shoulder width apart. Too wide makes it difficult for them to move their legs properly, too narrow makes it unsteady.
Now as for posture, a player wants to feel like they are simply sitting back to a chair, like moving back almost into their heels. They do not want to be too far on their toes, or too back on their heels where their toes are going up. It is all about proper, comfortable balance.
First and foremost, it is important to get this out of the way: the golf swing is extremely complicated. It is difficult, especially for beginners, as there is so much information out there that everything tends to be overwhelming. The key in all of this, however, is to just have fun.
It is imperative to enjoy the learning process and be patient. A player must feel that his or her body is strongly connected, but relaxed, in such manner that the overall anatomy’s mechanics make sense. With the arms for example, he or she wants to know and understand certain points where it needs to be bent and straight.
As for the swing itself, a golfer would want to have the fastest part of their swing from the ball (in the middle) to the top (at front), not during the wind up. The idea is to hear the “whoosh” at the end of it.
The idea of moving the arms involves knowing where to bend and straighten. This same concept applies to the legs.
A golfers limbs—like his or her arms—should be sturdy not stiff. They want it to have some purposeful movement and not sway too much just for the sake of it. The idea is to set in the back leg and turn into the back hip, pushing everything to the front hip.
It should somewhat feel like getting ready to jump and turn from right to left (or left to right, depending on the dominant hand). He or she wants to explode into it, project a real athletic movement.
This is another one of those vital facets of a golf swing. A player can simply put a tee in the ground and hit it as many times as he or she gets comfortable. The plan is to work on brushing the grass.
Finding that sweet spot of not hitting the golf ball fat or thin is the key to taking a divot. In other words, a golfer wants to hit that perfect ratio of grass and ball that a chunk of green flies out after a swing. It will be hard at first, but the body will figure it out eventually with the right amount of patience and practice.
Basically, getting the golf swing right takes time and repetition, knowledge and patience. It is always important to just go out there and have fun with it. A golfer should not dwell on mistakes too much, but rather learn from them and adjust until they are comfortable enough to swing and hit a golf ball.