Shape Up Your Swing
Look for this symmetry, back and through
You may have heard of the expression 'connection' used in the context of the golf swing. It refers to the working together of the body with the hands and arms (as opposed to these components working independently).
The basic positioning exercise that you see over these pages will remind you of the symmetry that exists in a sound swing- the 'connection', if you like, between the arms and the body that underpins your consistency.
From the set-up, make as if you are holding a football in the palms of your hands, and simply turn your arms and body together to create what would be the first move away in the backswing. Turn your body until your arms and hands are parallel with your target-line (far left); then, as you unwind, rotate your body into the through-swing to finish with your arms and hands again parallel with that line.
Maintaining this neutrality with the hands is a sure sign that your arms and body are working correctly, in a logical progression. Any tendency to reverse-pivot and close the clubface going back will show up like this (inset far left), while failing to unwind and release the hands correctly may well result in this type of fault on the way through (inset left). Analyse the motion and you see that these faults defy logic - tilting or rocking the shoulders, the hands and arms are clearly at odds with the body.
Those of you who work out at a gym can take this a stage further and train with a good swing.
'Crossover' is your key to speed
One of the characteristics that we can identify with the better player is this crossover of the hands and forearms immediately though impact. The result is a mirror-image of the backswing as the wrists re-cock and the club works up on plane on its way to the finish. Rehearsing the exercise clearly gets your arms and body on the right track. With a club in your hands, there are two key checkpoints to look out for.
First, looking at your swing from this angle, the shaft should be seen to bisect the left shoulder as the club swings up into the follow-through. That tells you the swing is on plane. Second (and this is best observed from face on), you can clearly see your left hand under the right - a rare sight for most amateur players. This confirms that you have released the club, the crossover of the wrists and fore-arms maximising your acceleration through the ball.