Golf Swing Basics
There are tons of books on how to execute a perfect swing, and thousands of videos on how to improve your current swing, as well as plethora of articles describing what to do or what not to do, when, why and how to do it.
We believe that too much information just creates a loss of focus on the few important things and – even worse – make the swing movement look like something mechanic and un-natural.
That is why we’ve condensed the swing improvement technique in 5 key steps. If you just keep these suggestions in mind, we ensure you that your swing will improve. You may not become Tiger Woods, but your swing will certainly gain in consistency and solidity. Additionally, we have picked what we consider the top three books on the swing to complement these key steps.
5 Key Steps to Improving your Swing
1. Check your grip
This has been said a thousand times, but it remains paramount for the whole swing motion. You should hold the club grip firmly but gently. Remember the “famous” metaphor: think of holding the club as if it were a bird, you don’t want it to fly away, but you don’t want to squeeze it either.
2. Be Fluid
The swing movement is a circular rotation in a smooth, rhythmic way, with the highest speed to be achieved when hitting the ball. There is nothing worse than decomposing the swing in a series of movements – like some teachers do. It does not harm to know the theory behind the swing, i.e. the key stages of the golf swing, as long as you forget about it as soon as you are on the golf course. Once you are on the golf course or at the driving range, the only thing you should remember is that the swing is a symmetric movement around the spine angle in a continuous fluid motion.
Before swinging, relax your arm and your shoulders….. IF you feel tense, just wait for a second and do some swing practice drills to get some fluidity in your swing movement.
In his book On Golf: Lessons from America’s Master Teacher Jim Flick puts the whole attitude of golfing in the right context. Finding the perfect swing is not based on fundemantals you most often read and hear about, but rather finding the one swing you are most comfortable with.
3. Don’t move your head !
Once you get the right grip and a fluid motion, you’ve done half of the job. The other half is about hitting the ball right and – to ensure this – THE key tip is to keep your head looking at the ball position on the ground even after impact. Looking at beginners golf, this is easily the Most Common mistake they commit.
Remember: do NOT move your head till the ball is on air!
4. Remember the swing plane
The swing in movement is, like mentioned before, a symmetric rotation of the body around the spine angle.
The most difficult part for many golfers is to understand and visualize what is meant by the “swing plane”. Watch the video below: it will give you a clear, visual explanation of what the golf plane is.
Also, you have to get the right plane. If too steep (too vertical), you will hit the ground before the ball or – if you hit the ball properly – you will loose distance as you gain “altitude”. If you hit it too horizontal, the risk is that you produce a hook shot. However, the majority of beginner golfers have a swing too vertical, hence, you’ll probably need to learn how to go more “horizontal”.
5. Target the bottom
The last, very common mistake, is that people target the ball while you have to target the bottom of the ball. Remember: the lower you target, the higher the ball will fly and the more consistent will be the shot.
The basic, fundamental book on how to improve your swing is this one: “Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf” by Ben Hogan.
For those of you who want to improve their swing without perfect-picture form, see: The negotiable swing.
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