Hopefully over the past few articles we have been able to focus attention on a few fundamentals in order to be able to achieve an athletic golf swing. We could spend weeks describing the minutia of the swing, which I consider very counter-productive so I will endeavor to condense the clarification and keep it simple.
First I would like to start by explaining my philosophy of the golf swing. The golf swing is the same athletic move as any other sport you have played where you were trying to advance a projectile towards a target. Tossing a ball underhanded, a tennis forehand stroke, skipping a rock on a pond are all rhythmic athletic moves that are similar in function to the golf swing. Therefore it ‘s helpful to keep in mind that by definition a swing is a constant motion back and forth with equal rhythm. It’s not a golf hit or chop at the ball it’s a golf swing through the ball.
It is imperative that you maintain a comprehensive sense of balance during the golf swing. To understand balance, you need to understand that the balance point of your body is your sternum, or the center of your chest. All of your body weight radiates from and around this point, hence I label it “the balance point of your body”.
As you swing the golf club your balance point moves over your back leg as you coil your trunk into the back swing and then finishes over your target leg as you uncoil to the finish of the swing. This is how you create weight transfer in any athletic activity. The balanced finish position is the key to consistency, if you can maintain balance when you are finished with a swing, then you have completed the best athletic golf swing possible. I refer to this end balance point as “swing to balance”.
I like to remind my students that balance in life is the key for a happy and productive life and balance in the golf swing is the key to a consistent, successful round of golf. Every athletic movement of which I am aware, and I certainly include golf, requires the body to be in balance to perform at the highest, most consistent level.
Drill for improvement:
The “cross your heart drill” is the best for getting a sense of how your sternum moves during the swing. Take a long iron from your bag and lay it across your chest and shoulders crossing your sternum. Spread you legs shoulder width apart and bend slightly at the hips to feel balance as if you were preparing to swing the club.
Now turn your torso so that the club is over your back leg, the weight should now be over your back foot. Then as you uncoil the body all the way, the club will then be over your target foot with your hips chest and eyes facing your target. Your weight should be in your target foot. This rotational movement is similar to how the body works during the actual swing. Try this drill a few hundred times and I guarantee that you’ll create better balance in your swing.