Everyone’s swing gets out of sync at some point. Players with low golf handicaps tend to recover rather quickly from being out of sync, so it doesn’t cost them a lot of strokes. Buy players with high golf handicaps don’t recover so quickly, so it often costs them dearly in strokes. Regardless of how you play, being out of sync results in blocked shots, severe slices, duck hooks, and other assorted mis-hits.
An out of sync swing also short-circuits power, costing you distance off the tee and in the fairway. When you’re out of sync, it’s usually because your arms don’t match up with your body. Either your arms are wayout in front of your body. Or, they trail the body too much. Both ways spell disaster. Below are three drills along and some golf tips to help you quickly get back in sync when things go haywire.
Load Up For Power
Golfers use their backswings to load up power. But when your arms and body are out of sequence, you don’t store much power. The correct backswing sequence is: swing your arms, turn your body, shift your weight. Swinging your arms pulls your body into action, forcing you to shift your weight to your back foot. A good image to keep in mind when making your backswing is to picture your body coiling and creating leverage against the ground.
Below is a drill frequently used in golf lessons to ingrain the feel of a good backswing sequence: Start with the club extended well ahead of the ball. Then swing back over the ball and make your backswing. Do this drill a few times to regain your rhythm. Then, step up to a ball and swing normally. This drill teaches you to widen your swing arc going back while building momentum with your body and shifting your weight to the back foot in proper sequence.
Shift Your Weight Forward
Having loaded up with power, you now have to transfer that power into the ball. If your swing is out of sync, you’ll have problems transferring that stored power. When you’re in sync, your lower body moves toward the target first, dropping you arms down and to the inside, which keys the transfer of stored power to the ball.
Here’s a drill used in golf instruction sessions to ingrain the correct sequence: Take an address position without a club. Hold your palms together out in front of you. Now swing your back hand all the way to the top. Come back and slap your left hand. If you do this drill correctly, you’ll feel your weight shift to your back foot when you swing your right hand back. The elbow will bend 90 degrees at the top. From there, it’s a direct route to your left hand. Take this route in your swing.
Unload The Power
As you move forward in the swing, your arms come down in front of your body and your back elbow drops to a position just off your back hip. Now you need to turn your left hip out of the way making room for the club. This inward rotation exerts an outward force on the club that thrusts it out to the ball. The body provides the power while the hands swing the clubhead into the ball accurately.
Use the following drill to ingrain the proper downswing sequence. In golf lessons we use an exercise band, but you can also imagine this drill. Loop a long exercise band under your front foot. As you swing back, the band stretches, storing energy. When your front leg shifts forward toward the target, the band pulls your hands down automatically. Ingrain the feeling of this sequence.
Everyone’s swing gets out of sync now and then. Players with low golf handicaps tend to recover more quickly than players with high golf handicaps, costing them fewer strokes. If your swing gets out of sync, do the drills described above while keeping the golf tips we’ve provided in mind. These drills will remind you what the feel of a good golf swing is and you’ll get your swing back in sync in no time.