The scene is repeated over and over, day after day, on golf courses worldwide: Golfer A tops his shot off the tee or from the fairway. Golfer B chirps, “You looked up!”
It’s just another way of saying that Golfer A took his eyes off the ball – like a baseball hitter who swings and misses, or a football receiver who drops an easy pass.
Of course, Golfer B doesn’t always know what he’s talking about. For some players, “You looked up” is the ready-made answer for just about any lousy shot.
But there are times when “looking up” does indeed cause a poor result. When a golfer turns his head toward the target before making contact with the ball, the left shoulder rises and pulls the arms and club up with it. The usual result is a topped or thin shot, where the bottom of the clubhead strikes the ball. Occasionally, the opposite will occur, with the golfer hitting the ground behind the ball (a fat shot).
Yes, the eyes should remain on the ball until the club has sent it on its way. And the head should stay relatively stable throughout the swing. If you have a habit of looking up early, watch this video to learn the proper role of your head in the golf swing: