Even golfers who understand the concept of swing plane still have trouble identifying whether or not their own plane is sound. Is it too flat? Too upright? Without a knowledgeable observer checking your swing, it’s tough to determine.

Here’s a good way to not only test your swing plane, but to gain a sense of what the proper positions feel like. All you need is a club, a wall and room to swing. (Note: If you’re afraid of damaging the wall, simply turn the club upside down and grip it beneath the head.)

  • With the wall behind you, take your stance as though addressing a ball.

  • Your backside should just touch the wall.

  • Begin your takeaway and stop when the club’s shaft is parallel to the ground. It should be parallel (or nearly parallel) to the wall as well. If the club points at the wall, your plane is too flat. If it points away from the wall, you’re too steep.

  • Continue swinging to the top. The club should touch the wall at a point about level with the top of your head, or slightly higher. Lower than this signals a flat plane; higher means you’re too upright.

Any time you struggle with hooks or slices, use this drill to check your swing plane. You may find that an overly flat angle is causing your hooks, or that an upright plane is producing those slices.