Top 4 Tips To Cure Early Swing Release
An early golf swing release or otherwise known as “casting the club” is a very common swing fault for recreational golfers. An early release is the result of poor sequencing of the downswing where the arms and hands start moving before the lower body and hips. On video you can see an early release when the shaft and right arm (left arm for left handed golfers) form a straight line just prior to impact.
The frustrating outcomes for those suffering from an early swing release include fat shots, thin shots, slicing and often when struck solidly the ball flight is high with no distance. An early release is undesirable for another reason, the loss of power. Think of all the power that’s built up in a golf swing. When we release the club early, all the momentum you worked so hard to build up has been lost.
The following tips will help you from releasing the club early and give you a better chance to hit the ball solidly with a more powerful ball flight.
A great drill to perform when struggling with an early release is to practice hitting half shots with only your lead arm. This will help you feel a solid left wrist (right wrist for left handed golfers) through impact. It may be difficult to make solid contact at first, but the main point to this exercise is to help you feel the correct position of the wrist through impact.
An early release in the golf swing is a result of our dominant arm and side taking over. Because of this, we need to train our left arm to be a little stronger and more dominant. With 6-10 golf balls and starting slowly, make half swings taking the club back as far as your hips. You will do this drill at 50% of normal speed to start and once you become more comfortable you can speed things up. If you can incorporate this as part of your practice sessions, you’ll feel much stronger through impact.
A Penny certainly isn’t worth much these days. But it can still serve a purpose in the following drill to help correct an early release in your golf swing. For this drill you will need a 7 iron and a handful of pennies. For the richer individuals you can use dimes.
What we’d like to achieve in the golf swing is the ability to hit down on the golf ball with our irons and making contact with the ball first and the ground second. Often with an early release the club strikes the ground first and the ball second or simply misses the ground all together. If you place a penny approximately 4 inches behind the ball and we make a swing with an early release, the penny will be struck and most likely disappear with the ball. This drill helps with sequencing in our swing. The only way to not make contact with the penny is to have our weight transfer to the left (right for left handed golfers) and striking the ball with a downward blow. The result will be a shot that hits the ball first and the ground second leaving the penny in place with the ball being compressed down the target line.
A credit card is worth a lot more than a penny but can also be used to help with an early release. This is another drill that can help you feel a firm wrist through impact and promote consistent ball striking.
Take an elastic and put it around your left wrist (right wrist for left handed golfers). Next you will take a credit card or a similar type card and slide it under the elastic. The elastic should be splitting the card in half. Once the card is in place you can proceed to hit golf shots. Ideally it’s recommended that we start hitting chip shots and pitch shots then progressing to full shots. What will happen is the left wrist remains firm and won’t breakdown as it would when the club is released early. Consistent use of this drill will help train proper sequencing of the downswing and less chance of an early release.
The 60/40 rule is very simple. This refers to weight distribution at set up. Most golfers who struggle with an early release, have at most a 50/50 weight distribution between their left and right feet. What’s important to understand is that when the golf club is released early, the individual’s weight gets trapped on their back foot. One way to help this problem is to pre-set weight at address with 60% on the left side and 40% on the right side (left handed is opposite). When you swing, try and keep the weight at 60/40 and this will help you from getting trapped and should promote a consistent ball strike.