There are many different check points golfers can use throughout the swing to ensure they achieve the best technique. One such check point is where the club is pointing at the top of the swing.
Many great players have strange, unique and sometimes downright weird club positions at the top of the back swing. These unique positions, such as the huge over swing deployed by John Daley, work fantastically well for those players but may not have the same benefit for the average golfer.
In general, players want to see the club shaft parallel to the ground at the top of the back swing with the club head pointed towards the target. This position has been shown with countless players to be the best starting point for the down swing although getting to this point can be difficult. Use the following steps to help achieve a great top of the back swing position.
1. After taking a solid set up with the club face and body aligned correctly to the target, begin to swing back keeping the club head long and low to the ground.
2. At halfway back, the left arm and club shaft should be parallel to the ground and point straight back along the body aim line (the toe line). Try to ensure the toe of the club is pointing toward the sky.
3. From the halfway back position, begin to hinge the wrists upwards until the arms have traveled past parallel with the ground and the club shaft begins to point towards the sky.
4. The shoulders, arms, hands and club should all be rotating away and upwards until the extended left arm points towards the sky (for a right handed golfer).
5. When the left arm hits this position, the shoulders should be fully turned underneath the chin with the middle of the back facing the target.
6. The club, after being lifted by the arms, hinged with the wrists and turned with the shoulders, should be parallel to the ground and pointing towards the target.
If you can get to this position with the club pointing down towards the target, the down swing becomes much easier to accomplish. However, players need to be careful of not hitting the following two positions.
Across the line
Across the line is a term used to describe the club’s position at the top of the swing when it points not at the target but off to the right. This position often causes a player to swing from out to in during the down swing, cutting across the ball to produce a left to right ball flight (for a right handed golfer).
Laid off is a term used to describe the club’s position at the top of the swing when it points to the left of the target. If golfers become too laid off, the down swing tends to swing through the ball from in to out. From this position, the club face needs to rotate very quickly though impact to get a ball on target.