Leading with your hips in the downswing is a crucial concept for generating power, accuracy, and consistency in your golf swing. Here's why and how to do it effectively:Why and How: Starting Golf Down Swing: Lead With the Hips

Why Lead with Your Hips:

  • Power generation: Initiating the downswing with your hips creates a coil-and-release effect, maximizing power transfer from your body to the clubhead.
  • Improved timing: Starting with your hips helps sequence your swing correctly, ensuring the rest of your body moves in the right order and maximizes clubhead speed.
  • Better swing plane: Leading with your hips promotes a shallowing of the swing plane, leading to cleaner contact and more consistent ball strikes.
  • Increased stability: Initiating the downswing with your hips provides better balance and stability, leading to more controlled swings and fewer mishits.

How to Lead with Your Hips:

1. Feel the Hip Turn:

  • Imagine your hips “firing” backwards towards the target at the start of the downswing.
  • Focus on rotating your hips, not just shifting your weight laterally.
  • Maintain your spine angle during the hip turn to avoid swaying or casting.

2. Connect Hips to Upper Body:

  • As your hips rotate, let your upper body naturally follow, maintaining a connected feel throughout the swing.
  • Avoid initiating the downswing with your arms or shoulders, as this can lead to loss of control and inconsistency.

3. Maintain Sequencing:

  • Remember, hips first, then torso, then arms, and lastly the clubhead.
  • This sequence ensures maximum power transfer and helps you hit the ball solid with good timing.

4. Practice Drills:

  • Empty backswing: Practice turning your hips back without completing the full swing to isolate the feeling.
  • Medicine ball throws: Practice rotating your hips and throwing a medicine ball to develop power and sequencing.
  • Mirror drills: Check your hip rotation and swing sequence in a mirror for visual feedback.

Additional Tips:

  • Feel the ground: Push off the ground with your feet to initiate the hip turn and power transfer.
  • Don't over-rotate: Your hips should turn comfortably, not excessively, to avoid losing balance.
  • Find your comfort zone: Experiment with different hip turn feels and timings to discover what works best for you.
  • Seek professional guidance: A qualified golf instructor can provide personalized feedback and drills to help you master leading with your hips.

By understanding the benefits of leading with your hips and incorporating these tips and drills into your practice, you can develop a smoother, more powerful, and more consistent downswing that will take your golf game to the next level. Remember, mastering this key move takes time and dedication, so be patient, practice consistently, and enjoy the process!


Here's a Q&A on starting the golf downswing and leading with the hips:

Q: Why is it important to lead with the hips in the golf downswing? A: Leading with the hips helps generate power and promotes a proper sequence of movements, resulting in a more efficient and controlled downswing. It allows for the transfer of weight from the back foot to the front foot, contributing to increased clubhead speed.

Q: Should I initiate the downswing with my upper body or hips? A: It's recommended to initiate the downswing with the hips. This helps create a chain reaction where the lower body leads the way, followed by the torso, shoulders, arms, and finally the club. This sequence maximizes power and maintains swing control.

Q: How can I practice leading with the hips in the downswing? A: Practice hip rotation drills, focusing on initiating the downswing with a hip turn. You can use slow-motion swings to feel the proper sequence or try specific hip rotation exercises to build muscle memory. Video analysis can also provide valuable feedback.

Q: Is there a specific weight shift during the downswing? A: Yes, there should be a noticeable weight shift from the back foot to the front foot during the downswing. This shift facilitates the rotation of the hips and helps transfer energy through the swing.

Q: Should I be conscious of my front knee movement during the downswing? A: Yes, allowing the front knee to flex slightly during the downswing can aid in weight transfer and power generation. However, it's essential to maintain stability and avoid excessive movement that may affect your balance.

Q: How can I ensure proper hip clearing in the downswing? A: Focus on clearing your hips out of the way before impact. Practice drills that emphasize hip rotation and work on maintaining a stable spine angle. This helps create space for the clubhead and promotes a more effective release.

Q: Can leading with the hips improve my ball-striking consistency? A: Yes, leading with the hips contributes to a more consistent and repeatable swing. It helps maintain a proper swing plane, prevents casting, and encourages a solid strike on the ball.

Q: Are there any common mistakes to avoid when trying to lead with the hips? A: Avoid excessive lateral movement, dipping, or lifting during the downswing. These can lead to inconsistencies in your swing. Focus on rotational movement and maintaining a balanced posture.

Remember, while leading with the hips is a fundamental aspect of the downswing, it's crucial to consider overall swing mechanics and seek guidance from a golf professional for personalized advice.

In golf, the downswing is a crucial part of the swing sequence, and proper hip movement is essential for generating power and maintaining control. Leading with the hips means initiating the downswing by rotating the hips toward the target before the upper body and club follow. Here are some key points to keep in mind when leading with the hips in the golf downswing:

  1. Weight Transfer: Shift your weight from your back foot to your front foot as you start the downswing. This helps create a natural sequence of movements and allows you to transfer your energy efficiently.
  2. Hip Rotation: Begin the downswing by rotating your hips toward the target. This rotation generates torque and allows you to unleash the stored energy as you move through the downswing.
  3. Sequence of Movements: Ensure a proper sequence of movements. The hips should start the downswing, followed by the torso and shoulders, and finally, the arms and club. This sequential movement helps maximize clubhead speed and control.
  4. Maintain Posture: Keep a stable spine angle and maintain your posture as you rotate your hips. Avoid dipping or lifting, as this can lead to inconsistencies in your swing.
  5. Front Leg Movement: Allow your front knee to flex slightly as you rotate your hips. This helps accommodate the weight transfer and allows you to generate more power.
  6. Hip Clearing: Aim to clear your hips out of the way before impact. This clears a path for the clubhead, prevents blocking shots, and encourages a proper release of the club.
  7. Practice Drills: Work on drills that specifically focus on hip rotation and downswing sequencing. This could involve slow-motion swings, focusing on feeling the hips leading the way.
  8. Balance and Stability: Ensure good balance and stability throughout the swing. The proper movement of the hips contributes to a balanced and controlled downswing.

Remember, while it's important to lead with the hips, it's also crucial to maintain overall synchronization and fluidity in your swing. It may be helpful to seek guidance from a golf professional or use video analysis to fine-tune your downswing mechanics. Regular practice and reinforcement of these principles can lead to a more consistent and powerful golf swing.