If your head isn't moving at all while you are swinging the club, you are likely making a very limited swing that will offer minimal power at impact. If you watch videos of some of the best golfers in the world making their swings, you will see that their heads move a moderate amount from address on through to the finish. They don't move all over the place, of course, but there is some movement to be seen. Take this as a lesson for your own game. Knowing that the best players in the world do allow their heads to move slightly during the swing, you will be free to allow yours to do the same in the pursuit of better ball striking.

Head Lesson Chart

The amount of head movement that is going to be ideal for your swing will depend on the style of swing you use and the type of player you want to be. If you are hoping to make controlled swings to become a precision player, the head movement you use should be kept to a minimum. On the other hand, players who are interested in launching the ball as far down the fairway as possible are going to need to accept a little more head movement as part of the overall swinging action. There is no right or wrong answer on this point, either – you are free to play the game however you wish, just make sure that you are creating a swing with fundamentals that match your intended style.

If you watch a professional golfer hit a shot, and you watch his or her head during the swing, it might not seem like the head itself is doing much at all. It just sort of stays in place, maybe moving just slightly up and down, or from side to side. So, that looks easy enough, right? Not so fast. Keeping your head relatively still during the swing actually takes quite a bit of talent and technical practice. Pro golfers work for a lifetime to refine their technique, and you will need to put in some hard work of your own before this outcome is the result.

In this article, we are going to provide some advice on how your head should behave during the swing. The devil is in the details on this topic, as even small mistakes can lead to big ball striking issues. Only the players who are willing to pay attention to the small points and consistently work on their technique on the range will come away with an improved swing in the long run.

All of the content below is based on a right-handed golfer. If you happen to play left-handed, please take a moment to reverse the directions as necessary.

— What Should Your Head Be Doing?

In golf, it’s always helpful to have an objective when you start working on your swing. What is it that you are trying to accomplish as you practice your technique? When you turn your attention on the range to working on your head position and movement, what is the goal? In this section, we’ll clarify what you should be trying to do. Once you have a clear picture of your objective, you’ll be far more likely to succeed in the end.

Head Golf Lesson Chart

  • Relatively stable. It’s common for golfers to tell other players that they need to ‘keep their head down’ or ‘keep their head still’ during the swing. While those giving the advice probably mean well, the way those tips are worded can lead players into trouble. Here’s the thing – the golf swing is a dynamic action, and it’s nearly impossible to keep your head perfectly still from start to finish. If you did, you would have to greatly restrict the flow of your swing, and you would probably have very little power left to strike the ball. Sure, you can keep your head perfectly still during a putting stroke – more on that later – but it doesn’t really work when hitting a driver. So, instead of trying to keep your head completely still, a better goal is to aim for a relatively stable head position. There is going to be a little bit of movement, and that’s okay. As long as you aren’t drifting significantly from side to side, or moving dramatically up and down, you’ll be fine as it relates to this point. It’s only when there are dramatic, obvious head movements during the swing that problems will tend to pop up.
  • Eyes on the ball. This is another common piece of golf advice, yet in this case, we don’t really have anything to add or change about the tip. It is important to watch the ball all the way through impact, for a variety of reasons. For one thing, it’s easier to hit something you can see, so keeping your eyes on the ball until it has been sent into the distance will lead to a better strike most of the time. Also, if you move your eyes away from the ball – to look up toward the target, for instance – your head is going to move along with your eyes. That will pull your upper body out of the shot, and the mechanics of your swing will be harmed in the process. By keeping your eyes on the ball time after time, it will be easier to keep your head stable and you’ll be more likely to achieve a solid strike. Clean ball striking is one of the biggest keys in this game, and something as simple as watching the ball all the way through impact can go a long way toward making you a better ball striker.
  • Chin up. The first two points we have included in this list are probably pieces of advice that you have heard before. Even if you have never taken a golf lesson, you’ve probably heard somewhere that you should keep your head still and your eyes on the ball. This point, however, is one that tends to slip through the cracks, despite the fact that it is just as important as the first two. When you set up over the ball at address, you should keep your chin up away from your chest to make sure you have plenty of room to turn your shoulders freely in the swing. If your chin is down, your left shoulder will run into your chin shortly after the backswing begins. As a result, you’ll either need to lift your head or stop your shoulder turn – and neither of those are good outcomes. Settle into your stance and make sure your chin is up away from your chest, which will place your back in a relatively flat position. Then, make sure your chin stays up during the swing. That will allow you to hold a good posture as the swing develops, and you should have no trouble making a full and free shoulder turn back and through.

Understanding what your head should be doing during the swing is pretty simple. It shouldn’t be doing a lot, in the end, and your eyes should be focused on the ball all the way through impact. As long as you hit those two points, and you keep your chin up for good measure, you’ll be well on your way to solid ball striking. In fact, checking off these points related to how your head works in the swing will actually go a long way toward helping you improve your overall technique and level of play.

— Causes of Common Mistakes

There are some mistakes related to head position that are seen over and over again in the amateur game. While no two golfers are exactly alike, it is helpful to look at common mistakes because one of these issues may be popping up in your game from time to time. Even if you aren’t making any of these errors currently, knowing what to watch for can help dramatically when your swing starts to give you trouble. The points below touch on some of the key errors that amateur golfers make in this part of their swing technique. Specifically, we are looking at why these issues happen, so hopefully you can understand what is at the heart of each individual mistake.

Engine of the Club: Shaft or Head? Golf Information
Let Your Head Move on the Backswing
Get Longer Drives Club Head Should be Going Upward at Impact
How Best to Keep the Putter Head Low to Roll Pure Putts
Head Face Check at the Top
Get Longer Drives with Rising Club Head
What is the Correct Head Movement for a Full Golf Swing Tips
Golf Drill Tip: Irons flying too low – Not enough club head speed
Golf Head Position Physical Mistakes
How to Check the Club Head for Signs of Swing Issues Golf Tips
Stop Moving Head Back for Better Bunker Shots
How to Create A Smooth Head Over Heel Rolling Putt Senior Golf Tip
Chipping Golf Tip – Hands Lead Club Head
Stop Moving Head Back for Better Bunker Shots
How to Create A Smooth Head Over Heel Rolling Putt
Chipping Golf Tip – Hands Lead Club Head
Golf Tip Fix: Keep Your Head Still? Don't Be So Sure
Correct Head Movement for Full Golf Swing
Golf Tip: How do I Keep my Head Down
Golf Tip: Lay Your Head On a Pillow
Increase Your Feel and Distance Control with a Insert Putter Head
Is It Ok Letting The Head Move Beyond The Golf Ball At Impact Golf Tip
Golf Tip: Lay Your Head On a Pillow
Increase Your Feel and Distance Control with a Insert Putter Head

Why The Head May Move During The Golf Swing
Golf Putting Tip: It’s Your Head, not Your Hands
Hit Up With A Rising Club Head For Long Golf Drives
Hit Up With a Rising Club Head for Long Drives
Improve Your Accuracy – Club Head Follows Handle Lesson
Feeling The Golf Club Head In The Short Game
Hit with a rising club head for longer drives
Why Address the Ball With Driver Head Off the Ground
How to Control Your Head
Longer Drives with Club Head Upswing Strike, Golf
What Is Considered Good Head Movement In The Golf Swing
Myth Two Keep Your Head Down In The Golf Swing
Keep your Head Still?
How To Aim The Head Of A Thomas Golf Senior Hybrid Club
What Should Your Head Be Doing In The Golf Backswing
How and Why: Get Your Putts to Roll Head Over Heels
Keep Your Fairway Wood Head at Low Point Before Impact
What Should Your Head Do During The Golf Downswing
Senior Golfers Hit Straighter and Longer Let your Follow Through Bring Your Head Up
What Should Your Head Do During The Swing
Increase Club Head Speed With the Golf Driver
Top Look at Head Movement
How to Create more golf club head lag with this simple drill
Why a Heavy Putter Head Could Help Your Putting Stroke
Senior Golfers Hit Straighter and Longer Let your Follow Through Bring Your Head Up
What Should Your Head Do During The Swing
Increase Club Head Speed With the Golf Driver
Top Look at Head Movement
Why a Heavy Putter Head Could Help Your Putting Stroke Senior Putter Tip
Keeping Your Head Down In Your Golf Swing Is A Mistake
Allow Your Head To Move On The Golf Backswing
Potential Problems With Keeping Your Head Still During The Golf Swing
Annika Sorenstam Golf Swing, Early Head Movement
Club Head and Face Overhead Top View
Should Your Head Move Beyond The Golf Ball At Impact
Why The Head May Move During The Golf Swing
Correct Head Position For Golf Putting
Benefits Of Swinging The Handle And Not The Golf Club Head
Should Your Head Move During the Golf Swing
Why the Putter Head Sweet Spot is so Important
Correctly Aiming Your Senior Hybrid Golf Club Head
What Is Golf Club Head Feel And Why Is It Important?
Breathing Deeply And Focusing On The Golf Club Head
Head Movement During The Golf Short Game
Why your follow through should bring your head up
Fast Down Swing Hip Turn To Generate More Club Head Speed Golf Swing Tip
What are the Benefits Head Over Heel Rolling Putts Ladies Putting Tip
Building The Golf Set-Up And Posture For Less Head Movement
Head Movement In The Golf Short Game
Jack Nicklaus Head Tilted At Address And Held During The Golf Swing
The Advantages Of Minimal Head Movement During The Golf Swing
Hands Need To Feel The Club Head
Focus On Your Fundamentals To Keep Your Head Stable In The Golf Swing
What are the Benefits of Having a Insert in the Face of the Putter Head
Should Your Head Move During the Golf Swing
Why the Putter Head Sweet Spot is so Important

How To Get More Club Head Speed? Grip The Club Lightly
Why Grip The Club Lighter For Golf Club Head Speed

Head Cover Drill
Use Your Head To Keep Your Ball Marker Handy
Right Hand Golf Tip: How and Why, Lay your Head on a Pillow Golf Swing
Right Hand Golf Tip: What is the Proper Head Movement During a Full Golf Swing
Improve Your Takeaway with this Low Club Head Drill
Improve Your Takeaway with this Low Club Head Drill
How to Create more golf club head lag with this simple drill
Shorter Golf Swing Drill 7 Close your front eye for head stability
Swing Golf Plane Drill 3 Maintain spine angle Javlin through head
Control The Golf Club Head With Hinge Drill

How to Keep Your Head Still in Golf, Should Head Move During Back Swing
Lifting Your Head When Playing Golf Shots
What Do People Mean When They Talk About Club Head Feel In The Golf Swing?
How Can I Increase My Club Head Speed With My Golf Driver
How Should My Head Move During My Golf Swing
How Can I keep My Head Down?
Golf Head Position, At Impact In Relation To The Golf Ball With Different Clubs
Should I Lift My Head During The Follow Through Of My Golf Shots
Golf Head Position, At Impact In Relation To The Golf Ball With Different Clubs
Should I Lift My Head During The Follow Through Of My Golf Shots
Should I Try To Feel Where The Club Head Is During My Golf Swing

Golf Stretches, 2 Seated Club Over Head Shoulder Stretch
Golf Stretches, 2 Seated Club Over Head Shoulder Stretch

Head Golf Lesson Chart

  • Looking up early out of anxiousness. Most of the time, looking up early in the golf swing is a result of nothing more than being anxious about the result of the shot. This makes sense on a psychological level – if you are worried about where the ball is going to go, you may be tempted to look up early to see if it is going where you had hoped. Deep down, what we are talking about here is a lack of confidence. If you don’t believe in your swing, or don’t believe in your ability to hit the shot at hand, you are more likely to look up early and come out of the shot. This explains why many of your worst shots likely come when you are facing a tough shot on the course. For instance, would you be more worried about a 150-yard approach shot that only had to fly over the grass, or the same shot that was going to be hit over water? Without a doubt, it is the one over water that would grab your attention. When playing over nothing but grass, it would be much easier to keep your head down and trust your swing. With the water in your peripheral vision, however, you may want to look up early to make sure nothing has gone wrong. To get out of this nasty habit, you simply need to build up your confidence to the highest possible degree. By working consistently on the range to improve the quality of your swing technique, you will find that you gradually believe more and more in your ball striking ability. As that belief grows, you’ll be less likely to worry about where the ball is going and keeping your head down will become a simple task.
  • Lifting your head while swinging too hard. Usually, you think about lifting your head out of the swing as a mistake that is made in the downswing. And, often, that is the case. But did you know it’s just as possible to lift your head when at the top of the backswing? This will happen usually when the player is trying to swing too hard. If you are trying to give a particular shot absolutely everything you have, you might lift up at the top, trying to extend that backswing even further and really launch the ball into the distance. There are a couple of problems with this approach to the golf swing. For one thing, swinging so hard is rarely going to add much in the way of power to your shots. You’ll feel like you are swinging extra hard, but in reality, you may not produce much more speed than normal through the hitting area. Also, even if you do create more speed with this aggressive swing, it’s going to be tough to make solid contact – and hitting the ball hard off the toe is not as good as hitting it a little softer off the sweet spot. Since your head is likely to move around more than normal when you swing extra hard, don’t even bother with this type of shot. Just stick with your normal level of effort and focus on keeping your head still and making great contact. As long as you can find the sweet spot, you’ll more than likely be pleased with the outcome of the shot.
  • Lazy posture. We mentioned earlier that you need to keep your chin up and away from your chest if you want to make a clean, full turn in the backswing and into the downswing. One reason golfers wind up with their chin down too close to their chest is plain old laziness. If you don’t put any effort into your address position, you are going to wind up with your shoulders hunched over the ball and your chin down into your chest. While it might seem like you are just walking up to stand next to the ball before your shot, building your stance is one of the most important things you do as a golfer. If you make the effort to build a solid, athletic stance with your back straight and backside pushed out behind you, it will be far easier to make a good swing in the end. And, when you do this, it’s likely that your chin will be up naturally.

It’s easy to fall into bad habits in the game of golf. Sometimes, these habits will be with you right from the start of your experience as a golfer. Other times, they will pop up as the years go by, seemingly out of nowhere. Whatever the case, it’s always good to work on improving your habits as soon as possible so you can take your level of play closer to your true potential.

— Two Simple Drills

Drills are one of the best ways to improve your golf game, and we have two suggestions for drills you can do to work on your head position. Each of these drills is rather simple, and you can do both of them at the driving range during a normal practice session. As with any drill, you should think about how these two apply to your game and decide if they are going to be beneficial for you before you put them into use.

Head Golf Lesson Chart

  • Head down pitches. This is a good drill to practice keeping your eyes on the ball all the way through impact until the shot has been sent on its way. For this drill, you just need one of your wedges and a few range balls to pitch out to a short target. The idea is very simple – using your normal pitching motion, hit a few shots while keeping your eyes down on the ball the entire time. Once the ball is gone, keep your eyes down looking at the spot underneath where the ball used to be. You aren’t going to look up at all in this drill, even after the ball is gone. Once you strike the shot, count to three and then let yourself look up. It doesn’t really matter where the ball goes, as that is not the point of the drill. Instead, you are just trying to get into the habit of striking a shot without feeling anxious about looking up early to see where it heads. Once you have hit a few of these kinds of pitch shots, go ahead and hit a few more pitches while using your normal head and eye action. You should hopefully notice a difference in your willingness to keep your head down for as long as it takes to see the ball head off into the distance.
  • A video check. This drill will probably require the help of another person to record a video of your swing. Ask a friend at the driving range to record you making a swing while they stand a few feet away in the ‘face-on’ position. That means that they are looking at you face-to-face while holding the camera (or, more likely, cell phone). Once they have recorded a swing from this angle, watch it back and see how your head is behaving during the swing. This is the perfect angle because you will be able to see any side-to-side movement, as well as any up-and-down movement. Remember, as we mentioned earlier, a little bit of movement in the swing is natural, and not a problem. It is when you are making significant or sudden moves with your head during the swing that you need to be concerned about your technique.

It might go without saying, but you aren’t going to improve anything about your golf game if you don’t actually practice. You probably don’t have the time available in your schedule to practice on a daily basis like a professional golfer, but try to carve out visits to the range now and then to work out any issues you are having with your head positioning or any other part of your technique.

— Short Game Head Position

To wrap up this article, we are going to discuss head position in the short game. It is important to use your head correctly in the short game as even the smallest of details can mean the difference between a make and a miss when you get this close to the hole. Fortunately, while what you need to do with your head was pretty simple in the long game, it is even simpler in the short game.

Head Golf Lesson Chart

For the most part, your head should not move at all while you are playing short game shots. There might need to be a little movement when you make a bigger swing such as you would for hitting an explosion shot from a greenside bunker, but those shots are the exception rather than the rule. Most of the time, you should be able to keep your head perfectly still as you swing whatever club you are holding back and through.

In addition to keeping your head still, you also want to keep your chin up – just as you did in the long game. The motivation here is the same as it was for the full swing. Keeping your chin up will keep it out of the way so the rocking action of your shoulders can take place without interference. Posture is just as important in the short game as the long game, so settle into a solid stance and make sure your chin is up to put your back in a great position.

One thing we haven’t talked about yet in this article that deserves a bit of attention is the angle of your eyes at address. This is a point that is particularly important when putting, since your eyes are such a crucial part of getting the ball started on the right line. At address, you want your eyes to be level, or parallel, with the surface of the green. If you tilt your head significantly to one side or the other, that will distort what you see, and it will be harder to swing the putter down the proper line.

Finally, remember to relax when hitting short game shots. Even if you are trying to keep your head still, which is a good thing to do, you still need to be relaxed so the club can flow freely back and through. If you are too tense, it will be hard to get the speed right on these short shots, and you’ll struggle to achieve the results you desire. Work hard on your technique in practice so when you are on the course you can just relax and let it flow. Pretty soon, keeping your head still should come naturally and you should start to hit more great chips and putts than ever before.

Using your head correctly during the golf swing might not seem like a big deal, but it’s actually an integral piece of the overall puzzle. You should find that your swing feels simpler and easier to execute under pressure once your head is behaving properly from start to finish. We hope the advice and discussion in this article will help you get on the right track sooner rather than later. Good luck!