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Golf Question: Am I Taking The Golf Club Back Far Enough?Everyone has a different top of back swing position as it relies on an amount of flexibility. The back swing is a gradual rotational coil and build up of tension to unleash the most consistent but powerful down swing possible.

The main points which determine a full back swing are

Shoulders - The shoulders should be turning approximately 90 degrees
Hips - The hips should rotate approximately 45 degrees
Wrist hinge - The wrists should hinge approximately 90 degrees

These aspects of the back swing with a straight left arm and well distributed weight transition should get the club parallel to the ground at the top of the back swing. To build this sequence, rest the club across your shoulders and cross your arms to hold the club, then stand face on to a mirror and watch your shoulders rotate 90 degrees around your spine. This will Turn the hips approximately 45 degrees, but be sure that they arent turning as one but more independently from each other with the weight distributed evenly. Repeat this drill for a better understanding more repeatability of this movement when you have a club in your hand for real.

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If your golf club is hitting your neck at the top of the back swing then there are some worrying problems in your swing!

For the club to hit your neck then your swing is too narrow possibly caused by the bending of the left arm at the top. This is an extra lever in the swing which the golf swing does not need and actually inhibits a consistent down swing movement because the arms then need to straighten up rather than putting better focus on hitting the ball with as much velocity as possible.

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The last thing you should see at the top of your golf swing is the club through the corner of your left eye! This is known as an over swing and is defined when the club goes past parallel to the ground. Many golfers may believe there is more power in the swing because it has travelled further, therefore the downswing has more time to gain speed. On the contrary because to achieve an over swing, some golfers will bend their left arm and/or allow their wrists to hinge too much. These two factors actually lose any tension and built up energy in the back swing, creating a slower, less powerful down swing but most importantly make it difficult to hit the ball well every time.

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Golf swings with a deliberately bent left arm are adding levers to the golf swing which will only create a more complex and inconsistent down, however, due to potential upper back flexibility issues, golf swings with a slight bend at the top of swing can still be very proficient. For example, PGA tour Professional J.B Holmes has a bend in the left arm at the top of swing but obviously still plays to an exceptional standard.