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Correct Golf Answer Focus on leading with the hips during the down swing

Its a movement which plagues vast swathes of golfers across the globe – swinging over the top during the down swing.

The over the top movement sees the hands and arms move away from the body and swing the club head from out-to-in across the target line. This means the club cuts across the body. The shots which can be produced from this over the top movement include a pull, a pull hook and of course the dreaded slice!

There are a number of reasons for coming over the top but the most common is when golfers begin the down swing using the hands and arms rather than the hips and lower body. This causes the hands to take the club ‘outside the line and move the club from out to in. Golfers looking to stop coming over the top should focus on instigating the down swing using the hips. Follow this swing sequence to improve you down swing.

  • The club is taken away from the ball using the hands, arms, shoulders, torso and hips in that order.
  • As the hips are the last thing to move during the back swing, they turn a relatively small amount.
  • At the beginning of the down swing, the sequence is reversed and the hips rotate toward the target turning through the same position they were at address, continuing to turn towards the target. At impact, the hips should have opened to the target
  • After impact, when the golfer raises up out of the posture to face the target, the hips, chest and eyes all facing forward.

Using this sequence, the hips turn and the hands and arms drop the club into the ‘slot during the down swing. This should bring the club on a more inside path into the ball.

Swinging from over the top can be a terrible affliction and those suffering should ensure their first swing change is to lead the down swing with the hips.

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To hit better shots and to stop swinging over the top, the hands need to be dropped and find a better position during the down swing. However, this needs to be done AFTER the hips begin to turn and not before or the swing sequence will be thrown out of balance.

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If you are struggling swinging over the top, the last thing you should do is grip too tightly on to the club. Having a relaxed grip will allow the hands to follow the body and fall into place during the down swing.

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Swinging the club around the body like a baseball bat back and through the ball may help stop the over the top movement. However, if grooved, the slice may become a hook! This is not the cure to stopping a slice.