The downswing in golf is where it all happens
Do you pull a lot of golf shots or hit a big slice that puts your ball in a whole lot of trouble?
Maybe you push the golf ball way right of the target and hit a lot of fat and thin shots?
If this sounds like you then there’s a good chance you are getting your golf club in the wrong position in your downswing.
You’re not alone, as most golfers from beginner to amateur alike fail to get the golf club into the right position in the downswing.
The great news is any golfer can learn to master the correct downswing in golf and begin to see almost instant results on the golf course.
The downswing in golf is critical
Mastering the downswing in golf is by far the most challenging part of golf swing for most golfers.
It happens at lightning speed and requires precision timing.
Getting this right is the real key to becoming a great ball striker. It may take a bit longer to learn than the other moves, but the results will be worth it.
Without mastering these pieces first the downswing will be much more difficult.
90% of golfers do this incorrect move in the downswing
A lot of golfers perform a great backswing only to mess it up on the downswing.
This is due to the more dynamic nature of the move where more moving parts are required.
Golfers tend to commonly move too much from the top which causes the over the top golf swing.
What happens is the upper body rotates too fast giving the lower body no time to shift the weight to the lead side.
The problem occurs because the shoulders and upper body are able to move really fast, whereas your hips and lower body can only move slowly.
What’s the key move in the downswing?
Your number one focus in the downswing in golf is to shift your hips and weight to the lead side.
You don’t want to just move your shoulders and upper body and release the golf club.
Move your weight to your lead heel and really push it into the ground.
This is a super important move in the golf swing.
Watch the video below to learn the 3 keys to mastering the downswing in golf.
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3 keys to shift to the lead side correctly
It’s important to understand it’s not just a matter of shifting your weight to the lead side, because there is a right way and a wrong way.
The incorrect way is pushing from the rear side (right) and moving your hips forward creating a lot of secondary axis tilt with your upper body away from the target.
This puts your body in a very unstable position and more susceptible to injury.
You need to shift you weight first, sit into your left glute muscle and then pull from your left oblique.
This will naturally the pull the golf club down into the correct golf swing plane every time.
A visual key to the proper downswing in golf
I’ve created this short video that demonstrates the correct position your golf club needs to be in to hit solid, straight golf shots every time.
Why most golfers pull and slice shots
Most beginner and amateur golfers suffer from pulls and slices for one simple reason and it’s not what you think.
Most simple believe it’s because of a poor takeaway, grip, lack of shoulder turn and athleticism etc.
Whilst it’s true these things are important to get right and do contribute to these poor shots, the real reason is improper position at the key point in the downswing in golf.
Believe it or not a golfer can get away with solid, straight consistent golf shots nearly every time if he or she gets in the right position in the golf downswing.
They can still achieve this even with a poor takeaway, grip, lack of shoulder and poor athletic ability.
What is this key Position
Have a look at the picture at the below. Notice the difference between the picture on the left and the one on the right.
The picture on the left shows the shaft of the golf club coming down in between both arms.
The picture on the right shows the shaft of the golf club coming down right in line with the right forearm.
The picture on the right is the ideal position you want to be in just as the hands get a fraction below waist height in the downswing.
It’s a mirror image of your set up position with the golf club perfectly on plane. From here it’s positioned ideally to make solid contact with the golf ball on the right plane.
However, the picture on the left shows the golf shaft coming down too steep an angle and off plane.
This results in the golf club hitting the golf ball on too straight an angle and can result in coming across the golf ball.
The result will be lots of pulls, slices or even pushes.
Aim for the shaft through the rear forearm
Yes it’s true you can get away with a certain percentage of golf shots swing like this, but it requires a number of compensations in your swing to achieve.
If you don’t believe this position is key, have a look at your favourite professional’s golf swing in slow motion.
You’ll see just about all of them end up in this position with the shaft splitting their rear forearm in their downswing.
Even Jim Furyk who has an unusual backswing gets himself into the same downswing position just after waist height.
p.s. for lefties just do the opposite and get the shaft through the left forearm.
How to get into this position
I can hear you saying, “that’s fine and good, but how can I get into this position”.
It’s different for each golfer depending on your swing, but if you perform a couple of simple drills it should help you achieve this much easier.
Here are the 2 keys to getting the golf shaft in alignment with the right forearm.
- Drop the hands at the top of the golf swing when commencing the downswing.
A lot of golfers come in too steep on the downswing because they rotate their shoulders first and spin their hips.
By dropping the hands slightly first it gets your swing on a better plane and the result is your downswing will come more from the inside.
There’s a great drill that ties in with this I posted on this article I posted here about curing the over the top move.
- Sit into your left side at the start of the downswing.
This has a similar effect as dropping the hands at the start of the downswing. By sitting into your left side you are correctly transferring your weight to the lead foot and lowering your hands with the golf club.
This drops the golf club more on plane and allows the forearms to match up with the club shaft in the key downswing position.
Important – Ensure this commences before your upper body begins to start moving the golf club down to impact.
If you’re struggling to hit straight, solid golf shots then there’s a good chance you’re coming in too steep and the shaft isn’t aligned with your rear forearm.
Look at your golf swing in the mirror or on video and see if you are getting this key downswing in golf position right.
Get one of your golf buddies to watch your golf swing from behind and they can tell you.
Give it a try and let me know your results, I would love to hear.
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