Perfect Posture For Your Golf Swing
You have arrived at your ball on the tee or on the grass. Now:
How far over do you bend at your hips?
How much do you bend your knees?
Where are your arms supposed to be?
What about your back and head positions?
What did that guy on TV say about parallel lines, anyway?
In this article you will learn some information that will improve
your golf swing dramatically. Some of my golf students get
amazing improvements to their golf swing simply by being in the
correct posture before they carry out their swing motions.
When you are in your best possible posture you can almost feel
a good swing before you actually do your swing.
This article is in two parts. It will:
1. Describe a routine that you can do in front of a mirror to
train yourself how to be in most of the correct posture angles
without using a golf club. Pt. 1 #1
2. Show you how to have perfect body alignments. Pt. 1 #2
3. Show you how to achieve all of the correct posture angles
with a golf club. Pt. 2 #3
4. Describe a quick way to ensure you are in the correct body
angles during your round of golf or while practicing. Pt. 2 #4
Please note that pictures and video clips are displayed in the
copy of this article which I have on my website (given below).
1. The Basic Training Routine
Here are the steps to get into a good posture. Do them in front
of a mirror so you can get feedback of the movements you make
and the positions you achieve.
* Stand at attention with your feet about shoulder width apart.
* Reach out your arms so that your hands are almost straight out
from your shoulders.
* Grab your left thumb with your right hand (right thumb with
left hand for lefties.)
* Firm your whole body to maintain body control for the coming
* Lower your arms until you feel the top of your arms touch
your ribs just under your armpits.
* Snug your arms lightly downwards and inwards to your ribs.
Note: I remind golf students of the previous two steps with one
word — TOUCH.
By maintaining this touch position in the arc of your return
swing to the ball you will avoid many of the bad swing results
golfers experience. But, the "one wrong thought" I wrote about
in a previous article makes most golfers lose the control and
precision that this "touch" provides.
Maintaining this "touch" is one of the "don't moves" which I
teach. It is at this point that I tell golf students that
"there is power in no movement". End Note
* Tilt your left thumb downwards as far as you can.
Note: Lefties are to tilt your right thumb downwards.
Do not twist your hands or your wrists to do this step.
You will feel a noticeable stretch in your left forearm.
This stretch sets you up to swing any club you use so the club
does not dig into the ground behind the ball. End Note
* Bend forward at your hip joints.
Note: Try several bend angles at your hips when you do
Keep your back as straight as it was before you bent forward.
Keep your head from drooping downwards
More on this step Pt. 2 #3 where I describe the same steps using
a golf club. End Note
* Bend your knees forward until the muscles just above your
kneecaps start to firm up to prevent you from falling
to your knees.
Note: Several of my golf students bring their hips forward
with their knees. You must avoid this as it brings your hips
under your shoulders causing your balance to move backwards
onto your heels. Think of some of these thoughts when bending
1. Bend your knees forward and reach your hips backwards.
2. Get into the ready position common to most sports.
3. Get into the position you need to push a vehicle out of
a snow bank or mud-puddle or to move a sofa/couch to vacuum
4. If you are familiar with any kind of baseball then you make
the bend of the knees the same as the back catcher starting
the squat position.
5. If these thoughts don't help you get the knee bend correct
then — picture yourself beginning the first movement of sitting
on a toilet seat. (My junior golfers love that tip.)
Correctly doing this move will usually place your shoulders
slightly forward of the front of your shoes. It will also
place your hip joints over or slightly behind your heels.
Practice the steps above facing the mirror and standing sideways
to the mirror. In fact, do so in both sideways positions.
2. Setting up those perfect parallel body alignments
Your foot position is the foundation to being lined up correctly
to where you want your golf ball to stop (or, best of all, fall
in the hole on the green.) Your feet also act as guides for your
turn movements in your swing sequence. (Future articles and my
lesson modules will show you how your feet can guide your
You have arrived at your ball and you have positioned your feet
so they are parallel to the line of flight of the ball.
How do you ensure that your knees, hips, and shoulders are also
parallel to the flight line?
For almost all golfers and "would-be golfers" this can be done
by sight and feel.
When you have taken the posture position described in Part 1 #1
you can look down and see if the SAME length of both of your
shoes is visible past your knees. If so, then your knees are
aligned parallel to your feet.
If your knees are parallel to your feet then your hips are
already parallel to your feet. This applies to almost everyone.
The exception will be anyone who has different lengths
in their legs.
When you stand at attention your shoulders are each above one
of your hip joints.
You will feel comfortable with no side or back muscles working.
When you bend at your hips you must feel this same comfort
— no muscles working or straining.
Your shoulders will be in line with your hips, but at an angle.
Since your hips are parallel with your feet then, so will your
shoulders be parallel to your feet.
During a round of golf a quick glance out of the bottom of your
eyes will confirm your knee and hip alignment. A quick thought
about whether your back and sides feel comfortable will help
confirm that your shoulders are in line.
More instruction on a good setup posture is found in Part 2.
As well, I have additional notes about how to avoid improper
posture and body alignments at my website.
Copyright by Glen Osborne August 2004. All Rights Reserved
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Glen teaches his golf program for Ladysmith, BC Parks & Rec.
Beginners, struggling golfers, and juniors are his specialty
10935 Trans Canada Hwy Ladysmith, BC Canada V9G 1X7