Bad habits in the golf swing are a pain. They creep in without most people even being aware. They know something is wrong with their golf swing because they are not getting the results they want, but they don’t have a clue how to fix it. They try tip after tip from different sources and may have some good shots but can’t seem to find consistency and continue to struggle on the course. If this sounds like you, don’t worry. Here are some practical tips to fix even the worst bad habits in the golf swing.
The first thing I recommend is getting in touch with and focusing on your fundamentals. This includes your grip, stance, ball position, posture, as well as some important keys in the swing. The golf swing does not have to be complicated and the simpler you can make yours, the easier it will be to repeat and you’ll be on your way to consistency.
Fundamentals are overlooked by many golfers as they try and find the latest tip or swing key. My advice is to stop searching and get back to your basics. The pros on tour all have slightly different golf swings but they all share common fundamentals. Without these fundamentals, more advanced tips or swing keys would simply be useless.
The setup is always the first place to start because if you fix your setup, this will a lot of times fix your golf swing or greatly improve your swing. If you have errors in the setup, there isn’t much use in working on your swing because you will be limited. So, get your setup in order and then work on your swing basics.
The main keys I like to work on with people’s swings are the takeaway, swing plane, transition from backswing to downswing, impact, and what happens after impact and into the follow through. I like to also focus on the big picture and how parts of the swing blend together into one complete golf swing motion. You can separate parts of the swing to work on technique, but this is good to do only at the driving range. When you get out to the course to play, you want to be focused on feeling a good swing and thinking about your target.
If you are struggling with bad habits, make a plan to go to the driving range and focus on your fundamentals. Have a checklist of keys to work on and make sure you are doing things right before you move on to the next thing. Simple setup adjustments along with some swing path rerouting can do a lot and turn a golfer’s game around for the better.
Keep it simple. A great way to think about the swing plane is to get your takeaway starting out correctly. You want to feel that as your club gets to the point where it’s parallel or level with the ground, it is also parallel with your target line and your clubhead is in line with your hands. If your club is behind you too much or out away from you, your club is basically off plane and you’ll have to compensate or rely on timing in the rest of your swing to hit a good golf shot.
Once you’ve gotten the first part of your backswing on track, then it’s just a matter of swinging your club over your right shoulder (for the right handed player) and turning and allowing your weight to shift. If you maintain your angles from the setup, you can’t really overswing or have too many swing faults, they will correct themselves. Once you’ve gotten into a good position at the top of the backswing, the downswing is a piece of cake. You’re just letting your club swing down so that everything can come through together at impact for maximum power to be transferred to the golf ball.
After impact, the focus is to swing your club towards your target and then over your left shoulder as you turn and face your target and finish your weight transfer and your follow through. This will help you hit straighter shots. It’s a good idea to be conscious of your balance and your tempo as this will also help to eliminate or greatly reduce swing faults.
There are some basic tips and guidelines for how to break your bad habits and get your swing on the right track. For more information on how to play great golf, check out my website at www.sarahpesaventogolf.com.