Last week I was playing a round with some low handicappers when I became mesmerized by the distinctive sound of a golf ball leaving the clubface of an excellent ball striker.
It was like a cannon ball being fired. It’s a very different sound, accompanied by a penetrating low ballflight.
They seem to be in total control. How are they doing it?
The more I observed them, the more I realized they were doing a few key things a lot better than the average medium-to-high handicapper, and it was all linked to their impact position.
The 4 conditions for Immaculate Impact
In this article and the next I’m providing some tips related to the first two conditions.
How NOT to do it (believe me, I’ve been there)
We want our weight to be forward and our hips to be open. This will allow our arms to take over and will ensure we can achieve a slightly descending strike.
Here’s how NOT to achieve this:
- DO NOT focus on turning your hips at the start of the downswing. If you do, you will likely turn both your hips and shoulders. This will result in your clubhead moving on an “out-to-in” path. You are casting your club over your shoulder. The path your clubhead is on now will produce a pull or a fade/slice. More often than not you’ll see that you’ll pull your short irons and slice your driver.
- DO NOT use your back foot (right foot for a right-handed player) to “pivot” to open your hips. If you find that the heel of your back foot leaves the ground during transition and down swing, you’re likely “pivoting”. This will result in the same issues discussed in point 1.
- DO NOT focus on shifting weight to the left. Consciously shifting your weight to the left will likely result in a steep swing. To increase your chances of consistently hitting the ball right, we really want a shallow angle of attack. That’s because a steep swing will result in poor results when we hit slightly more in front of the ball than intended. It will result in a “fat” contact. A shallow angle of attack, on the other hand, ensures we have a larger “flat zone” where contact with the ball results in an ok ball flight.
The sequence to get it right
In the image above the magenta lines indicate how Rory uses his right leg and knee to push forward and rotate. The green line shows how much his lead hip moves toward the target.
Leading with the Hands
This should get your body in a much better position. Let me know if that worked for you too in the comments below!
All we have to do now is make sure our hands are leading and the shaft is leaning forward. In my next article I’ll discuss how to achieve just that.