2008-01-04 / Sports

Golf Instruction - Balance and Tempo

By Joel Garyn

(A USGTF Golf Professional, you can contact him for lessons at 347-404- 3751.)

In golf, staying balanced during the swing is vital to hitting the ball with any power or accuracy. Wild shifts in weight from one side to the other will destroy your TEMPO, making the club head come into the back of the ball incorrectly with the result of poor ball flight and loss of distance.

Instead of moving your entire body to the right and then to the left during the swing in an attempt to throw your weight into the shot, ROTATE your body around a single axis point.

The golf swing is rotational and not lateral, with the center point of the rotation located about where your sternum is.

If you remember from the start that the swing is rotational, you will have a better chance of keeping your body balanced and hitting with more power and accuracy.

Make sure that your weight is centered evenly over your feet NOT out on your toes, which many golfers have a tendency to do.

If you keep your weight centered, you will rarely find yourself out of balance at the end of the swing.

Concentrate on keeping your knee flex constant throughout the entire swing. When you set up to the ball, feel as though you are sitting on a barstool with your feet firmly planted on the ground. You want to be in the same position through impact.

A good tempo will keep all parts of the body-arms, legs and upper bodyconnected throughout the swing. If you lose your balance after full swing, it's an indication that you are swinging too fast and exerting too much energy.

Try this drill at your next practice, as you start your backswing say "onethousandone" and the downswing say "twothousandtwo". This will help your tempo a great deal. One last thought, the golf swing is one fluid act and not a series of disjointed actions. Swing the club and just let the ball "get in the way" of the club head.

Have a great week. Next week, we will talk about proper ball position for different clubs.

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