Yet another ‘fundamental’ of the golf swing that I have been completely oblivious to; spine tilt.
You naturally have spine tilt at address because your right hand is lower than the left. Your right shoulder should be lower than your left.
You need to maintain this tilt in the backswing i.e. Your back should be sloping away from the target at the top of the swing.
I’m usually pretty good up to this point. But where it all goes wrong for most amateurs is in the downswing – the head moves forward (towards the ball), the shoulders spin out and we swing over the top resulting in any number of inconsistent, crap shots.
What you need to do
Maintain or even increase that spine tilt at impact.
It’s not the easiest move, but absolutely critical to pure ball striking. Maintaining the tilt keeps your spine in the right position and creates room for your arms to swing freely. If you let your upper body dominate and the head get on or ahead of the ball you run out of room and end up flipping to try and save the shot. Golf gets very difficult with fat and thin shots aplenty.
How do you do it
I don’t know, yet.
But keeping your head behind the ball is a good start. And just being aware that the correct position through impact is to feel like your upper body is moving away from the ball is enlightening. Your upper body moves away from the target, your lower body moves towards it and that is how you get forward shaft lean and compress the ball.
Did you realise you were supposed to look like that at impact?
Here are some really good blog posts on the topic too:
And I like how in this video by Terry Bradley, he demonstrates how keeping your head behind the ball into impact enables to maintain tilt, clear the hips and shift weight to the lead side. No more getting stuck.
Finally, another really good article…