English 101 – 40
February 26, 2004
The Golf Swing
To begin executing the proper golf swing, your feet should be
shoulder width apart. When gripping the club, place the club in the joints
of your left fingers with the thumb pointing down the center or slightly to
the right or the shaft. (This is written for the right-handed golfer, all
left-handers must reverse everything.) Place the pinky or the right hand
in between the index and middle fingers of your left hand. Do not grip the
club any tighter than you would a baby bird.
The next step is the placement of the ball with respect to your
stance. Firstly, with mid range irons, the ball should be placed in the
center of your feet. With high iron and wedges, the ball should be toward
your right foot. With low irons and woods, the ball should be towards your
left foot or the front of your stance. Secondly, the ball must be placed
at the correct distance with respect to how far it is from your body. Your
knees should be slightly bent and your arms should be pointing nearly
strait down. The club should be at an angle in which the head is flat on
The back swing is the part of the swing that many golfers struggle
with. First, keep your elbow close to your right side the entire time.
Second, your left arm should be practically straight. This is not that
strict, some bending is acceptable. Next, the turning of your body can
best be done by imagining a rod down your spine from your pelvis to the
back of your head. You must rotate your body around this imaginary rod.
When rotating, start with your shoulders, not your waist. Your waist will
move slightly following your shoulders. During this process, your head
should move very little. It should certainly not move up and down.
Fourth, the path that the club follows in your back swing is called the
swing arc. This swing arc should be about 45 degrees with respect to the
vertical. The fifth step is at the top. Here you must “cock” your waist
and point the club at the target. This isn’t as important as the “cocking”
of the waist. Many golfers do not execute a full swing, and the club does
not point at the target.
A final check is to look at what your legs are doing. Both knees
should be bent. The right knee should be pointing forward, while the left
knee should be pointing slightly to the right and be slightly in front of
the right knee.
The final part of the full golf swing is the down swing. The most
crucial part of this is to pull with your left arm, and not push through
with your right Golf is a left-handed game. The angle of your swing plane
you kept on your back swing should still be kept through your down swing.
Finally, “un-cock” your wrists right before you strike the ball. Keep your
eye on the ball through impact. The follow through should be facing the