It’s interesting to watch the golf swings of various players when you visit your local golf course or practice range. When watching players who are struggling, we see similar characteristics: poor posture, leaning, exaggerated movements with the golf club during the swing, and most commonly falling out of balance at the finish position of the golf swing. While better players tend to display good balance, an effortless flow of energy, a sustained finish, and a general appearance of smoothness throughout the entire motion.
When asking players to describe their better swings and shots, common responses are: smooth, balanced, effortless, flowing, and simple. These characteristics lie inside every golfer and you have the ability to bring them out on your own. The difference between those who are more successful and those who struggle is awareness. Any golfer who has struck a solid golf shot and smoothly followed it to the target has experienced this. The real question is, “Were you paying attention when it happened?” For many players, the answer is NO. Many of us have experienced these swings after we are frustrated and no longer care about the result. It’s interesting to see what happens when you ALLOW your swing to unfold versus trying to make the ball go somewhere.
For you to find YOUR place of balance, I encourage you to start by searching for YOUR balance during your golf swing. Set up to a golf ball and swing the club back to the top of your backswing. Do not look back at the club, stay in this position, and search for your balance. Allow your body, club, and weight to shift and move until you find the area where you feel most balanced and comfortable. Note what sensations you are feeling in your body. Where is your body weight, where is the pressure in your muscles, do you feel a sense of balance and are you “grounded”. If you sense you are in balance, then you most likely are. This is the area we want to find during a golf swing while committing to striking a golf shot.
Now for every backswing in golf, there is a follow-through. You will want to search for these same characteristics in your finish position. I recommend you try this a few times with your eyes closed. Do not trust where someone has told you to put the golf club. Look for it yourself and search for it by inquiring into your own balance and your sensations of being grounded. Most golfers are amazed by what they find. Often they are in areas that are nowhere near they were told to be in. This is OK…this is what makes us unique and still have the ability to be successful with our golf swings (consider Jim Furyk’s golf swing).
Experiencing both sides of your golf swing in balance is the start of your self-coaching and the ability to find your most efficient and effective swings on your own. “Instruction” is telling someone what to do, while “Coaching” is guidance to higher levels of success. Question anything you have been told to do with your golf swing and review it using this method for yourself. Choose to be powerful and take ownership of your golf swing by coaching yourself.