You’ve already worked out how to grip the club like a pro. Now we can help you take a stand – in a way that will help you hit the ball further and straighter.
A well-balanced stance is athletic and prepares you for the task ahead – sinking the ball into your desired target. Stick with the tips I’m about to outline and you’ll be able to strike the ball more powerfully and accurately than ever, while protecting yourself from injury.
1) Start from the feet up
Perfect posture begins from the ground up. Your feet need to be shoulder width apart, with the weight on the balls of the feet. This will help provide good stability.
Stand too narrow and you’ll fall over - or subconsciously swing less to stay balanced. Stand too wide, and your body won’t be as free to strike the ball powerfully. Weight distribution is also a factor – so your body mass should be distributed equally on both feet for most shots. Just bear in mind that with a wedge, you should put a little more mass on your lead foot, say 60-40. For a driver, 60-40 in favour of your trail foot is the best bet.
2) Sink into it
What comes after the feet? Well, you don’t need to worry about your shins. But you should pay attention to how you’re bending your knees. They need to sink down gently, rather than drop down severely.
Here, I show you the correct softening of the knees, and then demonstrate a severe drop
This will help you to rotate your body properly, which we’ll get to in a bit.
3) Keep your hips honest
Deee-lite said groove is in the heart. Well I disagree; golfers can find all the groove they need in their pelvis. By leaning forward from the hips instead of the shoulders, you have a better chance of achieving maximum rotation in the backswing.
Leaning from the pelvis will also help achieve a sixty-degree angle of the spine, strengthening the core and keeping pressure off your back for the explosive shots. You can also use your pelvis to address how far you should stand from the ball; flex forward until your club hits the floor – the impact spot is where the ball should lie.
In addition, your club should be far away enough so you can spread your fingers in the gap between body and grip.
A note on the two different types of postures
The first type of posture is the “C” posture (below), where the stance is set too far forward, making the shoulders curl, impairing rotation and stability.
The C stance encourages an out-to-in swing path which increases the probability of slices and pulls. You want to avoid the C stance.
The S posture (below) is characterised by a slight drop in spine, giving you a nice “S” shape in the back. However, you don’t want too much of a dip; an overemphasis of the S shape can lead too excess rotation, which in turn leads to an increase in random errors.
Even minor errors will be amplified by the fact you’re over-rotating and swinging hitting hard. However, an overly S-shaped stance is still preferable to the dreaded C.
“Stand up properly” might sound like something your Gran used to bark at you- but my advice will give you a better base from which to strike the ball. And if you want to master the backswing, watch out for our next blog.