Swing Extremes: Swing Plane

Plane OppositesPlane Drill
No one has a perfect swing plane, but good ballstrikers manage to keep the club on plane throughout the critical takeaway and followthrough parts of the swing. Here’s a drill to help you learn the correct swing plane once and for all.

With a short-iron, grip down on the shaft so that the butt end of the club almost touches your belly button. As you swing back, maintain the triangle formed by your hands and forearms by keeping the butt end of the club pointing at your belly until the clubhead is just outside your right foot. An early body turn or an early break of the wrists will destroy the triangle and move the club under the swing plane line. If you keep the club pointed at your belly and your triangle intact, your clubface will remain square (as it should) and remain on plane. As a secondary check, make sure that the clubhead lies outside the hands and your right arm sits above the left.

As you start the downswing, drop your arms so the butt end of the club points away from your belly. This is the correct delivery position, where the clubhead is on plane and approaches the ball from an inside path.

If you’re ever off plane on the backswing, you’ll be forced to throw the clubhead from the top and the butt end of the club will point back to your belly button. This is the exact opposite of what you want to do. From this position, you’ll slice, pull or top the ball.

To sum up the perfect plane, keep the butt end of the club pointing toward your belly on the takeaway and away from your belly on the downswing. You don’t have to be perfect, but don’t do the opposite.

Class-A LPGA teaching professional Karen Palacios-Jansen is the Director of Instruction for Swing Blade Golf Enterprises (www.swingbladegolf.com).

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