We have all heard it. When getting information about aim and alignment, we often hear to “finish your swing facing your target.” Don’t do it — you will likely hit a shot that will not end up on line. You need to finish your swing facing LEFT of the target.
Look at all the Tour pros out there, including Jessica Korda (above): They are clearly facing well left of their target at the finish, and that goes all the way back to proper set-up and address. Here’s how to put it all together:
AIM AND ALIGNMENT
First, place your hands on the grip, keeping the clubface square.
Then, aim the square clubface to the target on the line you established from behind the ball. The leading edge of your golf club will be at a right angle to the target line.
Next, align your body (checking feet, thighs, hips, and shoulders) parallel and left of the target line, addressing the golf ball.
If you feel as if you are really left of your target, you will be aligned correctly. Do not align your body to the target…aim your club at the target and align your body left of the target! (For left-handers — right of the target)
Last, with confidence, trust your aim and alignment and make your best effort to create the shot. Even if you do not hit it perfectly, it will likely be on line, heading towards the intended target—a great miss!
COMPLETE YOUR SWING
This is accurate information: Left is “Right” (correct) at address. However, finishing with your belt buckle facing the target line is stopping short of the full completion of the swing circle.
When you finish a good golf swing, your belt buckle will actually be facing LEFT of your target if you have completed the swing circle. The ball will track towards the target on the line you established in your pre-shot routine, but your body will not finish facing the target. If it does, it could result in a shot that leaks to the right of the intended target.
Think in terms of the two lines at address that might help you understand this critical piece of information relating to the completion of your golf swing motion.
Imagine that the target line is the “ball target” and the parallel line you have lined up your body on is the “body target.” The two lines are parallel at address and remain so during the swing motion, but it is just the golf ball that (hopefully) ends up on the “ball target” line you established.
Ideally, you will end up in a balanced finish position, facing the “body target” line you set at address, clearly left of the ball target line. The swing circle motion has been completed, allowing both the operator and the equipment to hit a shot “on line” to the target!
Understanding this very thing has been instrumental for improved aim, alignment, and result with my students. See if this perception change alters the directional reality of your golf shots.
As my students and I often say about these actions that improve your motion and game, “If you can, you MUST!”
LPGA Master Professional/PGA Honorary Director Deb Vangellow holds both a BA and a Master Of Science Degree in Health/Physical Education/Coaching and Educational Leadership/Psychology from the University of Northern Iowa and Miami (Ohio) respectively. She currently is the LPGA Master Teaching Professional at Riverbend Country Club in Houston, Texas. Deb is the 2012 LPGA National Teacher Of The Year, an LPGA, Golf Digest Woman, and Golf For Women Top 50 Teacher, a Golf Digest and Golf Magazine Top Regional/Best in State Teacher, a US Kids Golf Top 50 Master Kids Teacher, a GRAA Elite Top Growth Of The Game Professional, and a Golf Tips Magazine Top 25 Teachers In America. She served as the National President of the LPGA Teaching And Club Professionals and is a longtime lead instructor in the LPGA Global Education Program in the U.S. and Asia. An educator/coach who offers wellness based developmental programming integrated into her student-centered philosophy, Deb can be reached at 281.682.7714, [email protected], or www.debvangellowgolf.com.