The Golf Swing Impact Position
Watching a professional’s impact position can make it seem like it is very easy to accomplish. However, when you get onto the field to try it out yourself, you will realize it can be difficult. You need to be guided through how it needs to be accomplished.
When you are getting into the right position, your legs will play an important role in getting you there. If you do not know the right ways to position and use your legs, you will find it difficult to hit the correct spots.
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How to achieve consistent impact with the proper golf swing
All the steps you go through perfecting your set-up, learning to position your club for the top of the backswing, lead up to one goal. The defining moment called Impact. You learn to make a great transition so that you can make good impact at the end of the day.
When the club finally comes into contact with the ball, you want it to count. However, this cannot happen if your positioning has been wrong throughout. The goal is to hit the ball but you must remember that the outcome depends solely on what happens before impact.
Below is a checklist to ensure you are in a perfect impact position.
First: Check to ensure that the golf club is moving along the right path into the ball. Check to also see that the clubface is aimed in the proper direction.
Second: The golf club, while coming down, should be at the right height. The club should not hit at the top of the golf ball, the aim should be close to the bottom.
Third: While aiming for the bottom make sure that the club does not strike the ground first. That will cause you to make a fat shot.
Fourth: While making the downswing to hit the golf ball, your swing should be fast. This is the part in your entire golf swing that should be fastest. The club should fast at the impact position to produce as much power and distance as possible.
Fifth: At the impact position, your right heel should have started to lift off the ground. The majority of your body weight should be on the left side of your body.
Sixth: Your hips and shoulders should be in a position that is open at impact. You should be aware of every little detail as you practice so that you get used to it. Your head should be looking back towards the back of the golf ball.
Seventh: The club should be in a slight forward twist. With the club in this position, your hands will either be ahead or level with the golf ball. All this depends on the position of the golf ball in this particular spot.
Eighth: Your spine angle should not change when you are in the impact position. You set your spine angle at the address and maintain it throughout the backswing. Keep this angle also at the impact position.
Ninth: Note the positioning of your hands. At the impact position, your hands should have gotten to a square position. Your palms and the back of your hands should be pointing towards the target at this point.
Tenth: If your hands are not well-positioned, you will encounter problems. Your swing will get blocked, and the result is that your clubface will be open as well. The blocking swing error will send your ball to the right of the target.
Eleventh: When you are in the impact position, your hips must have also rotated so that they seem to be pointing in the direction of the target. Do not slowly move your hips to uncoil them. That will leave them open and pointed way to the right side of the target.
Twelfth: Keep your head down all through the impact. It is important to look at the ball as you hit it. After all that has happened leading up to hitting the ball, you might be anxious to look at the target. Looking at where the ball is going will drive your attention from the ball. You need to focus on the ball only.
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Tips to improve your golf swing impact position
Impact is the only part during your entire swing where you will make contact with the golf ball. It is therefore what matters. All your hard work leads up to that point. You want your outcome to be great.
Here are a few tips to help you improve your impact.
- Hit down with irons and hit up with woods
When you are using irons, you will make a solid hit when the club hits the ball before it goes on to make a divot in the ground. Therefore when you are using irons, the club should not reach the bottom of the swing arc when it is hitting the golf ball.
This is the correct sequence of action. It is called ‘hitting down on the ball.’ If you strike the ball with the irons when it has reached the bottom of the swing arc, you will have thin shots.
You need to strike the golf ball after the club has completed the bottom of the swing arc and it is rising again. However, for the wood club category, you need to hit the ball before the bottom of the swing arc is complete.
Your goal should be to hit the ball when the clubhead is just rising from its lowest point. This move is referred to as ‘hitting up on the ball.’ To properly hit up on the ball, you need to position the ball ahead in your initial address.
- Keep flex in your wrist at impact
If you want to improve your accuracy at impact, one of the ways you can do it is by maintaining the flex in your wrist. You create flex in your wrist when you bend your wrist into a position where your palm is moved closer to the forearm.
You do this to create the right positioning for your clubface. Bending your wrist in that position puts the clubface in the position to compress the ball. You will also have control over the distance and the trajectory of the ball when you hit it.
While on the practice range, practice to keep flex in your wrist. You can begin by practicing on 50-yard wedge shots as you get yourself used to this movement. When it starts to come to you easily, then you can move on to the course.
- The clubface first, then your feet follow
You need to put your focus on learning the proper way to approach the ball. One of the biggest mistakes that affect your impact lie in the approach towards the ball. It is wrong to position your feet next to the ball before the club.
Instead, when you walk up to the ball, place the clubhead down and aim it properly before you plant your feet. If you position the feet first, they will most possibly face in the wrong direction.
Having your feet in the wrong position can ruin your shot even when you position your club correctly. Everything needs to work together seamlessly. While you are practicing, you can use some alignment sticks so that you get this right.
Get your feet used to face on the target together with your clubface. Getting used to aiming your clubface towards the target will improve your impact. A good swing alone is not enough, you want the ball to move in the right direction.
Don’t rush when you are positioning your feet. Take your time and make sure that your feet and the clubface are looking in the right direction. You will do this if you want a great shot that badly.
- Practice with low-trajectory shots
If you want to improve your impact, then you want to be able to control the ball. The easiest way to achieve control is to swing for low-trajectory shots. Use only your left hand to hold your lob or sand wedge.
Ensure that you have practiced the best grip. Plant the ball in the middle of your stance. When you have done this, transfer most of your weight to your left side. When you swing your club back, your left arm should be at the 9 o’clock position.
Then swing down into the back of the ball. When you are on the golf course, the grass will add resistance to your follow-through. This is ideal for you since it is what you are looking for.
- Point your knee to the ball
When you are learning golf or trying to get better, it is the small adjustments that are of the most help. It is amazing how easy it is to mess up making only slight errors. If you do not transfer your weight in the right way on your downswing, your impact will be affected.
Obviously, your accuracy as you strike the ball will suffer. You can solve this problem by focusing on finishing the downswing first. As you transition into the downswing, slide turn your hips while shifting your weight at the same time to the left foot.
Observe that your right knee points at the ball or slightly in front of the ball as you strike. If your right knee points towards the ball, then it means that you shifted your weight correctly. You may not achieve the perfect positioning immediately, therefore, you need to practice it a couple of times.
- Improve the techniques you use for visualization
You can be way off if you have not properly visualized your target. You need to have gauged the distance and also study the spot where you want the ball to land. It is not good to go in with just a sense of where you might want the ball to land.
You need to be exact. Pick out an exact spot where you want your ball to land. As you look to your target before you strike, you should not be studying only the general direction.
You should be looking at an exact position you will be aiming for at impact. If you have clear visualization, then you will have control over where the ball lands and how it gets there.
- Use speed to control the trajectory
When you are striking the ball, where it sails determines where it will land. There will be a difference when it is higher or lower into the wind. If you want to control the trajectory when you strike the ball, you need to control the speed at which you swing.
To gain control, you can make your swing shorter or you can choke down on the club. If you have a fast downswing, you will build more backspin and achieve greater height. You can also gain control over your trajectory by changing release.
As you extend your arms throughout the shot, it will go lower. In the follow-through, if you let your club higher, then you will gain more height to your trajectory.
- Use a box to get rid of that slice
If your clubface is open as you make contact, then you will have a slice. If your swing is faulty, even with a well-positioned club, you will get a slice as well. To get rid of this, use the box drill. Use the top half of the golf ball box.
Set it up to stand on its side and line it up parallel to the target line. Try to create a path so that the shaft goes just over the golf ball box. As you do this, make sure you do not hit the box. To get rid of the slice, try to groove this path just so that the shaft goes over.
Final words on the golf swing impact position
Your impact and how you strike the ball rely mostly on your low hands and body power. For you to control your trajectory, how you place your hands matters most. You need to power the golf ball with your body and not just your arms.
Apply the tips and practice with them your impact will be good in no time.
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