Women’s Golf Swing Sequence and Drills
The ability to hit the golf ball long yardages with your driver depends a lot on your technique rather than on the physical power that you can generate. Golfing superstars like Michelle Wie are able to drive the ball longer than 250 yards from the tee-off point because of their well-honed technique.
Women golfers generally do not possess the upper body strength of a male golfer, and hence, must rely on timing and body form in order to get the maximum distance.
Many professional woman golfers would suggest that the power in the drive stroke comes from the hips and legs.
You might be wondering how the hips and legs play such a crucial role in a drive stroke. In order to understand that phenomenon, you first need to learn the correct technique of the golf swing.
You need to understand the various steps involved in a swing sequence, starting with the backswing and then the downswing.
Practicing all the individual actions of the golf swing sequence will give you power, timing, accuracy, and consistency.
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Golf Swing Sequence
Stand with your legs about shoulder-width apart. Knees are to be slightly flexed while you maintain a reasonably good balance. Tilt forward at the hips.
The golf ball should be just inside your forward foot. The ball is positioned closest to the front foot for the driver stroke while for short irons, it can be somewhere mid-way between your two feet.
The position of the arm and the driver is very important. For a right-handed golfer, the left shoulder, the left hand, and the shaft of the driver should all be in a straight line as you begin the backswing.
Pull the driver back by rotating your shoulders in a natural way. Keep the hand and the driver positioned in a straight line, as mentioned in Step 2.
The left shoulder drives the pull-back movement. Pull your driver up and rotate your back till the back faces the target where you want to hit the ball.
Again, make sure to keep your left arm straight (if you are a right-handed golfer) as you approach the peak of your backswing.
Hinge your wrists when your arms are past your right thigh (for a right-handed golfer). The hinging action will help add extra power to your stroke.
The hinging of the wrists should be done until the driver shaft is almost perpendicular with respect to your arms.
The position where your arms are as far back as possible is known as the top of the backswing. At this moment, you will feel the weight of your body shifting towards your back foot.
You will also rotate your hips slightly as you attempt to pull as far back as possible. A 45-degree hip rotation should be the limit.
The correct sequence of body movements for the backswing is the shoulder rotation, the pulling up of the straight arms, the hinging of the wrists, and then the rotation of the hips.
Now comes the downswing, which is essentially a reverse of the backswing. Swing your arms down as you uncoil from your backswing and strike the ball.
The weight of your body now transfers from your back foot to your front foot.
Your hips will rotate as you swing and your right knee (for a right-handed golfer) will also rotate towards the target as you go through the stroke.
Keep the wrists hinged as you go through your downswing and un-hinge them as late as possible, preferably just before making contact with the golf ball. The later you un-hinge your wrists, the more power you can generate for your drive stroke.
Some things to remember
- As you go through the downswing and try to hit the golf ball squarely, keep your lower body stable.
- Try not to sway your hips too much. Let the hips rotate only as much as they naturally do.
- Your legs and hips are going to pull you through your forward swing motion, hence they are critical in generating power behind the drive stroke.
Now that you have understood the correct technique and steps involved in a drive stroke, let us explore some drills which you can practice to perfect your swing sequence and make your swing as effortless and efficient as possible.
Best Golf Swing Drills to Improve Sequence
The “3 Words Back and 1 Word Forward” Drill
The ideal golf swing has a 3-to-1 ratio in terms of the timing. The backswing takes 3 times as long as the downswing.
The 3 back 1 forward drill is a great way to practice the timing of your swing sequence and get the right kind of rhythm going. It involves speaking (to yourself) three words throughout the entire backswing sequence and one word throughout the downswing sequence.
This drill has been used by famous professional golfers through their careers. Words like “Wind It Up” and “Low And Slow” have been used by them for the 3-word long backswing. The word “Finish” is used for the 1-word long downswing.
You can make up your own words too if you like. But the key thing to note is that the words should be somewhat similar in length.
3 words of similar length can be recited to oneself to time the backswing and then 1 word can be recited to fine-tune the pace of the downswing.
The Body Motion Mirror Drill
The shape and form of your body are very important when you hit the golf ball. An incorrect posture can not only lead to inaccurate strokes and higher handicap scores, but it can also cause career-threatening injuries.
With the body motion drill, you can improve your body form and smoothen the transition from backswing to downswing. This drill teaches you how to use your lower body to generate an effortless and efficient swing.
First, place a hand glove inside your pant pocket. A right-handed golfer should place a glove in the left pocket. Then, stand in front of a mirror and get into the posture of hitting the ball. Then, go through the backswing motion with your arms pulled back.
Next, swing down and go through the downswing. During the downswing, the glove in your left pocket should move first and then the upper body should follow. The drill allows you to watch how your lower body moves in relation to the upper body as you swing through the stroke.
Relax The Wrists
While it is important to keep the wrists hinged at the top of the backswing and then unhinge them just before hitting the ball, it is also important not to keep the wrists too rigid.
The transition from the backswing to the downswing is pretty quick and would not take more than a second. So, the wrists need to be flexible and soft in order to generate a whip-like action.
If the wrists are too rigid and the whip-like action does not happen, then your stroke will not give you the long yards that you are looking for. So, if you find your drive strokes not flowing smoothly, then try relaxing the wrists a bit.
Related: 4 Golf Swing Distance Factors that Women Need to Know
Stable Lower Body
While going through your backswing, the weight of the body tends to shift to the back foot. On the other hand, while going through the downswing, your body weight then gets transferred to the front foot.
However, during this weight transitioning phase, the lower body must remain stable and your body should not sway.
If your body sways too much either towards the back or the front, then there is a chance that you may end up making contact with the ground near the tee/ball or you may strike the ball too high.
The perfect golf swing ends with the driver or the golf club hitting the ball square in the middle. If you are hitting the ball too high or too low, then make a conscious effort to keep the lower body stable.
Try not to sway too much on either side when you practice your strokes.
Aim Accuracy Drill
Sometimes, you get your backswing right, you transfer the weight perfectly, and you hit the golf ball sweetly from the middle of your driver. But the ball still ends up missing the target.
What could be the reason?
Perhaps, you did not line up correctly. The Aim Accuracy Drill will teach you how to align yourself with the target and increase your accuracy.
Take one extra golf club along with your driver. Put the ball on the tee and take position for the backswing.
Now, drop the extra golf club on the ground and line up the shaft such that it touches the tips of your two feet. Now, step out for a minute and observe where the dropped golf club is pointing.
If it is not pointing towards the target, then realign the club. Now, re-take your stance. Practice this drill over and over till the right alignment gets hardwired to your brain.
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