One of the most under rate, least talked about areas of the golf swing in the importance of good footwork. Good footwork is largely the function of a good golf swing. Your set up, body movements, weight transfer and so on all affect what your feet are doing.
In this article we are going to look at what good footwork is, and how your body and weight need to move in order to achieve “fancy footwork” and solid golf shots.
BE LIGHT ON YOUR FEET
To swing in balance we need to start in a balanced position, meaning your weight will be distributed equally over your left and right legs. It will also be on the “balls” of your feet.
If you are out of position at the set up your body will do everything it can to get balanced during the swing, which means your swing will be all about compensations and timing.
When you are getting into your set up position, make sure you “jostle” around with your feet to ensure that you don’t freeze. Freezing will make it impossible to make an athletic body movement when you swing.
LOADED AND STABLE
At the top of the backswing it is vital that we are “loaded” into our back leg, and that we are “stable”. You must understand that the back leg it the pivot-point of your backswing, meaning that you are turning around your back leg.
If you have achieved this correctly, your weight will be on the inside of your back foot towards the heel.
1. TOO MUCH LOWER BODY SLIDE
This gets your weight too much on the out side of your back foot. Not only will you have no stability but you will also find it hard to make a consistent move into impact.
2. TOO MUCH UPPER BODY MOVEMENT OFF THE BALL
If your weight moves too far off the ball (away from the target) you might find it hard to keep your front heel planted.
Let’s start by saying that “set up” and “impact” are totally different. At impact we have more weight on our front foot, our hips are much more open than set up, our shoulders are slightly open and our shaft is leaning forwards.
If you look at the PGA Tour players swings in slow motion and paused their swing at impact you would see almost all of them with their back heel raised slightly off the ground.
This is the function of correct weight transfer and hip rotation.
1. The heel is “pulled” of the ground by the rotation of the hips and the transfer of weight to the front foot.
2. The heel leads the toe.
1. Keeping your back foot on the ground.
2. Raising all the way on to your toes.
The finish position tells us more about the swing than you might realize. By accessing and evaluating your feet position at this point will tell you a lot about how you transferred you weight during the swing.
At this point, you want to have 95-percent of your weight on your front foot.
The toe should be the only of your back foot touching the ground. If you are able to achieve this, then your weight transferred to your front foot.
AVOID HANGING BACK!
If you still have weight on your back foot then you can bet that your weight did not transfer correctly during the swing.
Pay close attention to the position and amount of weight you have on your back foot. Here, it looks as though I transferred my weight, but look closely at my foot. There is too much weight on this foot for me to get all the way up to my
AVOID FLAT FEET!
If your feet are flat then you are in trouble. You can bet your life that you swung down with your hands, and didn’t use your body. You’re in trouble!
THE DRILL - PART ONE "LOAD UP"
1. Place a ball under the heel of your back foot.
Make sure it is also position on the outer side of your heel.
This will angle your foot “inwards” slightly, and will ensure that your weight does not move to the outside of your foot during the backswing.
2. Swing to the top of your backswing, while you transfer around 80-percent of your weight to your back foot.
Make sure that the ball under your heel doesn’t move. Use the ball to load up on your back leg without sliding your weight to the outside of your foot.
Now you are loaded!
THE DRILL - PART TWO "PUSH OFF"
3. Use the ball to push off with your back foot during the downswing.
This will create an explosive body movement that will assist you with delivering power at the ball!
By the time you arrive at impact, you should expect to see your back heel 3-5 inches off the ground.
4. Access your finish position by evaluating your weight distribution and back foot position.
If you have done this drill correctly, you will feel almost all of your weight on your front foot, with your back foot straight up on the toe.
You should be able to “tap” your toe up and down!
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