By Mike Kinloch
To help complete the correct backswing movement and the swing in general, a lot can be accomplished without hitting balls. Instead, you can practice motion drills to help enforce the correct movement patterns that are required for a functional swing. This can be done at home, during your warm-up or interspersed throughout your practice sessions.
One that I use frequently creates a good feel and movement for the backswing. It is done by taking your golf posture and holding the club overhand with the top hand and underhand with the bottom hand. The hands are about shoulder-width apart. The club will hang under the shoulders with the shaft parallel to the target line.
The feeling you want from this start position is that the chest and arms move the club away together, each hand staying opposite their respective chest and shoulder. This feeling continues as the body spirals the club up and around to the top of the backswing. My preference in the swing is to maintain good width on the backswing so this is the feel I am looking for as I complete the movement with the lead shoulder under the chin. I want to feel that at the top of the movement I have maintained the space between the shaft and my chest that I had in the start position.
When done correctly, this gives a great feeling of how the body moves the club to the top of the swing and how the rear shoulder and arm should feel when it gets there. The shoulder should be sat down and loaded at the top of the swing. Really concentrate on how this move feels as you perform it, then try to mimic the sensation when you make a golf swing. Avoid lifting and pinching the shoulder as you practice the movement as this will move the arm and club into a poor position.
The more correct repetitions you make of the movement, the easier it will be to carry that sensation into a golf shot and out on to the course for lower scores.
Michael Kinloch is Head Professional at Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club’s Peter Cowen Academy Dubai.