Photo & video by Joachim Guay
By Matthew Brookes
A proper grip is fundamental to good golf. Next cab off the rank is a sound set-up which can greatly enhance your ability to move the club correctly throughout the swing.
We regularly see amateurs setting up in the wrong posture with tight hamstrings or a scapula stability issue often to blame. Your pro will be able to quickly identify any physical limitations that are causing you to set-up incorrectly or if you have any trouble with the following routine which will ensure you’re balanced and positioned correctly every time.
Start in a tall standing position, legs locked straight, and then move your feet shoulder width apart (or wider to suit the club you’re hitting such as a driver). Now place the club on your chest and stomach, pulling the club towards the body with your hand. Ensure there is always contact with the body. This connection will help activate the upper back muscles which are very important further down the line in the set-up.
Now relax your knees a fraction, allowing just the slightest bit of bend, before hinging forward from the hip until the club is sticking out between your legs behind you, creating a tail.
The key thing to look for on video or in the mirror when reviewing this movement is for a flat lower back. You must avoid “anterior tilt” of the pelvis, often called a “S posture”. A flat or neutral back helps keep the core engaged in the golf swing, vital for power and consistency.
The pulling of the golf club towards the body noted earlier is very important to help with a better turn in the backswing. It also helps prevent rounding of the upper back, otherwise known as a “C posture”.
Another checkpoint is to draw a line vertically down from the back of the right shoulder joint or allow your club to hang vertically from this position. Check that the line of club passes just in front of the knee cap and into the ball of your foot. This will help make sure your pressure is evenly distributed between the toes and heels.
Follow this simple routine and you’ll be on your way to replicating a stronger and more balanced set-up position again and again.
Matthew Brookes is a PGA teaching professional and golf specific fitness trainer at Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club’s Peter Cowen Academy Dubai.