Some Keys to Solving the Backswing Push
The backswing is vital to a successful golf shot, and in some ways, is more important than the downswing. When you get the backswing right and put the club in a good position, it is almost hard not to hit a good shot. So focusing on the backswing during your practice sessions is a good idea, and one that should help you make a lot of progress in your game.
One common mistake during the backswing is something called the ‘backswing push’. This occurs when you ‘push’ the club back away from the ball, instead of rotating back naturally by simply turning your shoulders away from the target. This kind of push puts the club in a poor position and sets you up for failure right from the start. If you are going to make a quality backswing, you need to remove this flaw from your technique. Following are three tips that can help you to solve the backswing push.
- Focus on lead shoulder. When you are starting the backswing, focus on turning your lead shoulder away from the target (left shoulder for right handed golfer). The shoulder should rotate under your chin, and the club should just being going along for the ride at this point. If your arms or hands are too active during the start of the backswing, a ‘push’ is the likely outcome.
- Bend your knees. Many golfers who struggle with pushing the club away in the backswing are also those who stand with their legs straight at address. Make sure to take an athletic stance when you prepare to hit a shot, including flexed knees that give you balance and a good, stable base. If you need to, practice taking your stance (minus the club) in front of a mirror to get a good visual of how much knee flex you need for an athletic-looking address position.
- Slow down. The start of the backswing is a motion that should start slowly and gather speed as it goes. If you start to fast, your shoulders might not be able to keep up and you might continue to push the club head away from the ball as a result. Make sure the first few inches of your backswing don’t get too fast, and then you can steadily start to gain speed as you get farther along into your backswing, and eventually into the downswing.