By Rob Duca

You’ve probably heard golf announcers on television talk about a proper swing plane a thousand times. And yet, there’s a good chance that you still don’t understand exactly what it means, and there’s an even better chance that you have no clue how to achieve it.

But without it, you have little hope of hitting the ball with consistency and power.

What is it? Swing plane is the angle at which your club swings up and down and around your body, and it is a function of your spine angle and posture. More simply, it is the angle and path your club travels as you proceed from address to the top of your backswing to back through the ball. Most golfers who go off plane have it happen in the first 12 inches of the takeaway.

If you stand up too straight at address, your arms swing flatter, leading to topped or thin shots. Therefore, it is crucial to set your upper body over the ball, thus creating an athletic posture that encourages a good turn and allows your arms to swing around your body on a good plane. This will prevent you from coming over the top and cutting across the ball, causing a slice.

Here are some drills to help you with your swing plane.

  1. Bottle the Swing

Place an empty water bottle two inches outside the ball, leaving a tiny gap between your clubhead and the bottle at address. Make a swing without hitting the bottle. If you hit the bottle, you are taking an outside-in trajectory on the downswing. This drill will show you when your swing is off plane. Keep hitting balls until you’re able to make consistent contact without hitting the bottle.

If you want your swing to be more inside-out, place another bottle six inches directly behind the ball. The only way you’ll be able to make contact with the ball without hitting one of the bottles is by swinging inside-out, which promotes a draw.

  1. Imagine a Catcher’s Mitt

Many golfers hinge their wrists too early in the backswing, while others move the club too close to their body when they begin the swing. This drill will correct both issues.

Imagine there is a catcher crouching behind you with his glove in position to catch a pitch as you address the ball. Take the club back so it rests directly in the catcher’s mitt. If you don’t have a mitt at home, use a water bottle, placing it around 18 inches behind the ball. The goal is to hit the top of the bottle on your backswing without hinging your wrists and shifting your weight backward.

This drill is especially helpful for golfers who wrap their elbows too far around their body at the top of the backswing, which makes it nearly impossible to stop the arms from starting their release too early. This drill helps your body feel what it’s like to start the swing on plane, and it makes it easier to reach a position at the top of the swing where you can rotate the hips instead of using the arms on the downswing.

  1. Dot for Done Right

Your only aid here is a golf ball with a dot on it. Place the ball on the ground so that the dot is at the seven-o’clock position and you can see it at address. You want to make contact exactly with the dot on the ball. You will discover that it’s impossible to hit the dot on the ball with an outside-in swing path. You must swing the club inside-out.

This is a drill you can even use on the golf course, because there is no rule against marking your ball. Thus, mark your ball with a number of dots so that however your ball lies on the course there will always be a dot at the seven-o’clock position for you to focus on.

In the end, finding the correct swing plane is about training your body for muscle memory so that it becomes natural and instinctive. These simple drills will improve consistency, which builds confidence, which leads to lower scores.

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Wednesday, July 17th, 2024

The Golf Courses are open, and carts are available.

18-hole carts are available up to the 3:00pm starting time.

9-hole golf carts are available up to the 5:00pm starting time.

Drinking water is available at filling stations by the clubhouse. 

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