No more flying right elbow
Do you struggle to hit straight shots off the tee and right through to the green? Do most of your shots go straight left or have a huge left to right bend that end up in the water, bunker or even out of bounds? Do you hit topped shots or hit the golf ball fat and see it barely make the ladies tee blocks? If this sounds like you, then there’s a good chance you suffer from a flying right elbow which is severely damaging your golf scores.
You’re not alone, the flying right elbow at the top of the backswing is one of the most common faults in amateur golfers.
The good news is fixing the flying right elbow is easy and any golfer can achieve this by making one small adjustment.
What does the flying right elbow look like
Just like the name implies the flying right elbow is when the right arm (right hander) raises up and points away from your body. See the image at the top and how the flying right elbow looks. The right elbow at the top of the backswing raises up and points away from the body and even gets close to a horizontal position.
Take this FREE Golf Swing Test to see if you make this 1 critical mistake in the backswing that's linked to the flying right elbow.
I've taken it and was amazed at what I was doing wrong, but now my elbow position is perfect!
What type of shots will it cause
Here are 5 typical shots a flying right elbow will cause unless you make compensations in the downswing.
- Pulled shots to the left due to the steep downswing and a square clubface
- Sliced shots out to the right due to the steep downswing and an open clubface
- Fat shots due to a steep downswing and hitting the ground before the golf ball
- Thinned shots due to a steep downswing and not taking enough grass before the golf ball.
- Shanked golf shots due to steep downswing and the hosel making contact with the golf ball first.
You’ll notice with every bad shot it relates to a steep downswing.
The flying right elbow puts your golf swing on a steep plane at the top and unless you make a compensation on the downswing your club will come down very steep and cause any one of the above problems.
The magic of the right elbow pit
I learnt a very simple way of fixing the flying right elbow from the team at Rotary Swing.
Watch this revealing video that explains how you can fix your flying right elbow by making one small change to your set up and backswing.
WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW WHERE I DEMONSTRATE HOW TO FIX YOUR FLYING RIGHT ELBOW:
1 simple move that fixes the flying right elbow
At your set up turn your right forearm outwards so that your right elbow pit faces towards the golf ball. This puts your right arm in the biomechically correct position so that it is able to rotate properly in the backswing.
This gets your right elbow perfectly placed at the top of the swing and on the correct golf swing plane.
You should always keep this elbow pit facing skywards throughout the golf backswing.
This simple checkpoint that will make a huge improvement in your golf swing from start to finish.
Try it out and see just how much a difference it makes for you.
Why this simple change works
To understand why this simple move of turning your right elbow pit forward and then maintaining this position throughout the golf backswing works, you need to see what happens when you don't do it. As explained in the video see what happens when the right elbow pit faces left at set up and then points down during the backswing.
You'll notice the clubhead gets pulled behind your body and as a result you are forced to raise your right elbow at the top to feel comfortable.
The golf club gets off plane and the clubhead remains shut or closed.
This is a dangerous move and will require a lot of compensations in the downswing to save the swing, not to mention an increased chance of injury.
What is the ideal position of the right elbow
The ideal position of the right elbow at the top of the backswing is where is points roughly straight down at your right hip. The reason this is ideal is it gets your hands and the golf club in front of your body in a great position to make the transition into the downswing.
From here you are best positioned to come more from the inside and strike the golf ball solid and hit it straight and even with a slight draw.
This is the position (below) that most professional golfers look like at the top of their golf swings.
What about Furyk, Watson, and Couples
What about Jim Furyk, Bubba Watson and Freddie Couples and their flying right elbows you say? Good point, because these great players all play successfully with a flying right elbow. In fact all 3 golfers are major winners and some of the best players of all time. What these guys all have in common is they have enormous talent and have the ability to play with an imperfection and still make great contact with the golf ball.
In these examples all three players drop the golf club down sharply at the start of their downswings to compensate for the high right elbow.
This drops the club in the slot and allows them to attack the golf ball from the inside.
If they didn’t make this key move they would come down too steep and wouldn’t be the great players that they are.
Unless you have enormous talent likes these three I would recommend trying to keep the right elbow down which makes it easier to get the club into the right downswing position.
A second solution that also works
A great way to eliminate the flying right elbow is to incorporate training aids to act as practice drills.
These can be very powerful and great to work on away from the golf course.
WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW THAT DEMONSTRATES 1 SIMPLE PRACTICE DRILL TO FIX YOUR FLYING RIGHT ELBOW:
3 fixes that also work
Here are 3 fixes that work really well and will get you into the right position at the top of the backswing.
- Grab a soccer ball, bucket or something of similar size it doesn’t really matter. Place it between your bicep muscles and practice making golf swings without a club. As soon as you try to lift the right elbow too high at all the object will fall to the ground. This forces you to keep that right elbow down and pointing to the right hip.
- Buy a rotary connect or power band to help keep you better connected. It works the same as the previous tip and is placed around the bicep muscles. It provides better connection with the arms and will fall off if you try to lift that right elbow too high as soon as the elbows begin to fold.
- Keep the right elbow pit facing in front of you towards the golf ball. The right elbow should be pointing at your right leg. This gets you in the right set up position to ensure your right elbow stays down more and doesn’t get too high and behind your body.
Remember to focus on keep that right elbow pointing at the right hip and you’ll be in the perfect position at the top of your backswing.
Practice this slowly at first with at least 20 repetitions a day until your body becomes used to the feeling.
It will feel strange at first but after a week of performing these drills on a daily basis your body will adapt and get used to it.
Warning: Don’t go to the golf course straight away and attempt this at full swing speed as it’s most likely you’ll fall into old habits and start raising the elbow again.
Curing the flying right elbow is not that difficult with constant training and practice.
Give these tips a try and let me know the results, I would love to hear.
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS POST PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW, AND DON’T FORGET TO SHARE WITH YOUR GOLFING MATES AT YOUR FAVOURITE SOCIAL MEDIA ICON TO THE LEFT.
This post may contain affiliate links. I make money from these affiliate links to keep the site free for users, and it is no cost to you.