The right golf swing sequence is critical!
Upwards to 85% of golfers slice the ball. Occasionally the same players will hit a massive pull. That's because it is caused by the exact same swing path error. Most players who slice the ball think they do something completely different when they pull the ball. Typically only one little thing has changed and that's the club face. Your golf swing sequence has a lot to do with it.
While this can be more than demoralizing and frustrating for the average player and they get oh so sick of seeing it, it's not so bad for the teaching professional, because a slice is simply one of the easiest errors to fix.
There are many little details a teaching professional will check when a player is slicing the ball from alignment, to grip, to shoulder tilt, but in the end it's really all about the transition or golf swing sequence.
The most common cause of the slice is coming over the top of your swing plane.
The good news is you don't really have to mess with a lot of technical changes in your golf swing, you just need to understand two things to stop coming over the top.
They are sequence and timing.
Golf sequence is crucial
Let's look at sequence first. In all ball and stick type sports the stick works in a straight line downward before it starts to swing out or around. Think of a baseball batter at the plate waiting for a pitch. He is most likely holding the bat vertical as he stares down the pitcher.
As the throw comes his way, the bat drops back and straight down and only comes around as he rotates his shoulders over the plate.
If he went around first he'd be hitting the outside of the ball which is a big no no and the main cause of slices or pulls.
What normally happens to golfers
Slices occur when the face is open at impact combined with an outside/in path through the hitting zone and pulls occur when the face is closed. If you think of a tennis swing or a hockey swing you will see the exact same motion. The stick goes up, drops down and then goes around. The issue with golfers is they like to go around before they go down.
This stems from several causes that are physical (the inability to unwind the hips without also unwinding the shoulders) and mental (the urge to help or push the club to the ball or simply hit at the ball instead of swinging towards the target).
To fix a slice, slicers simply need to be able to wait until the club comes down on plane a bit before they start turning to the target.
It's a simple change in sequence. There's no big technical secret to share here.
You need to go down before around. Not around then down.
The only caveat is you need to have good timing in your swing in order to create the correct golf swing sequence.
WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW THAT DEMONSTRATES HOW TO GET A BETTER GOLF SWING SEQUENCE:
Timing is everything
It doesn't take a sharp eye to see that in general tour players have better timing in their swings than the everyday golfer. In fact, comments are made time and time again that professional golfers look so "smooth and effortless".
If you look closely you will see a 3 count to a skilled player's golf swing. They swing up, drop the club down on plane and then turn to the target.
The everyday hacker, however, has a 2 count to their swing. They swing up and then they swing down.
They completely miss the middle beat and don't allow the club to drop down on plane.
This ever so important transition move is the key to solid, controlled and long golf shots.
So before you go off tinkering with every little detail in your golf swing and overwhelm yourself with hundreds of swing thoughts I implore you to go out and work on your timing and golf swing sequence first.
How to do it right
Develop a nice 3 count beat to your swing. Make sure you don't rush down from the top and allow the club and your arms to drop vertically down on plane before you turn to the target.
Feel as if you are starting down in slow motion. You should feel your club gradually speeding up in the downswing, not moving fast right at the start.
Once you lock in your new sequence you will be striking the ball from an inside/out angle of attack increasing both your power and accuracy.
Maria Palozola is a Top 50 Instructor with the LPGA and is also ranked by Golf Digest as a Top 5 instructor in the state of Missouri.
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