golfer in the morning

The great thing about the game of golf is the fact that is truly for everyone. Regardless of age and athletic ability, once a player can develop a good natural feeling swing they will have a chance to have fun out on the course. If you find yourself as someone who just wants to take some simple steps in to learning the basics, this post is for you. I will take you through some pointers on how to properly swing a golf club.

Step 1: The Golf Swing Stance

The first part of learning a proper golf swing is having an athletic stance for your swing to follow through from. Posture is everything and it will be very important that your body can maintain a fluent balance throughout the duration of your swing.

When golfer is getting ready to swing the golf club they should be standing square behind the ball, their body weight should reside on the pad of your foot that sits behind your toes. This body weight distribution allows your body to fluently rotate through. To obtain this proper balance it is key that the golfer is breaking at the knees in a bent over manner well keeping your upper body portion gently angled over towards the ball.

Golf Stance
Using other irons from your set can be very helpful in making sure you’re square with your desired target. Being square for your shot is key for develop accuracy and consistency.

Step 2: How to Properly Grip Golf Club

The proper grip for swinging a golf club is an often overlooked attribute when a beginner is learning how to swing. Having a correct golf grip will not only enhance the power of your swing but, also the consistency of straight contact on the ball.

When first learning a correct golf club is normal for it too feel a bit uncomfortable. It will become a natural feeling over time so do not worry when you are beginning to adjust your grip.

Now at this point as right handed golfer, you should have your glove on your left hand and a golf club ready to hold. Make sure your left hand is the first hand to grip the club residing on the top of the golf grip roughly a half inch from the top. The thumb of your left hand should be pointing directly down the length of the club.

Top Hand Golf Grip
Left thumb pointing directly down the shaft of the club.

Now bringing the right hand into context, you should have it sitting below the left hand well interlocking your right hand pinky and your left hand index (pointer) finger.

Golf Grip
Left hand index finger interlocking with the pinky finger of the right hand. This is vice-versa for left handed golfers.

Most of your grip strength should reside in the left hand as it is the control mechanism when following through your swing. Your grip should never be super tight as this is a common misconseption. Obviously, it has to be tight enough to maintian grip on the club but, having a grip that is too tight will cause you to reduce the overall mobility you have with your golf swing.

Step 3: Adding Power Into Your Golf Swing

Now once you have your stance and your grip down lets move on to how you can create power when learning how to swing a golf club. As we have learned proper posture and stance play a vital role in the golf swing. Well maintaining the proper stance is what is going to allow you as a golfer to really get some torque behind the ball itself.

A common misconception when first learning how to swing a golf club is that a beginner often thinks much their of power comes from the hands and arms themselves. This is not the case, most of the power you generate comes from the twisting momentum you create in your core and hips. Developing a proper body rotation is a key attribute to improving your distance and accuracy.

You want to also make sure that your rotation is properly timed with you arm rotation through the body. Having your hip rotation and arms in sync will help you develop a consistent contact on the ball. Once you can develop a well-timed out swing and in sync, repetition and practice of this task at your local golf range will ease you into a more “natural” feeling swing

Step 4: Keeping Wrists Straight

Another common mistake for beginners when learning how to swing a golf club is breaking at the wrist. When a golfer breaks his wrist there is going to be an error with the contact of the ball causing an inaccurate shot or possibilty of a shank.

You can prevent this from happening if you learn to focus on breaking your elbow properly. Your back elbow break at a 90 degree plane, this will be your right elbow if you are a righty golfer and your left elbow if you are a lefty golfer

Step 5: Back Swing

Now that we understand the aspects that make an accurate and powerful shot, its key to address wear errors can begin to take form. Another common spot where errors occur is the back swing, especially for those who are baseball players.

When taking the club away from the ball its often that a beginner will take the club back too far. The club should be brought back behind your head and remain parallel to the ground. Often a new golfer will either not go back far enough but, more commonly too far. When the club begins to point towards the ground you have gone too far. I understand you want to generate as much power as possible to hit the ball far but, once you pass the parallel plane you will lose power and accuracy as your body and hands will become out of sync.

Correct golf back swing
Notice how the golf club is roughly 95% parallel with the ground underneath me. There is going to a mild break of the plane which is okay when you learn how to maintain a fluent swing. (I do this to add a mild increase in power to my swing)
Incorrect golf back swing
This picture captures the mistake of breaking the parallel plane. This error causes the golfer to lose the timing that must remain transparent and fluent between the hands and torso.

Additional Tips: How to Swing a Golf Club

Just to add some additional tips on learning to critique your golf swing as a beginner. You are going to excited to watch your shot play out but, it is crucial that you keep your eyes on the ball the entire swing. I have seen so many times where a new golfer picks there head up resulting in them either topping the ball or shanking. Maintaining eye contact on the ball not only improves your ball contact but, prevents you from picking up your body.

It is going to be frustrating at first when trying to put all these tips together. Like I said golf is a game for everyone but, only if you have patience. You are not going to become a Tiger Woods in one day so you have to stick with it and practice at the range.

I encourage you to try these tips out the next time you are at the golf range. For me it was best to take in a couple tips at a time and try to perfect them before moving onto the next part of your swing.

Let me know if you have any questions and remember it takes time, be patient and have fun out on the course!