Backswing Weight Shift – Cause or Effect
Cindy Jones P.G.A. Professional
Savannah Golf School
There are a number of misconceptions about the golf swing that can cause golfers to play below the level of their natural ability. How and when the weight shift occurs during the basckswing is a concept that experience as an instructor has taught me, is greatly misunderstood and often wrongly applied. Anyone who has played golf recognizes that weight moves toward the rear foot during the backswing. At issue is how this occurs. Do we need to shift our weight or is the weight shift an effect?
To illustrate the point, do the following: Stand up straight with your arms straight out in front of you and hands together, palms facing each other. If you are a right- handed golfer, keep your arms parallel to the ground, and swing your hands to the right while keeping your hands in front of the center of your chest. Notice that this movement has caused some of your body weight to be transported to the rear foot. The point is this, you did not have to CAUSE the weight to move there – it happened as an effect of you moving your hands. When swinging a golf club, except for a change in posture from doing this exercise, basically the same thing will occur. This means the weight shift in our backswing is an effect – so don’t TRY to make it happen or you run the risk of lateral body motion (sway), in your backswing – and inconsistent golf shots.
If in the past, you’ve started your backswing by consciously shifting your weight to your back foot, keep this tip in mind the next time you play. Allow the movement of the hands, arms and club in the backswing to cause weight shift to occur. Don’t try to shift your weight allow it move naturally – it will increase the likelihood of hitting more crisp, consistent golf shots.