Peter Thomson, the Australian golfer who won five British Opens and then went on to become a member of parliament in his home country, was once asked why he had never written a book on the mechanics of the golf swing. His reply was that it would be the shortest book in the history of the game, perhaps only one page in length, because the golf swing was 90% all in the setup; the other 10% was just swinging the club. And, so many great golfers throughout history have agreed with Thomson; that is, there are two parts to every swing, the setup and then the swing itself.
The setup is referred to as the position we all get into before taking the actual swing. It includes a good grip, the correct ball position in relation to the feet with all the various clubs, good posture over the ball, and naturally being lined up properly to the target. The great thing about the setup is that these are all areas that everyone can become good at because they do not require any strength or movement. Once a golfer is set up properly over the ball, then of course he/she must swing the club.
In a full golf swing itself, there are a few basic essentials that need to be adhered to:
1) At the top of the swing, there is more weight on the back foot, and at the end of the swing there is more weight on the front foot.
2) The golfer should stay at the same height during the swing. In other words, if he/she sets up over the ball at 58, they should be 58 at impact.
3) At the moment of impact, the head should be to the right of the ball, not past the ball.
Understanding these fundamental can start anyone on their way to a successful and enjoyable golfing pastime.
By Geoff Bryant, USGTF President