How to Perform Late Release in the Golf Swing

By John Wagner
Learn to delay the release.
Learn to delay the release.

Many amateur golfers release the club too early in the swing. As golfers swing back they create an angle between the club shaft and the left arm (for right-handed golfers). This angle between the club and left arm is what is released during the downswing. Releasing the club too early in the downswing can cause a loss of distance, poor contact and lack of accuracy. To release the club later in the downswing, you need the proper grip, wrist hinge, arm position and hip turn. If you make these changes, you can gain distance, accuracy and better contact.

Hold the club in the fingers of your left hand. You should see three knuckles of your left hand when you have taken your grip. Grip the club in the fingers of your right hand. The "V" formed by your right index finger and thumb should point to your right shoulder. Relax your grip pressure and make sure you can still see three knuckles of your left hand.

The left arm should be straight at the top of the backswing.
The left arm should be straight at the top of the backswing.

Swing the club back and keep your left arm straight but don't lock your elbow. When you are halfway back in the backswing, your wrists should start hinging naturally. You should have a relatively straight left arm and a 90-degree angle between your left arm and the club at the top of your backswing.

Rotate your hips toward the target to start your downswing. Starting your downswing with your hips will allow you to hold your release longer. Keep turning your hips and shoulders toward the target as you swing through the ball. Keep your grip pressure light and your arms and hands relaxed as you swing down.

Make a small divot (for iron shots) after you have struck the ball. Being able to make a divot after you hit the ball is a tell-tale sign of a late release. You should not make a divot with a driver swing.

About the Author

John Wagner is a certified golf instructor and professional golfer with more than 10 years of experience. As a certified GolfTEC, TPI Level 3 and Chuck Cook Golf Instructor, he has given more than 9,000 golf lessons.

Photo Credits

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