How to Start a Golf Swing

By George N. Root III
The beginning stages of your swing will determine club head speed, accuracy and the placement of your next shot.
The beginning stages of your swing will determine club head speed, accuracy and the placement of your next shot.

The beginning steps of a golf swing establish how the rest of the swing will turn out. Some people think that all you do is grab the club and hit the ball; but any good golf teacher knows that there is much more to the start of a good golf swing than that.

Lay one of the clubs down on the ground, pointing in the direction you would like to swing. This will be used to line up your swing at the intended target. You will not be hitting a ball in this exercise, so you can choose any target that you would like. Line your feet up in a straight line with the club, and then place your feet shoulder-width apart. Grab the other club with both hands, extend your arms fully and straighten your back. Flex your knees to bring the club down as though you were addressing a ball.

At this point you need to stop. Pay attention to your breathing and your heartbeat. Are you breathing fast? Is your heart pounding in anticipation of making contact with the ball? Inhale with a deep breath and then close your eyes; this will help you get your breathing under control. It is impossible to play the game of golf with good tempo if your breathing is not under control. As your breathing starts to slow down, start to feel the rhythm of your breathing. Use this rhythm to help you create your swing tempo.

Open your eyes and focus on the area where you would be addressing a ball (if one were there). Now you have reached the point where you can overthink your swing. Every golfer has that feeling that they are comfortable and ready to swing the club. One of the things that separates the professionals from the amateurs is that the professionals know that when they get that feeling, they swing the club. Amateurs will continue to stare at the ball and try to analyze everything before they start their swing. When you are given that instinctive green light, go with it and start your swing.

About the Author

George N. Root III began writing professionally in 1985. His publishing credits include a weekly column in the "Lockport Union Sun and Journal" along with the "Spectrum," the "Niagara Falls Gazette," "Tonawanda News," "Watertown Daily News" and the "Buffalo News." Root has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the State University of New York, Buffalo.

Photo Credits

  • Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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