Watch the pros on Tour and notice how in-control they look at the finish position of the their golf swing. Why? Because they are!
They are in perfect balance. Even the pro who might look a little crooked at the end of the swing has a balanced swing. Vijay, who is slightly bent to the side at the finish position of his driver, is still in perfect balance.
How often do you think an amateur practices or even thinks about his or her finish position? Probably never. I would surmise that once contact has been made with the golf ball, most amateurs thoughts shift to the ball flight rather than where our body is finishing the swing.
Why is the finish position so important to a successful golf swing? And beyond that being in a balanced finishing position?
The finish position is directly related to two very important concepts involved in the golf swing. Number one is swing plane and clubhead is number two.
The swing plane is defined as the path on which the golf club should travel upon during the swing.
A quick review of the swing plane tells us that beginning with the address position, into the backswing, onto to the downswing, into impact, to follow through, and completing with the finish position, the golf club is intended to travel on a specific arch. This arch is a result of the biomechanics of the golf swing sequencing properly. In other words, everything working with the correct timing.
Think of the club traveling in a circle during the swing.
This imaginary circle is your swing plane and it dissects your back shoulder on the backswing and transition phases of the swing.
Returns to the same position as you started at impact with the ball, and dissects your front shoulder during the follow through into the finish position.
If the golfer maintains the clubhead on this path during the swing this is an indication that the mechanics of the swing are being performed properly.
What does a balanced finishing position have to do with the swing plane?
A balanced finishing position is yet another indicator that, number one, the golf club is following the correct swing plane, and number two, the golfer is performing the mechanics of the swing in the correct sequencing with proper timing.
Secondly, the finish position is directly related to what is referred to as feeling the clubhead.
Ask any Tour player they will tell you that they can feel the clubhead at any moment during the swing.
Completing the swing in a balanced finish position requires you to be tension free and feeling the club head through the entire swing.
Now the bigger question is, how does the amateur golfer get to a balance finish position?
Easier said than done. To develop feel in the swing, maintain the proper swing path, and develop a balanced finish position requires mastering three principles.
Principle number one is proper swing mechanics. In order to develop feel and correct swing path requires the golfer to develop the correct mechanics of the swing.
Not only do you need to learn the different fundamentals of the swing, you need to train yourself to put these fundamental in proper sequence.
Principle number two is the body. The body swings the club. Your body must have the flexibility, balance capabilities, strength, endurance, and power to perform the mechanics of the swing.
If the body is unable to take the club on the proper swing plane because of a lack of flexibility or lacks the power to develop clubhead speed. The ability to maintain a proper swing path, and finish in a balanced position will be compromised.
Principle number three is practice. In order to develop the proper swing plane, create feel for the club, master the mechanics of the swing, and develop a body to support the swing, you must practice the swing and train the body. Over time this will result in the development of components of a proper golf swing.
The amateur will often leave out one of the three principles. If the golfer does not practice, train the body, or develop swing mechanics, it is unlikely ou will keep the clubhead on the correct swing plane.
Bottom line, a balanced finish position is a very good indicator that particular swing was efficient. It also should tell you that your body is flexible, strong, and powerful.
About the Author
Sean Cochran is one of the most recognized golf fitness instructors in the world today. He travels the PGA Tour regularly with 2005 PGA & 2004 Masters Champion Phil Mickelson. He has made many of his golf tips, golf instruction and golf swing improvement techniques available to amateur golfers on the web.