The Perfect Golf Swing: Keep Your Head Down!
Perhaps the most common mistake among amateur golfers and newcomers to the game is their propensity to pull their head off of the ball during the course of the swing. In 90% of sports, the adage, "keep your eye on the ball," is a relative standard. Golf is no different. Today, we'll talk a little bit about how pulling the head negatively affects the swing, and a tip you can use to ensure that your swing doesn't fall victim to this nasty habit.
You have to see it to hit it!
The first reason you'll want to keep your eyes focused on the ball until the very moment it makes contact with your club is rather obvious: if you can't see it, you're not going to hit it well.
Many new golfers are tempted to let their eyes follow the take away of their club as it draws back from the ball. If the eyes don't remain firmly planted, however, it's difficult to have them find their place again in time to have full vision of the ball when it matters most- at the point of contact.
The head leads the entire body
More vital than seeing the ball, however, is the monumental importance of keeping your body in line to make clean contact with the ball. Pulling the eyes away from the ball forces the head to follow suit, subsequently drawing the shoulders out of alignment. By this point, not only can you not see the ball, you're so far off that you'll be lucky if you'll mae any kind of contact at all, much less a clean shot.
Most commonly, pulling ones head off the ball forces the golfer to straighten his back, bringing the club up higher. Even the slightest change can negatively affect the swing, preventing you from striking the lower half of the ball for loft and distance.
Try this for practice
Avoiding pulling your head is a matter of building good habits. That means you should use trips to the range to create good muscle memory for the course.
Take a piece of chalk, and make a small mark about one inch behind the ball. This should be your focal point throughout your swing. Force yourself to keep your eyes trained on that point even after you've hit the ball, counting a full three seconds before you allow your eyes to come up and search the horizon for the ball you just hit. Chances are, if you're really keeping your eyes where they are supposed to be, you'll know exactly where your ball ended up, because you'll be able to see the angle at which your ball leaves the tee (or turf) after your club makes contact.
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