Ian Poulter

Classic swing, modern day result

Ian Poulter-opener

This swing analysis of Ian Poulter was updated May 16, 2017

There’s no doubt Ian Poulter can golf his ball. Surely everyone remembers the 2012 Ryder Cup when Ian single-handedly propped the Euros on his shoulders. Ian’s play was the catalyst for one of the single greatest comebacks in Ryder Cup history. In fact, Poulter has logged several epic Ryder Cup performances over his career. So how does this confident player do it? Golf Tips Top-25 Instructor John Stahlschmidt breaks down four key positions in Ian’s motion.

1 Take a look at Ian’s positioning here. This is indicative of the modern, more centered pivot. Yes, his weight has moved into his back leg, but you can see his head has stayed relatively passive during the backswing. Nice width, too, thanks to Ian’s long, lanky build. He’s poised for making a powerful move into the ball.

2 You want to hit it farther? Take a look at the amount of lag. This is the angle between his lead arm and the shaft. As you can see, Ian has at least a 90__ angle. This will set up good impact conditions with forward shaft lean and a tremendous amount of clubhead speed through the golf ball.

Ian Poulter-late lag3Impressively, Ian still has tremendous lag at this point in his swing. And he’s hitting a middle iron! Added lag also means he doesn’t have to lose his spine angle and lift his upper body until well after impact with the ball.

Ian Poulter-impact4. The club is right on path heading into into impact, and Ian’s hands are right where they were at address, signaling that his timing is spot-on and his balance is sharp.

Ian Poulter-braced left leg5 Notice how the shaft is an extension of Ian’s left arm post-impact. This is an awesome position, indicating he hit down on the ball with no scooping motion. Ian trusts his lofts, meaning the ball will get up on its own and there’s no need to flip the hands and arms to get the ball airborne.

Ian Poulter-hand release6. Ian’s sightline stays “through the ball,” even though the ball itself is long gone. This is because he has kept his posture, his head over the impact zone and allowed his hands to fully release.

Ian Poulter-follow-through7 As with all the Tour pros, Ian has moved into a balanced finish in which the majority of his weight favors his lead foot. This is a great position for everyone to mimic–hold this position until the ball lands!

John Stahlschmidt, PGA, is the Senior Head Instructor for TOURAcademy TPC Scottsdale. To comment, you can email John at johnst@touracademy.com.

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