Weighing In

Shift your weight correctly for the proper swing path

Why am I standing on two scales? Read below to find out the secret to a good weight shift.

I know that many of my students may think they understand how their balance shifts throughout their swings, but they often don’t really feel it until I show them this drill.

All I’ve done here is bring out two scales to illustrate how my weight shifts. Although I wouldn’t suggest hitting balls from on top of the scales (being higher than you nor-mally would stand will lead to inconsistent ballstriking), I do think it’s a simple, visual way of determining how your weight does (or does not) shift. Try this drill the next time you’re on the range and check how the needle moves during the following four checkpoints. Then retain that feeling on your full swings.

1. When addressing the ball on a normal iron shot, your weight should be distributed close to 50/50 between your left and right foot.

2. At the top of the swing, 80% of your weight should be on your dominant side. For most golfers, that means weight on the inside of their right foot.

3. At impact, your weight should be transferring to your weaker side so that 70% of your weight is on your front foot, while 30% remains on your back foot.

4. When I finish, I want 90% of my weight on my left side, while 10% remains on my right. Another way of saying this is, in your finish, show me the sole of your dominant foot.

If your weight shift gets out of whack (say, you finish with 90% of your weight on your dominant side and fall backwards), then you’ll be making dreaded “over-the-top” swings. This “out-to-in” path leads to big slices and weak, ugly shots. To ensure you make the best contact, work on this weight drill and see how it impacts your path. Then take it out to the course and make sure you retain the same weight shifts!

Frank O’Connell, PGA, teaches at We-Ko-Pa Golf Club near Scottsdale, Ariz. For more information, visit frankoconnellgolf.com.

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