I have seen several golfers lately who come for a lesson and tell me they are always starting the ball left (right for left handed golfers) and hitting pulls, so they think they must be coming over the top. When I look at their swing path through video and when I put them on the launch monitor it does not show an over the top swing. They look at me so confused about how can they hit it left of the target if they are not coming over the top.
In order to get the ball started on line, the club face must be square to your target at impact. The face of the club at impact determines the launch direction. The path of the club will determine curve (spin) and path relative to face determines the overall shape of the shot. So the first step for any golfer is learning to control the club face at impact so they can get the ball started on line.
A good drill is to put an alignment rod about 20 feet in front of you and practice launching the ball right of the rod by controlling the club face in an open position at impact. Then try to launch some shots left of the rod by controlling the club face in a slightly closed position at impact. Finally try to launch some shots right over the top of the rod by keeping the club face square at impact.
A second drill that gives golfers a really good feel for a square impact position is to take swings into an impact bag. You will feel how the club face squares up once it hits the bag. I suggest taking these swings in slow motion so you can feel the club face squaring up.
Once you can start the ball on line, you will have a much better feel for the club face at impact. I will talk about path and curve in another article.
For more information please visit kandicomergolf.com or stop by and visit us at Kandi Comer Golf located just outside Charlottesville at Old Trail Golf Club in Crozet, VA.