Starting the Club Downward

By Teresa Justine Kelly

golf course green in fall
You may have heard the expression "nothing happens in the backswing," meaning that the real importance of the golf shot is the downswing. Although the backswing is the golf position that sets you up for the downswing, the real power of the shot happens in the downswing. To have a solid, powerful golf shot, there are a few fundamental tips you should know about the downswing that will help you achieve a consistent shot every time.


Difficulty: Easy
  1. Stay on plane. To do this, using your driver, begin your downswing with the butt of the shaft of your club pointing at or near the ball.
  2. Keep your head quiet and behind the ball.
  3. Keep your left shoulder higher than your right.
  4. Maintain the clubface square at impact with your hands slightly ahead.
  5. Shift your weight from your right side to your left side, ending with your right foot facing upward, with your toe pointing to the ground.
  6. Finish with 90 percent of your weight on your front foot. Your finishing posture should be upright, balanced and forward.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep your tempo smooth. A fast tempo can throw you off your swing sequence.
  • If the shaft of the club is above the ideal plane on your downswing, it will be too steep, resulting in a sliced shot to the right. If your plane is below the ideal line, it will be too flat, resulting in a duck hook to the left or a blocked shot to the right.