Arm Position

, GolfLink Editor
Updated August 28, 2023
Man swinging a golf club
    Man swinging a golf club
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Your arms play a major role in what the golf club does during your swing. Here's how to make sure your arms work to help your golf swing.

Left Arm Connection

Left arm connection (for right-handed golfers) is one of the really important fundamentals that we teach at our golf schools.

I am talking about how your left arm connects to the upper part of the left side of your body going into impact and past impact, right here.

A lot of golfers disconnect, the arm comes off, it slides, it buckles up, and you get a gap underneath the armpit. Of all the great players I have spent time with and played with, they all agree that this is an important idea.

Sam Snead talked to me about this in length about his swing. How he wanted this left arm connected. Nothing under the left arm. That is something I look at very carefully with all the people that come to our golf school. When I watch them come into impact I see if I can see any kind of air under the armpit. I see if they are connected and then this move right here, as things work together, the left shoulder, the left arm, work together through impact. That is something I see in all the great ball strikers.


Proper Left Arm Position in the Golf Swing

I want you to understand that the clubface is controlled by your left elbow.

If my left elbow rolls, look how that changed the clubface. And not only when the left elbow rolls here does it change the clubface, it changes your radius, and it changes your arc.

Keep your left elbow down, look how your arc stays the same, look how the face of the club stays the same and the radius of the golf swing stays the same.

You can do this by simply connecting the left arm to your shoulder, feeling that you hold a handkerchief under, and by the simple feeling of keeping your left elbow down going back and your left elbow down going through. 

How Hands Control Your Golf Swing


In the golf swing these hands have a very specific roll, each one. For a right handed player the left hand controls the clubface, whether it is open or closed. The right hand controls the clubhead, that means the amount of forward lean that the club has when you hit your golf ball. What you have to do is train each hand independently so that it can have its proper roll.

Drill: Get the Proper Arm Position

What we see that is often wrong, is that the left arm is coming through on top.

  • To get the left arm out of the way we have a little drill where we put the right hand on the left bicep. Then swing the club through and just let the left arm relax and the left wrist break.
  • Then you put the right hand on the club and you are in a good release position.
  • So again, the arms should be in a position with the left wrist bent, left arm folded, right arm extended and the hands in front of the center of the body.

The Correct Arm Position for the Perfect Swing

One of the most common mistakes that I see golfers make is not keeping their arms in the proper relationship with their body when they turn. When you set up to the golf ball your arms are right in front of your body.

When you turn you want to keep them in front of your body as you go back, out in front of your body as you get to the top, out in front of you as you come down and the same as you come through.

Maintaining the proper relationship with your hands, your arms and body is the key to a consistent golf swing.

How to Perfect Your Rotary Swing Shape

When you’re making a full swing, we want a more rounded-shape swing. Think of it like a circle, where the club works around your body on the backswing and around your body on the through-swing. It will help you finish in balance.