An Easy Drill to Control the Swing Plane in Golf

An Easy Drill to Control the Swing Plane in Golf

As we look at the club, for our purposes the club has three parts. It has a shaft, anything attached to the shaft like the grip, is part of the shaft. It has a clubface, and it has a clubhead, which is the weight or the mass. You have to learn to control all three of those.

Learn to Control the Golf Club

I control the shaft by swinging the club on the correct angle, or as near on-plane as possible. When I stand to the golf ball I stand beside the ball, the club is angled from the ball towards the player. Very much like these shafts which I have stuck in the ground in front and behind of the ball along the target line.

Swinging on a Plane

When I swing I need to get the club swinging as near on that plane created by those clubs as possible so that I don’t have to make any sudden adjustments. We define plane as when the shaft is pointing to, or parallel to, the target line. I have turned my club upside down in this example. As I take half a backswing the butt end of the club continues to point to parallel to the target line.

As I continue my backswing past halfway then the other end of the club continues to point to parallel to the target line. Then on the downswing and the follow-through the bottom end of the club is always pointing to parallel. Learn to swing the club as near on-plane as possible.

How to Practice Swing Plane

You can practice it at home in front of a mirror with a long club so that you can see where the bottom of the club points to try to get the feel of where the club points. If you can do that then you can make slow motion swings where the ball gets hit just because it is in the way of the swing. If you can not stay on-plane throughout the swing, that is ok, but you must be on-plane on the downswing, but you don’t want to make sudden movements that make the transition to the downswing difficult. Stay as close to the plane as you can, pointing to or parallel and you will hit the ball more solidly and much more consistently and start to control the club.

Category: Swing Plane
Sub-Category: Backswing, Downswing, Swing Mechanics
About the Instructor
Jack Lumpkin
Jack Lumpkin
Sea Island Golf Club
100 Retreat Ave.
St. Simons Island, GA 31522
Tel: 912-638-5119

Jack Lumpkin is a legendary instructor to PGA Tour Pro Davis Love III and is listed as one of Golf Magazine's Top 100 Teachers and Golf Digest's #12 instructor in the world.


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