A Simple Drill to Fix Your Swing Plane

By Jim McLean

One of the things I wrote about in the 'Eight Step Swing' and I have spoken to professionals and people all over the world is swing plane. It is a difficult concept because the plane changes, everyone has a different swing plane depending on their height, their stance and their build.

What Factors Affect Swing Plane?

The other thing is that since golf is played outdoors we have sidehill lies, flat lies, downhill lies, uphill lies, and all of these things change your swing plane.

Another interesting thing about golf is that we have fourteen clubs. All of your clubs lean towards you, or what we call the inside, but they are all different. This is a 5-iron which is a mid range club, sort of in the middle of your clubs. Your short irons are more upright, you stand closer to them and you also change your ball position. Your driver you stand much further away from and is obviously much flatter, so that changes the plane before you take the golf club away.

A Drill to Improve Swing Plane

An easy way to monitor this is to put four golf balls down on the ground and also have a target line. That can be something you just visualize on the ground or put two tees down on the ground to do that.

Right here I put the golf clubs down to make it a little more vivid and a golf tee to line up to. When I take the golf club away the golf club basically turns upside down, the clubhead is now up at the sky. It should come close to matching the angle we had at address; however, the club is also going a little bit up.

Hitting on the Target Line

It is important to understand that this tee in the butt hole of the club should point pretty near to the target line; it should not go far off when doing that. I sometimes put the golf ball slightly to the outside of the target line to illustrate how far above the target line I would like to see the tee pointing at most, and then I put another ball between my foot line and the target line.

When I go back to my three-quarters position the tee in the butt of the club can point to the inside ball or to the outside ball. Somewhere in that area is the perfect place for it to be. There is no exact spot for it to be because there are many different types of backswing. This can be a nice little drill for you.

  • Take it back to three-quarter position and see if you are somewhere between the two golf balls. You can also do that on the other side when you go to a three-quarter position on the follow-through.
  • Again, my shaft should match up to the backswing angle; that would be sort of the ideal swing.
  • When you get a little more latitude here it will really give you more individuality to your golf swing, especially on the backswing where you do not have to be perfect.

On the downswing, if the club works right the tee will point back at that target line; you will strike the golf ball, go through and be back on-plane. Hope that helps you.

Category: Swing Plane
Sub Categories: Backswing, Downswing, Swing Drills

About the Instructor

Jim McLean
Jim McLean
Jim McLean Golf School
Doral Golf Resort and Spa
4400 NW 87th Avenue
Miami, FL 33178
Tel: 800-72-DORAL