Weight Shift Sweep Drills

The best golf swing drill for weight shift right before you play or when you're just on the practice tee warming up.

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Chad
Great video, but this is where I get very confused. The weight shift makes a lot of sense, but I don't understand the "squat to square," as the squat seems like it interrupts a normal weight shift and gives me a feeling of going up in the back swing, down in the squat and then backup.
February 27, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chad. You may be overdoing the squat. You don't have to increase knee flexion that much to squat.
February 27, 2020
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John
Hey guys, a 80% weight shift is moving my whole body and head off the ball a good amount, and when I try to keep the head quiet, I barely shift weight. And tips for keeping head still and weight shift, I already use shoulder blade glide to rotate.
November 2, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. Are you referring to the backswing? Try to combine the Weight Shift Video Part 2 and Fix Your Swing Sway Video.
November 3, 2019
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Charlie
Helped my game immediately
August 6, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charlie. Awesome. Simple and effective.
August 6, 2019
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Ross
It is pretty easy to see in this drill how your weight would be 80* on your trail side at the end of the backswing. After all your arms weigh almost enough on their own to do that when they are pointing away from the target. It's also pretty easy to see how your weight would be 80* on your lead side mid way into the follow through with the arms pointing toward the target. What happens early in the downswing while your arms are still pointing away from the target? Where are the arms when you get to 50/50 weight distribution?
May 26, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ross. Weight shift is the first thing you will need to achieve in the downswing. You will hit the 50/50 mark very quickly and before the hands get to the trail thigh. By the time the hands get to the trail thigh you need to be 80% on the lead side.
May 26, 2019
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Michael
Chuck, this drill does not seem much different than the tempo drill. Am I missing something?
February 27, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Both drills are very similar.
February 27, 2019
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Nigel
Hey Chuck when you said 'dance move' I couldn't help thinking of Fred Estair in this clip. https://youtu.be/34viwApgPyE
January 14, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Nigel. Fred is a little bit lighter on his feet than Chuck .
January 15, 2019
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Shawn
Hey, I'm new to Rotary Swing this month and just getting to step 1. I must admit to jumping ahead and watching other videos regarding rotation etc. My question is should I be rotating during this drill or just moving side to side? Watching Chuck in the video he does a little of both. I don't want to ingrain any bad rotation habits into my weight shift since I haven't gotten that far yet.
November 30, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Shawn. The whole goal is to shift weight. You may allow for some rotation while you're doing this, but the end result is getting the feel for weight moving back and forth. In Step 2 you will button up how much, or little to rotate.
November 30, 2018
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Giap
Where should I feel my weight at setup position?
November 7, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Giap. Over the center of the ankle joints. Take a look at Finding True Balance.
November 7, 2018
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Ron
During practice at the range today, I found two issues that I am having difficulty with. First is weight shift of getting over from the right side to the left side before my arms come down. Second, as I self profess, I was and am an arm swinger and although I am trying to put the stress in my right glute on the backswing so I will release from it first, I find myself still tensing up in the shoulder and arms and continue to fire the arms first . I have been doing this so long that it is almost a natural feeling. What should I do to overcome this. On several occasions, I did let the body control the swing and I felt my arms tenseless and could not believe the results when making contact. I am stuck and would like your suggestions to what drill should I repeat over and over to groove this weight shift and to quit tensing up in the upper body section. HELP, PLEASE!
August 21, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ron. When I hear stories like this you must shorten the swing and slow the pace. You need to make sure you can calm the upper half and transfer the weight in a smaller motion. I would put a lot of hyper focus into the 9 to 3 Drill until you can shift and allow for proper release.
August 21, 2018
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Eric
Is the goal to eventually shift into the right heel on the backswing and the left heel on the downswing? If I just think about general weight shift and the balls and toes of my feet get involved my hihios stop turning and I pick up the club and get into a flying elbow vs. elbow down and on the downswing I stop turning through and go over the top versus vs. shallowing. Where should we feel this pressure. A lot of the drills seem to emphasis a heel stomp, so i’m Guessing heel? The ankle is right on top of the heel, so ankle? Is this why you want to set up over ankles?
May 15, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Yes, the heel/center of the ankle joints. Also, why we setup up there for anatomical safety and better stability.
May 15, 2018
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michael
Hi Craig, wasn’t sure if posting here or The Chair Drill but following my last 2 reviews will this drill help me with hip thrust/ early extension as I lose spine angle or tush line which leads to inconsistency in striking. Regards Mike
May 10, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mike. Proper shifting will definitely help. Remember shifting in the drill above is not pushing off the trail foot to get to the lead side.
May 10, 2018
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thomas
Sudden memory! I recall skiing. Ski across the fall line, edge practice; dig in uphill edge, release and slide down hill, dig in to stop. Get used to transferring that weight from side to side. Now to transfer it to golf at age 74!!!
April 7, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Thomas. Everything is coming full circle for you now.
April 7, 2018
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Michael
Im currently doing this drill but I can't seem to control the club (downswing and backswing). Is it normal at first or am I doing something wrong?
September 18, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. At first, players try to over control the club instead of letting it free swing. Reduce tension in steering the club and get the weight moving properly. That is the goal of the drill.
September 21, 2017
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Matthew
Not sure if this is the right video to post under but I am having an issue with taking what I am doing in my garage hitting balls into the net and have the same result in the course. On video, I can hit the positions for rst pretty well but tonight I decided to take the video camera with me to the course. In video, my swing looks to have the flipping and especially early release I struggle with. The odd thing is that I am playing better and what I feel on the course is similar to my practice in the garage but the video says different. I tried left hand only swing and that looks relatively good but slight casting. How would you recommend to take these changes that seemingly seem good in the garage video to the course? Reason why I chose this piece is because only thing I could tell is maybe on the course I am trying to kill the ball and then dominant with right side opening up shoulders too quick and dominant with hand.
September 9, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matt. You have to go to the course the same way you started in the garage. I'm sure when starting the swings, or drill you didn't swing driver full bore with all the knowledge and just believed you had it. If you go to the range with lead arm only 9 to 3's with improper release and cast. No reason to move to full swings until you can do that and stack successive elements. You have to practice on the range. The same way as at home and at pace.
September 21, 2017
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Patrick
Not sure if this is the right place to ask but I have been hitting my irons great. However, now I am missing with my driver hooking all the time. My opti shot is telling me my swing is on plane or inside out but my clubface is closed 10 degrees. When I was hitting my driver well I had mire of a slight outside in swing. I am losing confidence with my woods by the day and I am not sure what to do.
August 12, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Patrick. Check your setup first: Proper Tee Height Video. If your setup is on par you have to be manipulating the club too much instead of a gradual rotation of the wrist: Flip vs. Release in Golf Video.
August 13, 2017
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Patrick
I have tried different setups. I have a generally neutral grip. Maybe slightly strong of neutral. I have also been playing around with pinching my thumb and forefinger together. I had an open clubface with my irons until I finally put all of the RST stuff together and now my hands are loose so I can whip the club through and square up with my irons. However, if I have that same loose feeling with my woods I guess I am whipping through too fast and closing the clubface. I am also regripping the club. It's an awful feeling especially since a month ago I played and was hitting two thirds of the fairways.
August 13, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Patrick. Sounds like you are relying on manual whip of the arms. I would suggest a Swing Review of your driver, or try calming the hand motion through the shot. Most players try to over steer their driver which is the exact opposite of what you want.
August 13, 2017
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Patrick
Hello Craig. This is going to sound stupid that I allowed this to happen but I really just started taking golf seriously and trying to learn last fall. My golf glove was worn out and loose. I got a new quality leather glove and didn't even think about regripping. I hit 30 drives and all but 5 would have been in the fairway. I will still submit a swing review but right now I couldn't be happier.
August 15, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Great Patrick. Sometimes the simple things help the most. Let's keep the swing moving forward.
August 16, 2017
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Patrick
I hear what you are saying. I am whipping my arms with my irons but all in sync with proper weight shift and takeaway to the right and weight shift, downcock and post up to the left and it just works with the irons and not the driver now. You are correct I probably need a swing review for my driver, as I have only submitted irons in the past. I have a review available and will submit it soon.
August 13, 2017
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William
I'm 53 Y/O, I've only been golfing about 5 years with a 6 month hiatus for a broken wrist. I subscribed to the original Rotary Swing a few years ago and saw instant improvement. I didn't even really work at the drills and I improved to the point where I was competitive with my friends who have been golfing their whole lives. Being the rocket scientist of the family, when I found something that really worked, I stopped using it. My golf game plummeted. I'm back and in one week I've cleaned up my sloppy swing and playing much better. I intend to continue with the drills and I see breaking 80 in the not too distant future.
July 30, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Welcome back William. We are pleased to have you back and we will certainly do all that we can to get you back on track and breaking 80 on the sooner side.
August 1, 2017
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rick
I used Rotary Swing a couple of years ago to great effect but quit golf when I moved. Since joining a club and trying to play again I have really struggled with my irons hitting the ball thin. Ugly. Having just rejoined RST, I started with the weight shift drill and got instant results. I hit a number of shots the last couple of days where the ball was flushed, good trajectory and a nice square divot. I was sliding my lower body into the shot and killing my back while thinning shots everywhere. This is the best and most simple lesson ever. I don't own it yet, but I will. Thanks!
July 24, 2017
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Great job Rick! Make sure you start going through the 5 Step Videos in order. Since you've been gone for a while we've simplified the learning process but you need to do it in order.
July 24, 2017
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Richard
Golftec tell me that my weight shift is much improved but my hip turn is lacking..Is there a drill to help turn?
July 19, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
You only need the hips to wind up about 35-45 degrees, while trying to get your shoulders to 90 degrees. Be careful with the info that golftec is passing along to you as we have run into several issues with their instruction. You can check out the core rotation rsa video, or go to the best golf of your life series video number 1 and we will show you a weight shift and body turn drill to help you with this, all while not allowing the hips to become unstable or over rotate. Hope that helps.
July 19, 2017
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Bubba
Awesome shift drill!
July 19, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you like the video Bubba!
July 19, 2017

Weight shift, as you've learned by now, is an incredibly important fundamental of all hitting and throwing sports, but especially golf. The problem is with golf, because our feet tend to be planted in the ground and not moving, we tend to forget about shifting our weight and swing everything from the waist up, and really even from the shoulders up for most amateur golfers.

                One of the things that I do all the time with my clinics is I have the students go through what I call a weight shift sweep. We sweep from the most dramatic drills, and in a short period of time we work through condensing it to being a normal swing. What I mean by that is I take a big movement, a big weight shift drill, and then I slowly start making it more and more and more like in the context of a real golf swing. I want to show you that drill today because it's something you can practice every single day. If you struggle with weight shift, this drill will make it so simple to get weight shift built into your golf swing, and best of all, just like everything else with Rotary Swing, you can do it indoors without hitting balls.

                The first one is the big one. Now, I've talked about this drill in other videos, but I'm going to put it all in the context of how I use it in the real world because, obviously, when you're going out to practice, and you're going to go off to play, and let's say you're struggling with your weight shift, you don't have time to do 300 reps on working on your weight shift. So how do we just kind of get something simple, and get a good kinesthetic feel to help us with that round that day so that we can start shifting our weight and helping everything fall into place and sequence correctly?

                This is my favorite one to start with, and it's just a step drill. All you're doing is you're just working on a little dance move. You start with your feet together, and you're going to step to the right and step to the left. Now, of course, I'm going to do this while swinging a golf club, but if you're really struggling with your weight shift, at first you don't have to swing a golf club at all. What I want you to get used to is feeling weight transfer and feeling it in your feet.

                Yeah, you probably don't think about your feet a lot in the swing, but guess what? They're just as important as tires to a race car. It's the only contact you have with the ground, so if you can't feel what your feet are doing, and you don't feel that you're on your heels, or on your toes, or on the balls of your feet, you need to become aware of that. The easiest way is to take away all the distractions and start feeling it with the most simple move, which right now, I can feel my weight go to my ankle, and then over to the ball of my feet, and it flattens out into the middle of my foot.

                I can feel this happening, and also I'm noticing how little movement it takes, relatively, to transfer 100% of my weight. Now, so many of us, we struggle with swinging, transferring even 10% of our weight. Right now, obviously if I lift my foot up, 100% of my weight has been transferred to the right, and 100% to the left. So clearly, weight shift, not that hard. You can do this.

                Now what we need to do is put this more into the context of a swing. So, I'm going out and getting ready to warm up, or I'm just at home working on these drills. I'm going to start with my feet together. I'm going to take a step and swing down. Take a step to the right, take a step to the left. Lift my foot up. Pretty simple, right? But what is this doing? It's giving me a sense of rhythm and balance and timing and tempo, to help me feel when my weight's to the right, fully planted, as I start to shift to the left it pulls my arm down, the club falls into the slot automatically, and as I release the club my weight's all on that left foot and I'm nice and balanced.

                This drill is the fundamental movement to the golf swing. If you can take these steps, to the right and to the left, and learn to release the club properly at the right time, you've got weight transfer down. Now, the trick is you can hit balls like this, but it's a little tricky because we're moving around a lot and, obviously, golf's hard enough without the ball moving all over the place in relationship to our eyes.

                What we want to do next, after you've done this drill a lot and you feel, "Yeah, I can do this. I can transfer my weight 100%, no problem, so why am I struggling with it in my swing?" Well, we don't get the freedom of all this movement, we'd struggle with consistency too much. So how do we start making this more like our normal swing? Good question.

                Now what I'm going to do is make the step smaller. Instead of starting with my feet completely together and taking a big step that I'm really trying to exaggerate, I'm really trying to get a good feel of letting my hips move in the swing and feel what that feels like, I'm going to start with my feet a little bit more of a normal setup, but maybe a little bit narrower, and take a little step. Now it's pretty simple because now it's more like a normal swing. It'd be a lot easier for me to hit balls here, starting with my feet really narrow, taking a tiny step, and a tiny step back to the left. So we slowly just start making that move smaller and smaller.

                Now, eventually you're going to get to the point where your feet are in a normal setup, and instead of stepping, I just want you to lift your feet. So instead, my feet aren't going to move this time, but I'm going to lift my left foot, and lift my right foot. So now I'm just going to keep doing this. I'm just lifting my feet up and down instead of stepping laterally. Now my head's not moving as much, my pelvis isn't moving as much. I went from a big exaggerated move, where my pelvis had to move a lot, so now it's just barely rocking back and forth. That's really helping starting to make it more like how it's going to be when I swing a golf club normally.

                Then the next step. How do I get from there? And again, you can do all of this stuff right before you warm up, or as you're warming up to hit balls. You could do this in five minutes, you can do it in 10 minutes, you can take an hour to work through all these. So now, instead of lifting my feet up completely, all I'm going to do is lift my heels up. Now my feet are going to stay on the ground. I'm going to lift my left heel up as I go back, lift my right heel up as I come through.

                Again, all we're really focusing on here is weight transfer, so the fact that my heel is coming up in the air, obviously I don't really want to see you do that in the real swing, it's not necessary. But what I'm want you to feel is that your left foot becomes light, that you don't feel like if I had my fingers under your foot that you'd crush them. Right? So lifting your heel up is not really the technical thing that we're trying to accomplish. What we're trying to feel is weight transfer.

                How do we start making that more in the context of the swing? Keep your feet moving as you're kind of starting to work through this. I want you to keep getting comfortable with your legs being alive in the golf swing. We need them for power and control. So now, instead of lifting my heels up completely, I'm just going to lighten them. What I mean by that is feel like you just kind of lift your heel up in your shoe, but don't literally let your foot come off the ground. So my heel is still on the ground, but I still feel the lightness on the left side.

                Now, because I didn't lift my foot up completely I didn't transfer as much weight. When I'm lifting my left heel up, this is still like 95% on my right side. As I start to lift, just feeling the lift of the heel inside the shoe instead of lifting my heel off the ground, well now it goes to maybe 80%, give or take, which, guess what? That's how much you want to transfer in the real swing.

                What you've done is you've gone from 100% down to 80%, to build it into the context of the swing so that you can feel how to shift your weight. Now I'm just barely lifting and releasing. A little lift, release. Now, what I'm really feeling is that same movement of my hips feeling relaxed and being able to freely move during the swing, but without me being so bound up and trying to just swing the club with my arms and hands.

                If you work through this sweep drill, from the most exaggerated to the least exaggerated, it'll help you warm up faster every time, and keep building in weight shift into your golf swing.

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