Fix Your Swing Sway w/ the Wall Drill

Fix your golf swing sway with this awesome and simple drill! Swaying off the ball in the backswing is a swing killer, but you can cure that fault while practicing in your living room!

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alastair
hi guys - is the head stating a centred a product of good body mechanics, or do i have to actively work on keeping my head centred i.e. should i be concentrating on not moving my head?
July 14, 2021
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Manny (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alastair... The head must move in order to properly get your weight/pressure shifted to the trail side. The question is how much. If you are properly setup, i.e. with Axis Tilt, stance width, hip hinge, balanced, etc... and transfer pressure to the trail leg, this drill helps you feel which muscles are used to rotate your shoulders using the shoulder blade glide to minimize the head movement. Keep it around 1 inch max. if possible.
July 14, 2021
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Alan
I’m noticing that my head keeps still on my backswing until my hips begin to rotate as well. This moves me laterally and my head moves. It’s as if my brain is telling me that the backswing isn’t complete without the “hip move”. I’m conscious that the hips should be quite but it’s a feeling that I’ve gotten used to over the years. Are you able to offer a drill to help?
March 7, 2021
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alan. The hips have to move and rotate in the backswing (Weight Shift Part 2 Video). The head moving about an inch is ok to help facilitate weight transfer.
March 7, 2021
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sjahari
My head seems to be quite stable AFTER I shift weight to the right leg. My head moves about 2 inches with the weight shift to the right leg. So my question is WHAT IS THE STARTING POINT? is it from the point I get to after bending at the hips? Or is it after I shift weight to the right ankle?
June 12, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sjahari. The head should only move maybe (1 - 1 1/2) inches in the backswing. The point starts once setup is complete and not after you have already shifted weight.
June 12, 2020
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Lawrence
Admittedly only into day two in a row doing the wall drill and notice my shoulders seem to be moving in a flat pattern. Going forward this week should i focus on pushing my right shoulder behind my back. in doing so does the right shoulder rise as i rotate to get my left shoulder under my chin doing the wall drill?
May 18, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lawrence. Take a look at Golf Backswing Shoulder Plane Drill. While performing this motion the trail shoulder will go behind the head, but you have to make sure you are rotating around the spine.
May 18, 2020
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John
Isn't the solution to this to have spine extension as you go back? Even if you pull from the trail side, rather than push from the lead side, you are still going to have your head moving off the ball if you maintain the same forward bend at the top that you had at address. No matter how hard I try, pulling the right should back around behind me is just not something I can feel during the backswing. But I can feel spine extension, and it seems to accomplish the same goal. Thoughts?
December 8, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. You need to rotate. It is ok for the head to move slightly in the swing as the drill above is for players that have excessive head motion. Most players that start to focus on spine extension end up tilting/adding side bend vs rotating. Try focusing on your core more if the right shoulder is an issue. Take a look at Golf Backswing Chair Drill to help recruit abs and obliques.
December 8, 2019
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Barbara
Hi, I'm new here and am not clear on the reps. How many reps of each of the sub-drills am I supposed to do before moving on to the next sub-drill in the first video? Am I supposed to focus only on the Dead Drill and not do any other videos on the site? If I have 6 reviews puchased, should I use one at the end of each Dead Drill video, after having done whatever amount of reps you are looking for? Can I do more than one of the sub-drills at the same time? Thanks.
November 21, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Barbara. The best way to use the reviews is to submit each DEAD Drill. Once, you feel you can do the drill correctly. Submit to your instructor Let them tell you how many reps, and fixes you need before moving on to the next section. The sub-videos are supplemental to help you get the drill perfect. You can use as many as you need to help you achieve the perfect drill position. It is 3000-5000 to master each step and usually after about 1000 you will be pretty proficient at doing the move. However, like with the backswing. If you can do it in your sleep without much thought. Feel free to stack on components or successive drills because you may not need so many reps without a new challenge.
November 21, 2019
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Nicholas
I'm sure this has been asked previously, but can doing this drill be beneficial for practicing the downswing as well? If so, how much movement should we strive for when getting the weight to the lead side and down into impact?
September 1, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Nicholas. This may help with upper body leaning into the strike too much. How much movement of the weight, or head? Your goal is to get 80% of the weight back to the lead side by impact. Also, in the downswing the head will have to move slightly for you to be able to shift enough weight. But, if you have a tendency to really drive the head on the downswing. This should start helping with the sequence from the ground up.
September 2, 2019
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Michael
I feel like this conflicts with having axis tilt in the backswing (neck tie drill). If I don't move my head much (no more than an inch or two), I either have to not shift my weight or I have to almost reverse pivot. I just can't find a way to combine not swaying way off the ball, shifting my weight, and still having proper axis tilt (neck tie drill) in the backswing. Are there any videos explaining how to combine all three? They just seem diametrically opposed.
May 7, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Weight Shift Video Part 2 will help with the hip sway. The drill above is for players that are dramatically moving off the ball. The head will have to move slightly and this drill is trying to calm down excessive movement. 1) Pull with trail shoulder (Pushing with the Left Side and Pull for a Perfect Takeaway Video), 2) Shift while not breaking the hip line (Weight Shift Part 2), 3) Combine with (How to Fix Golf Reverse Pivot) you should be able to correct your issue.
May 8, 2019
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Logan
I'm in a great position at the top, head moves just a little off the ball going back. But by the time I'm at impact the line that started off my left ear is in the middle of the forehead. I shift my head to far forward going down, can I use this drill to help with keeping the head back?
April 30, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Logan. Yes, this drill will help. However, the head will have to move a little in the swing. Don't glue it too much. I would make sure your sequencing from the ground up. Do some Step 4 - Add the Club Drills. Film them and see how much the head moves if you have hyper focus on leading the downswing with the lower half.
May 1, 2019
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Alexander
I love this drill! I feel like it immediately exposed my tendency to push from the left side, made me go back and evaluate my proficiency with the Setup (specifically my tilt), and forced me to focus on the movement pattern enforced in the bucket drill...it cleaned up a lot. One thing I've noticed, that I'm unsure of, is that sometimes I feel my head press into the wall; almost as though I'm decreasing the angle in the hip (hip flexion). Is that normal, or is it indicative of something that I should address?
February 7, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alexander. Glad you like the drill. You feel the head press harder into the wall on the backswing, or downswing?
February 8, 2019
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Alexander
Hi Craig, on the backswing. I haven’t started working on the downswing with the drill. I also find it difficult to keep my head from moving and still shift my weight.
February 8, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alexander. The head may move slightly. It won't stay perfectly still in the golf swing. If the head is pressing. I would make sure you aren't allowing the weight to get towards the toes and/or increasing a ton of knee flexion going back. It should stay relatively soft.
February 8, 2019
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OC
As one makes the initial trail hip movement to the right at takeaway, does the head not move as a consequence? Why do we make that initial trail hip move to the right, again? Regards OCH
May 31, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello OC. The head will have to move slightly when shifting. The drill above is to control excessive movement. Loading the trail glute is vital for power, sequencing, and hip stability.
May 31, 2018
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Robert
This is a great way to start the process of ending the movement your head during the swing, which I know I do some days or under pressure. I think you should develop a training device that can be used at the range, one that hangs a soft runner ball at your forehead so you will be able to immediately tell if you move your head up down back or forward during your actual swing. I will be the first to buy one because I know this is a big problem for me.
January 21, 2018
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
That sounds like that thing Tin Cup had clipped on to the bill of his cap!
January 21, 2018
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Here it is
January 21, 2018
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Rob
Yes!! All we need is 54 gadgets to attach to our body and we'll have the perfect swing!
January 21, 2018
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Paul
Very good video with a fix for hard problem to uproot
January 21, 2018
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Paul, this is a very challenging thing for many golfers to get rid of and virtually impossible if they're not using a mirror and video camera when the practice.
January 21, 2018
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Robert
Hi Chuck. Awesome work. Two other things I noticed from this drill. 1) As a caveat, to keep from hurting your head by dragging it backward during rotation, one (undesireable) solution is to straighten the right leg which does allow rotation but is antithetical to RST goal of creating differential between upper and lower body. So. Don't do that. 2) The other thing I noticed is that my knees were bent too much at address (trying to feel powerful I presume) and when I returned to the squat–to–square position and began to post up on my left leg, I got a rug burn on the top of my head! Which hurt a bit but not as much as all those topped shots that I've been having out on the golf course! Correct posture requires being a little more erect and athletic than I have been. Less like squatting my bodyweight and more like preparing to shoot a free-throw, calm, centered, relaxed and a little more vertically free. Thank God for myelination because, really, who among us could remember all this stuff?
February 6, 2018
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Peter
I have a little pendant I wear around my neck. It's a Medic alert thing in case I drop dead somewhere. I got the idea from Clay's use of a necktie. At my address position it sorta hangs off my neck. If it moves to the right in my back swing, I'm in trouble. It's just a less painful trick than beating one's head against the wall. Peter S K
February 12, 2018
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Robert
Sounds like a good use for my St Anthony's medal (patron saint of lost causes).
February 22, 2018

For many golfers when they start working on their body rotation, they don't understand how dominant this feeling to push from the left side is that causes your head to move off the ball. And, of course, every single move that you put into the swing, you've got to eventually take out to get back to where you started. That's kind of the goal, is that our address position obviously is a little bit different from our impact position with our open body, and so on, but in terms of angles and things like that, we want it to be relatively close, and so when we move our head way off the ball, if you try to just stay there and hit the ball, you'd have tons of secondary tilt that's going to cause all kinds of problems. You'd never be able to get back to the ball. You'd chunk it.

                So what most people do is they move off the ball, and then they try to move back to the ball, and their head is moving all over the place, and they can't even figure it out, even when they're watching themselves in the mirror, they don't realize how much they're moving.

                So I came up with another drill to make it pretty straightforward and simple. If your head's moving, you're going to feel this one. You're going to know if your head's moving, and I use a wall to make this simple, so I'm going to turn my back to you for a second, and show you how this drill works. The long and short of it is that you're going to put your head on a wall and start working on your core body rotation drills, where you know your head should be staying center.

                If you are one of these people who tends to move off the ball, or if you're not sure, this is going to make it really clear, because you're going to feel your head dragging across the wall, especially on this stinking thing, because I got all these panels there, so I'm really going to feel it. So what you do is you put your head, your forehead, and you may use a pillow if you want to just give you some sort of padding here, but put your head against the wall. I'll put my hat on backwards so I know it doesn't get in the way, and as I rotate back, my head should basically move maybe an inch, and that's it.

                But from behind, you can see that my head is barely moving. If I do this, my head comes away from the wall, or starts dragging across the wall. It's going to be pretty obvious that you're pushing from this left side, that's causing your head to move off the ball. So, make sure when you're working on your drills, always check your head in the mirror. If you need to, put a piece of tape on the mirror, where on the left side of your head, and make sure your head doesn't move more than a piece of tape width off of it, about an inch, inch and a half is max. Any more than that and we've got this big swaying problem. Put your head on a wall, and you'll know right away if you're pushing, because your head's going to start dragging all over the place.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a wall drill?

If you are one of these people who tends to move off the ball, or if you're not sure, the wall drill can help. So, what you do is you put your head, your forehead, and you may use a pillow, but put your head against the wall. And as you practice your swing and rotate back, your head should basically move maybe an inch, and that's it.

What can you learn about the wall drill?

Swaying off the ball in the backswing is a swing killer.  The wall drill can help you see how dominant the feeling is to push from the left side that causes your head to move off the ball, causing problems with your swing.

 

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