Golf Impact Position Down the Line

As I discussed in the video on Impact Alignments Face On, impact is everything in RST. All the work we do at setup, the takeaway, the backswing, etc. is all to lead to tour caliber impact position to produce powerful, penetrating golf shots. In fact, you can do a lot of things technically wrong in the swing and arrive at a perfect impact position everytime and still play great golf. The key is that all things we work on in the setup, backswing, etc. make achieving this ideal impact position more repeatable with less effort.

  • The club should be square to the path at impact
  • Tilt in the swing plane affects the path, causing in-to-out or out-to-in shots
  • Hip spinners need to drill keeping both hips and shoulders square at impact
  • Glutes should be engaged at impact, right arm straightening
  • Use an impact bag to drill and a mirror to check impact alignments

64x64
Kevin
Hello. Well I know this isn’t what it is supposed to look like. Is this because my butt isn’t getting pushed far enough back to give my arm room to clear?
July 10, 2021
64x64
Manny (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Kevin... I'm assuming you are referring to the latest video submitted. Your butt in the DTL vid looks good. Your arms clearing question is all about the DS proper sequencing. In the review, I stress drills to help you begin the process of getting the arms to impact without hip interference (i.e. Belt Buckle Drill) or other sequencing moves (i.e. Arms vs Body release). Work through these while you progress to better contact. OH! Move the ball forward in your stance, please!
July 10, 2021
64x64
Kevin
Will do. Also bought a lesson but can’t book it on the site. Let’s get this back swing fixed. I can also finally find out how much axis tilt you need. Let me know looking forward to meeting up.
July 14, 2021
64x64
Manny (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin... Had to update my scheduler. Should be able to complete the booking process now. We can get work on the BS and of course, Axis Tilt, thanks, and hope to see ya soon.
July 16, 2021
64x64
Juan
Hello When I see the videos of the dead drill, and the impact position videos like this one, I never find a way to understand how I can get my both arms extended at impact. When I look down the line, there is always some sort of bend in my right arm, even when I do a good swing using my left side. Please help me, how can I get both arms straight at impact using dead drill muscles (left side). Thanks!
November 10, 2020
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Juan. The lead arm will be straight and the trail will have to have a tiny bit of flexion left or you wouldn't be able to transfer the power. If both arms are bent at impact you are more than likely diving the upper half and not allowing the lower half sequence to bring down arms/club.
November 10, 2020
64x64
Juan
Thanks Craig. So, my left arm straight and right arm bend at impact. I understand. But, if I am making thin contact with the ball, and I see too much bend in my trail arm at impact, what it may mean in terms of body movements?
November 10, 2020
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Juan. Usually, thin comes from the slide of the hips beyond NJA, or the fulcrum moving. Take a look at Moving the Fulcrum, Preventing Hip Pain and Level Shoulders Videos.
November 10, 2020
64x64
Roger
SO, it appears to me that you should post up before impact. Is that correct?
March 14, 2020
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Roger. Yes. Post up will trigger the release and finish right before impact.
March 15, 2020
64x64
William J
At impact should the hands be exactly where they were at address? My setup, at address has my hands under my chin as viewed from DDL. As I practice impact position (at a slow speed from the top to impact) I notice (DDL on video) my hands are slightly out in front of where they were at address. By slight, I mean 1/2 to 1 hand width. Is this acceptable?
February 22, 2019
64x64
Dean
Hey William, great question and I loaded up Chucky in the analyzer to take a look. His hands are not exactly where they started at address when at impact from DTL. Looks like about that 2/3 thirds of a hand width you are detecting in your swing.
February 22, 2019
64x64
William J
Thanks for the quick reply. I guess with the shaft bend it all evens out so the club head is where it needs to be at impact.
February 22, 2019
64x64
David
How do you diagnose if you are a hip spinner? Also, why are we drilling neutral hips at impact? Aren't they supposed to be open?
December 4, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. If your hips are too open at impact and you lack proper sequence/weight shift. Hip spinners typically hang back and way over use the hips into the strike. Hips will be 35-45 degrees open at impact with the shoulders square. Hip spinners may feel like their hips will be square only to help them start slowing the motion down similar to the "Belt Buckle Drill Video."
December 4, 2018
64x64
David
I can't tell if I am spinning or not. It does't look like my hips are too far open at impact, but I do get flippy and handsy at impact. I notice a few inches before contact my clubface is very open and right after very closed. On video DTL, at the top the first thing I see move are my hips rotating and my left knee (im lefty) kicks in and butt comes off the line, and then my hands get far out from where they started. Does that sound like hip spinner? On another note, is it possible to change who reviews my swings when I send them in?
December 4, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. Sounds more like a trail side pusher from the shoulders and hips. That would require you to have the feeling of the last second flip to square the face. We always have the Unlimited Review Groups Open to choose your Instructor. Sadly, you can't choose your instructor for normal swing reviews. But, you could request a second opinion.
December 4, 2018
64x64
David
My reviewer keeps saying I need to work on rotation and weight shift- I know this. I will keep working. But I have improved big time and just want a review that looks at some of the other issues like I am talking about here. I feel that If I can just understand better what causes my EE- I want to know for sure I am hip spinner or trail side pusher or whatever, so I can work on the right things. If I send in videos now can you look at them?
December 6, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. Yes, I can take a quick look for you.
December 6, 2018
64x64
David
Okay thanks that big picture overview was very helpful. Ive done a ton of the weight shift drills and it definitely feels like I am shifting my weight cause I make my first move pressuring into the trail side so i am confused for sure. My swing looking exhausting is funny- it exhausting and hurts my back- when I am hitting it well I do hit it a long way- just no consistency at all. So, the prescription is get set up right on film, ditch club, work weight shift and rotation drills then film that and send it in, correct?
December 6, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. Yes. And, I would suggest sending in the drill for weight/rotation. You must get that correct, or you will continue to struggle with fixing the move.
December 6, 2018
64x64
David
I just submitted the videos!
December 6, 2018
64x64
Michael
As we move into impact, should we be trying to keep our trailing side shoulder blade retracted, or should we be letting it freely protract?
August 27, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. The trail shoulder needs to remain in the box with the connection to the body.
August 27, 2018
64x64
jennifer
at about 4:00, you mention about pulling the arms down....I thought the arms stay passive in previous videos in the downswing. I am a hip spinner and when I consciously swing my arms down or pull them down, I do hit the ball better. But other videos say to keep arms passive, that the big muscles pull them down...so I am confused. thanks!
June 21, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jennifer. It is a blend of pull and gravity. Some players have a tendency to yank the arms down which would be bad. Others, will go dead or limp and not allow for any pulling. Just as bad. When you shift the weight and begin pull to the lead side the lead lat will help pull the arms in front. You are allowing for some pull with a blend of gravity. Not a big yank.
June 21, 2018
64x64
jennifer
awesome...thanks for the reply. That answers my question fully. I appreciate it.
June 21, 2018
64x64
Antonio
Hello. Would you recommend to have the glutes engaged during all the swing or just at the impact position?
May 3, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Antonio. The glutes won't be engaged to max capacity throughout the swing. But, they should always be engaged and ready to work.
May 3, 2018
64x64
Chad
So we have all heard for years that from DL you should see both cheeks at impact. Is this correct? Based on Chucks ideal impact position if hips are square, you won't see both, which is right? I just want to clarify so I work on the right things. Thanks.Chad
April 30, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chad. At impact the hips will be roughly 35-45 degrees open. You should be able to see both cheeks. You Hit the Golf Ball With Your Legs Video.
April 30, 2018
64x64
gordon
Back in Jan 2015 a question was asked regarding advice for those who are not hip spinners, i.e. with hips too square at impact. The answer made reference to a „Merry Go Round“ drill, but my searches have failed to find it on the site. Can you help me find it or, if it is no longer available, point me at an alternative video to promote a more pronounced hip turn to impact? I would really like to become a low handicapper with a hip spin problem! Thanks in advance, Gordon.
January 18, 2018
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gordon. If you tend to under use the hips. I would take a look at You Hit the Golf Ball with Your Legs and Step 2 - Core Rotation. I apologize the Merry-Go Round Drill is no longer on the site.
January 18, 2018
64x64
gordon
Hi Craig, I have 3 follow on points, a question and two comments. The question is has RST stopped informing via email when a reply is posted? You are always super fast when answering, even over weekends and hols so I was about to jog your memory when I looked ans saw you had already replied! Now the two comments. Many thanks for suggesting the two videos dealing with under use of the hips, they address the issue excellently. Finally even more praise (!!), I am impressed by the internal consistency of the RST „teachings“, they comprehensively cover all aspects of the swing and „stack“ seamlessly. If only I could practice what you preach! Many thanks and keep doing such a super job, best regards, Gordon.
January 21, 2018
64x64
Mark
At impact my trail heel seems to be lifted off the ground a little. When I try to drill impact position (in NJA) with the heel on the ground it seems to put pressure on the outside of my lead hip. I'm not sure if this is a sign of something else is going wrong or if it's just my physique. Is it really that important to keep trail heel grounded at impact and what's the benefit?
November 13, 2017
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. Yes, it is very important for the trail foot to behave. I haven't come across a player yet that doesn't have the physique or flexibility to perform the move correctly. Take a look at Eliminating Early Extension Video to understand the importance of the trail foot push. Also, Preventing Hip Pain Video to help with the outside lead hip socket issue.
November 13, 2017
64x64
Antonio
Many in golf instruction argue that in the downswing the right elbow should be very close to your body and seen various tour pro analyses that prove this idea. Could you let me know your thoughts on this? Thanks PS: I'm transitioning from being a hip spinner out of control to getting back my swing thanks to your videos and swing reviews, but would like to know your opinion on mainstream golf instruction that emphasize a more hip-motored swing.
October 16, 2017
64x64
Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Antonio, RST stays away from what pros have done or what they do with their swings. The position of the right elbow in the downswing, is consequential to how the lower body is moving in the downswing to pull the arms into position, just like any other hitting or throwing sport. I would always argue WHY does the right elbow need to be in this position and never get a clear answer that had any sort of science behind it. We have a lot of videos in the intro section that talk about this approach to the swing in great depth. Check out the first video in the intro section for a perfect view on why we stay clear of "tips". Hope that helps and let me know if you have any further questions. Also, glad to hear we are helping you resolve your hip spinning issue. Keep at it!
October 16, 2017
64x64
Antonio
Thanks for your kind reply Chris. What's best is that before I used to finish my rounds with quite a lot of pain in my lower back and now this has changed completely. I must admit it has been hard to transition from the old swing to RST type swing but it has been definetely worth it!
October 17, 2017
64x64
Michael
Is there any flex in the lead knee at impact, or is the lead leg completely straight as you push up from the ground? I feel like I'm locking my knee and it puts a lot of strain on muscles/tendons around the knee. Just having a hard time figuring out the last bit of rotation and pushing up from the ground as you approach impact, thanks.
May 20, 2017
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. You would look for the leg to be straight. You don't want it back in a locked position. Therefore, you could say some flexion (but, very minor). If you snap or lock it back straight too fast. You will end up like Tiger in the Late 2000's. Torn ACL and MCL.
May 21, 2017
64x64
Yew Hwan
I have a question. Is this a two plane swing whereby the back swing is steeper and the downswing is shallower like any other conventional swing system? Because according to Chuck in this video, he says that the downswing shouldn't be too shallow (especially for hip spinner) or otherwise we would be coming too much in to out and unable to square the club face on time.
May 13, 2017
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Yew Hwan. This is closer to a parallel plane shift versus a two plane swing. One plane with an increase in elevation. Not so much to working on a vertical inclined plane and dropping it back underneath.
May 14, 2017
64x64
Yew Hwan
Hi craig, thanks and noted.
May 14, 2017
64x64
Andrew
if hips are supposed to be 30- 40 degrees open at impact, how open should shoulders be at impact? Thanks...
June 22, 2016
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Andrew. Shoulders will be square at impact.
June 22, 2016
64x64
Dan
Opposite of a hip spinner, I struggle to get my hips open the ideal 30-40 degrees open at impact. My hips at impact are truly close to square. As a result I lack arm extension past impact even with a good release. So, I'm trying to learn to get my hips more open at impact. Can you suggest the best way to drill this? or to learn this? Thanks.
January 18, 2015
64x64
R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, The video that helped me get my hip open at impact was the Merry Go Round drill on the site. You might have to search for it using the search bar. I would give you the link but I am responding from my tablet. Keep up the hard work, you'll get it. R.J
January 18, 2015
64x64
John
Should the hips be square at impact or slightly open. This video does not clarify.
September 8, 2014
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. The hips at impact will be roughly 30 to 40 degrees open in relation to the target line.
September 8, 2014
64x64
Greg
When Chuck is sitting into the left side and the arms are dropping the shoulders are closed. When I do the sit down the left hip is pulling my shoulders to open. Is this normal or am I doing the sitting into the left side incorrectly?
July 3, 2014
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Greg. When using the left side properly the shoulders will start to open a little. The feeling of closed, helps to make sure they don't "rip" open and return to a relatively square position.
July 3, 2014
64x64
Greg
I'm having trouble getting my hands to drop on the downswing with the initial bump or squat of the hips, so instead of moving straight down they move slightly outward causing a slight over the top move. Any suggestions on how to get the club to drop to get the club into the slot?
June 29, 2014
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Greg. It's probably because when your'e bumping. The right shoulder and right arm are too active. Take a look at the LADD Video in the Downswing Section to understand how pulling from the left and the left arm will shallow out the swing plane. Keeping the right shoulder passive and allowing the arms and hands to work down on plane.
June 30, 2014
64x64
Jason
I am a hipspinner! Of all the things I've learned so far on this great site, now I now why I've played golf in the "stuck" position on the downswing for so many years. I'm already seeing how to get this out of my downswing, but what other videos other than this one do I need to be watching? There was one video mentioned specifically about the belt buckle that I haven't seen yet.
May 1, 2014
64x64
Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Role of the right foot will help as well as squeeze the cheeks. If you arms are really stuck you may want to check out trace the plane line after you get the speed of the lower half worked out.
May 1, 2014

At the end of the day, nothing matters more than your impact position. This is the only time you directly influence what the golf ball is going to do, so it better be right. There are a few "pro secrets" about the impact position that I'm going to reveal to you in this video that will make achieving a perfect golf impact position easier and more repeatable.

Where most all golfers go wrong at impact is that they overuse their right arm. The right arm can only push in the downswing and it leads to a flip at impact and the dreaded chicken wing. As soon as you remove the right arm, both of these things instantly go away. Try it for yourself. Grab a golf club and start making practice swings with your left hand only and watch what happens. It's a miracle!

No, not really. But it should help you understand where these issues are coming from in your downswing and golf impact position. The reality is that your impact alignments are controlled primarily by the left side of the body. This is because you need to align yourself with the laws of physics and utilize a pulling motion to keep the clubhead behind the hands and following the hands into impact. If you're not familiar with this concept, check out this golf instruction video on Pushing vs. Pulling in the golf swing. 

Once you understand this very important fundamental of the Rotary Golf Swing, you're golf swing will begin to fall into place. Now it won't happen automatically. You'll need to drill this over and over again. Your brain learns new movement patterns through repetition and if you don't continue to repeat these new movements you won't learn them. You can't do a new move a few times and expect that you can take it out to the golf course and do it perfectly. You've never learned anything in your life that way, why would golf be any different?

So, pay close attention to the positions in this golf instruction video and continue to drill them at least 1,000 repetitions and you'll start to gain control of the flight of your golf ball.

We're after one thing: Real Results - Real Fast. And that's exactly what our members achieve. And that's why they say the AXIOM is: Mind-blowing. Game changing. Revolutionary.

Check it out ...

Here at RotarySwing, talk is cheap and the proof is always in the pudding. Come see the massive transformations we can achieve together in your swing.

See for yourself ...

From beginner to pro, we have what you need to get you where you want to go.

See how inside ...

RotarySwing was founded out of frustration with the current state of golf instruction. Quinton knew a better way had to exist to learn this game we all love.

Learn more ...