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Golf Swing Follow Through

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The follow through is a result of all things you have done in your golf swing up until this point rather than some position or move you are trying to achieve. However, it holds the secrets to check whether or not you performed many of those moves correctly. In this video, you will see all the key checkpoints for the follow through, referred to as Move 4 in the Rotary Swing Tour model.

Video Practice Points
  • The golf follow through is a continuation of the golf swing after release, but there are still important checkpoints
  • Getting into neutral joint alignment so you can safely pivot on the left hip is the most important one
  • Also check from up the line or down the line that you are maintaining your spine angle in the follow through
  • Check from up the line that your hands stay in front of your chest - if not, something is getting your arms out of sync in the swing

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Golf Biomechanics - The Follow Through

Golf Follow Through

The golf follow through is not so much a position as it is a result of all the things you did in your golf swing up to that point. In many ways, the golf follow through can be used as a diagnostic tool to help you understand how you sequenced your downswing. There are a number of checkpoints, but not there isn't really a golf follow through drill as it is simply a result of other things you did, not a cause or some golf swing position you need to achieve. 

Drills and Exercises for a Proper Follow Through

Golfers looking to develop a proper golf follow through often ask me for a drill or tip or even exercises to develop a "pretty" follow through. I sort of chuckle and then explain to them the cause and effect relationship of the golf swing. It's important that you understand this as the look of your follow through is not about posing to look pretty for pictures. It's about telling you what you did during the downswing.

For instance, if you find yourself falling forward during your golf follow through and being off balance, there's a very strong chance you were either off balance during your golf setup or your force of movement during the transition was from your arms and shoulders. That's what your follow through's job is - to tell you what you did wrong earlier in the golf swing!

So, don't go looking for drills and exercises to develop some proper follow through. They don't exist, and if they do, they're not going to do you any good! You can't look all pretty and balanced in your follow through if you were off balance during your downswing!

                All right, my favorite overview video of Rotary Swing is this one: the follow-through. One of the most common questions I get is, "What do I do in the follow-through?" And, "How come there's not very many follow-through videos on the site?" Well, it's because it doesn't matter.

                It's a diagnostic tool that's going to help us determine kind of what you did earlier in the swing, and what you did in the downswing. If we see you go to the follow-through and you've got a lot of weight on your right foot, and the shoe is bent, and you got a big crease in your toe box of your shoe down here, well, we know you didn't transfer your weight. The follow-through is nothing more than a byproduct of what you did earlier. It's not a fundamental of the swing, because the ball's already long gone and it doesn't care if you do some crazy movement like this, and you're like, "Nailed it." It doesn't work. The ball's already gone, it's not going to change anything.

                So what you use the follow-through for is diagnostically looking at key little pieces of the swing to see what you did earlier in the swing. As I mentioned, one of the biggest ones is we look at weight transfer. When we look at your foot being back like this, and we see you hanging back on your right side, well, we know that you didn't shift your weight in the downswing. And your force of movement had to come from somewhere. You didn't go to the top of your swing and just stop and relax. Right? That doesn't work. You moved, and the club, somehow, to get it back on the ball, and if you didn't transfer your weight to do that, and create that initial momentum for your weight transfer to change the direction of the club and let your arms fall down, you had to use your arms too much. And then you lose a ton of speed because, as I talked about in the downswing overview, there's just not enough muscle mass here to create more than 90, 92 miles an hour club head speed in most golfers.

                In the follow-through, one of the biggest things we're going to look at is did you get your weight shifted all the way over to where you could pretty much lift this foot up at this point, and be nice and straight and posted up in neutral joint alignment. And this is really critical. We talk a lot about this on the other videos you'll see, that I want to make sure that my hip is stacked right over my ankle and neutral, this is the safest place for your hip to be in, and the most powerful place. When you start doing this kind of stuff, or your knee is bent, we start seeing all kinds of injury potential, and we want to make sure that you never get injured playing golf, that all of these injuries are preventable. That's the big thing that we're going to look for in the follow-through.

                And the last thing is, we want to see that your body isn't twisted around like this. If your shoulders are ripped all the way around, we know that you really pushed hard from this trailing side, and again, look at the push versus pull videos on the site. They're going to go into all of these different little concepts about the physics of the swing. So when you see somebody ripped way around like this, they pushed really hard. And that's always going to create a lot of centrifugal force in the swing that's going to make the club want to throw away.

                So big things you're going to look through in the follow-through is we want to see a) big weight transfer. We want to make sure that you're really stacked over on this lead leg, and we want to see your chest basically facing the target, and the same thing with your belt buckle. We don't want to see way too much rotation, it's way too hard on your spine and it's inefficient. You don't need it. And then the club. Your arms and hands and shoulders should be nice and relaxed in the follow-through. There's not a lot to worry about here.

                So the big thing is weight shift, weight shift, weight shift. It's the whole crux for the golf swing for most amateurs, because their force of movement is so hard from the top, with their arms, hands, and shoulders, to try and get the club back to the ball, that it creates this force going this way, and it makes it harder for you to shift your weight. Well, as I've talked about a lot so far in the overview videos, is you don't move anything from up here. Your focus is moving from here to here. These are the parts of your body that are going to move the club in the downswing. Because of that, if you're focusing on this stuff you're always going to shift your weight because that's what you're doing. That's the only thing you're focusing on. If I shift my weight and forget about my arms and hands and club, you'll get your weight shifted over there.

                So if you're like this in the follow-through and say, "Man, I just can't shift my weight," well, focus on shifting your weight. Stop worrying about the club and the arms and the hands and hitting the ball, and focus on your core movements of shifting your weight over and rotating your hips, and all of a sudden you'll be in a perfect tour-quality follow-through every time.

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-Dr. Jeffrey Broker, Assoc. Prof. in Biomechanics at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and Former Senior Biomechanist for U.S. Olympics Committee

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