How many times have we heard over the years have we heard the expression of starting the downswing from the ground up?
We have heard this expression for as long as I can remember and from some really great teachers and even some of the best players to ever walk this planet.
After hearing this expression for all these years, how clear are you on the topic and how well is it working in your golf swing?
Most golfers have never really been taught clearly how to perform a downswing in golf from the ground up. Well, great news, we are going to show you exactly what it means and more importantly, we are going to show you how to put it to use in your own golf swing.
Question: Why do most amaetur golfers start the downswing from the top of half of their body and not the lower half?
Answer: Your body is going to use tension as it's primary indicator in the golf swing to determine which muscles to fire and in what order.
That answer alone, should be the big lightbulb moment on why you cannot build a downswing from the ground up, no matter how hard you have been trying.
The Faults that start it all...
1. Pushing the club into the takeaway with your lead arm/shoulder.
2. Fulling setting the club with your wrists to get the golf swing started.
Take a club out and swing to the top of your backswing and freeze. Determine where you are feeling the most amount of muscle tension in your body. I would be willing to bet that you feel in mostly in your shoulders and arms. If this is the case, THEN YOU MUST KEEP READING!
Clearly it is going to be much harder to build a golf downswing from the ground up if you have fully loaded up your much smaller shoulder and arm muscles. Why you ask? Because muscle groups do not want to stay fully contracted for long. They want to fire and go!
How do we fix it? Tell your body the right signals!
Load up your right leg (trail leg) by shifting your weight to start the swing. A simple drill to help you do this is, pick your right heel off the ground and then push it down into the ground with some force. This will teach you to shift your weight and also get your glute muscles and other important leg muscles woken up first.
Now that you have shifted your weight and have the lower body loaded up properly, you need to prioritize rotation of you core muscles. Feel like you are winding your guts up as much as you can, all while keeping the arms and shoulders as relaxed as possible.
There you have it, now you have created a backswing that has signaled to the body that you want your lower body to fire first.
Start without a club first and cross your arms over your shoulders. Work on shifting, loading and rotating. Once you have that mastered, add the club back to the mix and focus on the re-creating the same body movements you were just performing.
Downswing from the ground up…
Now that we are properly loaded, you can start working on shifting your weight by picking your left heel (lead heel) up off the ground. Push the heel back down into the ground with some force, stomp it! Try and here your own stomp. This is going to force you to shift most of your weight and get those big leg muscles used for leveraging the ground and stability woken up. Check out a great video called “how the lower body works”. This will show you a great stride and stomp drill.
By stomping and shifting you have now pulled your upper body into the hitting area where you will be releasing the club with so much speed.
That is exactly how you build a golf swing from the ground up!
-Dr. Jeffrey Broker, Assoc. Prof. in Biomechanics at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and Former Senior Biomechanist for U.S. Olympics Committee
-Hub Orr - Happy PREMIUM MEMBER of RotarySwing.com
-Sam Jarman, PGA Golf Instructor in the UK