Golf Ball Position in Stance

Ball Position In Stance

Since consistent ball striking is our goal, consistent hand position is vital. We do not want to have thirteen different hand placements for thirteen different clubs. You will find different theories on where the hands should be at address. However, I would say that your ball position must match your angle of attack (your path to the golf ball).

The various clubs will determine the ball position. Each club’s manufacturer has designed its club to sit in a particular position. In general, the shorter clubs (6 iron thru SW) will sit primarily in the center of your stance. The longer clubs will gradually move forward, (club head only) in the stance up to the driver. The entire set will not move at all in the butt of the
golf club, only the club head.  A consistent hand position will also increase the likelihood of making contact at the optimum point in the downswing. This will help you maintain the same club face angle at impact. Consistent club face angle and loft angle in every swing
add up to more consistent direction and trajectory.

You need to find your ideal impact position and develop an address
position that is similar but not identical.

A Consistent Golf Swing Demands Consistent Footwork

A Consistent Golf Swing Demands Consistent Footwork

Well nobody guessed the first “Name That Pro.”  This one might be easier.

Your feet can be a great indicator as to how consistent your golf swing can be. It also shows whether your swing path is so out of line, that it is almost impossible for you to have good balance or quiet feet.  If you practice at a driving range on a mat, listen for the noise produced by your feet on the mat. On grass see how torn up the grass is where your feet were.  Always check out your divot to see if it is aligned with where you were aiming.  Of course the best way to know how your swing is performing is to video your swing and send it me for a free analysis. Send it to

If you hear your feet scraping across the mat, then you know that something is wrong like possibly over swinging, turning your chest violently, maybe sliding your hips or over excessive turn of the hips.  As in this video below, over active feet can be related to a re-routing of the golf club on it’s path to the ball.

For consistency, quite down the swing. Less is more!  Guess who this pro is first and you get two dozen golf balls!

It’s The Alignment

It’s The Alignment

Without a doubt, every time I give an on course lessons, I find alignment issues.  The serious issue with this is, your swing path is effected by faulty alignment.  In most cases, the golfer is aligned to the right, (for right handers) only to swing the golf club across their body or to the left.  The by product is scooping, breakdown of the left wrist, and either a high fade or a pull shot.

You should always, always, always put a golf club on the ground when you practice.  Top touring pros do and they have been playing golf for a long time and most likely play better than you do, so don’t be embarrassed about putting a golf club on the ground while practicing at the driving range.

Second, here is the process for lining up properly.

1) Get behind the golf ball and get your belly button, the ball and your target in a straight line.
2) Find something directly in front of the ball you can recognize that is in line with your target, hopefully very close to your golf club’s face.
3) Point the leading edge of the golf club at your target.  The leading edge being the front edge of the golf club face.
4) Then, you align your shoulders at 90 degrees to the golf club face.
5) Your feet go last and are not important except that it is preferable, in most cases when playing an iron shot, that your stance is slightly open or to the left of the target, again for right handers.

Here’s a video below about keeping a golf club on the ground for alignment.

Practice with a Golf Club On the Ground!

Practice with a Golf Club On the Ground!

Touring pros put a great deal of effort in their address position. To prove your are never cured of a swing fault or address position fault, notice how so many of the videos we have of touring pros practicing on the range include golf clubs on the ground for alignment purposes. Send me your name and email and I’ll send you a video I did on this subject FREE!

Now, these are touring pros that most likely have played golf since they were 5 to 7 years old. Yet they still find it necessary to place a golf club on the ground to remind them that they are pointed in the proper direction. I guarantee you that if the rules were to allow it on the golf course they would be doing it there as well.

Improper alignment can, no will, have a very negative influence on your swing path. You know where you want the ball to go so you will adjust your swing path to overcome the improper alignment. Now you have compounded the problem and will spend hours on end repairing the swing path once you finally realize the misalignment.

Make sure you place a golf club on the ground when you practice. Touring pros do it so why shouldn’t you!

What does “Alignment” mean and how is it different from “Aim?”

What does “Alignment” mean and how is it different from “Aim?”

The question may seem too simple. Alignment deals with the shoulders, hips, knees and feet. We want these four body parts all in “alignment” so they are all pointing in the same direction. Pointing them in the same direction is “aiming.” A person can have good alignment and not be aimed at the target. Also, because of wind factor or slope angle, you may need to aim somewhere other than the flag or the green.

Most amateurs don’t recognize the full effect of alignment and aim. Proper alignment is absolutely essential to a proper swing. Some swing faults can be attributed to poor alignment.

In many ways, aim is just as critical. Aim deals with a perception. Therefore, you judge your ball flight by where you perceive you are aimed. If your aim is off target, you will adjust your swing for what you think is a swing flaw, when it is actually an aiming mistake.

Aim and alignment are also a lot more difficult than most players realize. The task is subject to mis-perceptions caused by several factors:

(a) The target is 90 degrees from the direction your body faces. This means you must be able to set both the club face and your body in a line perpendicular with the target line. It sounds easier than it is; most players are completely unaware when their line is off. Players will often begin the day with good aim and alignment and then unwittingly slip into misdirection as the round progresses…or in this case, regresses.
(b) When you are addressing the ball, looking down the target line, it may appear that the desired hitting direction has changed slightly.

(c) Sometimes you must hit from a slope, forcing you to adjust aim, alignment and setup.

(d) The terrain and obstacles in your target path affect your perception of target direction.

(e) It’s easy to forget how important it is to properly aim. Without a diligent and consistent pre-shot routine, you will tend to become less aware of the steps you are taking to aim. This is a big mistake.

It takes practice to manage each situation presented by the golf course. Golfers are highly susceptible to faults even in situations with no added challenges. Poor aim and alignment skills cause poor play for many golfers.

One of the most common errors is setting up too far right of the target. This may seem incompatible with the fact that most players tend to be slicers. Wouldn’t lining up to the right send their ball even further from the target? Not necessarily. When the setup is
to the right, a player tends to swing across the ball, on an outside in swing path. This outside-in path will help start the ball on a path toward the target, which is left of the player’s aim.

Usually though, the player strikes the ball with an open club face angle, and the resulting spin forces the ball back to the right. Players will then compensate for this tendency by cupping the hand at just the right moment in the follow-through and releasing the left
arm toward the target. It is extraordinarily difficult to time this movement consistently. Too many angles, too many variables come into play. It all adds up to an unpredictable, unrepeatable swing, much of which could have been avoided with a proper setup.

The Steps to Proper Aim and Alignment.

1. Set the Club face. You must first set the club face perpendicular to the target. Don’t make the mistake of setting your feet first. Instead, carefully choose the target line, set the club face angle, and then align your body to the club face.

How do you select and mentally hold the target line? It is very helpful to choose a target along the ground-line leading to the ultimate landing area. Pick a point a few yards ahead and aim the club at it. The more you can envision this line, the better. You might imagine a strip of neon yellow tape stretching from your ball to the chosen point.

2. Align Your Body in Relation to the Club. Place your feet along an imaginary line parallel to the target line. When you set your feet, your hips should naturally fall in line. Continue this alignment so the entire body is aligned and aimed parallel to the target line. Imagine a set of train tracks to the target, with your ball on one track and your body aligned on the other.

3. Align Your Eyes. The eyes play a critical role at this point. They deliver directional information to your brain, which then sends the message to your muscles. Garbage in… You know what comes next. Your eyes may give you a different message about direction once you are in the hitting position. You must trust that your club face and body are properly aligned. The more you practice your setup, the more confidence you will have that you are aimed correctly.

When you are looking at the ball, you should have the feeling that your eyes are parallel to the target. In other words, a line running through your right eye and into the left should be parallel to the target line. This will require you to keep your head relatively level. You will most likely find yourself tilting your head so that your right ear is below the left. Try to avoid this, because it can skew your directional perception. When you turn your chin on this forward angle, it tends to pull your vision to the right of the target. Even if everything else is aligned, this misalignment can cause undesirable swing compensations.

Once you are in hitting position, look at the target again, visualizing the desired direction of the ball. Instead of lifting your head to look down the target line, swivel it. You only need to rotate it enough to view the selected ground-line target a few yards ahead.