A few thoughts about balance

Balance is one of the most important facets in sports and arguably the most important in golf.

The golf swing is the singular most complex action in all ball sports. With muscles and tendons twisting and resisting and moving in opposite directions at exactly the same time. Not to mention the fact that you are required to deliver a flat blade into the back of a round ball that is a little over 4 cm wide with the sweet spot that’s a little larger than a penny. This is very often completed while hitting from uneven ground in adverse conditions whilst attempting to balance one’s emotions and the external pressures of the game. Coupled with a ball speed often approaching 200 kilometers an hour it doesn’t allow much room for error.

Balance is often the cause for miss hits and poor contact which more often does not have detrimental effects on the three most critical elements of a successful golf shot – distance, direction and trajectory.

When people think of balance in the golf swing they generally think of the finish position. I see so many people that have manipulated the finish position so as to achieve balance. They stand in a balanced finish but had poor balance during the most important areas of the swing.

What about footwork and its overall contribution to balance? I believe footwork is the most underrated and misunderstood area of the golf swing. Shifting the weight correctly on your feet and using your feet and ankles dynamically is a critical element and one of the hallmarks of a great golf swing. Your feet provide greater balance than any other part of your anatomy.

The lineal weight trace on your feet will often make the club and arms follow this pattern. Meaning where your weight goes on your feet the club often follows. Great footwork can lead to great balance and a dynamic impact and explosive power. Gripping and using the ground effectively will create a force between both feet that can be easily felt and transferred more effectively throughout the swing. Needless to say, that the world’s best and most consistent ball strikers have consistently the best balance when tested through the use of force plates and other measuring devices.