We have constantly heard or read the most important part of the golf swing is at impact. We have also heard and read that all good players look very similar at impact. Hard to argue these statements but having spent close to ten years teaching or coaching this game, I believe the most important part of the golf swing is not necessarily at impact but rather the position post impact at about waist high on the follow through.
Why? Because if you nail this post impact position you are more likely to have a better impact position.
If someone were to ask me “what is the most common fault you see with the average golfer or the beginners of the game?” I would not hesitate to reply, “breaking down after impact.” See picture where the arms have broken down instead of being straight at this point.
So why is this the case? In a nutshell and in very simple terms it boils down to poor rotation through the ball coupled with the temptation to help the ball get up in the air. So how do we fix that and start hitting crisp iron shots?
First of all answer this question: If you were to hit an iron crisply, what side of the ball is the divot made? Is it behind the ball, the right side, in front of the ball, or the left side (or target side)?
If you answered behind the ball, you’re not alone. But, you’re wrong.
When we hit a crisp shot, the divot or low point of the iron swing is in front of the ball. This is almost impossible to achieve if you think the divot is behind the ball.
I know, I really have your attention now. Next, I want you to grab your sand iron and try some stock standard pitch and point swings.
The key is sticking your finish. Make sure you finish with your belly button facing the target as well as the sole of the club. The most important key to sticking the finish is to have the club parallel to the ground. See picture of the same person as above, but with better rotation and understanding of the post impact position which I believe is overlooked in the golf world.
To perfect this move in your full swing and feel “the holy grail of iron shots” which is, ball first then divot, practice a small move first with your sand wedge. Then feel this post impact position in your full iron swing. It will feel like maximum rotation with the body with a “wooden” (straight arm) sensation as the arms release through impact.