Hip Slide Vs. Hip Rotation In The Downswing
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The first question I want to answer is how much slide – or movement towards the target – should you have during the downswing? The answer is it depends on where you’re coming from.
In the video, I put a foam roller just outside of the left edge of my foot and I want you to imagine that that’s a wall. The end goal of a golf swing is to have my hips or my pelvis up against that wall and my hips are fully turned towards the target.
When I take my set up, I’ve got this foam roller about a fist outside of my left thigh. If I make a backswing and I get more than a fist outside of it, that created some space. I just got done saying I need to get there at the end. So, what does that mean? During my downswing, I have to slide or move laterally quite a bit so that I can get to the wall with a full turn.
If I’m a golfer who makes a backswing that we’ll call centered or more normal, I don’t need to move as lateral as the first example because I’m already starting more forward.
Then we also have the players who pivot a little bit more – think more kind of stack and tilt model or guys that get their hips forward. Because I’m already kind of left in this case, I need to feel more pure rotation to get against the wall.
The golfer who moves more to the right with the pelvis up against the wall here needs to move back more as they turn. The golfer who stays centered in the middle doesn’t need to move back as much but still some amount as they turn. And the golfer who creates more space between their right hip and the line and leans a little bit more left with their pelvis needs a lot more pure turn and less lateral slide.
There is no correct or incorrect. There is no one person, teacher or method that is perfect. You can use any one of these three pivots and play really good golf. Your feel for how much rotation you need to have or how much slide you need to have depends on what you or hips or pelvis are doing during the back swing.
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