Anchor your swing : How to set up for power—and consistency – Brief Article

Jeffrey Johnson

You can’t hit a golf ball with power and consistency if you wobble. Instead, you must anchor your spine at both the top and the bottom.

Your head anchors your spine at the top. How can you do that and still make a swing? By noting your point of view relative to the ball at address, then maintaining that point of view during the back- and downswing. So let your point of view anchor the top of your spine. Now you can stop trying to “keep your head still” and instead keep your attention on the ball–where it belongs.

Next, you must anchor the bottom of your spine. The secret of this is what I call the “pelvic tilt.” Little has been written about the pelvic tilt, but I believe it is the key that allows the pros to consistently deliver tremendous force to the ball. Here is how it works.

1. Stand up straight

To begin, stand up straight, with your shoulders back, in a military posture. You will want to keep your spine this straight throughout the process.

2. Bend at the hips

Next, while keeping your knees and back straight, bend at your hip joints (not your waist), and push your rear end back until your weight is very heavy on your heels. Your shoulders should not lean out past your toes. Notice how your pelvis is now tilted down, as indicated here by the angle of my belt.

3. Tilt your pelvis up

Now tilt your pelvis upward until your lower spine is straight and your knees unlock. Push your buttocks down and underneath you. Feel how your pelvis allows your upper body to “sit” into your legs, your weight a bit heavy on your heels. Now slide your hips an inch or two toward the target and your upper spine a few inches away from the target, so your upper body is slightly tilted away from the target. You’re now “anchored” like the pros.

4. Maintain the tilt

As you swing, maintain the pelvic tilt through impact, as I am doing here. Look at the swings of professional golfers, and you will see that they preset the pelvic tilt and then keep it throughout the downswing. This is what allows them to create tremendous power with ease. It also prevents such common problems as standing up, leaning out or spinning out during the swing, and it protects the spine from injury. The pelvic tilt–with the stable base that it provides to the golf swing–is the secret to the modern professional’s power and consistency.

Jeffrey Johnson is author of the book Natural Golf and founder of the golf instruction program at

COPYRIGHT 2000 New York Times Company Magazine Group, Inc.

COPYRIGHT 2001 Gale Group

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