Golf Tips: Heads, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes… Let’s Throw in Hips too

In this edition of golf tips, we look at the importance of ensuring that your hips and feet are lined up correctly. Alignment everywhere makes a big difference, but this is an easy check that can make a big difference.

Next time you are on the course with a couple of buddies, who are okay with you standing behind them (a safe distance), watch to see if their hips and their feet are both pointing in the same direction. You would be surprised how many people aren’t lined up correctly, and that’s what we will look at in today’s golf tips.

This is the biggest bug in my game, and it affects more people than you would think. Whenever I find myself starting to spray my shots a bit, or hitting shots with an odd launch direction, I take a minute to look and see if my feet and hips are lined up.

I’ve had a lot of kids that I have coached think they are aligned properly, as they are only checking one part of their setup. If your feet are lined up right but your hips are turned inside, you are going to find yourself pulling a lot of your shots.

Likewise, If you think that your hips are lined up properly without checking your feet, which you would’ve noticed were lined up inside, you’re going to find yourself pulling your shots once again.

There should be a sign that you are doing it that will help you out in realizing what is going on. The divot that your club leads. A misaligned body is going to lead to a loopy swing (think inside out or outside in depending on the setup), and that is going to lead to a crooked divot. In these examples of either your feet or hips pointing inside, your divot is likely going to be starting at the outside of the hole and pointing to the inside of it. For a rightie, this means going right to left.

There’s a simple way to do it, especially if you find that it is something that is happening often in your swing. All you need to do, once you are set up, is to take your club and hold it parallel to the ground. Hold it at hip level, and line it up over your toes, making sure that the handle of the club is pointing at the hole, and in line with your feet as well. Next, move the club in towards your hips and do the same thing.

You should have seen that the club was pointing to the same location when lined up over your feet, and when it was against your hips.

It’s common for people to have their hips inside, as lining up your feet is the easier one to do. If you have had an injury or something happen to your body, you may not even know that your hips are misaligned, as the inside lineup feels regular.

This is how I lineup, due to a back injury back in high school. My hips always point inside, and if I line them up parallel to my feet, I feel like my body is out of position. Every time I set up to swing, I rock my right hip backwards, causing my left hip to come forwards. It’s a quick way to get myself into the correct position without having to think too much about my shot.

Next: Golf Tips: The importance of being comfortable with your swing

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If you find yourself starting to pull or push your shots, with a ball flight that you aren’t used to, this could be the reason. Take a minute to check your feet and your hips.