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The Importance of Balance

Watch nearly any tour golfer, male or female, and you’ll see how well they stay in balance throughout their entire swing, even when the ball travels remarkable distances off their clubfaces. Good balance is essential to hitting good golf shots. It allows you to maintain control of your body and the direction of your shot. Without good balance, it’s tough to keep good rhythm or tempo. That makes consistent contact and accuracy difficult.

Golf legend Jack Nicklaus believes balance is part of what makes Jordan Spieth so special. Nicklaus says about Spieth, “He’s got good balance. He obviously thinks very well; he manages himself around the golf course way better than almost any kid his age.” Good players can maintain their balance and tempo while swinging each club in their bag. Less accomplished players have trouble maintaining balance and tempo especially with the longer clubs. Trying to swing faster to generate additional clubhead speed can contribute to the problem.

Good balance starts at address. Your weight should be balanced equally over the insteps of both feet, not more toward the heels or the toes. If your weight is distributed more toward your toes, the downswing will tend to pull you off-balance forward toward the ball. If your weight is too far back toward your heels, you’ll tend to fall back. Neither lets you generate proper clubhead speed or make consistent contact.

At the top of the backswing, your balance point is over the middle of your back foot. If you’re in balance, you should be able to comfortably lift your front foot completely off the ground. At the finish, your swing’s momentum should put you in a balanced position, with almost all of your weight over your front foot. You should be able to lift your back foot completely off the ground at the end of a balanced finish.

Work on swinging with good balance and and you’re almost assured to make more solid contact. A golf swing with good balance also produces more consistent distance and accuracy. You’ll look more like a tour pro, too. That’s always a good thing.