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Instructional Tips


Golf Tip of the Month From PGA Professional Jerry Applegate

This month I would like to talk about the set up and start of the swing.

We always want to start our swing from a relaxed athletic position. By an athletic position I mean that your feet are shoulder width, your knees are flexed and you are bent from the hips. When you look at your body it should look like the letter “K”. This posture is the same as a quarterback taking a snap, a baseball fielder in position, a tennis player setting up to return a serve, a basketball player setting up on defense (and many other athletic sports positions). We want to be in a balanced, relaxed position ready to swing the club.

With an iron we want the ball in the middle of our stance with our hands slightly in front of the ball (towards the target). We want to start the swing by turning the lead shoulder (left shoulder for right handers and right shoulder for left handers) under our chin. We want what is called a “One Piece Takeaway” in which the hands, arms and shoulders all turn back together to start the golf swing. We want to avoid starting the swing with the hands and arms. This can lead to a swing that is too steep, too fast, off plane and off line (that sounds bad, doesn’t it!). I’ve often talked about a balanced turn in the golf swing. If you set up and start your swing correctly you are well on the way to a balanced turn.

It has been said by many great teachers (and players) over the years that if you are set up correctly and you start your swing correctly, that is 90% of the battle. The rest of the swing is almost a chain reaction and takes care of itself. There is a lot of truth to that statement. Work on a proper set up and start of the swing and good swings (and good shots) will be the result!

Thanks and watch for these great events in June. We’ve got the US Open Pick a Pro on the 15th, the 2 Person Best Ball on the 22nd and the Ladies Club Championship on the 26th & 27th. The golf course is in fantastic condition (the drainage project on hole #18 is almost completed!). Tee times and memberships are available! I hope to see you out at Ballantrae!!

4576 Primrose Road, Chicago, IL 60290