Don’t Keep Your Head Down

 In Golf Instruction HT

We have all said this before at one time or another, not knowing the unintended consequence that phrase holds. Most people use it as a cop out when they don’t know what else to tell someone. Most parents (with good intentions) tell it to their junior because that is how they were taught.

But let’s take a deeper look into keeping your head down. I think what is more important is “keeping your eye on the ball” at impact. From an anatomical and geometrical standpoint of the golf swing, keeping your head down can be detrimental in the long term.

Sure it could be a quick bandaid to someone but I believe that people trying to keep there head down too long is the reason they hit bad shots. Keeping the head down too long restricts the amount the rest of the spine can turn and extend through impact. This will result in many different problems…potential injury, lack of distance, no control of curve, tops, chunks, and shanks.

The neck (cervical spine) and thorax have the most range of motion of the vertebral column. By keeping the head down too long and restricting range of motion, we risk injury at higher speeds. We also have issues with ball striking because we have to bend our arms and wrists through impact to prevent them from crashing into the ground.

I have personally never seen a video of a junior who did not have their eyes on the ball at impact. I have been coaching junior golf (and getting paid for it) since I was 17. I have seen and videod over 1,000 junior golfers and never once have I videod a junior who didn’t have their eye on the ball at impact. I have also talked to coaches who say the same thing. We have, however, seen many junior golfers keep their head down too long and have difficulty.

But what is the most common phrase used when a junior hits a bad shot? “Keep your head down.”

These shots ranged from tops, chunks, and shanks to a few that were very pure. The similarity is shocking! All of them have their head down at impact! Find a coach that understands why shots are mishit. Don’t rely on folklore for your junior. With technology in the golf industry today, it is extremely easy to find the cause of the problem and start working on it quickly.


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