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Golf Swing Spine Angle Drills

author image Ryan Haas
Writing professionally since 2005, Ryan Haas specializes in sports, politics and music. His work has appeared in "The Journal-Standard," SKNVibes and trackalerts. Haas holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and creative writing from the University of Illinois.
Golf Swing Spine Angle Drills
A consistent spine angle translates to a consistent shot. Photo Credit Sean Murphy/Lifesize/Getty Images

Maintaining the angle of your spine throughout your golf swing is a critical component of being able to consistently hit the ball straight. When your spine angle remains fixed throughout the swing, the club face is more likely to be level at impact and thus give you a more solid shot. Regularly practicing swing drills will help your back muscles memorize the feeling of the exact spine angle you need for your club length.

Shortened Clubs

Professional Golf Association instructor Kevin Compare states that one way to regulate your spine angle is to practice with shortened clubs. When using a shorter club, you must bend over farther and shorten your backswing. One of the leading causes of a player changing his spine angle is pulling the club too far into the backswing. By practicing regularly with a shortened club, you will get the feeling of a sufficiently deep backswing when you use a full length club, including a driver.

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Elbow Drill

The elbow drill is a simple spine angle drill that you can practice anywhere without any special equipment. To perform it, place a golf ball on the ground in front of you like you are lining up to hit a shot. Hold a golf club flat across your back by placing each end in the crux of your elbows. Bend forward from your hips and the club will help to keep your back straight throughout the swing. Perform your regular swing movement slowly with the club behind your back. At the highest point of the back swing, the club end should be pointing at or just behind the ball. When you finish the swing, the opposite club end should be pointing down at your rear foot.

Head Against Wall

“Golf Magazine” contributor Peter Kostis notes that when your spine angle is consistent throughout your swing, it should feel like your head is up against a wall the entire time. Have a friend hold the butt of a club against the top of your head as you swing. The club should remain in contact with your head throughout most of your swing if your spine angle is staying consistent. The only time your head should leave the club is when you reach the end of your follow through and you must straighten your back to relieve the pressure on it.

Two-Club Position

If you have a partner available to help you drill, "Golf Tips Magazine” recommends using the two-club position drill. After you address the ball, have your partner hold one club at your leading-side shoulder and the other at your leading hip. When you perform your swing, your hip should remain in contact with the club while your shoulder moves laterally away from the second club. Repeat the drill until this movement feels natural.

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