Using the ground is a big discussion point in golf these days. Moreover, it can be a confusing one for the majority of golfers. This post will go into some detail as to how using ground force in the golf swing can lead to extra yards, better iron contact, and more consistent ball striking.
What is using the ground?
So, what does using the ground force in the golf swing even mean? What if I told you that the chances are you have used the ground in another sport sometime in your life? This may sound odd given that the ground is Earth and Earth is somewhat immovable. The best way to think about it is with a trampoline analogy.
Let’s say you weigh 175 pounds and you are standing on a trampoline, the force exerted is 175 pounds. Now, let us say you bend your knees and do a squat jump. Not only do you exert the force on the ground, but by Newton’s third law, the ground exerts additional force on you, overcoming your weight and pushing you off the ground. 🤯. Or in other words, the more you jump on a trampoline, the higher you will go.
Why is using the ground important?
In relation to golf using the ground force creates more centrifugal force. This provides more room for the club to pass through impact. Moreover, it shallows the club (helps you fix your slice), creates a square clubface earlier, and minimizes shot dispersion.
If you think about it in another way you have been told to use the ground many times before. If someone says “get in an athletic stance” when getting ready to return a serve in tennis, or “bend your knees before you shoot” in basketball, you are in essence being told to use the ground. Remember earlier when I said “What if I told you that the chances are you have used the ground in another sport sometime in your life?”, this was the answer to that.🤯.
What does using the ground force look like in a golf swing?
Like me, many people are visual learners so below is a video of using the ground force in the golf swing.
A great myth in golf is that a level head (in relation to vertical movement) will produce consistent ball striking. This is essentially saying try and jump without bending your knees, you probably won’t get very high (unless you have Phil Mickelson calves). Moreover, you will have no freedom of movement in the golf swing.
Take a look at the video here with a swing chosen at absolute random and is not me (sarcasm). Firstly, the transition sees a small squat move with the knees getting farther apart causing the level of the head to lower. Secondly, this creates a great angle of the club and lead arm leading to increase clubhead speed and smash factor. Finally, we see the head staying behind the ball which will lead to a more consistent strike.
How do I use the ground force in the golf swing?
Firstly, I would like to welcome readers who started the article here. In order to use the ground in the golf swing, you must be sure to maintain your head level on the backswing. Starting at the top of the swing you will need to feel a squat motion (knees bending) while keeping your width with your lead arm.
A drill to feel this correctly is holding a medium size workout ball between your knees. At the moment of the squat, the ball should drop to the ground. From this spot, you are loaded to turn your hips through impact and push off the ground through impact.
An important thing to remember when using the ground is to make sure your weight finishes on your front foot. If you use the ground in the golf swing and keep your head behind the ball through impact and fall back you will lose every bit of extra speed and consistency.
That is using the ground explained. A very commonly used term that confuses a lot of people in the golfing world. Debunking the myth of a level head through impact and bringing physics into the golf swing. Using the ground in the golf swing is a great way to pick up yards, shallow the club and strike the ball more consistently.