Stand (properly) and deliver

I want to address the two most important fundamentals to improving your golf swing and hopefully your scores: the grip and correct posture.

I am explaining this for right-handed players (sorry lefties, but you're outnumbered; just reverse the words).

The club should be held deeply in fingers of the left hand. If it is too much in the palm, the club won't rotate as your body turns and will produce weak shots that usually slice.

Open your palm face up and draw an imaginary line slightly diagonally from the base of your forefinger to under the pad of your thumb.

Wrap your hand around the club and place your thumb slightly on the side of the shaft. You should see at least two knuckles of your hand as you look straight down.

Now fit the groove of your right hand over and against your left thumb. If you find this difficult to grasp, there are molded grips available that you can place on an old club or a broken shaft to assist you in the proper hold.

Now for your posture: Stand erect and slightly flex your knees. When bending over it is paramount that you bend from the hips and not from the waist or shoulders. You want to have your spine in as straight a line as possible.

To help you attain this, make a fist with your right hand and extend your thumb. Place your fist under your chin with your thumb against your sternum. This will force you to bend at the hips instead of slumping.

Now stand in front of a mirror with a shirt or blouse that has buttons or a zipper. This will allow you to see the direction of your spine. As your right hand is lower on the club, your spine must tilt to the right to stay in line, and the angles you now have created must remain throughout your body rotation on both the back swing and the forward swing.

If you have trouble grasping this, just pick up any golf magazine and observe the pros at address.

By the way, Tiger, Phil, Vijay, Retief and Ernie have perfect posture. Hmmm, imagine that.

Rules teaser:

A player searching for his ball couldn't find it within five minutes. It was discovered later when another player hit it. Ruling?

Answer to last teaser:

A player's ball rolled up next to a divot that was not detached. Ruling? He must play it as it lies.

John Lucas is the professional at SkyRidge Golf Course. He can be reached at

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