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The Perfect Golf Swing

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As I ran up and down the tee line, I saw my uncle slamming the ground with a golf club. I could not understand why he was always so angry when practicing. I stopped running and watched him closely, studying his body as he elegantly whipped the club through the air. Sweat was dripping from his nose, his shirt soaked completely through. I was ten years old and in awe of this man. He was an athlete. I watched him for hours that day, and I would watch him for years to come as he practiced, trying to find the perfect swing.

The perfect golf swing is thought to be unattainable to many in the golfing world. I spent my childhood playing on a driving range, watching my uncle hit ball after ball. He is a PGA-certified professional who has made it his life's work to find the perfect swing. I cannot inform you on the perfect golf swing because I have never witnessed it, although I can explain the fundamentals of golf. There are four components which make up the golf swing, stance and posture, the grip, the backswing, and the follow through. By breaking golf into these four components, I will be able to verbally illustrate the most fundamentally sound swing possible. When done correctly the golf swing has the fluidity of sand in an hourglass, combined with the power of a coiled spring. It is truly a beautiful thing to witness when refined to this level.

The proper stance and posture enable a golfer to be perfectly balanced and poised throughout the swing. Only when this occurs will his legs, arms, and body be able to carry out their assignments correctly. Many golfers make the error of assuming the stance is only to line up the body to the target. The stance is also the step in which the golfer sets up so his body will be balanced throughout the swing. The first phase of the stance is the placing of your feet. The feet should be shoulder width apart for the majority of shots. They should be moved closer together for lofted irons and farther apart for long irons and woods. The right foot should be pointing straight away from the body, and the left foot should be pointed one quarter turn towards the target. This foot placement automatically regulates the amount of hip turn allowed in the backswing. The arms should be tucked into the body and kept as close together as possible. The left elbow should be pointing to the left hipbone and the right elbow to the right hipbone. The golfer should then assume the "semi sitting position." This is achieved by keeping the upper body erect and the back straight, while bending the knees to attain a sitting feel. The golfer should lower his waist approximately two inches from standing upright. The final point of proper posture is the inward pointing of the knees. They should be slightly pointed towards each other.

Good golf generally begins with a good grip. A golfer's power is generated by the movements of his body. This power is transferred from his body to his arms and from his arms to his hands. The hands are the only part of the body in contact with the club, so the proper grip is essential for quality shots. The most vital part of the grip is that both hands must act as one unit. With the back of the left hand facing the target, place the club in that hand so the shaft is pressed against the inside heel of your palm. The shaft must also lie across the top joint of the left forefinger. Then wrap the remaining fingers around the club with the thumb pointing downward. With the club in your left hand, face your right palm to your target. Then rest the shaft against the top joints of your four fingers. With your fingers firmly around the club fold your right hand on top of your left thumb, allowing your right thumb to rest on the shaft. If done correctly, the V formed between your thumb and forefinger on your right hand should point at your right eye when addressing the ball. There should never be pressure applied by the right thumb during the swing. A good way to accustom yourself to the correct feeling is to practice swinging with your right thumb not touching the club.

Once the posture and grip of the golfer is set correctly, the backswing begins motion. The initial



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