Because a woman's proportions are different from a man's, the average woman golfer has a tendency to overswing. She tends to turn or rotate her body faster than a man does, often with the result that the body overpowers and controls the hands. She falls into an exaggerated hip movement that throws the whole swing badly out of line. Add to this that women, having weaker wrists than men, frequently throw the clubhead from the top of the backswing and it becomes clear that acquiring body control and balance is superimportant to women golfers.
To overcome these tendencies before they become grooved, a woman golfer must concentrate on letting her hands, arms and her shoulders control the backswing. On the downswing, instead of letting her body swing her clubhead around, she must concentrate on hitting past her body with her hands—letting the clubhead pull the body around, as it were. To make these corrections, on both backswing and downswing, you must restrain your hips from being too active. Once you allow them to turn too fast or too far, you can never hope to regain your balance during the swing. When you watch the best women golfers in action you will notice how smoothly they start their swings with long-practiced hand-arm-shoulder action. Once started properly, they are able to restrain the excessive hip turn, which seems like a source of power but which is in actuality the defeater of alignment, balance and power.
SHIRLEY SPORK, Tamarisk CC, Palm Springs, Calif.
Above: too much hip action
Right: the correct restraint
NEXT WEEK: Joe Pryke on contacting the ball with the putter