The Perfect Golf Swing - Quiet Hips

Updated on April 22, 2008
Pay special attention to Tiger's hips...did they fly open?  Or did he keep them quiet and stationary?
Pay special attention to Tiger's hips...did they fly open? Or did he keep them quiet and stationary?

One more step on the road to the perfect swing.

Believe me when I say that there is no tip, pointer, or one page article that can give you the perfect swing, or tell you how to get one. Mastering the perfect swing means nailing down those components one by one, and then putting them all together in harmony to send your ball its farthest and straightest.

One component of the perfect swing is quiet hips on the backswing.

Your hips, the core pillar of your body- are the ultimate source of power and body control in your swing. How you use them will have an enormous impact on the overall result of your swing.

The secret: keep the hips quiet and minimize motion in the lower half of your body during the back swing.

Take a look at the picture of Tiger Woods. Even at the very end of his back swing, his hips are largely in the same position they were in before he began.

Keeping your hips closed and minimizing their movement during the back swing will prevent the awkward motion throughout the rest of your body that, in general, will send your ball slicing away from you.

The problem with overactive hips during the back swing is that it makes it incredibly difficult to bring your body back into line for the all-important point of impact- when your club head reaches the ball. Opening your hips forces your weight to your front foot. If your weight is focused primarily on the front foot, you will have to shift your weight back, and then forward again in order to drive properly through the ball. Most likely, your body will end up way ahead of your hands, dragging your club head behind you and either slicing ball to the right or grounding it and sending it hopping down the fairway (or worse).

Moreover, opening your hips- and subsequently shifting your weight- causes your head, shoulders, and spine to move out of alignment with the ball. Getting them back to the correct position once your swing has begun is next to impossible. That shot is doomed to go anywhere but where you want it.

Keeping your hips in position during the back swing will also allow for longer, straighter drives and fairway shots. Proper hip control allows you to explode through the ball at the point of impact with your entire body on the down swing.

Think of your hips like a gun, waiting to go off simultaneously with the upper half of your body. Your back swing should allow for just the tiniest cock of the hammer (your hips) before your arms, shoulders, and hands fire forward through the ball in unison.

To practice this, use a piece of tape to fashion a straight line on the ground in front of you. Straddle the line with your nose directly over it, and practice bringing your club head back in a smooth, easy motion. Is your nose still directly over the line? If it's not, its' likely that you've allowed the unnecessary movement in your hips to throw your upper body- and ultimately your head at the top- out of alignment. Try again, but this time, be sure to keep those hips quiet. The result should be that your nose remains exactly where it was at address- when you stood before the ball ready to begin your back swing- which means that you're ready to begin your down swing.


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    • Pure Chiropractic profile image

      Pure Chiropractic 7 years ago from Nanaimo

      Great hub. But for those with lower spine issues, they may been to bring in hip movement to minimise torsion of that region.

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      nick cercone 7 years ago

      GOOD article. Quite by accident I started keeping my hips as quiet as possible on all shots with amazing simply confirmed this action..Thanks

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      Brian 7 years ago

      Great advice. I was actually working on this today with a friend of mine. He said the same thing about me. That I had to much movement in my lower body. He had me to squat a little more, squeeze my knees in like I was holding a big rubber ball between them and keep my hips square to the ball on my backswing. It was like coiling a spring and then releasing the stored energy. I hit the ball straighter and farther. It also helped me alleviate the common problem of getting to deep with my backswing and not getting back in the proper position causing me to bring my right shoulder over the top and bringing the club outside in instead of inside out..... Try It.

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      meech741 8 years ago

      Good advice, I'm teaching my son how to play golf, this will help. Cheers!

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      Scott 9 years ago

      It looks to me like Tiger's hips have rotated about 30 degrees in the photo.

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      Trevor Taylor 9 years ago

      Nice page, but then again I love this product!!

    • Mark Pearson profile image

      Mark Pearson 9 years ago from UK

      Excellent technial advice