Hip Rotation: Here’s what you’re doing wrong and how you can improve
Updated: Sep 3, 2020
“It’s all in the hips.”
A phrase I’m pretty sure almost every golfer has heard. It seems simple enough, but most golfers don’t rotate their hips properly. In fact, in many cases, when the golfer tries to increase rotation, the motions they perform work counterproductively. The Golf AI app will tell you if your hip rotation angle is less than ideal, and give you feedback/drills on how to improve.
Your hips are at work throughout the golf swing and significantly impact the way you strike the ball. Maximizing rotation is the key to achieving balance and unlocking the power in the golf swing. Below we will go through select parts of the swing and highlight how you can use your hips to maximize power and consistency.
At set-up, it is crucial to have you hips and posture in the proper position to make a full turn in the backswing. Being too close/far from the ball makes it much harder to rotate your hips during the backswing. However, getting your set-up down is easier than you might think. When you are over the ball, you want to feel a comfortable, centered position with pressure near the balls of your feet -- while your arms hang relaxed and grip the part of the club where they feel most comfortable. Being in an athletic position like this will allow you to rotate with ease.
Hip rotation and positioning in the backswing is critical. The best analogy I could find was from Danny Maude’s YouTube video, where he compares hip rotation to standing and rotating on the top of a screw. I highly suggest you watch it. When you’re taking your backswing, you want to feel like you are twisting that screw into the ground. Now, if you’re trying to drill that screw tightly, you can’t do that by swaying backwards or turning side to side. As you are twisting, think of it as an upward spiral. You want to keep your hips over the ball as you twist up and the only thing keeping you from twisting you out of the swing should be your shoes stuck into the ground.
The other thing you want to focus on is keeping the center of your hips in place. AMG’s video on clearing the hips gives a fantastic anatomical visualization of the difference between Pros and Amateurs in regards to “hip depth” during the backswing. Moving your hips closer to or farther away from the ball on the takeaway can make it much harder to clear your hips on the downswing.
Once you’ve reached the top, you should feel like a rubber band ready to sling forward. You want to control this and make sure your hip action serves to clear the path for your hands, as opposed to thrusting towards the ball. Ensuring sure your hips maintain a connection to the upper body is vital in maintaining consistency in your ball strikes, along with the added power you’ll experience.
When you make impact, the hip rotation doesn’t stop. The momentum of your moving hips should continue until you finish your swing. The ideal finish consists of your back foot heel off the ground and your belt facing towards the target. Shooting for a finish like this will help increase the consistency of your hip rotation in the swing.
Golf AI's golf swing video capture recognizes the importance of hip rotation in the golf swing, however mastering that movement is no simple task. I’ve gone over some common misconceptions relating to hip rotation and highlighted specific tips that will help improve your hip rotation throughout the swing. If you have any questions, don’t be afraid to ask in the comments! And if you try some of these tips out, let us know how they work for you!