Why You Shouldn’t Hit Down on the Golf Ball

Hi I'm Chuck Quinton, founder of RotarySwing.com. I want to talk about some well intended advice that actually tends to cause more harm than good. And that is that you've probably heard that you should hit down on the ball right? Everybody hears that, everybody talks about that. You see evidence of that when a good player takes a divot right? Clearly the club must be working down after it hits the ball because it's taking some turf out. So now, as an amateur golfer, not really understanding the dynamics and mechanics that causes the club to take a divot, you start trying to reproduce what you see without understanding what's really causing it. The reality is, you don't ever want to try and hit down on the ball because that's going to cause you to be too right side dominant.

When you think about the golf swing, you've got two basic halves of your body doing effort doing work. The left sides doing one thing, the right sides doing one thing, but they're all working together, but in different ways. The left arm stays straight throughout the entire swing, all the way down to the impact and pass, but the right arm elevates, folds at the right elbow, cocks at the right wrist, hinges at the right wrist. I've got all these levers that can allow me to make the club go in a tangent path down in relationship to the swing. So my left arm though, if you think about it like a grandfather clock and it's pivoting from this left shoulder socket, how would that ever take a deep divot? Well it's just kind of brushing the grass here right? Just lightly taking out some sand. I'm not trying to hit down, but yet the club is still working and taking a shallow divot.

Most great ball strikers take a really thin dollar bill sized divot, you've heard that before. The way that you do that is by not trying to take that divot. The reality is, there's so much centrifugal force pulling the club down and out away from you, and pushing the club out away from you, that you don't need to try and change that path of that club. It already wants to go that way. As I showed you here, I'm just letting my wrist un-cock yet, hey look at that, I'm still clearly taking grass. I'm still clearly swinging down, but I'm not trying to swing down. If I try and swing down, what I can do with my left thumb is push against the shaft. Well that's a great way to hit a chunky shot, or not be able to get the divot consistently in the same spot. Or I take this guy who's in a really powerful position, has all kinds of levers to push the club down, and now I can really hit way fat back behind the ball by pushing with that right hand.

That is why it's bad advice, because everybody's going to take that advice and hit down on the ball and do it with their dominant hand, because that's the easiest one, it's in a leveraged loaded position to do that. If you do that and you chunk it, or you cup and you chicken wing, I promise you, you're using way too much right hand, and you're taking this common adage of hitting down on the ball way too literally. Let the club work down to hit the ball by using the left side and take the right hand out. If I do that, I let my right hand come off, I'm still, every time, going to brush the grass without doing this. I'm just going to take a nice clean, crisp, shallow, divot because the bottom of my swing arch is under my left shoulder and very consistent. And all I can do with my right arm is screw that up with a pushing motion.

Now if you're not familiar with this concept of pushing versus pulling, it will blow your mind and completely change the way you think about the golf swing forever. So if you haven't taken a look at it, take a look at this push versus pull video I want to share with you, and it's going to show you just why you shouldn't push in a golf swing and how pulling is going to completely revolutionize what you're doing with your swing. If you like this video, make sure you click like down below and subscribe to our YouTube channel. Got tons more content, hundreds of videos. I'm going to keep sharing more with you every week.

Chuck Quinton

Chuck Quinton

is the founder of the RotarySwing Tour online golf instruction learning system. He played golf professionally for 5 years and has been teaching golf since 1995 and has worked with more than 300 playing professionals who have played on the PGA, Web.com and other major tours around the world.