How The Right Leg Works
In The Golf Swing
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Let’s talk about how the right leg works during the downswing.
At set up, there’s a small amount of flex in the right leg and the right knee. I like to see the kneecaps towards the balls of the feet or sort of the edges of your shoelaces or where your toes meet your foot. I don’t want the right leg to be super straight at address where the knees are in the middle of your foot, nor super bent at address where it’s way over your toes.
Almost all of the good players will straighten their right leg a little bit as they turn back from the address position. Whatever amount of flex they have to start with, they will lose some of that when they go back.
There are two main functions straightening the right leg serve during the backswing. The biggest thing it is correlated with is the amount of pelvis turn. When I make a backswing, if I lose the most amount of flex or straighten my leg the most that allows my pelvis to turn the most.
Typically the more you turn your hips, the more you can turn your chest and shoulder and you have a bigger backswing turn. Why do I want to have bigger backswing turn? Well, I can produce more speed from there, I can get my arms deeper from there, and I’m going to typically hit the ball better from there. So, if I straighten my leg more, probably better golf is the result.
So, I have a bend of the knees over the balls of the feet at address. Weight in the feet is at the balls of the foot. As I make my backswing, I’m losing some flex. The weight in my foot is not all the way on the balls of my feet. It’s more towards the middle of my arches. The right hip is higher than the left at the top of the backswing. In transition, I want to re-flex my leg basically back to where it started, maybe even a little bit more forward as I’m turning.
During my downswing, I’m reflexing then I’m feeling my quad and my kneecap are both going to start to turn towards the target. I’m pushing off of my right foot from about last parallel into the follow through.
Check out the swing analysis at the end of the video of Adam Scott, Hideki Matsuyama, Jordan Speith and Justin Thomas. I walk you through each one showing you what I just talked about here so you can see that these really good players are doing these same things with their right leg and swing (and we should be, too!)
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