Whether you’re an old-fashioned girl or a thoroughly modern woman, the requirements for proper “golf posture” — bending from the hips so your rear end sticks out — may make you feel you are breaking a basic rule of etiquette. But rest assured: On the golf course, this is how golfers — female and male — stand to make a good swing. Accomplished players don’t give it a second thought.
Good golf posture should make you feel that you’re in a “ready for motion” position. The golf swing requires a good deal of motion, and golf posture prepares your body for that motion.
Poor golf posture sets the stage for two power-sapping swing errors. First, keeping the lower back pulled under and in limits hip turn, since the big muscles around the hips add power to the swing, a restricted hip turn siphons off power. Think of these muscles like an elastic band — the more it is stretched the farther it will fly. No stretch (turn) — no distance.
The second error is a consequence of the first: When the hips don’t turn, neither do the shoulders. Then the arms are forced to lift the club to the top, a weak substitute for a big, powerful shoulder turn.
These are common problems among female golfers, and you can’t repair them without fixing your posture. To do that, bend from your hips so your rear end sticks out and your upper body tilts forward. This allows your hips and shoulders to turn freely and your arms to swing — rather than lift — the club.
The best place to check your posture is in a mirror. But if you’re on the practice range and need a quick evaluation, check your hip turn. Take your normal address position, place a shaft across your hips, then turn your body as you would when making a backswing. If your posture is correct, your hips will turn fully and the shaft will form a diagonal line–the front end of the shaft over the toes of your left (front) foot, the back end of the shaft over your (right) back heel. If the shaft barely moves, start again at address and use the shaft to push your hips back. Repeat the process a few times and you’ll begin to feel more freedom of movement.