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How to Keep Wrists Together to Promote a Good Golf Swing

by M.L. Rose
    Wrist action is an important part of your overall swing mechanics.

    Wrist action is an important part of your overall swing mechanics.

    Andrew Redington/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

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    Some golf instructors don’t focus heavily on the hands and wrists, but former LPGA great Patty Berg believes “hand-wrist action constitutes the most important factor in a golf swing.” Whether you focus on your wrists directly, or allow their movements to flow naturally from your overall mechanics, the wrists must work together to promote a sound swing.

    Step 1

    Check your grip. A strong grip will keep your hands and wrists together, while a poor grip may induce a player to compensate by grasping the club too tightly, according to Tiger Woods. A player’s grip must be comfortable for the individual, but in general golfers should hold the club in their fingers or the bases of their fingers rather than in their palms. Point your thumbs down the shaft and overlap the right pinkie between the first two fingers of the left hand (for a right-handed golfer).

    Step 2

    Maintain your wrist position throughout the backswing. Tom Watson keeps his left wrist slightly cupped at address, so the back of his hand is raised slightly, relative to his forearm. But whether you cup your left wrist or keep it flat, Watson adds, it should remain in the same position during your backswing and about 1 foot into your downswing.

    Step 3

    Take a full shoulder and hip turn in both the backswing and downswing. Your body’s rotation will help both your wrists cock naturally at the top of your backswing, then will naturally uncock your wrists prior to impact. However, by shifting your weight forward aggressively on the downswing, you can delay uncocking your wrists and generate extra power, according to Gary Player.

    Step 4

    Maintain a straight left wrist at the moment of impact. In a standard, neutral grip the back of your left hand mirrors the position of the club face. Swing coach Hank Haney believes that by keeping your wrist flat, relative to your forearm, the back of your left hand is more likely to be square to the target, which ensures that your club face is also square at impact.

    References

    About the Author

    M.L. Rose has worked as a print and online journalist for more than 20 years. He has contributed to a variety of national and local publications, specializing in sports writing. Rose holds a B.A. in communications.

    Photo Credits

    • Andrew Redington/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images