A simple way to get more lag in your golf swing
Editor’s Note: Baden Schaff has been a PGA teaching professional for 17 years and is the co-founder of Skillest, a digital platform that connects golf students with golf coaches across the world for online lessons. To learn more about Skillest and to book a lesson of your own, head over to Skillest.com or download the app in the app store.
In my previous article I discussed how the concept of keeping your arms straight can be incredibly detrimental to your game. I thought it would be good to elaborate a little further and delve into how it can be a huge power leak in your swing.
Lag! What is it and how do we get it?
Effectively, lag is shorthand for the angle between the club, wrists and arms. It’s formed by having the correct order of the arms, wrists and club head as the club come around into impact. Often we can become obsessed with trying to generate all of our power from the turning, spinning and torquing of the body, but if you don’t have your arms and club in the correct order to hit it’s all completely pointless.
Ben Hogan used to say “I lead with my elbows”. He was in fact referring to the feeling he had on the downswing. He was acutely aware that his right elbow should lead into impact to create the correct kinetic link of elbow first, hands second, clubhead third, thereby creating the most amount of stored energy as the club approaches impact.
There’s a simple way to work more lag into your golf swing — and it all comes back to not keeping your arms straight.
The structure of your arms at the start of the swing is critical to you creating consistent lag in your swing. By getting your body in the correct shape at the start, having your right arm bent at the correct angle you can actually preset your lag. It’s not something you have to create during the downswing.
This has so many benefits. It means you can set the club off in the correct sequence, keep your wrists relatively passive and yet still generate lots of power.
Starting with straight arms and then keeping them that way in a “one piece” fashion during the backswing will guarantee that you will need to make huge adjustments by reordering your arms and wrists during the downswing. This reordering, for the average golfer, is almost impossible to do on a consistent basis.
So don’t be scared to start with bent arms as it will set you up for the correct sequencing on the way back and down without making large compensations. It’s also a great reminder that most of your issues can be solved by getting your set up right.