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As a general rule I start from the ground up when analyzing someone swing. This isn’t set in stone and sometimes I’ll talk about other things. But most of the time I’m looking at what golfers are doing with their feet first.

Having your feet pointing straight out in front of you greatly inhibits your lower body functionality during the swing.

First off, it’s very difficult to turn your hips during the backswing with your right foot pointing straight out in front of you. Try it now and see for yourself.. Stand up and perform a mock golf swing with your right foot pointing straight out in front of you. It’s difficult right? Not to mention, more likely to cause an injury in the pelvis area. I personally feel a sharp pain in my right hip with my right leg in this position.

Second, if your left foot is pointing straight out in front of you, it’s very difficult to allow the left knee to move laterally at the start of the downswing. Chances are you won’t be able to achieve a squatting or sitting position during the start down.

So, let’s start talking about how to do it properly..

I like to see both the left and right foot turned outwards a little. This means the toes are turned out. The distance between both toes should be greater than the distance between both heels.

Why is this important?

Right foot

Well, during the backswing it’s important that the right leg (trail leg) straightens a little. We want it to straighten a little because we need the tailbone moving to the left. You should never be trying to bump your hips laterally to the right – away from the target during the backswing. Don’t forget the hips have to move laterally towards the target during the downswing. So moving them laterally away from the target only moves your lower body center further away from where we actually need it at impact. Therefore, bad advice!

This doesn’t mean there’s no pressure in the right leg. But try and apply the pressure under the right foot, as the right leg straightens a little. Rather than trying to load weight into the right thigh – as per the status-quo teaching for the last few decades.

We want the right hip to be moving back behind you also, towards the target. By turning your right foot out a little, you can then push down under your right foot going back and actually turn your tailbone and right hip towards the target.

Left foot

Turning your left foot out allows you to sit into your left leg during the downswing.

But let’s not forget the backswing. As the tailbone and right hip move closer to the target, we want to feel a gradual “counterbalancing” action into the front leg. This goes hand in hand with the necessary side tilting and extending needed in the spine going back to stay centered.

As mentioned the old status-quo teaching advised loading pressure into the right thigh. Modern teaching techniques recommend loading pressure into the left thigh. Once you feel this during the backswing, then gradually start sitting/squatting into the left leg even more coming down. Your hips should be moving laterally as well as rotationally and if you have turned your left foot out to begin with, you’ll be able to sit into your left leg because your left knee will be able to move laterally as well. Allow your left knee to lead your left hip coming down.

Check out this short video on some of the best in the business, and how they position their feet to allow their lower body to function properly.