Weight distribution is important in all aspects of the golf swing but we found that weight distribution specifically at the point of impact dramatically effects golf power.
Where many golfers get confused is that you want to keep your head, spine, and upper body behind the ball at impact but you want most of your body weight to be transferred to your front leg, which is past the ball.
To really nail down an accurate measure of a golfers weight distribution at impact, we used to use an expensive force plate. This is pretty high tech and expensive. We later found it was essentially a waste when I saw William Breland from GOLO golf use 4 cheap scales and get the same read outs…oops!
We traded in our high tech gear and got 4 scales with small dials. It’s important to use small dials because if the dials are too big, the feet cover them and you cannot get an accurate reading. Just an FYI if there are any do-it-yourselfers out there who want to give this a try.
What we measured was:
- The weight distribution between the right foot and the left foot
- And the front to back weight distribution of each foot individually.
Here is your take home message:
- At the point you impact the ball, you want approximately 70-80% of your weight on the left foot.
- Of the weight that is on your left foot, you want 60-80% of that weight on your left heel…this is key.
- Of the weight that is on your right foot, you want 60-80% of that weight on your right toe and the heel should be starting to lift off of the ground.
Most amateur golfers usually fall short in 1 of 2 ways.
Left Foot Compared to the Right Foot
It is very common for the amateur golfer to hang back on their back, right, foot at impact. The older the golfer, the more likely this swing fault is occurring. Take a look at this picture comparing an amateur to one of the Age Defying Golf Icons: Fred Couples.
Front of the Foot Compared to the Heel of the Foot
The second common swing fault that is hardly every mentioned, is having most of your weight on your left heel. Again, the older the golfer, the more common this swing fault. As golfers lose their range of motion in their ankles, they tend to kick their weight forwards, or toward the ball at impact. As a result, when we test them they have a lot more weight over the toes of the left foot instead of the heels.
This involves a touch of physics but here goes: In the golf swing your body is the center of movement, similar to what the shoulder is when a pitcher is throwing a baseball. The farther away the ball is from the center of movement, the faster the ball will go. That is one reason why baseball pitchers tend to be tall with long arms. They can whip the ball a lot faster.
When the golfers moves his/her body forwards, towards the ball, they are shortening their “lever arm.” Thus, the golfer loses power.
I guarantee that you will not find a professional golfer with any variation of weight distribution at impact. It is that important.
If you want more golf power and to hit the golf ball with more distance, you need to correct your weight distribution. You can read this article to improve your weight distribution between the left foot and right foot at impact, click here: Fix your weight distribution at impact.
If you want to correct your weight distribution from front to back, check out this article.
Thanks for reading!
Dr. Ryan York, DPT CGS
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Certified Golf Performance Specialist
Age Defying Golf