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While every pro has a unique swing, they do share a commonality that separates themselves from mere mortals — a square clubface at impact. No matter the loops and drops they use on the takeaway and subsequent downswing to the ball, the clubface is seemingly always pointing directly at the target at the moment of impact.
But before the clubface has a chance to send the ball soaring down the fairway, there’s another common trait that the best players in the world share. And believe it or not, it happens before the clubhead even moves away from the ball in the takeaway.
The way golfers begin the swing is called a “trigger,” and for the best players in the world, it’s a move that is repeated on every swing. GOLF Top 100 Teacher Justin Parsons has been studying these triggers that top pros use (which he incorporates into his teaching) and he shared a video about his findings recently on Instagram.
1. Face on
Parsons found during his studies that from a face-on view, he sees the best players trigger their swings by pushing off the front foot into the back foot.
“We’re going to see the body move a little bit from the lead side to the trail side,” he says. “We’re going to see on video that little push across — and you see that with Tiger at his best, you see it with Rory a little more subtly. You see it with Bryson an awful lot more aggressively.”
Once that trigger move is initiated, Parsons says there isn’t much more excess lateral movement to the top of the swing.
“That little shift almost pre-sets everything,” he says.
2. Down the line
From a down-the-line view, Parsons sees another trigger players use, and it involves a “twisted shift.”
“You’re going to see the trail knee moves towards the golf ball, and the lead knee move away from the golf ball,” he says. “And you might wonder, ‘Why on Earth is that happening?’ The players are also using the floor to get not only lateral movement and some pushing into the ground, but they’re also using the ground to get some rotational movement.”
This move is one that is used by Bryson DeChambeau and, for a more exaggerated example, Matthew Wolff.
“The best players in the world do that very powerfully,” he says. “Really, really good ball strikers, you’ll see that little change in the knees.”