We are always searching for more distance and better accuracy, and we want pinpoint control on approach shots to the green. Good balance is paramount if you want to achieve these objectives on a consistent basis. A balanced swing allows you to have better control of the club and deliver it squarely to the ball, ensuring accuracy. In addition, you will have better power, be kinder to your body and make the swing look effortless.
Swings become off-balance when weight is distributed too much on the toes or heels. Both can lead to an improper take away and can lead to the golfer falling forward or backwards. Also, taking the club back too quickly in a jerking motion can create momentum in the wrong direction and make it difficult to start the downswing in balance. Lastly, starting the downswing in a lung or hitting action can also interfere with your good balance. The downswing should start slowly and gradually increase to maximum speed at the ball.
Next time you practice, focus solely on balance. Don’t worry about distance and straightness. Just focus on balance and hitting the ball solid. You will be pleasantly surprised at the quality of your shots. Find your own personal rhythm and practice over and over swinging in balance.
Moe Norman, one of the greatest ball strikers off his day, had a great quote. He said “I don’t try to balance my swing, I let my swing balance me”.
Whatever club you use, by the time you swing to the finish position, your weight should be positioned on your front foot, as you have made a full turn through with your chest facing the target. If the shot is very short and the swing is so small that there is little to no weight shift, then you should start with most of the weight on your front foot and there will be little to no weight shift during the swing.
Letting your left heel come off the ground during your backswing is ok and can help you make a complete turn. Some players are more flexible than others and will not need their left heel to come off the ground in order to complete the backswing and have the majority of the weight on their back foot. As long as your trunk has rotated and your back is to the target at the top of the backswing, it is ok to lift your heel or keep it on the ground.
Enjoy your practice! With good balance you will be less tired after the round.