We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Coming over the top is a common error in the golf swing in which the club crosses its regular arc at the top of the swing. Numerous technical errors may be the cause of this common swing malady, and even psychological factors may be to blame in some cases. Although some notable professionals, such as Fred Couples and John Daly, have made the over-the-top swing work, you'll make the game much easier if you aim to reduce this problem.
One cause of coming over the top during the backswing is letting the right elbow, for a left-handed golfer, flare out from the body. Ideally, the elbow should remain tucked in tight to the torso to help keep the club on plane. To make sure this happens, practice hitting shots while keeping a towel placed under your right armpit. The towel should not fall out until after you've hit your shot.
Perhaps the most common mental error a golfer makes is rushing at the top of the swing. Video footage of Tiger Woods at the 2012 Masters clearly shows him committing this error. The average golfer typically makes this mistake in an effort to generate more club head speed. However, rushing at the top can cause you to come over the top and produce a poor shot.
Prevent rushing at the top of your swing by pausing at the phase between the backswing and downswing. Hold this position to a count of at least one before initiating the downswing to prevent rushing. The reason Fred Couples gets away with coming over the top is because he has an extremely smooth transition from his backswing to his downswing.
Head Position Drills
According to teaching professional Mike Malaska, coming over the top may be caused by restricted head movement during the swing. You've probably been told at some point to keep your head still during the swing. While somewhat helpful, this swing tip is also somewhat inaccurate. Your head should feel free to move to the right as much as you want, but should avoid getting ahead of the ball, or moving left.
Begin your swing by tilting your chin slightly to the right prior to initiating your backswing. This will free your upper body at the top and help you avoid cutting across the ball. Jack Nicklaus, also a notorious "over-the-topper," is a classic example of a player who used this strategy to free up his body at the top of the swing.
Golf Driving Tips, an authority on golf technique, illustrates the importance of timing in preventing coming over the top. The golf swing is designed to work in a chain-like series of events. The backswing should begin with movement of the club head, then shaft, hands, arms, shoulders and hips. The downswing should occur in an exact reverse of this series. However, many amateurs reach the top of their swings and, in anticipation of making a mighty blow at the golf ball, begin the downswing with an aggressive movement of the arms and shoulders. This causes an over-the-top swing and poor shots.
Prevent this timing error by swinging extremely slowly in front of a mirror. Check your position at every phase of the swing to make sure your body has made the correct sequence of movements. At the top of the swing, make sure to initiate the downswing with your hips and not your upper body. The shoulders, arms, shaft and club head should then follow.