How To Keep Head Behind Ball

By | on June 12, 2016 | 26 Comments | Array


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Paul Wilson is the creator of Swing Machine Golf and founder of Ignition Golf. Paul's golf swing technique is based on the Iron Byron swing machine. YouTube Channels: Paul Wilson Golf and Ignition Golf Tips. Please Join me on Google+

26 Responses to “How To Keep Head Behind Ball”

  1. June 12, 2016


    Hi Paul,
    Please allow me to digress a bit.
    Steve Stricker’s short swing. What causes it and why is it effective?
    I don’t intend to copy him. Just wondering.

    • Eriab,

      It hasn’t been too effective lately. Not sure what you’re asking. It’s a shorter swing. Nothing wrong with that. It didn’t seem to hold up pressure when he almost shanked one in the US Open a few years ago.

      I gaurantee frame by frame it matches all other pros. I would prefer he loosen up his arms a little.

  2. Avatar photo

    June 12, 2016


    Hi Paul, once again a great video. I took it onto the practice area yesterday and had a good result. I am now automatic with the touch the leg…touch the head routine! A question, do I perform the same tilt when I am pitching and chipping? MJ

  3. Great! Always thought shoulders turned round and round, but this clears it up. I think touch the legs makes sense, but you should explain why. When someone mentioned to clear the hips, really struck home.

  4. Paul:

    Once again your tip of today was the problem that I was having on the course today. You are psychic!

    • Jim,

      I am. This is important. If you are pulling/pull hooking/pull slicing you are using arms so you are not getting the tilt. If you turn your arms off, you would have to use your body. If you use your body you will get the tilt. So turn the arms off.

  5. This is the key area for the whole swing. My bad shots are always pulls.
    On a point, on watching golf on the TV you are right all these guys have that tilt at impact.
    However they showed a slo mo of Jason Day and were analysing his swing. All of what you teach was there but they had a circle around his head and it remained there with seeming no movement back or forward. This was pointed out as important. I’ve also watched a few other guys against a backdrop and there does seem to be minimal head movement.
    Any thoughts?

    • David,

      I just watched a bunch of Jason Day videos. I see his head behind the ball at address then he moves it back about an inch.

      In the July 2001 issue of Golf Digest Jim McClean measured pros head at address and at the top. Tour average head movement was 3.6 inches. Amateur average was .7 of an inch. So if you preset your head behind the ball it would appear that it is not moving much.

      I want you to move your head so you load the weight. This will allow you to use your legs and hips. No weight shift and you will hit with your arms.

  6. Paul when moving the head behind the ball how do you stop from swaying, which is very easy to do? Thanks Stan

  7. Great tip, I hit a 100 balls doing this with a slow 50% swings and by the end I naturally went to touch the legs position and managed to hit a dozen really good shots. I correctly felt the poweless arms in my swing too and it felt effortless, now I need to practise more of the same to try and maintain it. Thank you

  8. Very important golf lesson ,Paul more than it seems to be .There are several tricks to keep the head behind the ball.One is to put a alignment rod inside the right heel at right angles to the target line and turn your shoulders beyond it at the backswing ,then keep your head there through the downswing .
    Another one is to replace (in your head ) the wall you mention by a broken window with jagged glass jutting all around ,and avoid putting your head through the jagged glass.
    I do myself another thing:I coil my shoulders ,my hips following , until I feel an unsustainable stretch in my back ,and then I let go my upper body in the through swing :my head cannnot go much forward this way .

  9. June 15, 2016



    The difficulty with keeping the head back is moving the hips while keeping the head back.
    Needs a twisting of the body that is difficult to achieve with a stiff body and arms bracing for impact. Hence the value of your advice of swinging at 50% and of powerless arms.

    I was a pull slicer. Fixed the slice using your “turn the wrists way early” method.
    I became a puller. Fixed the pull by using your “keeping the head back” approach.
    I became a pusher. Even a push fader. That was a totally new thing for me. Didn’t like the feeling at all as it was weak and the body felt bad. Fixed the push by driving the legs (more) but then my head followed me…

    At the moment getting my head to separate from my legs. Slowly getting there and recent results have been useful. I have improved about 4-5 shots since I joined but my aim is mid single handicap so a lot more to go from my current 12-13 handicap.

    • Paul,

      As I said in the tip this would be a piece. So you wouldn’t really be trying to fire the hips until step 2. 50% is always good.

      Glad you fixed the slice. This is so easy to fix. I fixed a student yesterday in minutes. Again.

      The pull hook just requires you to switch to the thought of using the lower body not the roll over (although the roll over still happens). If the lower body turns before the arms start you will hit it dead straight.

      Just do the practice swings at home nightly as I suggested. This will get you used to it. Then apply it to the ball. You should be striving for single digits at this point. Did you ever do a swing analysis with Pete? This would stop any confusion.

  10. June 15, 2016


    I would like to add that when I did this tilt on my setup, I hit the ball much higher… For me the harder part, is the turn on the backswing, moving the head to the right while keeping my weight inside my right leg. It takes practice…

    • Jeff,

      This is because you are hanging back with too much weight on the back foot at impact. Don’t pre-tilt. You get the tilt in the downswing. Yes, loading to the instep is one of the hardest things in golf to master. Just keep your back knee facing forward. This will help.

  11. June 19, 2016


    A technical question: When I shift right and turn my shoulders in backswing, the right side of my nose blocks out my right eye at the top of backswing, leaving only my left eye seeing the ball…no, I don’t have a tomahawk for a nose!…but is this normal/ok?…doing what you advocate is so totally different from my old swing where both eyes are on the ball throughout the swing….perhaps this is why I tended to pull the ball?

    Later, Ken

  12. Hi Paul,
    i used this tip to good effect on my irons, but with my driver i got very bad results. Mostly it was topping or slicing right. When i don’t add that tilt, the results are much better. The ball is forward when i set up with the driver. i think the head is automatically behind the ball, because i always allow my head to move back over my right foot (the two axis thought) and swing inside the cylinder off my left foot, so it seems that my head is behind the ball all the time. Have i confused something?

  13. I found the tip I asked for yesterday Regarding swinging up 🙂

  14. Paul. How much can the head dip down? In order to keep it back and tilt behind (now doing it manually) my head dips down quite a bit, but at least Im now keeping it back where it is at the top of the backswing

    • Stian,

      Your head will did down upwards of 6 inches at you hit the ball.

      How The Head Moves Down and Past Impact:

      I really wouldn’t be trying to drop it etc. This will happen if you have the right fundamentals. I have never thought of this.

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