Feel this key move to start your downswing, says PGA Tour pro

tommy fleetwood hits an iron from the fairway during the 2022 Nedbank Golf Challenge

Tommy Fleetwood is one of the best ball strikers on the PGA Tour.

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Welcome to Play Smart, a regular game-improvement column that will help you play smarter, better golf.

Everyone has different feels that they use to make their swing work. For some, it’s an on-plane takeaway. For others, it’s a release pattern after impact. These feels are what golfers lean on to keep everything together, and it differs for every player.

Now, this feel can often times be very different than what really happens. In instruction, we call this phenomenon feel vs. real. But while the reality might be different than the feeling, all that matters is that it produces the desired result.

Tommy Fleetwood has long been one of the PGA Tour’s premier ball strikers, and most of us wish we could produce the kind of contact he does. For 99.9% of people, that’ll never happen — but we can hear from him on the feel he relies on to begin his downswing.

Tommy Fleetwood’s key move

Fleetwood explains that on the takeaway, he tries to feel his hands staying inside the clubhead in the first few feet of his swing. From there, he allows his body to take over and make a full turn to the top of the backswing.

This is where the key move comes into play. To begin his donwswing, Fleetwood tries to feel like he’s pushing his lead hip straight back.

“My left hip goes straight back,” Fleetwood says. “I don’t want it to sway. Go straight back.”

With this move beginning the downswing, the only thing left to focus on is turning through the ball and making contact.

Remember, this is simply an explanation of Fleetwood’s feel, which might not work for every golfer. However, with all the success he’s seen throughout his career, it’s worth giving it a shot.

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