Justin Rose: My four keys to a powerful and consistent golf swing
Iron play is one of my big strengths and it's central to my status as one of the world's top players. I've worked hard to create a swing that enables me to hit the ball powerfully, consistently and accurately – and I'm still working hard to keep improving today.
Many of the things that make me such a good ball- striker will also help you become a better iron player. If you can hit the ball better and more consistently, you'll boost your chances of knocking your approach shots close and set up more makeable birdie opportunities.
#1: Address - Feel Heavy Over The Ball
I like to feel like there's a little pressure in my left foot – maybe 55% of my weight – when I set up with an iron. I also like to feel like I'm very heavy through my feet and trying to grip the ground with my toes. This helps me to stay more centred over the ball and keep my head still as I turn. If my weight is 50-50 and I feel light through my feet then I can sway o the ball a little bit, which reduces my power and consistency.
#2: At The Top - Store Power In A Neutral Position
Match Your Angles
I like my left arm, shoulder angle, left wrist and the clubface all matching at the top. From here, I can just rotate through the ball. If my left arm gets too high, I need to wait for it to drop into the delivery area. If you don't match, you need to manipulate.
Don't Rush The Backswing
I'm never in a rush and I let the backswing develop. It's like a spring. It's still going to uncoil with power, irrespective of how quickly you create that tension in the backswing. A smoother backswing helps store power with control.
From The Turf Up
If you think 'hit' from the top, the upper body moves first and you cast the club over the top, outside the neutral plane. It can lead to a slice. The downswing starts from the ground up so the club stays on a neutral plane and you have an inside 'attack'
#3: Downswing - How To Maintain The Lag
My key to storing energy on the way down is keeping my butt back, so if there was a wall behind me at address I keep my backside against that in the transition rather than standing up and losing my angles. I feel as if I'm lowering into the ground halfway down, with my left arm pinned to my chest and lag in the club. Then as I push up from the ground it pushes me into rotation and creates room to hit the ball with my chest as I turn.
#4: Impact - Clubhead Moves Fast With A Passive Face
Hips and Upper Body Are Open
The more open my hips and upper body look at impact, the better. It shows I've created room for my hands to stay low and release through impact, maintaining my angles in the downswing. I feel like I'm hitting the ball with my chest turning through impact, rather than the arms and hands.
Keep The Grip Low Through Impact
I like to feel the grip is as low as I can get it at impact. That helps me turn the corner more quickly to the left in the follow-through – as you can see from the clubhead's position here – which slows down clubface rotation so it is squarer for longer through impact.
Swing Fastest Past The Ball
Imagining the fastest part of your swing is past the ball helps maintain the lag and release the energy when you need it. This helps attack the ball from the inside and with a downward attack angle so you really compress it, transfer maximum power and produce a high and penetrating trajectory.