My Golf Instructor

The Reverse Pivot
Understanding a Reverse Pivot

Get your upper and lower body moving in balance correctly to avoid a reverse pivotProper Balance Eliminates the Reverse Pivot

There are 3 main reverse pivots in the golf swing. To help understand what is meant by a reverse pivot, remember that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Your body wants to be in balance. No one wants to fall over, so we are well equipped to subconsciously activate self balancing reactions when we sense our equilibrium is off. This is what happens when you reverse pivot. The term reverse here simply means you are doing things backwards or in reverse order. When you reverse pivot in your golf swing your weight and body parts move in the opposite direction to which they are supposed to. In other words, when your weight should move onto your back foot and then onto your front foot, with a reverse pivot it does the opposite. Your weight will move towards your target onto your front foot and then it will fall away from the target onto your back foot.

When your weight is not moving correctly and with the force of your swing, you will lose a lot of power. Having your weight reverse also leads to off plane swing conditions, loss of direction and inconsistent contact. So not only will you hit the ball shorter, you will end up spraying it all over the place if your are not properly balanced with stacked body parts during the swing.

The 3 reverse pivots:

  • 1) Lower body reverse pivot on the takeaway. Here, your hips and lower body move towards the target on the takeaway forcing your weight to lean onto your front foot. As a result you will usually then rock onto your back side as you come into the ball.
  • 2) Lower body reverse pivot on the down swing. Here your hips and lower body move backwards and you fall back on your rear foot as you swing into the ball.
  • 3) Hip slide / upper body reverse pivot on the back swing. Your hips slide or sway away from the target and as a result, your upper body leans back towards the target.

Remember that the inside moves the outside. What your core does controls where your arms and club go. It is important to stabilize your lower body and load the upper body properly behind the ball. A multitude of swing errors result from reverse pivoting and being out of balance. Before you go blaming your swing plane, set up, or release, you might want to make sure that your core is doing what it should.

The 3rd reverse pivot listed above with the hip sway away from the target and the upper body leaning back towards the target is by far the most common and in my opinion the most detrimental. Although we will give tips and drills to help target all reverse pivots, emphasis is put on number 3.

Maria Palozola

Maria Palozola is a member of the LPGA and has participated in multiple LPGA Tour events. She has provided instruction to thousands of students in the past 20+ years and has won multiple teaching awards from the LPGA, Golf Digest, and Golf Magazine including being ranked as one of the top 50 female instructors in the world.

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