Address the golf ball as though you are going to hit a straight golf shot. In other words, position your body relative to the target line so that your knees, hips and shoulder are all parallel to the target line. Assuming you are a right-handed golfer, position the golf ball two to three inches opposite your left arm pit with the clubface positioned behind the golf ball and perpendicular to the target line. Your left thumb pad should be opposite the back half of the golf ball. Your hands should be slightly to the left of the leading edge of the clubface.
The left hand will control the movement of the golf club as you pivot the golf club. The right hand will move only as a result of the golf club pivoting. Keeping your left thumb pad in its initial address position, opposite the back half of the golf, but allowing the thumb pad to rotate, move the last three fingers of your left hand to your left in the direction of the target. The last three fingers of your left hand will move along an arc created by their movement and anchored by your rotating left thumb pad. As you pivot your left hand, the left fore arm will rotate clockwise from the elbow down to your wrist. In doing so, your left arm will move slightly to your left (two or three inches) and slightly away from your body. The intention is to pivot the clubhead ninety degrees so that the golf club shaft is parallel to the target line. As the right hand moves in response to the left hand pivoting, the right elbow will move towards your body and may even touch the area in the proximity of your right hip bone.
Imagine that you are standing on the face of a large clock and the golf ball is positioned at twelve o’clock. The idea is to move the clubhead from twelve o’clock to three o’clock.
With the golf club shaft positioned parallel to the target line or with the clubhead in the the three o’clock position, exert a force with your right hand against the golf club in the direction of the target line. This will cause your hands to pivot counter-clockwise about your left thumb pad. When your hands pivot back to their initial address position so the clubhead is directly behind the back of the ball, one cycle of the waggle is completed.
Typically, a golfer will waggle the club back and forth several times as he adjusts his address position. When he is comfortable that his address position is exactly what he wants it to be, he will begin his takeaway.
For more detailed instructions on how to waggle including illustrations, I suggest you refer to Ben Hogan’s book, Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf or my book, The Golf Swing: It’s all in the Hands – Chapter Three.
This article was written by:
James Lythgoe is passionate about the golf swing and wants to share his knowledge of the golf swing with you. He is the author of The Golf Swing: It’s all in the Hands. He founded a blog thegolfswing.ca, where he can share instructional posts and insights on the hand action of the golf swing with beginner and intermediate – level golfers.