While golf information becomes easily available, you might feel a little excluded as a Left-handed golfer. Let’s face it, golf equipment is most often designed for right-handed players. What can be even more maddening, is the fact that today’s information is not geared towards lefties. With that in mind, we have planned this informative piece just for you.
You’re Not the Only One
Despite the fact that left-handed players are fewer in number, there are still quite a few celebrated left handed players. For instance, Bubba Watson, Phil Mickelson, and Mike Weir are all lefties. Then there is Bonnie Bryant, a left-handed LPGA Tour champion.
The funny thing is that Mickelson isn’t even a natural left-handed golfer, he just chose to swing left. Whether playing left it’s a personal choice or your natural hand orientation, you have the right to know how to play the game just as well as anyone else.
Golf is Difficult for Lefties
As luck may have it, playing golf is harder when you’re left-handed.
It has nothing to do with the game itself. Left-handed golf clubs, gloves, and golf gear in general is quite difficult to find. However, this has become more accessible now, compared to finding gear two decades ago.
An effective approach to overcoming the playing challenges of being left-handed, is by acquiring the services of a left-handed golf instructor. You might think that the hand orientation of your instructor does not matter, but it actually does.
A left-handed instructor can help you make the process more effective and simplified. You might be worried that left-handed instructors are non-existent, but they are out there.
Crucial Tips for Left-Handed Golfers
While you’re out and about looking for a good instructor, we have laid out some tips that could be of use to a left-handed golfer.
Golf Club Grip for Lefties
Being a left-handed golfer doesn’t mean that you’ll have a weaker grip. You can have a firm and proper grip on your club regardless of your hand orientation.
When you hold your club, check that it moves across your left palm. The club has to pass through your index finger base to right above your little finger.
Don’t move the grip into your fingers, as this could lead to a wild golf swing motion, resulting in a hook. Similarly, when the grip rests in your palm, it reduces the speed of the swing which will give you slices.
Your Golf Stance
The way you take up your stance and swing, is the same for golfers of both sides of the spectrum.
The only difference is that right and left- handed stances are mirrored viewpoints of each other.
- As you set up, start by firmly placing the club behind the golf ball. Your clubface will be equally aligned with the target.
- Keep your feet close together under all circumstances. Now move a little bit towards the right with your right foot and take a bigger step toward the left with the left.
- Your feet will now be shoulder-width apart from each other. The golf ball should be just as little in front of the inner part of your left foot.
For lefties, any information you get about assuming a better stance will require you to do the opposite when it comes to aligning your body.
Golf Swing Follow Through
Don’t quit your golf swing after you have reached impact. A decent follow through is evidence that you have gathered enough power with a full hip rotation.
The most important part of your golf swing is swinging on the balls of your feet while gathering enough movement in your hips.
Very few golfers are not aware of the importance of well-balanced follow through. This is regardless of their hand orientation.
Until now, it has proven to be detrimental where left-handed players are concerned. A good follow through method will join your start and finish positions together.
The best Follow through will give you increased power strength and stability over your golf shot.
When you are a left-handed golfer, you have to get your body comfortable with going over the opposite of the usual swing sequence.
This will definitely bring greater energy, attention, and drill rehearsals. You have to focus on your muscle memory, and as such it is vital not to switch, chop or change between right and left.
It doesn’t take a champion like Tiger Woods to know that an unreliable follow through can give unpredictable and imbalanced shots.
Left Arm Swing Sequence
In the perfect swing sequence, your left arm needs to work together with your right. This is applicable with both your backswing straight towards the follow through. In the following guide, you can double check your steps to ensure that you have the best swing sequence.
- When you stand at address, your left arm should be loose and limber while copying the right. Your left arm will be placed a little lower due to the hand placement on the grip.
- As you get into the backswing, both your arms have to spread out away from the ball while swinging the club away from your body.
- The moment your club becomes aligned with the surface, your arms should be straightened out. Doing this will add width to your backswing.
- Now you have to keep your right arm stretched out to your swinging width. But, here your left arm will twist and bend towards the left side.
- While your club makes its way to the top of the swing, your shoulders have to turn completely beneath your chin. At this moment, your left arm would be bent and close into the left side.
- Afterwards, your hips will turn and twist towards the ball. Your left arm will remain close to the side. This is just to prevent the club from being thrown on an outside swing path.
- When you move towards impact, your left arm will begin to straighten out.
- When you reach impact, both of your arms would have extended completely for a strong and steady shot.
- The follow through mirrors the back swing. Also, your left arm keeps straightening and spreading out through the ball. The right arm now folds into the side and bends.
- When you reach the top of your follow through, keep your left arm stretched out as the club rests on your shoulders.
This sequence can have a few slight changes. For instance, your left arm, has to extend through impact or you won’t have enough power to strike the ball. If your left arm buckles, you run the risk of lifting your club head higher than you should at impact.
In the beginning of this article, we briefly touched on a few left-handed golf champions. Let’s tell you more about some of the best, just for some extra inspiration.
At the top of our short list we found the first major winner who was left-handed. Bob Charles won the claret jug after winning the Open Championship during a 36-hole playoff in 1963. In the very same year, he won the Houston Open, and was the first leftie to win a PGA Tour event. Even though he had only won six PGA Tours he was a productive winner who claimed as many as 79 wins in his carreer.
Mickelson is definitely the most accomplished and celebrated left-handed golfer. He is actually right-handed hence the nickname “lefty” as he just has a preference to swing left. He has managed to win six majors and multiple PGA Tour events. Raking in over $92 million in prizes.
Weir was crowned champion of the Masters back in 2003. He has also been the first left-handed golfer to win a major championship in four decades as well as being the first to win at Augusta. Weir has also drummed up eight career PGA Tour wins and one PGA Tour Champions win.
Drills for A Left-Handed Player
Despite golf being dominated by right-handers, there are golf drills specially designed for left-handed players.
By doing a quick search on the web, you can find many drills for your enjoyment. Carefully examine them and add them to your practice routine. Just make certain that you find drills that are suited for you.
An easy and impactful leftie golf drill is the left-hand-only swing. To execute you simply need to:
- Hold your club in only your left hand.
- Do a few practice swings with your shaft leaning forward.
- Check that your left wrist remains flat throughout your follow through and not bending.
This will improve your swing by preventing a backwards-leaning shaft, which is a common problem for left-handed golfers.
Many left-handed golfers feel like their hand-orientation is a shortcoming. Even though it can certainly be bothersome to find the right gear, you do have some advantages. It has been proven throughout golfing history that left-handed golfers are imaginative , and better at visualizing their shots. Simple practice the right drills and pay close attention to the correct left-handed swinging sequence, and you should be doing just fine.