How Left Golf Arm Rotates on Golf Backswing to Find Swing Plane

To hit the golf ball consistently, a golfer must swing the club onto the correct swing plane on the backswing and on the downswing.

This can be made simple or difficult depending on setup and the initial takeaway path, but when the one-piece takeaway is completed, it is left arm rotation that determines the swing plane.

Why Left Arm Rotation is Important

Being able to hit the ball squarely, without a glancing blow, requires the golf club to swing in a plane.

This means that the club shaft aims at the ball at the top of the swing, in the same way, a pool player would line up the cue at the ball. If the club is not swung on the plane on the backswing, a golfer has to adjust on the downswing, which is very difficult to do correctly while accelerating at the ball.

The most efficient swings move the club onto a plane at the earliest opportunity, which is halfway back on the backswing. Follow these tips on how to make the left arm rotate correctly and swing the golf club into the plane.

Left Arm Rotation on Backswing

  • The less a golfer has to rotate the left arm, the easier it is to move the club onto the plane time after time. The amount the left arm has to rotate is linked to the address position.
  • If a golfer sets up correctly, the left arm swings naturally onto the plane, but if the arms are set poorly, swinging the club onto a plane is almost impossible.
  • Make sure a line across the arms, two inches above your wristwatch, points at the target, as this makes the arms hang down in a neutral position. This might sound relatively unimportant, but it is probably the most crucial aspect of addressing. Get this wrong, and a golfer immediately makes the swing complicated.

Swing the Club into Plane

  • The swing should start off with a one-piece takeaway where the butt of the club points at the golfer’s spine as it did at address.
  • From halfway back, the left arm rotates, so the shaft of the club points at the ball.
  • As the left arm rotates, the right arm folds.
  • The move could be summed up as ‘turn, then point the club at the ball.’
  • From this position, the golfer has to keep the club in the plane to the top of the backswing and all the way back to halfway on the downswing.
  • A useful tip to help a golfer do this is to concentrate on keeping the angle in your right wrist (made as the right arm folded) the same to the top of the swing and during the transition onto the downswing.
  • If the left arm over rotates normally, it leads to a flat swing where the club points to the left at the top of the swing.
  • If the left arm doesn’t rotate enough, the swing tends to become steep, with the club aiming to the right at the top.