Rear Foot Back Drill


Set-up with your normal stanceOne of the most common swing faults for the majority of golfers is coming over the top which is going to cause the dreaded slice. A slice produces a ball flight that robs the golfer of valuable distance as wellas the ability to control the direction of the shot – especially in windy conditions. A great drill I use with many of my students is the Rear Foot Back Drill. When this drill is done properly, it can cure a number of swing faults, especially ‘coming over the top’ on the downswing.

Drop your rear foot back.With a 6-iron, set up with your normal stance and ball position. I recommend you tee the ball up slightly to reduce the tendency to try and hit down on the ball too much. Now, drop your rear foot back so that your toes clear the heel of your front foot. Take a ¾ swing while keeping your feet attached solidly to the ground. Do not lift up the heel of either foot during this shot. Swing down, sweeping through the ball with a controlled tempo at about 50 percent of your normal swing speed. The result will produce a ball flight that does not veer wildly to the right for right-handers, or left for left-handers.

Take a ¾ swingYou will immediately notice a few things with your swing when performing this drill. First, it becomes very difficult to take too big of a  backswing. At the top of your backswing, you will feel like you are around ¾ of your normal backswing. Second, your downswing will be on an inside to out path; the path that helps to deliver a draw (not a slice) ball flight. And finally, your impact position will be improved which will provide you with better direction and distance control – two of the most critical elements of producing consistent results and lower scores.

Keep your rear heel on the ground throughout the swing.Practice the Rear Foot Back Drill until you are consistently hitting a controlled draw, then begin to move your rear foot back into its normal position while remaining focused on repeating an inside to out swing path on your downswing. Whenever you find yourself starting to hit that wild slice again, go back to the practice tee and get back to work with the Rear Foot Back Drill. You can even rehearse this drill as part of your pre-shot routine until the feeling becomes second nature.

About the Author

PGA Professional Mike Malaska is No. 24 on Golf Digest’s ranking of instructors and is one of Golf Magazine’s Top 100. To arrange a personal session with Mike, call 602.799.7099 or visit


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