Closed Golf Stance

The Benefits of a Closed Golf Stance

Weekend players frequently ask about ideal foot positioning during the golf setup. Should your feet be neutrally aligned with the target line, flared open, or closed inwards some degrees? Beginning golfers simply stand to the ball and feel most comfortable at address. However, stance direction has a significant impact on swing path, clubface control, and the weight shift required for solid contact.

Closed stance alignment positions your front foot instep to the left of the target line if you are right-handed, encouraging more hip turn and coil on the backswing. For players who struggle with outside-in swing paths, using this aim improves circular motion and compressive impact. Even neutral to open stance players can use a closed stance to shape specialty shots.

Let’s look at the specific benefits of keeping your Closed Golf Stance, as well as the proper fundamentals for implementing this technique effectively. Master these lessons to improve your accuracy and power when attacking pins.

Promotes a circle-shaped backswing

A closed front foot’s main advantage is that it guides proper backswing motion. Clearing hips with toes aimed left rotates the core correctly when pivoting the right arm upwards. This makes it easier to follow a wide circular path back.

Too often, golfers take an open stance to promote sweeping outside-in downswing lag. Flared feet, on the other hand, shift weight too far rearward during transition, causing the club to drop underplane during impact. This imparts right-to-left spin and a weak trajectory.

Instead, a closed stance closed golf stance allows you to drop into the inside of the backswing, which promotes proper plane arm motion. The club shallows naturally as the weight moves forward during the downswing, compressing the ball efficiently.

Consistency in hitting the Ball, Then Turf

Aside from aiding swing direction, a closed stance promotes consistent ball first contact via turf interaction. Having the front foot turned inward keeps the sternum centered rather than dipping towards the ball during impact. This allows you to strike the ball cleanly before taking any turf.

An open stance, on the other hand, brings the upper body closer to the ground during impact, increasing the risk of hitting fat. Shots struck at the bottom of the arc with a closed stance benefit from maximum loft on the clubface for added distance. Keeping the arms connected to the body and rotating down optimizes compression.

Adds Extra Power

Experienced golfers also use a closed stance to increase ground force generation from the legs, allowing them to channel more power into shots. Having the front foot aimed left allows the clearing back leg to drive down forcefully into the outside edge during the downswing.

This lateral motion generates a tremendous amount of stored effort, which is released into the ball as the weight moves to the frontside. Combining rear leg drive with upper body rotation increases the overall energy exerted during impact. This results in noticeably longer carry for solid strikes.

The following sections will go over the proper fundamentals for using closed stance positioning to get straighter shots and more yards. First, let’s look at the specifics of ideal foot alignment.

Proper foot Alignment

In a closed stance, how far should you angle your front foot inwards? Most golfers find that having their lead toes aimed 5-15 degrees left of the target line is ideal. This allows for full hip clearance without lowering the rear shoulder or restricting the pivot. When trying closed stance for the first time, let comfort guide you.

As you address the golf ball, try different degrees of closed front foot position and practice swings. Feel how the weight clears the rearfoot and shifts into lead during transition. There should be no restrictions when swinging slightly inside out.

Additionally, avoid simply aiming the lead foot left while keeping the rear foot neutral or open at the address. To properly direct motion, both must be in close alignment. Let’s look at the optimal weight distribution.

Weight Distribution

To fully benefit from increased rotational force from a closed stance, proper weight distribution between feet is essential. Follow the breakdown:

  • 60% weight favors the back foot.
  • Keeps pressure centered to coil completely back.
  • Avoid dipping or swaying off the ball.
  • 40% weight on the front foot.
  • To resist sliding, keep your lead foot planted solidly.
  • Maintain angles entering the downswing.

This rear-biased pressure lays back and centers enough for a large shoulder turn, which is cleared by closing the front hip. Maintain a proper spine angle and avoid swaying the weight too far back. As you begin the downswing, drive your back foot into the ground, transferring energy forward through impact.

Now, let’s look at some closed stance swing tips during the motion.

Swing Adjustments:

Having the lead foot closed requires some motion adaptations to square the face when striking shots. Use these keys to come down:

  • Feel like you stay more behind the ball during impact than in open stance.
  • Allow the front hip to clear hard left upon contact.
  • Lead shoulder ws underork chin; do not lift head up.
  • Clubface rolls slightly shut, then squares.

Exaggerated frontside clearing results in inside-out final delivery. Low point bottoms are slightly farther back and require less digging. Maintain pressure forward as you execute the big turn through impact.

Practice drills

When first using closed stance, use some simple isolation drills to help ingrain proper motions. Here are two useful examples:

Backswing Coil Drill: Make smooth half swings with the rear shoulder dipping behind the head and the hips opening left. Sense coiling completely before shifting weight forward without sway. Groove rear leg drive releases power through the ball.

Impact and Finish Drill:  Perform a series of shorter swings focusing on the front leg, dropping the lead shoulder and rolling the lead forearm up and left at impact. Feel centered and balanced after shots.

These isolated motions teach correct positions before combining them later. Maintain your angle entering the downswing for maximum compression.


If you tend to struggle with outside-in swing paths that result in slices and pulls, a closed stance is worth considering. Aiming the front foot instep inwards 5-15 degrees encourages a better hip and shoulder turn when returning. This shallows the delivery as it approaches impact, allowing for more centered and powerful ball striking.

To freely unwind the sequence, distribute weight slightly to the trail side and drive hard off the back instep through the ball. Then, receive the force into the lead side while keeping your face aligned to send shots straight on line.

While the closed stance setup contradicts conventional wisdom of an open alignment, give it a try on the practice tee. The benefits of making adjustments to improve consistency when striking shots solely through impact can be significant. Your teammates will wonder how you achieved such consistent precision shot after shot!

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