The Importance of Golf Ball Position: From Driving to Putting

Jun 10, 2019

golf stance

Golf ball position is one aspect that affects the direction the ball travels. Moving the position of the ball forward or backward, even just a little bit, will result in a noticeable change in the flight and direction of the ball. Ball position also influences the swing arc, depending on when the club comes into contact with the ball.

Stance Positions

There are three general stance positions most golfers will use:

  • Neutral: This stance is where the golf ball is positioned in the middle of your legs. To be in a neutral position, the ball and your club should line up with the buttons on a polo golf shirt.
  • Forward: This stance is where the golf ball is positioned near the inside of your left leg. To line up this position, you need to use your left shoulder. Use the line created between the upper arm and torso as a reference position to line up this position.
  • Rearward: This stance is where the golf ball is positioned near the inside of your right leg. To align this stance, line up the ball and club with your right shoulder.

With a natural position, the arc of the swing arrives in the middle. This gives you the most control over the direction of the ball. If you hit the ball just right, it will travel in a straight trajectory.

With a forward position, the club strikes the ball later in the swing arc. This allows the golfer to slice or pull the ball. While you will have to practice determining the direction of the ball, you can experience a higher ball flight with this position.

With a rearward position, the club strikes the ball earlier in the swing arc. This will result in hooks and pushed shots on the ball. You will also experience a lower ball flight path, meaning the ball will travel shorter distances.

Ball Position by Club

Aside from your stance, another factor to account for when taking into consideration the golf ball position is what club you are using. You need to be farther forward in your positioning for longer clubs and farther back for shorter clubs.

  • Driver: This is the longest club. You should be in a forward position to create the most momentum for longer ball flights.
  • Irons: As irons progressively get smaller, you need to adjust your stance slightly backward from the forward position, as the irons decrease in size. Many golfers use the logo on the left side of golf shirts as a reference position point when using irons.
  • Wedges: For wedges, you want to use a neutral stance since these are shorter than your irons. This allows you to still get the distance needed to get to the putting green but not overshoot the ball.
  • Putters: Putters can be the shortest clubs in your collection. Your goal is not to hit the ball too hard but to have precise control over it. The best way to do this is with a rearward stance.

ball rotation when putting

Finding Your Best Ball Positions

One of the easiest ways to develop a consistent and constant ball position in golf is by practicing with a golf launch monitor. This system records and tracks useful data you can use to improve your stance and positioning. It records the direction, distance, slice, spin, and other ball factors. Using a launch monitor helps remove the guesswork from your game on how to position yourself.

To learn more about improving your stance and golf ball placement using a golf launch monitor or to find the perfect launch monitor for sale to suit your needs, please feel free to contact Foresight Sports at (858) 880-0179 today!