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Guiding principles

Written by Golf Canada/ Derek Ingram
(Golf Canada)

Team Canada Men’s Head Coach Derek Ingram says using an alignment aid is a simple way to maintain your swing when practising solo.


Oftentimes on the PGA Tour, you’ll see guys practising with alignment sticks on the ground on the range and it’s no surprise why. The training aid is easily transportable, quick to set up and ideal to use individually. It’s something I encourage my athletes to use as well, as part of their daily maintenance practice to work on body alignment, clubface alignment and the starting line of their shots.

In this case, Team Canada’s Austin James has an alignment stick aimed slightly right of the target just outside the ball to guide his club face.

He has another between his feet and the ball to monitor his body alignment. Though some players are accustomed to the alignment rod right against the toes, I don’t like it because I feel the sticks get in the way and we are also trying to check hips, shoulders and even eye line.

Austin’s stuck a third alignment stick in the ground about 15 feet in front of the ball on the target line. He is trying to start the ball right of this stick and his target line and then draw it back to the target. In a perfect world, the ball does not overdraw past the target.

Those are the basics of an alignment station. Opening up and closing out your practice sessions with a drill like this for as little as 10 minutes with a mid-iron (six- to eight-iron) is a great way to maintain your body setup, your clubface at address and your clubface at impact (start line).

I believe it’s the small things that add up to make a big difference.

Check out other practice tips from the Team Canada coaches here


Spring_2017_Cover_ENThis article was originally published in the Family Issue edition of Golf Canada Magazine. Click here to view the full magazine

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