George Coetzee’s takeaway drill

Semi-finalist in October’s Volvo World Matchplay at the London Club, South Africa’s George Coetzee explains the deliberate takeaway rehearsal he uses before every swing.

The Problem: I’m very broad-shouldered, so I often have a hard time turning my upper body correctly on the backswing. When I don’t turn properly, I compensate by either picking the club up too early on the backswing, or by allowing my left forearm to rotate excessively in the takeaway. The first flaw causes me to get too steep and leads to weak slices, while the second flaw causes my right elbow to fold early and finish too far behind my body at the top of the backswing. Neither move is helpful for playing solid golf.

The Solution:  Keep right elbow in front of the body The swing rehearsal you see me make before hitting every shot is my personal reminder to focus on an early torso turn at the start of the backswing. Because I struggle with turning my shoulders in the takeaway, I have to feel that my upper body moves much earlier in the backswing than my hands and arms. For me, the feeling I’m looking for is almost as though I’ve made a full turn while the club is still at the address position. I’m also looking to keep my right elbow out in front of my body during the takeaway. The moment I allow it to fold too early, I run into trouble.


George Coetzee


Groove a perfect wrist action

“One of the most important things to learn in golf is that your left forearm dictates what the clubface does during the swing. As I said above, I have a tendency to roll my forearms in my takeaway, resulting in a flat and cramped position at the top. Because of this, I have to keep an eye on my wrist action too. I use the Swingyde practice aid to ensure I keep my left forearm in the correct position and hinge my wrists actively on the backswing. Let me tell you, I’ve had more than my fair share of cuts and scrapes on my left arm performing this drill, but it works!”




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