Optimizing Your Trail Knee Position in the Backswing

May 14, 2024 by
Optimizing Your Trail Knee Position in the Backswing
Motor Preferences Experts, Aurélien Van Stichelen
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As you navigate the vast expanse of online golf advice, you'll encounter many tips from esteemed coaches on utilizing your right knee during the backswing. The perennial debate persists: Should you flex (lock) your right knee? Should you straighten it? It's universally acknowledged that this seeming adjustment holds significant influence over the crucial initial phase of the swing motion, laying the groundwork for a seamless transition into the downswing and impact—a pivotal aspect for achieving effortless power and consistency in your shots.

Positioning yourself into a potent delivery stance at the apex of your backswing is the true secret to superior ball striking and consistency. When you discover the perfect combination tailored to your unique motor preferences, you'll experience a newfound sense of liberation and fluidity in your swing—a sensation of freedom that every golfer aspires to attain.


Firstly, we embark on assessing and comprehending your natural motricity to ascertain whether you lean towards being a terrestrial or aerial golfer. Terrestrial players tend to favor flexion, while aerial players lean towards extension. Next, we examine your leg extension, identifying your favored side for enhanced stability, whether it be the right or left leg, irrespective of your handedness.

Once these preferences are determined, we proceed to the move dial, where we delve into your three-dimensional weight shifting to pinpoint where you can optimize coordination with the ground force for maximum effect. Upon reaching this stage, we conduct an additional test to gauge your natural rotation between association and dissociation, two preferred movement styles for synchronizing or separating the shoulders and hips. This assessment also influences the positioning of your trail knee to ensure an optimal setup at the apex of your backswing.

A golf coach might read this article and perceive it as a complex approach, but in reality, once you've mastered the assessments—which are not inherently complicated—you can unlock the true potential of the individual standing before you. This approach allows for providing answers that are genuinely tailored to them rather than imposing our preconceptions. Motor preferences offer the ultimate pathway to personalization, making it accessible and achievable for all.

After all those assessments, we can start adjusting the best trail knee position that aligns with your motor preferences.

There are a few key considerations regarding the position of the trail knee. Some golfers achieve their ideal setup at the top of the backswing by strongly or slightly flexing the trail knee and anchoring the trail hip. In doing so, they engage their adductor muscles and keep their trail foot pronated, providing essential support, stability, and power for a well-coordinated club release.

On the other hand, some golfers optimize their performance by lightly or strongly extending the trail knee, allowing for more extension and maintaining a higher hip position. They engage their abductor muscles and keep their trail foot supinated while remaining flat on the ground. This ensures the necessary support, stability, and power for a seamless downswing and club release.

As coaches, we bear a responsibility to prioritize the well-being and development of our athletes. It's time to move away from binary judgments of good versus bad, right versus wrong, and instead adopt a systemic approach. This holistic perspective empowers coaches to design training programs tailored to the individual needs of each athlete, recognizing their unique pathways within their systems. By understanding their natural motricity and maximizing their coordination, we can create training experiences that are enjoyable, effortless, and fun. True power lies in personalized, individualized coaching, ensuring each athlete receives the attention and support they deserve.

in Golf
Optimizing Your Trail Knee Position in the Backswing
Motor Preferences Experts, Aurélien Van Stichelen May 14, 2024
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