Alignment and getting your lines crossed.

I talked about the Butterfly Effect (LINK) and how it only allows you to work on one thing at a time. More specifically, the first thing that is going wrong.

Well, it doesn’t get any “firster” than your setup. I was hitting the ball poorly, at least I thought I was and the guy hitting balls next to me comes up and says…”Wow, you hit the ball a ton. I notice that your shoulders are pointed left of your feet and your clubface is pointed right. Does that help you swing more inside out and create more lag.”

After having a few minutes with this nice fellow explaining to him my philosophies of the golf swing and life in general, I laid down a dowel rod at my feet and put a shaft in front of my shoulders. Low and behold he was correct and I think I have had this problem for sometime. Never thought to notice it as it wasn’t awful.

Moral to the story. If you are struggling, check your setup before you start adding a series of pathetic band aids that will probably ruin your swing for the next 15 years. 😀




  1. Big Dave

    I also discovered that when i stand up straight my body has some natural twist in it. My shoulders are closed in relationship to my lower body. I’ve never read anything else about this until your post. My thinking is that we should align our selves by our shoulders and not by the knees as I have read in several golf instruction books. What’s your take on this Monte? Did you move your shoulders or feet? How did you go about correcting your alignment?

    • Monte Scheinblum

      Just like everything else in the golf swing, I believe it is very individual.

    • Gunnar

      BigDave: ” My thinking is that we should align our selves by our shoulders and not by the knees ”

      So you don´t try to synchronize your knees and your shoulders? Do you let your lines being crossed and don´t try to correct it?

      I´m interested in this topic because it is just the same to me: I noticed that my shoulders are directed to the left rough, when my knees are parellel to the fairway. When I try to line up to the ball without any thinking my shoulders are directed correctly to the aim, and my knees show to the right rough.
      I`m not sure whether I should correct this, because I guess that it´s just normal that there is a litte twist in the body, which results from the way one grips the club. (The right hand is below the left hand. To do this the right shoulder is pulled down+ to the front)

      • "Big Dave"

        My point is I’m not sure what to do. Intuitively it seems I ought to align my shoulders with the ball path and not my knees. If one has a natural body twist it seems like forcing the body into a straight position would create tension and an unnatural position that may work against you when you swing, like creating lag that Monte talks a lot about.

      • "Big Dave"

        My intuition tells me to align my shoulders with the ball line since my shoulders turn around my spine and not my knees or feet. My thinking is that if my body has some natural twist it is probably better to let it twist instead of making it straight and creating tension, which seems similar to trying to create lag which we know from Monte is bad.

        My twist is not from setting up to swing. If I stand with my feet against a wall i have to turn my body slightly to get my left shoulder to touch the wall. I don’t know if it makes a whole lot of difference, but I was just wondering if anyone else had observed this. It just seems more natural to me to set up with my feet open.

        I’m guessing its one of those human variables that isn’t taken into account in most swing systems, but should be.


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