What are the Most Common Golf Swing Mistakes?

Jul 15, 2016; Ayrshire, SCT; Phil Mickelson (USA) plays his tee shot on the 5th hole during the second round of the 145th Open Championship golf tournament at Royal Troon Golf Club - Old Course. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

We all make mistakes when we first pick up something new. However with golf, if you continue to make the same mistakes, it becomes much harder to fix those bad habits later on down the road.

Golf is a game of trial and error. Hopefully we can point of the errors first, so that no one has to go through all the trials.

All Power, No Technique

To the untrained eye, golf is as easy as placing a ball down and hitting it as hard as you can. Most people have swung a baseball bat before, and they assume it’s the exact same motion and technique. Unfortunately for those of us that grew up playing baseball, that isn’t the case.

Power swings in golf usually end up with players hitting the wrong part of the ball and ruining their shot. If you can’t consistently hit the ball in the right spot, then you should slow down on your swings.

Too Much Arms

In golf you aren’t swinging with your arms, you’re swinging with your entire body. Many times when people first learn how to swing a club, they only use their arms. There’s shoulder turn, there’s no leverage, there’s just arms.

It’s a habit that everyone picks up just from bats or axes, or whatever people swing in their lives. However, it’s something that needs to be unlearned.


A golf swing should be a loose, fluid motion. A lot of times new golfers will focus so much on their technique, that they lock all the joints in their body. Everyone should learn to just relax when they’re getting ready to take a swing. There’s no reason to be death gripping the club and tensing up your body. Just take a deep breath and take it nice and slow.

Bad Alignment

Lots of beginner golfers don’t pay enough attention to the way they line up their shots. That’s a big problem. A lot of how good your shot will be begins with your alignment. Lots of bad shots have been blamed on a bad swing, when in reality it’s because their alignment was off.

Your toes should be parallel with your target line. Your feet shouldn’t be pointing at your target. It sounds simple, but it takes some practice to do it consistently every time.


It’s not easy to get a great swing every single time. Sometimes you get everything perfect except for one aspect, and it ruins your entire shot. Besides actual skill, what separates good players from bad ones, is consistency.

If you can’t walk up to a tee and give a good swing almost every time, then you’re not going to be able to keep up with any real competition. This is why it’s so important to learn all the fundamentals and the basics, and then practice them until you can do them in your sleep.

Written by BP Staff

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