How to Create Natural Lag in Your Golf Swing

How to Create Natural Lag in Your Golf Swing

The term “lag” is thrown around quite a bit in golf, but what is it and why is it important for your golf swing?

To put it in simple terms, lag creates some kind of delay in the club head and the wrists in order to preserve the power to create more distance. There is a correct way to create lag, while other times you may think you’re creating lag, but in reality, you’re hurting your swing more than helping it. Without lag, you’ll find yourself casting at the golf ball, creating timing issues, mishits, and inconsistencies in your strike.

Creating lag is a positive thing that all golfers should strive for but it should be a natural occurrence in your golf swing. Learning how to create natural lag in your golf swing will help you gain effortless clubhead and ball speed allowing you to gain the extra distance you’ve been looking for.

Don’t Force Lag

The best way to learn how to create natural lag in your golf swing, is by learning what unnatural lag is.

When golfers know they want to create more lag in their swing, they tend to try and force lag to happen. You start trying to hold the angle and when you hold it for too long, more timing issues occur.

You’re building tension in that angle, which is definitely a good thing, but lag is only as good as what you can release. You’re not getting the power you want and more than likely, it will be harder to square the clubface when you don’t release that angle. Creating unnatural lag also causes steep angles in your swing. When you come in too steep, it causes problems and you’ll find yourself coming down on the ball. If you’re using your driver, that is one problem you want to avoid!

Natural Lag

Once you understand the root causes of unnatural lag, you know what to avoid or you can begin to correct them if you have them in your swing. Your swing has many moving parts and getting them to move correct while in unison can pose a challenge. The first step is knowing what your body needs to accomplish.

Lag has to be in a position that is on plane. When you watch the pros, you notice that not all of their swings are exactly alike. There are substantial differences from golfer to golfer. There is no one-size-fits-all golf swing but the pros adjust and keep lag on plane.

Another kind of lag you’ll see in a good golf swing is arm lag. When you reach the top of your swing, your body tends to unwind. Your entire body isn’t moving when you change direction and shift your weight, just parts of your body are. You want your body to unwind as you make your turn and allow your arms to lag behind. When that happens, your club lags along with your wrists, allowing you to create lag in your swing naturally.

Creating lag is like a domino effect. Once you get it started, the other pieces begin to fall in place. To get the first domino to fall in regards to creating lag, is by unwinding your body in the right sequence. You want to start with your lower body and let your upper body follow. When it’s time for your upper body to rotate through, you’ll be ready to release the built up lag you create from unwinding in the right sequence.

Creating Lag

You now know what natural lag is along with the do’s and don’ts to create it, but how can you apply that to your swing?

Hips Shift First

As you begin your downswing, you want to start feeling your hips shift toward your lead side.

Clubhead & Arms Back

As you start your unwinding sequence by shifting and twisting your hips toward the target, you want to keep the clubhead and arms back for a brief moment.

Soften Arms & Wrists

To get the angles necessary to create lag, you want to soften your arms and wrists to get the delay you’re looking for in the downswing.

Let The Club Swing Out

You’ve created the angle, now it’s time to release the build-up lag by letting the club do the work and swing-out


Having lag in your swing is crucial to generating more power and gaining distance. Knowing the difference between natural and unnatural lag gets you one step closer, and will help you eliminate those unnecessary mistakes. Lag can be a tough concept to grasp for many golfers but once you start developing the technique, you’re well on your way to hitting the ball farther, becoming more accurate, and playing better, more consistent golf.

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