Breaking Down The Mechanics of The Closed Coil Golf Swing
Written by Matt Stevens

Matt Callcott-Stevens started playing golf at the age of 4 when Rory Sabattini's father put a 7-iron and putter in his hand. He has experienced all the highs and lows the game can throw at you and has now settled down as a professional golf writer. He holds a Postgraduate in Sports Marketing and has played golf for 28 years. Current Handicap: 8

Updated on December 13, 2023

Amateur golfers often struggle to optimize rotation. Leading to a loss of power, accuracy, and distance. It is especially prevalent among senior golfers who do not possess the flexibility they once did. There is a solution to this challenge. In this tutorial, I am breaking down the mechanics of the closed golf swing.

This post aims to help you understand the distance and accuracy benefits of the closed coil technique. Plus, I will explain how it works and who should be using it.

If you are familiar with the coil action, rather spend your time familiarizing yourself with a flat or inside out golf swing.


What is The Closed Coil Golf Swing?

A closed coil golf swing occurs when your legs stay stable, and you load your pelvis to create spring at the top of your backswing. It helps create an optimal spring at the top of your backswing, prompting an accelerated downswing.

Elite Golf Coach Dan Whittaker simplifies the explanation by comparing lower body rotation to a corkscrew. If you twist a corkscrew with no downward pressure, you get nowhere. The same applies to your golf swing.

By keeping your legs stable, you create slight tension while shifting the majority of your weight from your left to right side. As a result, you create an optimal coil at the top of your backswing, generating maximum power on the downswing for a longer shot with greater accuracy.


How it Works

Step 1 – Setup

Approach your ball and setup. Open your legs for a standard width stance. If you are a right-hander, make sure your left foot aims parallel to the target line. Then position your right foot slightly behind the left, and turn it away from the target. That encourages torque and a smooth weight shift onto your tailing leg during the backswing.

Employing a poor setup makes it challenging to execute a closed coil golf swing.

When you are in position ensure your left and right leg are grounded. That helps keep them stable during the swing. Before starting your backswing, do a few rotations and ensure that your cleats are gripping into the turf and enabling optimal turn.

Step 2 – Backswing

A closed coil golf swing relies on a powerful rotation during the backswing. Failure to optimize torque while hip turning reduces the spring effect produced at the top of your backswing.

At no point should your feet be moving during the backswing. If your left knee bends towards the back, it means you have merely shifted your hips and upper body without creating the optimum coil.

Keep low and let the power in your legs drive the weight from the front to the back. Mark Crossfield recommends that your left shoulder and chin should point to the inside of your right toes at the top of your backswing. Reaching this position is another part of achieving coil during your backswing.

Legendary coach David Leadbetter also suggests that you keep your left arm straight during your backswing. By keeping it straight you increase the coil and wind up. That generates added power on the downswing. Bending your left arm reduces your control of the club and ability to generate power.

When you produce superb coil on your takeaway, you reach the top of your backswing with immense energy storage. From that point on, it enables you to unload for your downswing.

Step 3 – Downswing

You reach the top of your backswing, and you can feel the tension in your right gluteus maximus muscle. The tension is ready to shift towards the left side of your waist, enabling you to clear your hips at impact and drill the ball.

To achieve this, drive your back leg forward for right knee flex, which helps you thrust the tension to your front leg. This shift optimizes power and gets your hips parallel to the target line at impact.

The stored energy enables you to release from the top-down, encouraging accelerated clubhead and swing speed. That helps you maximize the coefficient of restitution (COR) at impact. Leading to explosive ball speed and increased distance.

Optimizing the coil during your backswing also encourages the ideal posture. When you are in the correct body set up at the top of your swing, it helps you to get your club on plane. Encouraging a square position at impact. Thus, you reduce the risk of slicing or hooking your shots and instead deliver straighter ball flight.

Step 4 – Impact

When your clubface strikes the ball, your hips should be parallel to your target line and weight on your front leg. After impact, the momentum will send your club upwards for your follow-through.

If you maximize your body’s rotation during your backswing and downswing, you will be in a prime pose to strike the ball cleanly at impact. Catching the ball in the sweet spot of your club with the power generated from coiling produces the speed needed to increase yards off the tee box.

Catching the ball in the sweet spot with that power boosts the chance of you hitting straighter shots. Therefore you enjoy superior accuracy and ball position, spending more time in the fairway than in the woods.

Overall, employing a closed coil golf swing helps seniors and younger golfers enhance the power generated during your backswing.


What The Closed Coil Golf Swing Does


Rotating your hips with no pressure on your lower legs results in minimal power and an erratic swing plane. There are noticeable differences between rotating your hips and coiling.

The closed coil golf swing promotes optimal torque for enhanced spring on your downswing. Initiating it during your backswing increases your power and clubhead speed. Those two elements impart rapid pace onto the ball and provide increased yards.


Thanks to the immense power initiated on your downswing, you produce accelerated clubhead speed and increased COR. Together these features impart rapid pace onto your golf ball, leading to a high, long shot for considerable distance.


Not only does the closed coil swing deliver remarkable distance, but it also boosts your accuracy. Getting your body into the ideal position at the top of your downswing allows you to place your club on the path to square the face for impact. At the very worst, your club may be marginally closed, prompting a draw.

When you take rotation out of your game, you leave your arms to do all the work, and they can’t get the clubface to where it needs to be at impact.

Reduces The Risk Of Injury

Leadbetter explains that the coil swing requires less turn off the ball and a shorter backswing. That reduces the risk of hip, back, or shoulder injuries resulting from extended rotation. It is one of the core reasons why the swing is heavily associated with the veterans of our game.

Besides the reduced risk of injury, a closed coil golf swing lowers the chance of experiencing extreme aches in your joints and stiff muscles after your round.


Who Is This Swing is Best Suited For

Although most golf pundits recommend that seniors employ the coil golf swing, I think it can benefit most amateurs. If your game completely lacks hip and upper torso rotation, it is worth practicing the coil golf swing to get used to shifting weight from your front leg to the back.

In addition to the optimal rotation produced by this swing, it creates impressive power, distance, and accuracy. These are three features every golfer could use and why I feel all amateurs could benefit from the swing.

However, after breaking down the mechanics of the coil golf swing, we see that they offer the most value to senior golfers. The reduced risk of injury, optimal power, and accuracy, help make the game easier for the veterans.

As a result, the closed coil golf swing best suits seniors.


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Matt Stevens

Matt Callcott-Stevens started playing golf at the age of 4 when Rory Sabattini's father put a 7-iron and putter in his hand. He has experienced all the highs and lows the game can throw at you and has now settled down as a professional golf writer. He holds a Postgraduate in Sports Marketing and has played golf for 28 years. Current Handicap: 8