Three Golf Swing Release Techniques

by Steve | Last Updated: 17 February 2021

Any golfer knows they will have good days and bad days on the course and the key to playing well is consistency in your swing, and an important part of that is swing release.

The three swing release techniques are the slap hinge, crossover, and push release techniques. The slap hinge and crossover are based mainly on timing, easy to adopt, and are geared towards new players. The push release is not based on timing, is more consistent, and is suited to better players.

We are going to look at what swing release is and why it is important, taking into consideration what factors will play a role in it.

Then we are going to cover the three main swing release techniques, explain how they are adopted, and then also tell you what type of player should be using which one.

The fundamentals of the golf swing

The fundamentals of the golf swing have been proven over the ages and when you hit a golf ball, one thing always remains constant: 
The Five Laws, which represent how the club-head is delivered to the golf ball at impact. 

These laws are what cause the ball flight and spin.

  • Law 1 – Club head path though impact
  • Law 2 – Angle of attack
  • Law 3 – Club face angle – open, square or closed
  • Law 4 – Strike on club face heel, center or toe
  • Law 5 – Club head speed

If we therefore work on improving these Laws by changing how the club is travelling around your body it will improve the ball flight.

What Is A Golf Swing Release?

Many individuals define a golf swing release as different things. Some golfers will say it is the club swing through the impact of the ball that has complete rotation.

Other golfers will say that it is the club’s downward swing as their wrists unhinge, combining the golf club’s rotation to the square of the ball on contact.

The swing could also be defined as the release of all the energy that you have built up in the swing.

This just emphasizes that there is no one way to swing a golf club, which is even apparent at the PGA Pro level. If you spend 5 minutes watching the PGA tour, you will notice many different swings from some of the world’s best players.

Why Is A Golf Swing Release Necessary?

A good golf swing release is what separates a good golfer from a  great one, and consistency is the key.

No matter which technique you may have if you want to be more consistent a repeatable swing is needed and a consistent golf swing release can be the determining factor.

This idea is where the face of the club meets the ball and determines the flight and spin. There are a few golf swing release techniques, but we first need to consider several factors that will contribute to helping you achieve a consistent golf release swing.

Your Golf Grip

As we said that a consistent release is the key to a better overall game but this all starts with the grip.

The Grip is the life blood of your swing.  It’s the only point of contact between your body and the golf club.

So start, as you mean to go on, by getting the correct hold on your golf club.

When you grip a golf club you must allow the handle to be gripped more within the fingers of both hands. Gripping in the fingers helps you to keep control of the club without holding it too tight.

A tight grip is not recommended as it inhibits club-head speed and reduces the distance of the ball.

This will ensure you can gain maximum range of motion for the golf club and for it to help you engage in the correct body positions not only at address but also throughout the swing.

If you get this wrong you are going to have to create idiosyncrasies within your golf swing motion to compensate for it.

Which will lead to less swing efficiency, most likely swing inconsistencies and a possible long term injury.

That is to say, you must have enough grip pressure throughout your swing but not a grip that is too tight.

COMMON GRIP ERRORS

If you don’t have the correct grip on the club when you play, you can make the game much harder for yourself than it needs to be.

A lot of golfer’s who have played for a while have developed bad habits, most of which usually stem from a lack of practice and poor basic fundamentals.

The Grip is a key area of the golf swing, get it wrong and it can lead to a world of problems

So rather than teach you and hope you get things right, let’s first look at some errors that you will need to avoid.

In this short video Rich shows us how to get it right

It will be good to keep these errors in your mind, as something to avoid, while you learn how to do it correctly

Your Golf Set Up

One of the basic rules and fundamentals that many an avid golfer overlooks. Setting up your stance is one of the basics you always need to pay attention to.

You can never aim to be consistent and better your game if you do not set your body up correctly before your shot aligning your body square with your target.

Your stance, grip, and alignment play a crucial factor in determining your swing’s quality and release and cannot be overlooked.

Swing Release Techniques

There are three basic ways in which you can release your golf club, and we will cover them here.

The Slap Hinge Release

This technique is excellent for beginners because it is a technique that is easy to perform, but a drawback is that it is inconsistent.

It is inconsistent because your wrists are overly active when you make contact with the ball, which leads to extra rotation of the club’s face.

When you get to the impact position, your hands should be flat, and your wrists should lead the clubhead. Once the club has made contact with the ball, your left and right wrists would release up and under, respectively.

The Technique

The slap hinge will allow the wrists to unhook and become unhinged during the moment it counts most.

This would then cause the clubhead to move into a vertical plane, and the loft of the clubface would be adjusted during the impact, which would then produce a higher flight (the ball won’t carry very far).

Who Is The Slap Hinge Aimed Towards

This technique works pretty well for golfers who do not produce a lot of speed in their swing. Hence it is opted for by seniors and beginners. It can, however, also work well for players with a relatively strong and neutral grip.

Consistency With The Slap Hinge Technique

The primary reason that this technique will be inconsistent is that it all boils down to perfect timing. Techniques based on timing will produce unreliable results.

The Crossover Release

This technique works on the principle that your right hand (dominant hand) will impact the ball more so than your weaker hand. Put another way; the right hand will contact the ball and work its way over the left hand.

The Technique

When applying this technique, the wrists should rotate on impact with the ball and force the club into a horizontal plane. Furthermore, the clubhead has to open at the beginning of the impact zone and close during impact. Hence, this will lead to a draw.

Who Is The Crossover Aimed Towards

This technique is best suited for skilled amateur players. It is also geared to players with a neutral or weak grip.

Consistency With The Crossover Technique

Again this technique is based on timing and can lead to inconsistent results. On a day-to-day basis, your timing will vary, and even at a professional level, this can not be consistent.

The Push Release

This technique is the most consistent out of the three methods we have listed here. This is due to the fact that it is not based heavily on timing. This technique works on the principle that your wrists do nothing and don’t play a significant role as in the other two methods.

The Technique

At impact, your clubface should be ever so slightly open. The approach can be viewed as square to square in terms of positioning and impact. In addition to this, the loft is never changing throughout your downswing.

This technique will not add speed like the slap hinge will; however, it will offer greater distances and better overall consistency.

Who Is The Push Release Aimed Towards

This technique is not suited for beginners due to them not have much swing speed (remember that a swing can reach 100mph).

This technique is also geared towards players with a stronger grip and who have some experience with the game. It produces a much flatter and more boring flight; however, it is the most efficient style to use.

Consistency With The Push Release

Due to the fact that it eliminates timing altogether, this makes the technique the most consistent out of all the release techniques.

Thus this technique will make you more consistent over the long term, and if you are trying to break 80 or play competitively, then timing in your release just won’t cut it, and the push release technique has to be adopted.

Conclusion

We conclude that there are three basic techniques when looking at the release of a golf swing. Take note and remember that an efficient, effective, and consistent release will improve your golf game.

Many players regard the release as being many different things; however, whatever their definition, the principles and understanding that momentum, placement, and follow through play a significant role in the ball’s trajectory and must be acknowledged.

The three types of release techniques are suited for different players at different levels who have slightly different playstyles regarding swing speed and grip strength.

Remember, consistency is the key, and jumping from one technique to the other will only see you revert back to the beginning and trying to build consistency from scratch again.

Weekend Golfers Academy at Fore King Golf

Find It Hard To Learn A Golf Swing From Reading Text

It’s not an easy task to teach someone the golf swing in text format, as the coaching relies on our ability to use the right words, in the right way, at the right time.

It then relies on you reading, understanding and then implementing the words in the same way.

I’m sure you agree this is tricky and probably not the most effective way.

So we have made several video coaching programs that can ‘show’ you exactly what you need to do.

A great example of this is the Drive For Show Course, (which shows the Five Key Stages in Video Format)

and while it shows you how to hit your driver better, the core focus on the coaching is to help you build a classic and repeatable golf swing, which is suitable for both right-handed golfers and left-handed golfers.

To find out more simply visit the coaching page and choose the area of the game that you want to work on.

Steve King, the founder of Fore King Golf, started playing golf at the tender age of 29, after years spent playing many other sports and getting dodgy knees. Although late to the game, Steve soon fell in love with the sport and found himself, like many others, addicted to the pursuit of improvement and playing better. He is currently a member of The Kendleshire Golf Club & Hercules Golf Society, as well as running several competitions for Fore King Golf