Perfect Your Alignment – Golf Pro Paul Thompson’s Tip of the Week

Perfect Your Alignment – Golf Pro Paul Thompson’s Tip of the Week

Advanced PGA Professional Paul Thompson is the resident professional at Powerscourt since 1995. In addition to providing coaching on-site he also is a coach with The Golfing Union of Ireland.

Check out our blog where Paul will regularly be posting articles guiding you through all facets of your golf game. This week’s advice features Alignment.

Golf Pro Paul Thompson giving golf lessons at Powerscourt Golf Club


Alignment is understood by most as the foundation to controlling the direction of our golf shots. In other words, if we point ourselves at the target we have a good chance of hitting the ball in that direction. This is obviously good advice and one of the sound fundamental ideas we should try to adopt as part of our set up. But what happens if we do not aim at the target, especially if it happens at a subconscious level?


It would be great for all of us if we just hit the ball off line every time we did not aim squarely at the target because we could see the problem straight away and can then fix it. But our instinctive behavior has the ability to rectify this mis-alignment during the swing. This is all well and good if it happens infrequently during the round but invariably this mis-alignment becomes habit and the instinctive compensation starts to produce inefficient movements that become less effective and inconsistent. The major problem with this habitual bad alignment is that it is very hard to detect from your shot results and can and does affect any standard of golfer, no matter how much experience and skill they have.


  • The easiest way of staying away from this habit is by checking your alignment on a regular basis by picking a target, setting up to the ball and then putting a club along the line of your feet (See the blue line in the image below).
  • Stand away from the ball and look from behind to check where you were actually aiming. If your alignment was out, alter the club that is on the ground so it points in the right direction and then return to the set up position.
  • If you now feel uncomfortable and want to point in a different direction, your body is telling you that you are probably lining up badly on most of your shots.
  • You will need to work on your alignment and the best way of doing this on the course is to have a good shot routine. Remember, you will feel a little uncomfortable to start with and will probably feel you are aiming in the opposite direction to the way your bad habit was aiming you.

Paul Thompson

  • Advanced PGA Professional
  • GUI Provincial Coach
Correct Alignment, the foundation to controlling the direction of golf shots

Many thanks Paul for the informative post! Appointments with Paul can be booked via Powerscourt Golf Club Reception: Tel (01) 204 6033 or the Golf Shop Tel (01) 204 6031. Read more about lessons from Paul Thompson by visiting the Powerscourt Golf Club Website.

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