One of the most damaging things a golfer can hear is … “Keep your head down” or “You picked your head up.” If you’ve heard these phrases after a shot, you probably have topped the ball or are not making solid contact. There are many reasons why this may have occurred and probably has nothing to do with what the player’s head was doing through impact.
By keeping your head down, you end up limiting your ability to rotate through the ball, causing a number of other issues such as steepening the club in order to get the clubface to hit the ball straight — leading to a golf career of fighting a slice. Or, bringing the club from a shallow angle and attempting to time the impact with the ball, body rotation and release of hands — leading to a hook shot. With lack of rotation and club loft, the ball will not achieve its greatest distance potential.
My advice is to allow your head to move freely through the downswing into the finish. Many “golfing greats” rotate their head prior to impact, realizing the advantages of rotating and creating consistency with their shots. Following the lead of the professionals, by rotating your head and body, the combined movement enables the body to stabilize through rotation which also stabilizes the clubface through impact — thus generating a more predictable ball flight. More consistency with your game leads to lower scores and greater enjoyment of the game.
If you are a player that has a tendency to keep your head down, practice hitting half shots and becoming comfortable with your head rotating with your body through impact. You will begin to gain a sense of the freedom through body rotation, leading to lower scores.
Steve Di Nino, IJGA Golf Coach