Q: Does poor ball position cause a swing problem, or does a swing problem cause poor ball position?
A: Yes. If you place the ball too far back in your stance (more toward your right foot, for right handers), you will have to keep too much weight on your right foot at impact in order to avoid topping or whiffing the ball. If you place the ball too far forward in your stance, you will have to overshift your weight to your front foot and slide toward the target in order to keep from hitting behind the ball. In other words, poor ball position can cause an improper weight shift in your swing. Conversely, if you have a tendency to keep too much of your weight on your back foot at impact, you will get tired of hitting behind the ball, and you will start moving the ball further and further back in your stance. If you keep too much weight on your front and slide toward the target on your downswing, you will start playing the ball further forward than desired.
Tip: A good instructor easily can tell which of the above needs correcting. They also can tell if poor alignment is attributing to the problem. Poor ball position is one of the most common mistakes golfers make and is one of the easiest to correct.
As always, have fun playing the game of golf. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions. Join us every Monday evening at Sapelo Hammock for our continuous learning sessions, and we will check your ball position.