'From the top' refers to the point in the golf swing where the back swing ends and the down swing begins. The club and hands are at 'the top' and as such we analyze the different stages of the swing separately.
In our analysis 'from the top' we refer to the 'first move' is to the initial forward movement from the top of the swing. It is of utmost importance that the club and hands begin forward movement along the correct plane.
A high majority of the amateur golfers swing the club along an 'outside - in' path through the impact zone. The main cause of this is an incorrect initial movement or 'first move' from the top of the swing. The incorrect movement occurs when a golfer begins the 'first move' by turning the shoulders first or too soon, along a horizontal plane. This will automatically send the hands out and away from the body causing the club path to be 'outside-in'.
The proper 'first move' results when the the knees are the first body part to move toward the target. When this occurs there will be an automatic drop of the hands down toward the side of the body. It is this drop which brings the hands close to the golfers side and allows for the proper 'inside - out' swing-path to occur. If the hands drop toward the side and the front shoulder moves upward rather than across the body the club head has a much better chance to get along the proper path.
Because the knees actually begin moving toward the target as the hands are finishing their ascent to the top of the swing what appears to be a slight pause or delay results. This is pause or delay at the top of the swing is often noticeable when watching many good golfers swing.