For the new golfers ( and the experienced golfers )

I’ll start with this. More will come if we have some response.

“Keep your head down” Or, “You’ve looked up”.
I had corrected the swing issue of a relatively new golfer by explaining this in a few sentences to make them think correctly for their own golf swing.
My reward was seeing them getting the golf ball air borne and started enjoying their game.

What is your interpretation of this and your thoughts?

I know what the layman’s interpretation is… you are lifting up or you are swaying… whatever. I know 100% what causes a “fat”, a “chili dip” , or a “thin”. I know 100% what causes my duck, that I fight all the time or a complete fan. Most of the time it’s me coming up out of position on the downswing. my duck is caused by me getting just a little too flat, the Fan is caused by me casting over the top… Everything else is caused by me not being committed to my swing and staying through it. I’ve hit enough golf golf balls and taken enough video. When my new partner asks me a question I will record their action so they can see. He is slowly learning to make correct decisions on club selections. He is finally learning flyer lies. look he is longer than me by 50-60 yards. But, for instance, he had a fairly severe down hill lie in some light rough from about 190… he tried to hit a 6 iron and of course it went no where… I went over and said look and your lie… the downhill is going to cause a deloft… even you you make great contact it’s like hitting an old “butterknife” (1 or 2 iron for you young people). I said try it again but use a 9 iron… he was pin high… Things us old guys know, and the young guys…just dont unless you educate them… Opposite with up hill…less loft because the lie is adding loft…

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Experience pays off if we pay attention.
You’ll be surprised, some will go on like wearing blinds and ear plugs on the golf course. I certainly know a few who have dipped in this game for decades but still have the same issue. They are too old to groove their mistakes to be consistent.

Please explain your expression of “coming up out of position”?

Sure! When I initially learned to play (many moons ago) I was taught there was a subtle weight shift you were supposed to feel going from the center of your stance to the right leg post, then the weight transfer began from the right to the left leg followed by an unwinding of the upper body shoulders/arms/hands/club. I hope you understand what I’m saying. When I began the journey to improve my swing, gain distance etc after my injury. I came to the conclusion with the newer equipment, lighter shafts etc I found there is a weight shift, but it is not really C to R to L it’s more accurate to say it’s down and up. You still turn the upper body in a barrel, but the actual weight shift is done by taking the athletic posture we were all taught, but the weight shift is more into the left ankle and knee it’s a feeling of pushing into the ground then unwinding everything and pushing up. It’s definitely a more active lower action with your leg. The right leg is merely a post and you will finish with most of the weight on the left. Now, to answer question about coming out of it. The shoulders and arms turn, the torso and spine are part of the center mass. Centrifugal Foce Centrifugal force is the outward force, away from the axis of rotation, acting on a revolving object . Centrifugal force is the tendency of an object moving in a circle to travel away from the center of the circle. If my spine angle tilts upward because I am coming out of the shot a titch early. That’s coming out of it! There are plenty of things that can go wrong. But I’m telling you using ground force is how to generate speed and power. It’s more push down then push up, than a left to right feeling. 50 extra yards doesn’t lie. It takes practice. But you’ll see some guys and gals actually look like they are jumping coming off the ground. It’s just not maintaining spine angle all the way through

That will be a lot to digest for the group I took out.

Something very simple from observation with this gal who hit the range balls well but having issue with topping and chili dip with the chipping on the golf course.
I hate to give advice on the golf course but in this case, the purpose of my presence with them was to help them.
Anyways, something very simple and she could relate to it like a light bulb turned on.
In a few sentences, I reminded her that her arms are connected to the core. So, she would not strike the golf ball solid if she was bopping up and down during the weight-shift by trying to manipulate and hit it hard.
The real turf on the golf course is not a perfect flat lie as on the driving range, the artificial turf will slide the club head forward easier is making early landing.
Right after that image was put into her head, I reminded her that she knows to keep the knees flexed during the weight shift, not to stand up until after the impact.
I could hear the difference after that moment, one will not miss the sound of a perfect contact of golf club meets the golf ball.
She still needs to work on direction a little. At least she was enjoying the game by being able to advance the golf ball.
By understanding the relationship between the human body and the golf swing, many mistakes / myths could be avoided and lessen the injury which comes with the game.

I can see that you are a student of Ben Hogan Golf. So was I when I started this journey and still is.

100%. Mr Hogan developed a what looks like a perfect swing. At least it was for him. If I had to choose the most beautiful swing it would be Mr Jones. A great golf swing maintains the angles that are set at address. All professional golfers and really great amateurs their positions from basically the downswing through impact are amazingly similar AMAZINGLY! Including Mssrs Hogan and Jones. Todays players really generate their power pushing into the ground then pushing upwards, almost violently. While the torso and shoulders seem to turn smoothly and quietly, The speed that can be generated using ground force took a lot of practice, patience and trial and error. Lots of video work. However, I now have a much more quiet upper body, and a more active lover body. The ground is the key!

I agree.
IMHO, Hogan has the most efficient golf swing, even after suffered the devastating accident his golf swing was still a wonder to watch ( on the videos).
I watched the video of Jones golf swing; it was a perfect swing for the hickory era. It might be too wristy for the modern shaft. As he commented to Jack after watching the young Nicklaus at The Masters, " you play a game which I’m not familiar with".
Totally 100% agree that the power comes from the ground up. As advocated by Hogan and proven in all other sports, including martial arts.
However, as you mentioned, the “violent” move in a modern-day golf swing gets the golf balls out there. It also promotes early injury as we have seen.
Looking at the statistics of the top golfers from the 50s-70s, with traditional equipment of driver, lofted irons and balata golf balls, they can get over 300+ if they switched to modern equipment, without the violent move in the golf swing.
It did require more skill to achieve the level of golf they did, back then with their equipment.

What is your take on this phrase?
“Don’t get ahead of yourself, one shot at a time.”
We’ve heard this over and over again. So, what is everyone’s observation and interpretation of it?

There is no right or wrong answer, by sharing your thoughts will strengthen all of our knowledge. As I have found out that I’ll learn more by helping others.

Listen to C-Dub!

I was fortunate, in how I was taught to play and manage my game. 100%. Nothing matters except the shot you have in front of you. Not the previous shot, not the shot you are going to have. Just the shot you have and 100% effort and thought needs to go into it. Should I hit into a bad spot and get out of position The thought process is what puts me back in position. I cannot reach the green maybe 200 yds out. Do I only hit to 100 yards or closer. Whatever I decide, I commit to that shot. Then Deal with the next shot. You don’t want to make worse than a bogey. EVER! When you figure out 1 shot at a time a 15 cap will go down to single digits inside month. There is no wasted shots.

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I think it can be true, but quite often something else causes the bad shot.

I’m not sure I ever truly pick my head up early (maybe 1 fault I don’t have?), but I know that I will quite often have a poor setup (I tend to slouch), poor takeaway (I jerk the club inside and layed off) and poor tempo.

If I’m lucky I just top the shot, but most times the ball is rocketing somewhere I didn’t want it to lol.

Picking your Head Up----De-Bunked

Like I said, it is not “Picking Your Head Up” it’s the torso/spine angle loss of angle … I like it when I self diagnose and then find out it’s correct. The older I have become, the more I understand my own swing and tendencies. You don’t have to SWING HARD to create the centrifugal force required to send a golf ball flying. It is closer to the actual acceleration you are providing pushing down into the ground and then weight shifting upwards (more or less) Executing that correctly looks like the Ernie Els deal. How does he swing so EASY and hits it tremendous distances? Stop looking at his upper body! Look below the waist. Mr Hogan is incredible… for a little dude he could bash it out there with anyone. Look at Mr Hogan’s lower body in recordings on YT. It doesn’t look what I like to call violent, but it certainly is! It helps to be able to maintain a the upper and lower body separation and the hands and arms just stay totally extended. Now as far as Mr Hogan’s upper body, NO ONE, and I mean NO ONE to this day could get their shoulder turn on (unwind) the downswing as fast his… I dare anyone to try, you won’t. He was so consistent you get that powerful lower body move combined with that consistent ultra fast shoulder turn… That’s why he looked so smooth also. The legs can really generate POWER if timed correctly…hence beating balls. End of 2021/Beginning of 2022…I was beating ball after ball and hitting the ground, whiffing, ball was going every which way. I can tell you the date and time and hole. I was 255 front 274 hole, second shot, 515 yd Par 5, second shot 12:15 in the afternoon August 13. I hit a 3metal. I finally had that perfect timing of lower and upper body. I swung and hit the ball, I did not swing hard, I just swung the club. It connected and the nad finished 10 ft away just past the hole. By JOVE I GOT IT! I did it again, BOOM, That’s when I went from being a mess, and a double digit cap down to 7 where I am today. If I could play everyday, that would come down alot too, but only playing once a week, well I am accepting of where I am.

Most layman could not understand the term of “loss of the angle of torso and spine”.
They would get it quicker is say they stood up ( 99%) or snap back ( 50%) or both.
Often I’ll just point out that their arms are attached to their shoulders and the shoulders are attached to the core ( spine). They get it when they realized when they stood up ( mimicking the power hitters ), their arms are just a bit higher than the address position thus the top.
I had a few who were still topping the golf ball because they were trying to pick the golf ball clean instead of taking a divot. Half of them were afraid of hurting their hands, a self-preserving reaction makes them lift their arms slightly at impact even when their spine angle maintained the same.
They will be relieved when I tell them they could do anything they wish after the impact. They can snap their left knee like Tiger or twist their body like a pretzel as Palmer did.
The old school of maintaining the spine angle after the impact is an over kill. The old school of the reverse C had made so much money for the chiropractors.
No one I know is on the long drive circuit, no one is on the professional tour, so no need to sacrifice their health and well-being to chase perfection.
Main goal is to let the average golfers able to have fun.
We all know the “come-back shot of the day”. Even when one is not having a good success on the golf course for the day; one good putt or one solid golf shot will keep the golfer hooked and eager to come back soon on the links.
I like to tell people that the statistics of the Tour players are not perfect in any way.
Golf is a game of “misses”. Dr. Rotella wrote a book, " Golf is not a game of perfect". For those who could only rely on numbers and mechanical reasoning, they will not be able to enjoy this game to the fullest.
A few encouraging words for the newbies, the more you practice and play, the fewer mistakes you’ll make on the golf course, the more fun you’ll get.

Here is “The Unforced Error”.
We hear this all the time on telecasting by the commentators.
Thoughts and your experience?

Unforced Error. Scottie chipping that 3rd shot on 18 on Sunday 39 ft away. OR Rickie Rinsing his Tee ball on 16 on Sunday! That should not happen.

Just so you know. The biggest mistake and I am a culprit also is releasing the club before your hands actually get past the ball. If you do it correctly the finish is balanced and you will finish upright. Do it wrong you will have no choice but to come up to hit the ball. It’s either that or smash ure club into the ground. Release early and all that stored energy to transfer into the ball is lost. Lucky to hit it 180 yds with a driver and most likely a wipe to the right because the club face will be way open. I know I’ve done it.

Well, the early release has been the culprit for the newbies.

You have been in and around the game for decades, so, what did you do to correct that issue?
I know that I had the left to right ball flight for years when I first picked up the game; probably due partially to the early release of the club head.
Funny thing was, my instructor had never tried to correct me on that. My 5 iron had an 8–10-yard drift and my driver had a 16–18-yard drift to the right if I tried to smash the golf ball. The harder I hit the golf ball the more it drifted to the right. Always took a large piece of divot with irons back in those days.

Did you use any practice drill or some idea turned on your light bulb?
I’ll have some quotes from the past in which will direct the conversation back to the topic.

Actually yes. There are 2 drills I use to stop the early release. But it takes a lot of repetition. Mr Penick used the slow motion drill. Mr Hogan Slow Mo on purpose at age 65.
Second drill takes a partner. You get the student in position with club half way down the backswing. Teacher grabs the end of the club. Tell the student to go ahead and fire while you are hold onto the end of the club. Student will get the feels of hold lag then when you feel the strain let it go. The student will see what lag actually feels like. That’s a pretty cool 2 person drill

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Excellent drills and they both work well for many of us.
I’ll add one more from Davis Love (Jr) who was under the coaching of Harvey Penick, the father of Davis Love III, a nationally top ranked golf teacher based at the golf performance center of Sea Island.
He will make students hit golf balls with only their left hand.
I also felt that the early release of the golf club face could be partially caused by the trailing hand’s “hitting” into the golf ball. The right hand ( trailing side) should not be dominating until the moment of impact, not from the top as a baseball swing would be by the kids.
I always feel a good drill would be having the golfer without their golf club and do a shadow golf swing with their left hand and then the right hand in slow motion.
I kid this mother of feeling of spanking the naughty boy’s butt with the back of her left hand (back handed) at the ball position and then the right hand (palm). Get the feel of when to let it happen, before joining the two hands together.
Using the drill from Davis Love ( Jr), hitting an actual golf ball would be tough without practicing and costly. I had people swing at a short rubber tee off the matt as a target, same exercise with the left and then the right and finally join both hands.
This will not only teach the right position to release the hands but also teaches the use of body to lead the hands for the golf swing. I t will not work if someone is all hands, The body must lead for the motion to happen.
Works well and does not waste range balls at the beginning, before golfers could actually hit golf shots with one handed swing.
I believe Tiger Woods had a video of demonstrating hitting golf balls with left hand only.