Connect with us

Published

on

It’s important not to overdo the “Sam Snead squat.” Understanding the subtle leg movements of the game’s greats is key to making your practice purposeful and making real improvement.

Your Reaction?
  • 49
  • LEGIT5
  • WOW4
  • LOL15
  • IDHT7
  • FLOP22
  • OB18
  • SHANK35

Lucas Wald is a former touring professional turned instructor. Lucas has been recognized by Golf Digest as one of the Best Young Teachers in America (2016-2017) and the Best Teacher in Arkansas (2017). His notable students include Brad Faxon, Brandel Chamblee, Jeff Flagg (2014 World Long Drive Champion), and Victoria Lovelady (Ladies European Tour). Lucas has been sought out by some of the biggest names in the game for his groundbreaking research on the golf swing, and he’s known for his student case studies – with juniors, adult amateurs, and tour pros – that show that significant improvement in power and ball striking is possible in golfers of all levels. Check out his website - lucaswaldgolf.com - and be sure to follow Lucas on social media.

13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. tom

    Dec 16, 2017 at 11:06 am

    you may or may not agree with his articulation. but the topic itself is huge in order to swing the club correctly. actually it’s got nothing to do with swinging itself, the left knee just sets the correct sequence up .

    upper body and lower body separation . with lower body needing to move first. with the left knee needing to get out of the way first. a total cascade effect.

    this is the bull whip effect imo.

    george gankas has a cult following with many of his students thinking he invented the topic. but whatever works.

    stack and tilt addresses the need to move left knee first and feet first. again to clear the lower body out to make room for the upper body to swing.

    lean, tilt, and rotation of course all need to be there as well.

    • tom

      Dec 16, 2017 at 11:09 am

      you may or may not agree with his articulation. but the topic itself is huge in order to swing the club correctly. actually it’s got nothing to do with swinging itself, the left knee just sets the correct sequence up .

      upper body and lower body separation . with lower body needing to move first. with the left knee needing to get out of the way first. a total cascade effect.

      this is the bull whip effect imo.

      george gankas has a cult following with many of his students thinking he invented the topic. but whatever works.

      stack and tilt addresses the need to move left knee first and feet first. again to clear the lower body out to make room for the upper body to swing.

      lean, tilt, and rotation of course all need to be there as well.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQNjDOVSmRM&index=6&list=PLoiojOHre1oM1zXVoUgMdTYp7OPllRTQ2

      steve elkington’s temp coach. secret dirt etc.

  2. CB

    Dec 15, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    I’m flabbergasted at how wrong this analysis is. Blows my mind how some people just have it so totally wrong.

    • FG

      Dec 16, 2017 at 3:45 pm

      Who knows, you may be totally wrong as well! You can’t just disregard everything and say you are right and everyone is wrong when it comes to golf instruction, it’s too subjective, everyone has their own opinion

  3. mM

    Dec 15, 2017 at 11:06 am

    You completely misunderstand Snead’s move, which is so completely not the same as the other players mentioned in the list. Facepalm this one, this is precisely why there is misinformation out there and it’s why people are confused. Pigeon toed??? Snead was 45 degrees flared out with BOTH feet! Man, you cannot be farther from the truth. Try making your feet flared 45 degrees out. You will realize why the squat works and why that load happens, unlike the McIlroy move, where Rory does not lift his heel. You can’t even see that.
    You should not be teaching.

  4. stevek

    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    Sit… at address
    Squat… in the backswing
    Slide… at top of the swing
    Swing… in the downswing
    Simple… and so obvious!

  5. The dude

    Dec 14, 2017 at 1:02 pm

    Ya…let’s teach this…..wow.

  6. Brett Weir

    Dec 14, 2017 at 9:51 am

    I’ll listen to Lucas Wald teachings over Shawn Clement 11 times out of 10.

    • Someone

      Dec 16, 2017 at 7:32 am

      i will have to agree with you here for the simple fact that he’s direct and to the point. keeps the videos short. but as for the validity of the advice, i think it needed a bit better explanation of why. he only discussed what the pros do, not what we need to do as amateurs to apply this. He also doesn’t mention who this applies to. All instructional videos require 4 parts. identification/application : who does this apply to. diagnosis : what the swing fault is. remedy : how to fix the swing fault. drill : what to practice to ingrain the swing correction. those four parts, and all instructional video can be spot on. everything else is just spouting random knowledge without proper application.

  7. tom

    Dec 14, 2017 at 8:38 am

    this one is a keeper !

  8. The great suarini

    Dec 14, 2017 at 1:38 am

    Poor video didn’t explain why Snead’s squats
    It’s simple he didn’t slide much at all and had a lot flare in his right foot. So as he compressed a little he got the squat look

    • RBImGuy

      Dec 15, 2017 at 1:10 pm

      without sneed to show, one have to ask what happen?

  9. fred

    Dec 14, 2017 at 12:15 am

    The legs move laterally to permit the hips to rotate.
    Lateral motion is not natural to the human body. Add to that that most golfers lead a sedentary life and only move forward to get around, it’s not surprising that most golfers cannot effectively move their legs laterally and hips rotating around.
    And that’s why most golfers suck at swinging.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Instruction

The 3 different levels of golf practice

Published

on

“I would have practiced as hard, but I would have made my practice more meaningful. I would have worked more on my short game and putting. I would’ve done a lot more drills to make the practice more meaningful, and I would’ve added pressure to the practice as much as possible.” — Lee Westwood

Now here’s the rub. Practice is not monolithic! I approach practice as having three different, distinctive and separate curriculum and criteria.

  • Level 1: Basic
  • Level 2: Advanced
  • Level 3: Extreme

Basic Practice (Level 1) by definition is “repeated exercise in or performance of an activity or skill so as to acquire or maintain proficiency in it.” Basically, it’s doing the same thing over and over again to get better at it. My favorite skill that requires practice is the 76-yard “flighted wedge.” I do it, and I recommend it be done at every range practice session. Additionally, I identify and then practice as many different “skills” that are required to hit different golf shots. I have found that a non-pressurized environment is the best way to practice in a basic model.

It goes without saying that golf is not played in a pressure-free environment, so basic practice doesn’t help us play golf. The prime objective of Level 2 Practice (Advanced Training) is to take what you do in Basic Practice to the golf course.

First, create on-course situations that require you to hit the shots you have practiced. There should be rewards for demonstrations of competence, and there should be consequences for demonstrations of incompetence

“When you practice, try to find a situation to fit the shot you’re trying to practice.” — Ben Hogan

For example, a major problem is the unevenness of the lies you will encounter during play as opposed to the lies you used for your drills. From marginal to extreme, lies are difficult to replicate on the practice tee. So, play a round of golf and move the ball into the most undesirable lie that is very close to where you are.

Another example would be duplicating the creativity that is sometimes required during actual play. The prime example of that would be the sensation of “being in-between clubs.” I would suggest that you play an occasional round of golf using only half of your clubs. Take two wedges instead of four. Take only the “odd” or “even” numbered irons. Look at not taking the driver, or not taking all of your fairway clubs. I have not taken my putter, which forced me putt with my sand wedge!

A third example would be to play a round of golf and deliberately miss every green in regulation. Should your ball accidentally finish on the green in regulation just move it off into the rough, a bunker or whatever else could use the extra attention. You can create games where your opponent moves your ball off the green into something that would be advantageous to him.

Level 2 Practice is conducted on the practice ground as well as on the course. What I do and recommend is to take each of the shots, skills and drills used in Level 1 and add some accountability to the range experience. I have my students and clients use a “Practice Book” to schedule activities and to keep track of improvement.

Author Note: I will send you a sample practice book page that many of my players actually use. Request it at edmyersgolf@gmail.com.

Please be advised that Level 2 Practice can feature games, wagering or other forms of friendly competitions because they should only activate the lesser emotions of irritation, annoyance, anticipation, anxiousness, joy, pleasure and disappointment. Dealing with these feelings in practice will help you recognize and deal with the minor stresses experienced by most recreational golfers.

Stress is the major cause of “CHOKING.”

Stress, by definition “is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.” Stress can ruin our ability to perform when we experience the major emotions such as fear, anger, shame, humiliation, euphoria, ridicule, betrayal, doubt and/or disbelief.

Level 3 Practice (Extreme Preparation) is on-course training sessions best suited for very serious competitive golfers. The more a player is able to compete in a simulated or controlled environment that accurately replicates the actual “pressures” that produce the kind of stresses that can effect performance, the better the player will perform when stressed in actual tournaments or events. Please be advised that Extreme Practice DOES NOT feature games, gambling or “friendly” competitions. They don’t control the conditions of play sufficiently to replicate the type of pressure that would induce “stress.”

“Simulation, which  is a technique (not a technology) to replace and amplify real experiences with guided ones, often “immersive” in nature, that evoke or replicate substantial aspects of the real world in a fully interactive fashion.” For many years now, the medical profession has used simulations to train doctors, the military has used simulations to prepare troops for the realities of the battlefield and aviation has used simulators to train pilots. Simulating has the added benefits of being cost and time effective while producing verifiable results.

If it’s possible for airlines to replicate every possible scenario that a pilot could experience in the cockpit by using simulations, then why isn’t it possible to replicate situations, and subsequent emotional responses, that a competitive golfer could experience on the golf course? Let me give you an example of what I mean.

“I got nervous all the time, as nervous as the next guy. It’s just that I caught myself before it became destructive.” Jack Nicklaus

Recent events at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play gives us some evidence of the destructiveness of uncontrolled emotions. Justin Thomas said that he couldn’t get the thought out of his mind of becoming the No. 1-ranked player in the world should he defeat Bubba Watson in the semi-finals, which he failed to do.

“I haven’t had such a hard time not thinking about something so much,” Thomas said. “And that really sucked. I couldn’t stop thinking about it, to be perfectly honest.”

Then there was Ian Poulter being told that with his win over Louis Oosthuizen he had earned a spot in this years’ Masters tournament only to be told 10 minutes before his next match that he had not actually secured the coveted invitation. With elation, joy and satisfaction jerked away and replaced with disappointment, and possibly anger, the Englishman went out and got whipped by Kevin Kisner 8 & 6!

I concede that Justin Thomas’ and Ian Poulter’s situations were so unique that simulation-based practice and preparation techniques may not have been available to them, but now they both must know that their performance was effected negatively by mental stresses. And with that knowledge they may want to get tougher mentally. Level 3 Practice does that!

Not all that long ago, I was approached by a PGA Tour veteran for some on-course, one-on-one training. He was experiencing severe “choking” in pressurized short-game situations. So I took him out on the course and we replicated the exact shots he had problems with in the past. He demonstrated that he could perform each and every shot in a stress-free environment. We went into a “low-stress” training environment and his performance began to suffer. Then, at his urging to get “real,” we went into a “high-stress” practice mode and he melted down. Without going into details, he became so angry that not only couldn’t he hit golf shots, he tried to run me down with the golf cart as he retreated to the safety of his car.

Now, that’s not the end of the story. A few hours later, after some soul searching, he apologized for his lack of self-control and acknowledged that he had recognized the early signs of stress growing internally as we worked. We went back out onto the course and got back to work.

Your Reaction?
  • 40
  • LEGIT4
  • WOW4
  • LOL1
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP2
  • OB1
  • SHANK8

Continue Reading

Instruction

Winning Ways: Here’s what it takes to become a winner in Junior Girls golf

Published

on

Every competitive golfer strives to win, and I want to help them achieve their goals. Recently, I wrote a story highlighting the statistics behind winning in junior boys golf, and how they can do it more often. Now, we set out to examine the data on winning in junior girls golf, and provide ways they can improve. The data is based on an analysis of tournament results from all events during the 2017 year from the Junior Tour of Northern California. We then asked stats guru, Peter Sanders, Founder of ShotByShot.com, to provide the stats related to the winning scoring numbers that we found. Finally, we discuss ways that juniors can practice building skills and work towards becoming tournament winners.

The Winning Scores

In 2017 the Junior Tour of Northern California held 26 tournaments with 850+ members. According to our data collection based on information available on the website, the average girl’s tournament course measured 6145 yards. The average winning score for girls was 146 (36 holes), or 73 per round. Ten of the 22 tournaments where won with scores of 144 or better and the low 36 holes total was a whopping 133! In the data collection we also collected the average 10th place scores girls. The average 10th place score for girls was 159 or 79.5.

The Winning Stats

We provided the numbers to statistics expert Peter Sanders. Peter’s company has been providing Strokes Gained analysis for golfers for the last 29 years. Peter is the founder of ShotByShot.com, a website that provides golfers at all levels with Strokes Gained analysis, pinpoints specific strengths and weaknesses and highlights improvement priorities. Since the launch of ShotByShot.com in 2005, Peter has collected over 317,000 rounds. Accordingly, Peter has agreed to share the numbers, below, for a typical female player who averages 73. There are two important points to consider when reviewing these statistics:

  1. In order to have a complete picture of the puzzle that is golf, one must consider the ERRORS, or lack thereof, that play such an important role in scoring at every level. Even the 650+ PGA Tour stats ignore these important miscues. Shot By Shot has included them in their analysis from the beginning and they are highlighted in the infographics below.
  2. The data provided represents only tournament rounds. As such it will primarily represent the high school and college programs that use ShotbyShot.com

Infographics Created by Alexis Bennett

The Winning Preparation

Junior girls are encouraged to use these stats as a benchmark against their own performance to determine where they might need to improve against the “typical 73 player.” After identifying gaps in their game, they can then create practice plans to help improve. For example, a junior might notice they have more 3-putts than the model. To improve, they could work put more time into practice, as well as playing games on the golf course like draw-back and 2-putt.

  • Drawback is a game where after your first putt, you draw the second putt one putter length away from the hole. This often changes a shorter putt (> 2 feet) to a putt of between 3.5 – 5 feet. This putts significantly more pressure on your putting.
  • You may also play Two-Putt, a game where when you reach the green, you (or your playing competitor) tosses the ball away from the hole. You must 2-putt from that spot to move to the next hole (even if it takes a couple attempts!).

Others reading this article might find that they don’t hit enough greens. Improving this area will require more consistent strikes, which may require further technical development and block practice, as well as working on the golf course. To start, I would recommend that every junior implement the yardage rule. The yardage rule works like this; figure out the distance to the very back of the green. For example, this number may be 157. Then figure out what club ALWAYS flies 157, which might be 6-iron. Then choose 7-iron for the shot. This way your best shot will not fly the green, your average shot will likely be in the middle of the green and your less-than-perfect shot will hopefully end up on the front of the green.

During practice rounds, play competitive games with yourself to sharpen your ability to hit greens. For example, if you normally hit 7 greens per round, in practice your goal might be 9. You would track your results over a month and then see your progress.

Beyond building individual skills, like hitting greens or working on putting, junior golfers need times to play competitive rounds on their home golf courses. Ideally, these rounds are played against other people with similar skills and done under tournament like conditions with consequences (loser buys winner a coke or cleans their golf clubs). Playing hundreds of rounds at your home golf course under these conditions gives you a unique opportunity to sharpen your game, learn your tendencies and build skills such as endurance and mental toughness. Most importantly, it teaches you to win and shoot under par!

Please also keep in mind building these skills may take months (or even years). In my own personal experience, when I set out to improve my birdies per round, it took nearly 4 months and 75+ rounds and significant practice to begin to see a change. Depending on your schedule and access to resources like a golf course and instructor, some changes might take a year or more. Regardless, don’t ever worry; building a solid foundation in golf will always lead to rewards!

Your Reaction?
  • 40
  • LEGIT4
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK2

Continue Reading

Instruction

PNF Drills: How To Turn Onto The Golf Ball

Published

on

In this video, I share a great drill to help you turn onto the ball. This will help you rotate through impact.

Your Reaction?
  • 11
  • LEGIT1
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP4
  • OB1
  • SHANK8

Continue Reading

Trending