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Eddie Fernandes has made big changes to his swing (and his power and consistency have gone up) by mastering the key moves in slow motion before he speeds them up. Everyone should use this kind of slow motion training to make real changes to their swing!

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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 Harris English, Brad Faxon, Brandel Chamblee, Jeff Flagg (2014 World Long Drive Champion), Eddie Fernandes (2018 World Long Drive Champion, Master Division), 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.

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. geohogan

    Dec 13, 2018 at 2:21 pm

    The placebo effect works successfully more than 30 % of the time.
    If that is good enough for most golf instructors, it will probably be good enough for you.

    Then believe slow motion, internal focus on position of body parts will improve your golf swing and do it religiously. Placebo effect is more dependent upon doing it religiously
    rather than repetitions. Amen.

  2. shawn

    Dec 10, 2018 at 5:20 pm

    OK duffers… here’s the Hogan ‘secret’ to this slow motion drill. Before you can do a proper slow motion drill you must first have a proper fast motion swing. This slow motion ‘drill’ is useless to help learn the fast motion drill because the two are dynamically and neurally different. It only confirms you have a proper fast motion drill and may help mentally. Don’t waste your time if you think it will repair your faulty homemade swing. End of story.

  3. shawn

    Dec 10, 2018 at 11:00 am

    Slow motion training does NOT lead to more power and consistency according to biomechanical research. So why do hack instructors promote such misleading information? Clickbait for the gullible?

  4. Ray

    Dec 9, 2018 at 10:07 pm

    Looks amazing. Total Sadlowski in slow-mo. Amazing flexibility in that turn with no momentum to help. Impressive. Does he have the fast twitch to run in full speed??

    • shawn

      Dec 10, 2018 at 5:15 pm

      Good point, Ray, because this slow motion ‘drill’ is fraudulent and a show-off display of body control mimicking the golf swing. The neuromuscular pathways are not the same for slow and fast golf swings. So what’s the value of this ‘drill’ other than showing off to the uncoordinated ignorant m a s ses?

  5. stevek

    Dec 9, 2018 at 8:04 pm

    Swinging slow motion has no relation to a fast swing because different muscles and neural pathways are used for each swing speed. So what is the value of swinging a golf club slowly? Now if he was slowly swinging a weighted steel rod that might be useful for muscle toning.

  6. ogo

    Dec 9, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    Forum Swearbot Filter Alert: The filthy word “repe t i t ion” is deleted!!!!!!!!

  7. ogo

    Dec 9, 2018 at 4:53 pm

    What a pile of utter rubbish being promoted by a couple of ignoramus ball beaters pretending to understand kinematics and kinetics and ingraining the neuromuscular system. They are biomechanical quacks!!!!

    • john jarosky

      Dec 9, 2018 at 5:22 pm

      Really ogo? Youtube ‘Ben Hogan Coleman video’. Mr Hogan did this exact drill for most of his career and then after.

      • ogo

        Dec 9, 2018 at 6:54 pm

        Okay, john…. how many repetitions per day and how many days must you do this slow-motion ‘training’ before it is engrammed into your neuromuscular system?
        100 times daily for 100 days… for 10,000 repetitions maybe? As for Hogan, it appears this ‘drill’ was useless if he had to do it for most of his career.

      • ogo

        Dec 9, 2018 at 6:56 pm

        Okay, john…. how many repet i tions per day and how many days must you do this slow-motion ‘training’ before it is engrammed into your neuromuscular system? 100 times daily for 100 days… for 10,000 reps maybe? As for Hogan, it appears this ‘drill’ was useless if he had to do it for most of his career.

        • John Jarosky

          Dec 10, 2018 at 10:49 am

          The two guys on the video are sharing information they feel will help improve golfers. Its a fantastic drill for sequencing and club face awareness and why Ben Hogan practiced it for 50 plus years. That alone at least places some validity to what they are saying. Great…it’s not for you. Move on to the next article. Its not my place to say your comments are both arrogant and ignorant. I’m sure people can see that for themselves.

          • shawn

            Dec 10, 2018 at 11:04 am

            There is no proof that slow motion training will help golfers improve. Hogan’s swing must have been fragile if he used this ‘drill’ for 50 years, or he was an obsessive-compulsive neurotic doing useless habitual habits. The opinions of the two instructors is superficial and incomplete.

            • john jarosky

              Dec 10, 2018 at 11:19 am

              Shawn, fair enough and in a way really that is not my argument. Is there really ‘proof ‘ of anything when it comes to golf swing mechanics? The Hall of Fame is full of different backswings for example. My personal belief is if you believe something will work in your golf training, there is a very good chance you’ll see improvement. And this is one of those drills that has some merit at the very least. Would Ben Hogan have been Ben Hogan without this drill? Probably. The reaction of some people on a video that has had merit to one of the greatest players to ever play the game is quite humorous and makes the comments sometimes better than subject discussed.

              • shawn

                Dec 10, 2018 at 5:04 pm

                John says: “My personal belief is if you believe something will work in your golf training, there is a very good chance you’ll see improvement.”
                But this slow motion ‘drill’ is not ‘training’. It’s useless repit i tion that looks good so it must be good. Wrong, wrong, wrong. You are invoking the “mind over matter” argument and that’s what most rec golfers with homemade swings believe if some unqualified instructor and a neurotic pro does it too. The video is innocent at best and unprofessional at worse, or both.

              • geohogan

                Dec 13, 2018 at 2:12 pm

                @john jarosky
                One example of proof is Dr Gabrielle Wulf research corroborated by others in the her field, that external focus has positive results in motor skill performance
                in comparison to internal focus(on body positions, fast or slow motion)

                People dont realize, that the subconscious controls all complex movement, by a complex preprogram, built by billions of neurons. A singular intent(external focus) initiates each preprogram.

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Instruction

Walters: Avoid these 3 big chipping mistakes!

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Chipping causes nightmares for so many amateur golfers. This s mainly due to three core mistakes. In this video, I talk about what those mistakes are, and, more importantly, how to avoid them.

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The Wedge Guy: The importance of a pre-shot routine

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I believe one of the big differences between better recreational golfers and those not so good—and also between the tour professionals and those that can’t quite “get there”—is the consistency of their pre-shot routines. It is really easy to dismiss something that happens before the ball is even struck as irrelevant, but I strongly urge you to reconsider if you think this way.

To have a set routine to follow religiously before every shot gives you the best chance to execute the shot the way you intend. To do otherwise just leaves too much to chance. Indulge me here and I’ll offer you some proof.

It’s been a while back now, but I still remember an interesting account on this subject that used the final round of the 1996 Masters—when Nick Faldo passed a collapsing Norman—as his statistical proof. This particular analyst reviewed the entire telecast of that final round and timed the routine of both players for every shot. What he discovered was that Norman got quicker and less consistent in his pre-shot routine throughout his round, while Faldo maintained his same, methodical approach to every shot, not varying by more than a second or so. I think that is pretty insightful stuff.

A lot of time has passed since then, but all competitive tour professionals pay very close attention to their pre-shot routines these days. I urge you to watch them as they go through the motions before each shot. And notice that most of them “start over” if they get distracted during that process.

While I do not think it is practical for recreational golfers to go into such laborious detail for every shot, let me offer some suggestions as to how a repeatable pre-shot routine should work.

The first thing is to get a good feel for the shot, and by that, I mean a very clear picture in your mind of how it will fly, land and roll; I also think it’s realistic to have a different routine for full shots, chips and pitches and putts. They are all very different challenges, of course, and as you get closer to the hole, your focus needs to be more on the feel of the shot than the mechanics of the swing, in my opinion.

To begin, I think the best starting point is from behind the ball, setting up in your “mind’s eye” the film-clip of the shot you are about to hit. See the flight and path it will take. As you do this, you might waggle the club back and forth to get a feel of the club in your hands and “feel” the swing that will produce that shot path for you. Your exact routine can start when you see that shot clearly, and begin your approach the ball to execute the shot. From that “trigger point”, you should do the exact same things, at the exact same pace, each and every time.

For me (if I’m “on”), I’ll step from that behind-the-shot position, and set the club behind the ball to get my alignment. Then I step into my stance and ball position, not looking at the target, but being precise not to change the alignment of the clubhead–I’m setting my body up to that established reference. Once set, I take a look at the target to ensure that I feel aligned properly, and take my grip on the club. Then I do a mental check of grip pressure, hover the club off the ground a bit to ensure it stays light, and then start my backswing, with my only swing thought being to feel the end of the backswing.

That’s when I’m “on,” of course. But as a recreational player, I know that the vast majority of my worst shots and rounds happen when I depart from that routine.

This is something that you can and should work on at the range. Don’t just practice your swing, but how you approach each shot. Heck, you can even do that at home in your backyard. So, guys and ladies, there’s my $0.02 on the pre-shot routine. What do you have to add?

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6 reasons why golfers struggle with back pain: Part 1

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This article is co-written with Marnus Marais. Since 2011, Marnus has worked with some of the world’s best players on both the PGA Tour and European Tour, helping them to maintain optimal health and peak physical performance. His current stable of players includes Dustin Johnson, Patrick Cantlay, and Louis Oosthuizen, amongst others.

You find more information on Marnus and his work at marnusmarais.com

 

Back pain is by far the most common complaint among regular golfers. It is estimated that up to 35 percent of amateur golfers endure lower back injuries. And in our experience working with tour players, the prevalence is even higher in the professional ranks! 

Back pain can affect our ball striking and short game, diminish our enjoyment of the game, or even stop us playing altogether. It can make us feel anxious about playing (and making the pain worse) and just generally disappointed with current performance falling way short of our expectations. 

There is certainly no shortage of information on the topic of back pain, and with myriad back pain products and supplement options available, confusion about the best path to pain-free golf is one of the main reasons we don’t actually do anything effective to alleviate our suffering! 

We aim to present in this article an easy-to-digest explanation of the common causes of back pain, alongside some simple and practical ways to address the underlying issues. 

The recommendations we make in this article are generic in nature but effective in many of the low back pain cases we have worked with. However, pain can be complex and very specific to the individual. You should seek the personalized advice of a medical or exercise professional before undertaking any form of remedial exercise.

Reason 1 – Lack of mobility in 2 key areas

Certain areas in the body need to be more stable, and others need to be more mobile. The lumbar spine falls into the stable category, partly due to its limited capacity for rotation and lateral flexion (side bending). We know the unnatural golf swing movement imparts both rotational and side bending forces on the spine, so it’s an area we need to keep stable and protected. 

In order to avoid excessive low back rotation in life and especially in the golf swing, it’s very important that we try to maximize the range of movement in other areas, most notably the joints above and below the low back, where the majority of rotation in the golf swing should take place:

Area 1 – Hips

We need sufficient range of movement to turn into, and out of, both hips. For example, if we can’t turn and load into our lead hip due to a lack of internal rotation mobility, we tend to compensate with excessive rotation and side-bending in the lower back.

Suggested Exercises – Hip Mobility

Foam roll glutes, you can also use a spiky ball

90 90 hip mobility drills, fantastic for taking the hips through that all important internal rotation range

90 90 Glute Stretch – great for tight glutes / hips

Area 2 – Thoracic Spine (mid to upper back)

Having sufficient rotation in our thoracic spine to both left and the right is extremely important. The thoracic spine has significantly greater rotational capabilities compared to the lumbar spine (low back). If we maximise our mobility here, we can help protect the lower back, along with the cervical spine (neck).

Suggested Exercises – Thoracic Mobility

Foam rolling mid / upper back

 

Cat / Camel – working the T-Spine through flexion and extension

 

Reach backs – working that all important T-Spine rotation

Reason 2 – Alignment and Muscle Imbalances

Imagine a car with wheel alignment issues; front wheels facing to the right and back wheels facing to the left. Not only will the tires wear out unevenly and quickly, but other areas of the car will experience more torque, load or strain and would have to work harder. The same thing happens to the lower back when we have body alignment issues above and/or below.

For example, if we have short/tight/overactive hip flexors (muscles at the front of the hips that bend our knee to our chest) on one side of the body; very common amongst golfers with low back pain. This would rotate the pelvis forward on one side, which can create a knock-on effect of imbalance throughout the body.

If the pelvis rotates in one direction, the shoulders naturally have to rotate in the opposite direction in order to maintain balance. Our low back is subsequently caught in the middle, and placed under more load, stress and strain. This imbalance can cause the low back to bend and rotate further, and more unevenly, especially in the already complex rotation and side bending context of the golf swing!

Below is a pelvic alignment technique that can help those with the afore mentioned imbalance

Reason 3 – Posture

Posture can be described as the proper alignment of the spine, with the aim of establishing three natural curves (low back, mid/upper back and neck).

 

The 3 major spinal curves – 1-Cervical, 2 – Thoracic, 3 – Lumbar

Modern lifestyles and the associated muscle imbalances have pushed and pulled our spines away from those three natural curves, and this had a damaging effect on our spinal health. Our backs are designed to function optimally from the neutral illustrated above, and the further we get away from it, the more stress we put on our protective spinal structures. 

Aside from promotion of pain, poor posture also does terrible things for our golf swings; reducing range of motion in key areas (hips, mid back and shoulders) and creating inefficiencies in our swing action, to give us a double whammy of back pain causes.

Fortunately, re-establishing good posture is really simple and you can combine the information and exercises featured in the videos below with the mobility exercises featured in the Reason 1 section above. The equipment used in the videos is the GravityFit TPro – a favorite of ours for teaching and training posture with both elite and recreational players.

 

In the next installment of this article, we will cover reasons 4, 5 and 6 why golfers suffer from back pain – 4) Warming Up (or lack thereof!), 5) Core Strength and 6) Swing Faults.

 

If you would like to see how either Nick or Marnus can help with your golfing back pain, then check out the resources below:

Marnus Marais – marnusmarais.com

Nick Randall – golffitpro.net

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