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The A Swing: A simpler way to swing

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As a golf instructor, you are always trying to improve your knowledge and understanding of the golf swing in order to help your students improve the efficiency of their swing as well as their ball striking consistency. No matter the player’s talent level, I’ve also come to understand how important it is to keep the approach of improving a player’s action as simple as possible.

During my 20+ year association with David Leadbetter and our elite worldwide Leadbetter teaching staff, we are consistently pushing the limits on how to simplify the complex game of golf. It’s a teaching culture within the Leadbetter organization inspired by David himself, and is fully captured in his new book “The A Swing.”

The A Swing is very much an evolution of David’s teaching philosophy, and emphasizes the synchronization between the three key fundamentals of the swing:

  1. Setup
  2. Body turn
  3. Club swing

What sets the A Swing approach apart is how simple it is for any player to understand, feel, and ultimately execute. Since first discussing and implementing some of the A Swing concepts with David in 2012, we have seen some dramatic improvements at every level with our players. Lydia Ko, the world’s No. 1-ranked female golfer, has been working with David and I since the Fall of 2013 has many A Swing traits that blend perfectly with her effortless swing rhythm.

Traditional Backswing

Traditional Backswing

Photo Credit: The A Swing by David Leadbetter. St Martins Press, 2015

A Swing Backswing

"A Swing" Backswing

Photo Credit: The A Swing by David Leadbetter. St Martins Press, 2015

The whole essence of the A Swing is based on synchronization. To me, synchronizing the swing’s two main components — torso rotation and the arm/club action — is paramount in good ball striking, regardless of the philosophy one follows.

In most cases in the golf swing, poor body motion is directly related to arms, hands and a club that are out of position. This can be observed if a player makes a simple pivot motion with their arms folded across their chest, where they would wind up going back, transition going forward, and then unwind to a balanced finish. More often than not, it looks technically correct. Yet take the same player and put a club in their hand, and the body motion looks totally different.

Related: Visit the A Swing Website

Watch the video below with Brett Meyer of the Leadbetter Golf Academy to see the incredible results of one student who worked with David on The A Swing. 

The goal with the A Swing is to develop a powerful, balanced torso motion using ground force, and compliment it with a simple arm action. What we are suggesting is eliminating wasted motion with the hands and arms in order to create great synchronization going back and coming down. In our biomechanical testing, we have found that on average the butt of the club travels 20 percent less than a conventional, on-plane backswing. This savings is huge as far as synchronization is concerned, and really allows the arms/club and body to arrive at their destination at the top almost in tandem. It also encourages an in-sync downswing, and allows the body to work more effectively.

In all our testing with players of different levels, we have found the transfer of energy throughout the swing to be much more efficient. In many cases, we have seen not only improvement in accuracy (wouldn’t most players settle for that?), but also increased ball speed as a result of more center-face contact.

In addition to conceptualizing the A Swing approach, there are complimentary drills to help speed up the learning process to grasp this alternative backswing, thereby setting up a powerful, on-plane downswing. Depending on the needs of my clients, who typically struggle to find time to practice, I can implant a segment or a full compliment of the A Swing knowing that with minor changes, they will see immediate results.

It’s all about getting better and as an instructor it’s been great to see real improvement among our players of all ages and abilities with the A Swing.

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Originally from Dublin, Ireland, Sean Hogan was a member of the Irish National Junior Golf Team alongside golf superstars Darren Clarke and Padraig Harrington. Sean accepted a golf scholarship to attend the University of South Florida. While at USF, he earned Academic All-American Status and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in management information systems. As a collegiate player, Sean made frequent trips to the Leadbetter Golf Academy (LGA) in Orlando, Fla., to improve the mechanics of his game. It was during these lessons that Sean developed a great interest in the golf instruction, which ultimately inspired him to join David Leadbetter and his teaching staff as a trainee in 1994. After completing the year-long LGA Golf Instructor Certification Program, Sean began teaching golfers of all ages and abilities at several Leadbetter European Academy locations, including Austria, Spain, and Portugal. He also was appointed to the Director at the Leadbetter Golf Academy in Carvoeiro, Portugal. Since returning to the U.S., Sean has become a Master Instructor at the Leadbetter Golf Academy Worldwide Headquarters at ChampionsGate, and he is now the Director of Instruction at the Leadbetter Golf Academy Crystal Springs Resort. Over the years, Sean has had the opportunity to assist David Leadbetter with leading PGA Tour players, including Masters Champion Trevor Immelman, Ian Poulter Ben Curtis, and Charles Howell III. Sean is currently working closely with Fredrik Jacobson and the LPGA’s leading players, Suzann Peterson. After completing the year-long LGA Golf Instructor Certification Program, Sean began teaching golfers of all ages and abilities at several Leadbetter European Academy locations, including Austria, Spain, and Portugal. While in Europe, Sean learned to speak German. He also was appointed to the Director at the Leadbetter Golf Academy in Carvoeiro, Portugal. Since returning to the U.S., Sean has become a Master Instructor at the Leadbetter Golf Academy Worldwide Headquarters at ChampionsGate, and he is the Director of Instruction at the Leadbetter Golf Academy Crystal Springs Resort. Over the years, Sean has had the opportunity to assist David Leadbetter with leading PGA Tour players, including Masters Champion Trevor Immelman, Ian Poulter Ben Curtis, and Charles Howell III. Sean is currently working closely with Fredrik Jacobson and the LPGA’s leading players, Suzann Peterson.

34 Comments

34 Comments

  1. Bob J

    Mar 10, 2017 at 1:28 am

    Fascinating to read all the “gurus” here who know better than some of golf’s most accomplished teachers. LOL.

  2. Ben B

    May 5, 2016 at 12:48 am

    I have never been a good golfer, and have never really believed in Leadbetter’s teaching. At 70 years old, I saw several videos on the A Swing, and without much practice, went to the driving range at a local course and hit about 10 balls with what I imagined the A Swing to be, and got called to first tee with my guys. Shot the best I had in years, and I am not good, mid 90’s, over the top. With his swing, I was less prone to come over the top due to the limited backswing alone.

  3. Steve Wozeniak PGA

    Sep 25, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    I would have loved to be a fly on the wall when Lydia told these clowns to take this A swing and shove it………she tried it for a bit missed cuts and hit it like a dog, anyone that knows the golf swing laughs and this stuff…….Lydia is back swinging like Hogan, Ben that is!!!!!!

    Anyone that has “written” 40 books about the golf swing is confused……

  4. Tommy P

    Jul 5, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    I’m 82 and used to be a 10. Did not play for awhile and had trouble getting my swing back. Even before buying the book, just looking at the Utubes I was able to right away hit real good shots. You guys who are talking the swing down do not have the ability to follow directions.

  5. Mike

    Jun 22, 2015 at 9:49 am

    Have not bought the book, just watched various videos to get the concept. Took what I perceived as the proper move to the range. Have to tell you there is something there ( for me at least) I am an 8 handicapper, always working on a new “move”. Don’t kid yourself, it takes some work to get it (at least for me it did). Probably have hit 1000 balls using the A swing. I am a believer. At least for me, I think there is something there. On the course by drives are longer, I am playing with guys a lot younger (I am 67) and I am up with them and past on occasions. I won the super seniors long drive contest last year at our State Match play with a 286 yard drive so I was not short to begin with. But my drives are more penetrating and I have a little draw I never had. So at least for me I will continue working on this technique.

  6. Mike T

    May 30, 2015 at 10:57 pm

    A fully cupped wrist at the top? I’ve done that and it sucks big time. It’s all just to sell a new book? Bogus. They don’t even explain what the A in the A Swing is… I can think of one thing.

  7. Susinto

    May 29, 2015 at 5:34 am

    Bought it 2 weeks ago, i didnt change all my swings to A swing, but it did enhance the “feel” part of my golf game. I was/am a very mechanical swinger., able to make me enhance the feel part of my swing, i give this book 10/10, also considering only 10% fee of local pro for 1 hour. Would recomend it to all my near kin, those wo want to pick up golf at full speed.

    Video on youtube and limits of budget and also pros in my country – indonesia, doesnt help my game much. After reading this book on kindle, i now can hit my shot higher with more spin, higher flush shot percentange on my 6&5 iron, hybrid and 5 wood, with a few adjustment made.

    According to me, the current world no.1 (yes Rory) has the same swing as the A swing. Look at the 1st part of upswing till the shaft is parallel to the ground. Its definitely A swing. More apparent on titleist Rory (less bulky Rory), than the nike Rory (muscleman Rory)

    Cheers

  8. gvogel

    May 25, 2015 at 8:42 am

    Two words: Jimmy Bruen.

    Five words: Phil Rogers helicopter wedge swing.

    • Heli

      May 25, 2015 at 10:57 am

      Bernhard Langer helicopter too?

    • Tim

      Jul 13, 2015 at 4:05 pm

      I don’t see much video or read much about Phil Rodgers anymore, but he schooled Jack Nicklaus on the wedge game. Jack was never very good in that area (didn’t need to be compared to the rest of the field) but when he needed help he went to Phil. I still use his figure 8 flop shot a lot around the green-side rough.

  9. Jayw

    May 25, 2015 at 8:32 am

    There is a huge improvement in the transition from the top of the back swing to down swing in the video on the right. In the left video the initial move that the golfer makes in the transition of the downswing is with his shoulders, hand, and arms, and immediately he starts the typical over the top casting. The club starts an outside-in club path and the ball flight is from left to right. In the video on the right, the golfer starts the downswing from the ground up. His transition starts with a drop of his hands and arms. At impact the club path is much more down the line to inside out. No casting whatsoever. This is absolutely a night and day difference.

  10. joe

    May 25, 2015 at 3:26 am

    Is this not Jim Fury’s swing?

  11. Flop

    May 25, 2015 at 12:57 am

    This is a total FLOP.

    The guy in the video is simply getting a couple of basic, standard swing tips, just to straighten him out a little bit, because his usual, upright, steep swing is a bit over the top (pun intended) and can be easily fixed without all this A-swing bull sheet. And the new swing really isn’t that much of an improvement, as can be witnessed in the video, which is a terrible example of a video to show, by the way. If the student all of a sudden started hitting perfect little baby draws and his swing looked totally different to his original swing, I would have been impressed, but alas, as it stands now, it’s really just barely an improvement. F

  12. Jayw

    May 24, 2015 at 9:38 am

    According to the book by Daniel Coyle, The Talent Code, Greatness isn’t born. It’s grown. There is no talent without hard work. Also, the most successful tour players think and talk positive. Everything that’s related to the game of golf is expensive. That’s the way it’s always been and most likely always will be. The A Swing by David Leadbetter is less than 20 bucks on Amazon. And ships free with prime. 1/2 dozen (6) top quality brand name golf balls cost about that much.

  13. Joe

    May 24, 2015 at 6:24 am

    I’m an 8.5 hdcp. I like to tinker. I realize this “tinkering” may limit serious progress. That said, this A Swing has been enjoyable. The book (Kindle version) is a relatively quick read and there are plenty of videos on line to help with visuals. After just one range session, I would say it seems repeatable. To me, being one that doesn’t practice, that “repeatability” is important. I will definately continue with it….I hope I don’t get caught between swings and that my glutes fire.

  14. JSteinmann

    May 23, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Everyone has a gimmick to sell books and videos. Golf instruction is all about making money and selling hopes and dreams presented as secrets and shortcuts to replace what is simply talent and hard work.

  15. Jayw

    May 23, 2015 at 7:54 am

    I like what I see so far about the A Swing. It looks like a simple swing, and easy to maintain. I’m going to read the book to see if it’s for me or not. It’ll be a good read. I like learning about the golf swing. If I like it I’ll pursue it further, if not that’s ok, at the very least I will have additional knowledge. I was watching a Bobby Jones series on the golf channel one time an he said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. In the A Swing video David was saying that the A swing is an Alternate method that may help some people that have difficulty with other swing types, etc. He made it clear that the A swing wasn’t for everyone or that it was not a cure all exact method. A lot of people have been using the conventional method for years and struggle with it and don’t improve. I don’t believe that the natural golf swing, or, single plane swing is the same as the A swing. Just to name a few of the differences that I see, in the single plane swing you spread your stance very wide, and place the ball more forward and out away from you so that you reach for the ball. Also, you rotate your hands and the clubhead on the backswing. I don’t see any of that in the A swing. The single plane is different and some like it. I always like to take a positive approach and take as much good out of something and someone as possible. I see only good things from A Swing that will help a lot of people that struggle with other swing types. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

  16. Dudley Rogers

    May 22, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    It’s “…has been working with David and me…” not “with David and I”

  17. other paul

    May 22, 2015 at 7:21 pm

    I am not sure what is with all the people on here calling it a shank. I think to many (not enough…?) people are reading Kelvin Miyahira’s stuff.

  18. Jonny B

    May 22, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    Looks a lot like Ryan Moore’s swing.

  19. MartyMoose

    May 22, 2015 at 9:47 am

    I’ll stick with the traditional backswing. The “A Swing” backswing has pull hook written all over it.

  20. Guru

    May 22, 2015 at 8:14 am

    I hate that they tout this as revolutionary and try to add Lydia’s name to it.

    The concept is simple. For those that are ‘hitters’ and not ‘swingers,’ you often put your lead arm on your chest at the top of the backswing, which gets your arms behind your chest in terms of sync and are too shallow coming into the ball, so trying to get the shaft parallel up top gets you out of whack. Come across the line to sync up. That is the A swing. Just saved you a ton of money.

    Lydia is a swinger, and she does nothing close to the A swing. A hitters swing will always limit your distance vs a swingers swing, but is easier to learn IMO. Choose wisely and please don’t waste your money on these hacks

  21. ML

    May 21, 2015 at 10:48 pm

    Nearly impossible to make those changes In a couple “hours” by a 16 handicap

    Couple years maybe

    The guys a shill…. Now way

  22. snowman

    May 21, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    This is very well may be a good way to teach/swing….But be on alert for the upcoming Ledbetter Infomercial/DVDs etc, etc that will hype this thing as “revolutionary” and all for three easy payments of 49.99. I love capitalism, and Ledbetter has stamped his name on lots of ‘golf stuff’ over the years.

  23. Todd

    May 21, 2015 at 7:12 pm

    How do you determine when the body rotation and arm swing are “synchronized”? Can it be measured with a 3D motion measurement system? Is there a visual confirmation that can be gained from video? Seems awfully subjective to determine if there are no absolute tests for being “in sync”.

  24. Desmond

    May 21, 2015 at 4:26 pm

    After watching the video, I do not see this “A Swing” as revolutionary only because I’ve seen much of it over the last 2 years. The backswing, with the left arm more against the chest, is what my instructor is teaching. It’s more forearms against the ribcage and lead arm more against chest, no need to separate, please quiet the hands and wrists (as most golfers move arms and wrists too much).I need to study this downswing more as more info is needed, but perhaps Leds took recent biomechanical studies, worked on it as other instructors I’ve read and visited, and voila! we have a “packaged” Alternative swing to which he can attract students. It’s a good gig, and better than “swing in the barrel Leds” of the ’90’s, which screwed up a lot of golfers with the spin move who took the barrell image literally.

    What I’d like to see is the student on the left who was taught and videoed with Led’s traditional system, and then the same student on the right with the “A Swing.”

  25. lance sedevie

    May 21, 2015 at 3:39 pm

    This pattern is the same as Brian Manzella’s soft draw pattern which works great and has been out for years. Nothing revolutionary to be seen here.

  26. Anthony

    May 21, 2015 at 3:27 pm

    ok, so cross the line at the top? What about for us that do not slice the ball? in your traditional vs A swing picture, the traditional is right on plane at the top (traditionally speaking) and the A swing is crossing the line. Everything else being neutral, crossing the line at the top will get give the ball more draw/hook spin and reduce the slice. Crossing the line at the top taught to people who slice the ball, especially when they slice the ball because they are too laid off at the top. And the goal when teaching people to cross the line is that they move from their laid off move, to BEING ON PLANE, even though they feel they are crossing the line ( that is what is getting them on plane).

    In the video you posted, before the lesson the guy is severely laid off at the top with an opened face (he is not on plane with a face square to the plane like in your traditional picture). After the lesson he looks like the traditional picture at the top of his swing(as he is on plane traditionally speaking), he is not crossing the line?

    So is the A swing just telling you to get on plane at the top or cross the line? If it says to cross the line, he is not crossing the line at the top of his swing in this video. If A swing tells you to cross the line at the top, is that encouraged for someone who already hits draws?

  27. Jake

    May 21, 2015 at 11:58 am

    This article seems like an advertisement for the book? Here’s some valueless fluff, now go buy my book. Poor.

  28. Greg V

    May 21, 2015 at 10:37 am

    There are A swing videos by David Leadbetter on the current iPad Golf Digest edition.

    My take is that the A swing is a shortened version of the type of outside/inside swing such as Jim Furyk makes. For many amateurs who fight a slice, over the top move, the A swing looks like it could provide positive benefits.

    However, when you take a wonderfully natural swing which has worked at the highest level of women’s golf – Lydia Ko – and attempt to fit her action into the A swing paradigm, I believe that you are making a big mistake. My fear is that Lydia will start playing “golf swing”, instead of playing golf. That mistake has already been made by Michelle Wie and Suzanne Pettersen.

    I hope that the effort to fit Lydia’s move into a “swing paradigm” is not the cause of Lydia’s recent substandard play, but I fear that it might be.

  29. Jeff

    May 21, 2015 at 9:49 am

    Is this new swing motion basically a single plane swing with the club across the line or am I missing something. I’m curious because the photo of the A swing in the article looks exactly like my swing but as one plane swing and slightly across the line as I start down my hands track perfectly to the ball and the shaft flattens. All sounds good so far but the two problems are if the shaft flattens to long I can leave the face open with an inside path and if I try to square early I can get a little steep with an early release. It seems to me that this A Swing adds a bigger element of timing than if the shaft were on plane. Any suggestions Mr.Hogan.

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Instruction

What is ground force in the golf swing?

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There is no doubt about it, the guys and gals on tour have found something in the ground—and that something is power and speed. I’m sure by now you have heard of “ground reaction forces”—and I’m not talking about how you “shift your weight” during the golf swing.

Ground force in the golf swing: Pressure and force are not equal

With respect to ground force in the golf swing, it’s important to understand the difference between pressure and force. Pressure is your perception of how your weight is being balanced by the structure, in this case, the human body. Your body has a center of mass which is located roughly one inch behind the belt buckle for men and about one inch lower in women. When we shift (translate and/or torque) the center of mass, we create a pressure shift as the body has to “rebalance” the mass or body. This pressure shift can help us understand some aspects of the golf swing, but when it comes to producing power, force and torque are where it’s at.

Pressure can only be expressed in relation to the mass or weight of the body. Therefore, if you weigh 150 pounds, you can only create 150 pounds of pressure at one time. However, when we direct that mass at a larger object than our mass, all of a sudden that larger mass directs an opposite and equal reactionary force. So now, when a human being “pushes” their legs against the ground and “feels” 150 pounds of pressure, they now get 150 pounds of force directed back towards them from the ground, creating a total of 300 pounds of force that allows them to jump off the ground in this scenario.

If ground reaction forces don’t have anything to do with the “weight shift,” then what do they affect? Everything!

Most people use the same basic ingredients to make chocolate chip cookies. However, almost everyone has chocolate chip cookies that taste slightly different. Why is that? That is because people are variable and use the ingredients in different amounts and orders. When we create a golf swing, whether we are aware of it or not, we are using the same basic ingredients as everyone else: lateral force, vertical torque, and vertical force. We use these same three forces every time we move in space, and how much and when we use each force changes the outcome quite a bit.

Welcome to the world of 3D!

Understanding how to adjust the sequencing and magnitude of these forces is critical when it comes to truly owning and understand your golf swing. The good news is that most of our adjustments come before the swing and have to do with how we set up to the ball. For example, if an athlete is having a hard time controlling low point due to having too much lateral force in the golf swing (fats and thins), then we narrow up the stance width to reduce the amount of lateral force that can be produced in the swing. If an athlete is late with their vertical force, then we can square up the lead foot to promote the lead leg straightening sooner and causing the vertical force to happen sooner.

While we all will need to use the ground differently to play our best golf, two things need to happen to use the ground effectively. The forces have to exist in the correct kinetic sequence (lateral, vertical torque, vertical force), and the peaks of those forces need to be created within the correct windows (sequencing).

  • Lateral force – Peak occurs between top-of-swing and lead arm at 45 degrees
  • Vertical torque – Peak occurs between lead arm being 45 degrees and the lead arm being parallel to the ground.
  • Vertical force – Peak occurs between lead arm being parallel to the ground the club shaft being parallel to the ground.

While it may seem obvious, it’s important to remember ground reaction forces are invisible and can only be measured using force plates. With that said, their tends to be apprehension about discussing how we use the ground as most people do not have access to 3D dual force plates. However, using the screening process designed by Mike Adams, Terry Rowles, and the BioSwing Dynamics team, we can determine what the primary forces used for power production are and can align the body in a way to where the athlete can access his/her full potential and deliver the club to the ball in the most effective and efficient way based off their predispositions and anatomy.

In addition to gaining speed, we can help athletes create a better motion for their anatomy. As golfers continue to swing faster, it is imperative that they do so in a manner that doesn’t break down their body and cause injury. If the body is moving how it is designed, and the forces acting on the joints of the body are in the correct sequence and magnitude, not only do we know they are getting the most out of their swing, but we know that it will hold up and not cause an unforeseen injury down the road.

I truly believe that force plates and ground reaction forces will be as common as launch monitors in the near future. Essentially, a launch monitor measures the effect and the force plates measure the cause, so I believe we need both for the full picture. The force plate technology is still very expensive, and there is an educational barrier for people seeking to start measuring ground reaction forces and understanding how to change forces, magnitudes, and sequences, but I’m expecting a paradigm shift soon.

 

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Why you are probably better at golf than you think (Part 2)

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Golf is very much a monkey-see-monkey-do sport. If you ever go to the local range, you are sure to see golfers trying to copy the moves of their favorite player. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it does not. While I understand the logic of trying to mimic the “secret move” of the most recent winner on tour, I always balk when the person trying to create their best impression fails to realize the physical differences between them and the best golfing athletes in the world.

Read part 1 here. 

In addition to most golfers not being at the same fitness levels as the best players in the world, they also do not have bodies that are identical to their favorite player. This single statement proves why there is not one golf swing; we all are different sizes and are going to swing the club differently due to these physical differences.

You have to understand your swing

The biggest reason I believe that golfers are better than they think is most golfers I meet do not understand what their swings should look like. Armed with video after video of their golf swing, I will always hear about the one thing that the golfer wishes they could change. However, that one thing is generally the “glue” or athleticism of the athlete on display and is also the thing that allows them to make decent contact with the ball.

We are just coming out of the “video age” of golf instruction, and while I think that recording your golf swing can be extremely helpful, I think that it is important to understand what you are looking for in your swing. As a young coach, I fell victim to trying to create “pretty swings”, but quickly learned that there is not a trophy for prettiest swing.

It comes down to form or function, and I choose function

The greatest gift I have ever received as an instructor was the recommendation to investigate Mike Adams and BioSwing Dynamics. Mike, E.A. Tischler, and Terry Rowles have done extensive research both with tour-level players as well as club golfers and have developed a way to test or screen each athlete to determine not only how their golf swing will look, but also how they will use the ground to create their maximum speed. This screen can be completed with a tape measure and takes about five minutes, and I have never seen results like I have since I began measuring.

For example, a golfer with a greater wingspan than height will have a golf swing that tracks more to the outside during the backswing and intersects the body more towards the trail shoulder plane during the backswing. A golfer with a shorter wingspan than height will have a swing that tracks more to the inside and intersects the body closer to the trail hip plane. Also, a golfer with a greater wingspan than height will have a more upright dynamic posture than a golfer with a shorter wingspan than height who will be more “bent over” at the address position.

Sport coats and golf swings

Have you ever bought a sport coat or suit for a special occasion? If so, pay attention to whether it is a short, regular, or long. If you buy a long, then it means that your arms are longer than your torso and you can now understand why you produce a “steeper” backswing. Also, if you stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart and your middle-finger tips touching the top of your kneecaps, you will have perfect dynamic posture that matches your anatomy. If it appears that you are in a taller posture, then you have your second clue that your wingspan is greater than your height.

Translation to improvement

Using this and five other screens, we can help the athletes understand a complete blueprint of their golf swing based off their anatomy. It is due to the work of Mike, E.A., and Terry that we can now matchup the player to their swing and help them play their best. The reason that I believe that most golfers are better than they think is that most golfers have most of the correct puzzle pieces already. By screening each athlete, we can make the one or two adjustments to get the player back to trusting their swing and feeling in control. More importantly, the athlete can revisit their screen sheet when things misfire and focus on what they need to do, instead of what not to do.

We are all different and all have different swings. There is no one way to swing a golf club because there is no one kind of golfer. I encourage every golfer to make their swing because it is the only one that fits.

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How golf should be learned

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With the COVID-19 pandemic, golf is more popular than ever. Beginners being introduced to the game often find that golf is very hard, much harder than other sports they have played. To simplify the golf swing and make the game easier, it needs to start with a concept.

Golf should first be learned from a horizontal position. If the ball was placed four feet above the ground on a large tee, players would naturally turn in an efficient direction with the proper sequence to strike the ball on the tee.

Take for example, a person throwing a ball towards a target. With their eyes out in front of them? having an awareness to the target, their body would naturally turn in a direction to go forward and around towards the target. In golf, we are bent over from the hips, and we are playing from the side of the golf ball, so players tend to tilt their body or over-rotate, causing an inefficient backswing.

This is why the golf swing should be looked at as a throwing motion. The trail arm folds up as the body coils around. To throw a ball further, the motion doesn’t require more body turn or a tilt of the body.

To get the feeling of this horizontal hitting position or throwing motion, start by taking your golf posture. Make sure your trail elbow is bent and tucked with your trail shoulder below your lead shoulder.

From here, simply lift your arms in front of you while you maintain the bend from your hips. Look over your lead shoulder looking at the target. Get the clubhead traveling first and swing your arms around you. Note how your body coils. Return the club back to its original position.

After a few repetitions, simply lower your arms back to the ball position, swing your arms around you like you did from the horizontal position. Allow your shoulders, chest and hips to be slightly pulled around. This is now your “throwing position” in the golf swing. From here, you are ready to make a downswing with less movement needed to make a proper strike.

Note: Another great drill to get the feel for this motion is practicing Hitting driver off your knees.

Twitter: @KKelley_golf

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