Archive for February, 2014

My theories on pitching personified.

Those of you who have seen my short game video will know what “Keep the right arm moving” means.

Here is what I am talking about. Below are three videos of Lee Westwood pitching.

The first is a beautiful move on the range illustrating EXACTLY what I describe in my video.

The two bad ones are two of the worst right arm stalls I have ever seen. Worse than a 30 handicap “hot potato.” He even had practice swings where he was rehearsing stalling the right arm.

This tells me two things. He inherently and instinctively knows what to do, but under pressure, doesn’t have a go to feel.

“Keep that right arm moving Lee.”

For those that don’t have it…LINK to short game video


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Yesterday’s shank “Fix”

I will simply say two things.

1. Anyone with enough understanding of how to manipulate the path like that (properly) won’t get the shanks, unless their is an injury involved.

2. This is a perfect example of an industry wide lack of understanding of cause and effect.

I saw this from a well respected pro as a cure for the shanks

“Stand parallel to your target line, ball postion left of center, take a 7 iron, hit to 3rd base and finish in balance. Then hit to 1st base (note blocking motion, fat, or topped shot). Hit to 3rd again (or left – assuming right hand player). Have student go back and forth and then hit to short stop. Gets them target aware, affects path and clubface. Also, make sure they are in the proper posture before any of the above and their grip is farily neutral. “

Going to let you guys have at it for a while before I comment.

Exasperation-More on Secondary Tilt

Let me start by saying I am not frustrated with a single golfer who can’t get past how secondary tilt (spine tilt away from the target) is necessary even when “hitting down to compress an iron.”

On the contrary, I am frustrated for them.

I am frustrated at all of the gurus out there promoting forward spines and covering the ball…and the ones not stressing it’s importance and why are almost as bad.

It’s not rocket science folks. You are bent at the waist/hips at address. That means your arms go up in the backswing and down in the downswing, so the down is already there.

What you then need is secondary tilt to offset the down being too much or your arms have no room and the swing is too steep…depending on the club you’re hitting.

The shorter the club and the farther back the ball is in the stance, the less secondary tilt needed because that is a steeper swing.

I continue to be dumbfound why this is such a difficult concept.

There is a reason why 99% of the people who have EVER played this game for a living have secondary tilt even with their wedges…and the ones that don’t hit head high BB’s from playing in the wind. You will notice they all take big divots as well…and none of them are particularly long hitters. While notice how much all the long hitters in the history of the game had…and long drivers have ridiculous amounts. Too much in many cases when their right shoulders go down too much and not out. Doesn’t affect distance, just consistency and injury.

Right shoulder working down too much creates false ST when the body senses there isn’t enough. Hello Tiger Woods.

The golf instruction industry spends all of it’s time telling people to copy anomalies of great players, or adhere to a strict method of swinging the club.

Wouldn’t a more prudent way is to realize that there is no one way to swing the club and we shouldn’t be copying anomalies, we should be studying what’s common?

So it’s being done ass-backwards on two fronts.

Devils advocate would say lag is something they all have and you (Monte) rail against that.

Right. I rail against it because trying to crate lag when you throw away secondary tilt is a disaster.

Two general ways to create proper ST:

1. Create some at address and maintain it into impact.

2. Create it in transition. Lower body shift, upper body stays back.

The enemies. Too long of a backswing and upper body movement toward target. Coincidently, the two enemies of lag.

Creating ST properly can also eliminate the dreaded OTT and early extension. Coincidently, two more enemies of lag.

Seeing a pattern?

PS-Anyone who says that ST puts pressure on your back and hips because it promotes a reverse C finish…avoid them as they are likely to have warped religious and political beliefs as well.

The body will often react to lack of ST by creating it late and that is what causes the reverse C. When you create it properly, it allows the right shoulder to work around more, still come from the inside and not create such a vertical downswing shoulder turn….which is what creates the reverse C. When the right shoulder works around more, it brings the body into a more neutral position at the finish.

My upcoming videos on wedges and driver (follow ups to short game video), will address these issues quite clearly.

Secondary tilt

The more spine tilt you have away from the target at impact, the less vertical your shoulder turn has to be to come from the inside. The less vertical the shoulder turn is, the less chance you have of getting your arms stuck. The less chance you have of getting your arms stuck, the less chance you have to flip.

The more spine tilt you have at address, the more likely you are to have some at the top of the swing. The more likely you have some at the top of the swing, the more likely you are to have some at impact.

The more your shoulders rotate perpendicular to your spine, the less likely you are to have too much spine tilt away from the target. The more spine tilt you have away from the target, the less likely you will be steep and take a huge divot.

How’s that for circular logic?

That’s how you make a simple concept complicated.

Set and maintain some secondary tilt the right way and try and rotate your shoulders 90* to your spine and all will be well.

Rhythm versus Tempo

It’s not semantics either.

I see thread after thread here about having good tempo… there is no such thing as good and bad tempo per se.

Fact is the context is almost always the tempo is too fast being the issue. The other fact is most ams have tempos that are too slow. Some painfully so.

You can have a fast or slow tempo and it’s individual and usually based on matching your general personality.

The issue is rhythm… And how well you transition from the backswing to the downswing.

More often than not, those that slow their tempo make the rhythm worse as it makes the body anxious and activates the hit impulse even harder.

The next fix is to pause at the top. That ruins the whole dynamic motion, Bob Murphy notwithstanding.

The last gasp is to just swing easy.

Now you have a deathly slow backswing, a pause at the top and a wave at the ball. No distance, accuracy or solid contact.

The point. Learn how to not pull the handle in transition and you can swing as fast and as hard as you want.

Pulling the handle too hard in transition is the “I got quick” mistake everyone discusses.

I am sure I left out some pertinent details and I am hoping this thread brings them out and educates all of us on attacking the core issue and not superficial change.

My swing pattern

Stated plainly…

Eliminate excess movement while not restricting free movement.

An example of excess movement: Arm over run. i.e. arm swing after the shoulder turn has stopped.

An example of restricting free movement: Restricting hip turn for maximum X-factor.