Two Swing Positions You Need For Solid Shots |
by Barry Goldstein
A head-on collision always has more effect than a sidelong, glancing blow. It?s true in boxing, auto accidents and golf. However, golfers rarely consider this because standard instruction has always promoted the notion that the ball must be hit with the club moving from inside to out ? a glancing blow.
We are going to offer an alternative to that notion that will make you a more powerful and accurate golfer. The alternative? Hit the ball when the club is in the ?flat spot.?
Phil Rodgers, a multiple winner on the PGA Tour in the 1960s and now one of the best teachers in the game, developed the ?flat spot? idea a number of years ago. He defined the flat spot as an area approximately 12 to 14 inches long directly behind and ahead of the ball. It usually starts about 6 inches before impact.
In the flat spot, the club is not moving downward, upward or sideways. Instead it is moving on the target line and exactly parallel to the ground. The collision puts the entire weight of the clubhead flush to the back of the ball, with the whole face square to it at impact. It doesn?t take much imagination to perceive this as the most effective way to strike the ball with maximum force and accuracy. You simply cannot strike the ball that way when the clubhead is going downward, upward or from either inside to out or outside to inside the target line.
How do you get the club moving on that path in the impact zone? One part of the answer entails a swing element that may sound strange to you at first because it is contrary to much golf instruction. However, it will simplify your swing and make it exceptionally reliable and repeatable.
To put it simply, your lower body should be far less active than it probably is now. Your hands also play much less of a role than the wrists and arms.
We will talk throughout this article about the feel of the swing and how what you feel is happening (or not happening) isn?t always the case. For example, take the swing action we have just described. It may seem that you are being asked to make an upper-body-only ?arm swing.? When you first try it, it will no doubt feel that way, too. Sometimes even seeing is not believing.
Students who see themselves on video making this ?arm swing? for the first time often say it?s the swing before following the instruction. They felt their knees were locked and their feet were anchored to the ground. However, what they see is a gentle bending of the knees, a well-timed move to the left with the hips spinning nicely and the club following through the way it?s designed.