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Old1964

Initiating the downswing - everything moves at the same time?

15 posts in this topic

Surely, this is an easy one for those of you who know...

Is it true that regardless of how the downswing is initiated, everything should start moving at the same time - turning around the steady head?

It seems that people say the turn of the hips starts the downswing, but even then, since everything is connected, when the hips turn, the torso and arms turn with it.

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The rotation and shift of the hips to the left side are what I believe start the downswing. From there the hands and arms follow, this is what creates lag and speed in the golf swing.

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Quote:
It seems that people say the turn of the hips starts the downswing, but even then, since everything is connected, when the hips turn, the torso and arms turn with it.

Everthing is connected, yes. By bone ligiments, muscles. Here's the thing, except for bone, everything else stretches. This is why our shoulder's rotate more than our hips. It also means, when we start our hips correctly, it creates tension through the torso, causing it to start rotating the other direction. There are many videos of pro's who actually start there downswing before your backswing finishes.

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I've heard it likened to a marching band. The guy at the front of the line leads but they all start at the same time.

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But they don't start at the same time, the hips will start before the torso, before the shoulders, before the arms, before club

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Originally Posted by saevel25

But they don't start at the same time, the hips will start before the torso, before the shoulders, before the arms, before club

Ya maybe. To me it "feels" like the all move together but are initiated from the bottom up. On video I "see" them moving in the sequence you describe but if I ever tried to feel them moving like that I wouldn't be able to make a swing. But maybe its just the differences in acceleration rates that make it appear so? I focus more on the rhythm than the mechanics in this instance but that's just me. Anyway, I suspect that if I put too much thought into this it would mess me up completely so I'm just going to stick with my current level of blissful ignorance on this one, doesn't seem to be a problem for me anyway.

I kinda like the line in the SnT book where they say, "what starts the backswing? The Brain does."

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Quote:

Originally Posted by EverythingGolf

The rotation and shift of the hips to the left side are what I believe start the downswing. From there the hands and arms follow, this is what creates lag and speed in the golf swing.

The shift to the left side...yes.

Originally Posted by saevel25

Everthing is connected, yes. By bone ligiments, muscles. Here's the thing, except for bone, everything else stretches. This is why our shoulder's rotate more than our hips. It also means, when we start our hips correctly, it creates tension through the torso, causing it to start rotating the other direction. There are many videos of pro's who actually start there downswing before your backswing finishes.

The stretch, the lag...got it. I have actually hit some balls at the range with the hip turn starting before the club reaches the top of my backswing, but found it to be too difficult to do with any consistency.

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Originally Posted by Old1964

The stretch, the lag...got it. I have actually hit some balls at the range with the hip turn starting before the club reaches the top of my backswing, but found it to be too difficult to do with any consistency.

Even though the lower body starts the swing don't get to quick with the hips and start blocking shots, in the end everything works as one unit.

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Aha! Yes. I know that this is going to be the key for my new golf season.

Of course, I just had a video done and was shown how I get quick with the hips and drop the club back behind myself which results in low, ghastly hook.

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Thinking out loud: There are two static positions in a golf swing; the address and the finish. And, in between those two static  positions, an action takes place which is usually less than 1.5 seconds. To ask what starts the downswing, which I have asked thousand times, btw, is flawed due to the nature of subjectivity of a golfer's pattern, IMHO.

It might be better to find what a golfer lacks when compared to a better model, and to add a piece here and there to mold an efficient swing.

P.S. No offense intended to the OP.

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Originally Posted by EverythingGolf

Even though the lower body starts the swing don't get to quick with the hips and start blocking shots, in the end everything works as one unit.

Yes its all one unit, because it's one body, but things don't start rotating at the same time. Think about it this way, look at a baseball swing, the player lifts is bottom foot, puts it down, rotates the hips, rotating the torso, which turns the shoulders, and the arms come flying through. Any powerful swing, baseball or golf has that order of operation. If you think about it or not, depends on the golfer. For me, i have to concentrate on my lower body, because i have a nasty habit of throwing the clubhead at the ball, which i take huge divots, even with long irons. Sometimes it feels like the clubhead stops when it hits the ground, and then drives forward. So i have to play with a more sweeping action, and allowing the arms just get carried through the swing.

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Originally Posted by saevel25

Yes its all one unit, because it's one body, but things don't start rotating at the same time. Think about it this way, look at a baseball swing, the player lifts is bottom foot, puts it down, rotates the hips, rotating the torso, which turns the shoulders, and the arms come flying through. Any powerful swing, baseball or golf has that order of operation. If you think about it or not, depends on the golfer. For me, i have to concentrate on my lower body, because i have a nasty habit of throwing the clubhead at the ball, which i take huge divots, even with long irons. Sometimes it feels like the clubhead stops when it hits the ground, and then drives forward. So i have to play with a more sweeping action, and allowing the arms just get carried through the swing.

I know what you are saying, I did'nt mean you do everything at the same time, is a sequence of moves.

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Originally Posted by Fearlessgolfer

Thinking out loud: There are two static positions in a golf swing; the address and the finish. And, in between those two static  positions, an action takes place which is usually less than 1.5 seconds. To ask what starts the downswing, which I have asked thousand times, btw, is flawed due to the nature of subjectivity of a golfer's pattern, IMHO.

It might be better to find what a golfer lacks when compared to a better model, and to add a piece here and there to mold an efficient swing.

P.S. No offense intended to the OP.

No offense taken.

But, don't some golfers arrive at a static position at the top of their backswing?

If there is a wrong way to begin your downswing, there must be a right way?  For instance, I know that it is incorrect to start the downswing with your head! I agree with you that it would be great to look at the swing, analyze it, and fix it. But, of course, wouldn't the teacher tell you something like, "You need to start your downswing with..."?

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I've started to hit a wall while working on getting my right elbow tighter to my body on the downswing and maintaining the proper club to wrist/arm angle before impact.  My sequencing was beginning to fall apart at the range.  While watching some of the tournament over the weekend I noticed now the hips appeared to be starting the downswing for many of the pros as the club was at the top of the swing, and realized that I was beginning to eliminate the hip-slide from my downswing.

So at the range today, I paused at the top and then tried to consciously allow my hips to start the downswing while feeling like my hands were staying behind, and then tuck the right elbow in tight, and it seemed to put everything back in order.  It probably looks nothing like it feels, but the feeling of starting the downswing with the hips helped me fix a lot of the problems I'd been running into the past few days.  It also explains why I wasn't hitting anything with power lately.

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TPI has some good exercises and drills for learning how to rotate the hips independant of the upper body.

I think a good drill is just get to the top of the backswing, and then hold that position, then try to just concentrate on the left hip/knee bumping towards the target, starting that rotation.

I am in the same boat, i have a hard time getting that right elbow to drop down, it might be something i just can't feel in the swing.

Quote:
If there is a wrong way to begin your downswing, there must be a right way?

Well starting the swing is individual. Some players might be like Jack Nicholas who lift there left heel off the ground, and replant it down. Some might bump the left knee towards the target, some slide the hips, so don't concentrate on the lower body at all because they already have a good action. So, how you begin is based on your golf swing and your own body, but a good golf swing is a chain of evens

Hips -> Torso -> Shoulders -> Arms -> Club

Now how you feel that happening is another issue

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