I wanted to follow up on my last entry with how the iron swing I developed this winter is working.
I gave up on the video for a while and concentrated just on what felt like good contact. Keep in mind this was off of a mat and into a net 10 feet away so there wasn't a lot of information besides how solidly it felt. Anyway, after I came up with what felt like a consistent swing, I tried it out at a local simulator and was surprised by how positive the results were. My distances were substantially farther (some freakishly so) and my ball flight was either straight or right to left. Very few weak fades!
Long story short, after this initial success, I took some solicited advice from a very talented player and changed a few things - one of which was to stop leaning my club shaft forward at address. I didn't realize it at first, but taking this advice really hurt what I had developed. By this time the snow had started to melt, I was practicing outside and back to hitting craptacular shots. My son happened to be watching one day and he told me to try leaning my shaft forward at address. Unbelievable! Talk about a transformation... I started hitting these shots that would start lower but just continue to climb. I started using this setup again and I haven't looked back.
Along with the club shaft "pre-set" at address, some other things that seem important are:
1. The feeling that my head is staying directly over the ball through impact.
2. The left arm remains straight and my wrists break almost immediately upon starting the backswing with my upper body and hips (yes, my right leg straightens) completing the turn. It almost feels like the club is wrapping around and behind my shoulders.
3. On the downswing, I just have to maintain that same plane and inside path coming through. I believe the hips have to be moving forward to achieve this.
4. I try to finish in balance after contact but this doesn't always happen. It's a work in progress.
After playing for the last four months, I'm not very concerned with how the swing looks anymore. My distances are such that I now use 2 clubs less on certain holes than I did last year. More importantly, distances are now very consistent & predictable. Of course, I have a lot of work to do on the club face control, but the swing path feels right. Golf is a lot of fun when you know you can hit greens with every iron in the bag.
I apologize if this reads like I'm bragging. I will never be a really good player but I "worked" very hard at improving my iron game during the off-season and it's rewarding to see the effort pay off.
Now, for the driver, putter....