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My Swing (billchao) - Page 2

post #19 of 268
Thread Starter 

Brutal today, 24°, with wind it felt like single digits. Needless to say, the range was quite empty.

 

I filmed some short shots today:

 

Standard pitch, DTL:

 

Standard pitch, FO:

 

High pitch, DTL:

 

High pitch, FO:

 

So, apparently, bounce is my friend. It looks like I pretty much bottom out the club behind the ball on all of these shots, yet they all still managed to be pretty decent (ground was partially frozen btw). I'm looking to get new wedges this offseason, so it's something I'll have to keep in mind.

 

I also hit most of these shots off the toe. I think that's a product of swinging left. I need to learn more about short shots, so any feedback would be appreciated.

 

Still working on a new feel for the full swing takeaway, but waiting for a friendlier day to film it. My initial feeling is that I'm going to like it.

post #20 of 268

 

In the face-on view, I'd like to see softer elbows just after impact and into the follow through. Let them fold and be soft against your body.

 

From face-on, have your palm a little more up and your right hand knuckles feeling like they're pointing down more (green arrow) like you're dealing cards or scraping your knuckles along the ground. This will shallow the clubhead a bit. It'll expose a bit more bounce and shallow your AoA a little bit. You want the clubhead to feel like it's well under the plane, and though it might be close to it in the end, it shouldn't ever really be above it.

 

So basically: a little shallower on the backswing, and a little softer elbows on the follow through.

 

Overall grade: B+. Very good!

post #21 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

In the face-on view, I'd like to see softer elbows just after impact and into the follow through. Let them fold and be soft against your body.

Thank for the feedback, Erik. Would you say the softer elbows is a product of using the pivot more? It seems like I'm throwing the club at the ball and that causes the straighter arms, right?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

From face-on, have your palm a little more up and your right hand knuckles feeling like they're pointing down more (green arrow) like you're dealing cards or scraping your knuckles along the ground. This will shallow the clubhead a bit. It'll expose a bit more bounce and shallow your AoA a little bit. You want the clubhead to feel like it's well under the plane, and though it might be close to it in the end, it shouldn't ever really be above it.

Yea, I had a feeling I needed to shallow my AoA. For the right hand feeling, am I looking to achieve this by rotating my hand as I take the club away and sucking the clubhead to the inside (basically the opposite of what we're supposed to do in the full swing)? Would this action open up my clubface more? I already set up with the club open at address, so I'm just wondering how that would affect everything.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

So basically: a little shallower on the backswing, and a little softer elbows on the follow through.

 

Overall grade: B+. Very good!

Thanks! Obviously there is still more work to do, but it's good to know that I'm on the right track.

post #22 of 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 

Thank for the feedback, Erik. Would you say the softer elbows is a product of using the pivot more? It seems like I'm throwing the club at the ball and that causes the straighter arms, right?

 

A bit. Hit some pitch shots with just your right hand on the club. Stick your left hand in your pocket or something. Your arms (elbows) can be softer on the backswing too - you're trying to do a little bit too much with the wrist hinge/unhinge. Let the soft elbows help.

 

Right-hand-only will make it obvious that you want to use a bit more body pivot and gravity to hit the ball.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 

Yea, I had a feeling I needed to shallow my AoA. For the right hand feeling, am I looking to achieve this by rotating my hand as I take the club away and sucking the clubhead to the inside (basically the opposite of what we're supposed to do in the full swing)?

 

It should - without much effort - return to roughly its address position.

post #23 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

A bit. Hit some pitch shots with just your right hand on the club. Stick your left hand in your pocket or something. Your arms (elbows) can be softer on the backswing too - you're trying to do a little bit too much with the wrist hinge/unhinge. Let the soft elbows help.

 

Right-hand-only will make it obvious that you want to use a bit more body pivot and gravity to hit the ball.

Soft elbows and gravity, got it. No wonder I've never had any success with the one hand pitching drill before. I've always been doing too much with the wrists/arms.

post #24 of 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 

Soft elbows and gravity, got it. No wonder I've never had any success with the one hand pitching drill before. I've always been doing too much with the wrists/arms.

 

Yeah that's a great drill for pitching.  More with the pivot, less initiating with the wrist hinge.  Soft arms, let the pivot "carry" the arms.

post #25 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

Yeah that's a great drill for pitching.  More with the pivot, less initiating with the wrist hinge.  Soft arms, let the pivot "carry" the arms.
This is the feeling I want for all pitch shots, right? If I have a longer shot, do I just increase the length of the backswing and/or the rate of the pivot? At which point do you make the transition from pitch to full swing mechanics?
post #26 of 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post

At which point do you make the transition from pitch to full swing mechanics?

 

That depends. You can pitch an 8-iron from the same distance you hit (full swing mechanics) a sand wedge. It depends on a lot of things. Many people will stop pitching about 50 yards. It's up to you.

 

Also, you rarely hit "pure pitches" from some distance out. You'll start to blend in some full swing mechanics. When those "take over" or "become the majority" is more a subjective feel than anything.

post #27 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

That depends. You can pitch an 8-iron from the same distance you hit (full swing mechanics) a sand wedge. It depends on a lot of things. Many people will stop pitching about 50 yards. It's up to you.

Also, you rarely hit "pure pitches" from some distance out. You'll start to blend in some full swing mechanics. When those "take over" or "become the majority" is more a subjective feel than anything.
Thanks. I guess I'll have to experiment when the changes are more concrete.

Honestly, I can't think of the last time I hit a full SW anyway. They fly so high, I found that I have better control choking down on a longer club and hitting 3/4 shots.

Even from as close as 40 yards, I tend to play a low spinner rather than a high pitch, but now I'm wondering if that isn't just because my pitching technique needs improvement.
post #28 of 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post


This is the feeling I want for all pitch shots, right? If I have a longer shot, do I just increase the length of the backswing and/or the rate of the pivot? At which point do you make the transition from pitch to full swing mechanics?

 

Yes that will be a good baseline feel for most pitch shots.  For a longer shot, just make a bigger pivot and/or take more club.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post


Even from as close as 40 yards, I tend to play a low spinner rather than a high pitch, but now I'm wondering if that isn't just because my pitching technique needs improvement.

 

I would recommend going with some longer pitch swings from that distance.  Think you'll be happier with the consistency of those results than hitting the low spinners, I know I am ;-) 

post #29 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post
 

I would recommend going with some longer pitch swings from that distance.  Think you'll be happier with the consistency of those results than hitting the low spinners, I know I am ;-)

Then that's exactly what I'll do. Good thing I've got all winter to "own" this pitch swing.

post #30 of 268
Thread Starter 

Just an update on what I'm working on:

 

It's been bothering me that my club exits so low and so far left, even on my pitch shots (before I started working on the new technique). I was thinking about how Erik mentioned that I was doing too much with my wrist action on the short shots and I was wondering if it translated to my full swing (I use basically the same feels).

 

I was working on a weight forward drill (by presetting my body in an exaggerated impact position and just swinging my arms) and found that, while I managed to get my path more inside out, I quickly turned it left past the ball and the club still exited low and left. My speculation is that, on a real swing, it would be nearly impossible to get my weight as far left as I had it set during the drill and therefore impossible for me to ensure my path goes out to the right.

 

I started to practice the feel of maintaining the flying left wedge and I noticed that I really had to hold off my wrists to do it; it felt very restricting, which I can't imagine is actually ideal in a swing. After messing around with it some more, I found that if I swung back by focusing on my right elbow folding and swung through by focusing on straightening the right elbow, my hands and wrists remained pretty passive and I was able to maintain the wedge.

 

In essence, I swing too much with my hands and I roll my wrists over too quickly. I think this is partially responsible for my path problems, but definitely contributes to my inconsistency. I started working with this "right elbow takeaway" and it seems to clean up some things in my backswing as well, but I won't know for sure until my new tripod comes in and I can get myself on film again.

 

The other thing I've been working on is my weight distribution. I've been studying this thread: http://thesandtrap.com/t/64993/weight-forward-using-swingcatalyst-and-sam-balance-lab-to-explain-pressure-throughout-the-swing and I noticed that the pressure during Grant Waite's swing is largely distributed through the balls of his feet. I definitely have too much heel pressure going on throughout my swing, especially into impact, which contributes to my path problems.

 

To summarize: right elbow swing, pressure more towards my toes.

post #31 of 268
Thread Starter 

Took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather and took some videos, today. I've been working pretty hard on the transition move and getting more weight forward and I seem to be making some progress. I also felt like I'm pressing my left arm into my chest too much, so I tried to isolate the feeling of just turning my shoulders and letting my arms come along for the ride. I haven't spent much time on it, so I didn't expect too much. It does seem to clean up some of that late backswing lateral head movement I have. It also seems like I'm getting that lifting at the top under control, but I still can't seem to resolve the club exit issue.

 

Here are the videos:

 

 

Two questions:

1. Does it seem like the back of my left hand is pointing out to the right (open relative to the target) at impact?

2. Am I doing too much with the squatting move?

 

I still need to figure out how to shallow the club on the downswing.

 

Key feels: Shoulder turn takeaway, drive the left knee down and left to start downswing

post #32 of 268
Thread Starter 

I took some more video today, taking advantage of the nice weather again. It took me four film sessions to get this swing, making minor adjustments along the way. It would be really helpful if I could set up my camera and computer so I could get instant feedback, but oh well. I should also start keeping swing notes on me so I don't keep forgetting to incorporate feels I've been working on. Also, finally managed to get Movie Maker to work on my computer, so I managed to make an edited video:

 

I should have used the DTL swing where I hit a dead shank, it was slightly better (deeper hands, shallower club going down).

 

I'm bending my knees slightly more. I can't really say why, but I felt my legs were too straight, so I bent my knees a bit more to feel the ground better. Now I realize that all that bouncing I do before my swing negated any change I felt I was making, so this feel was a wash.

 

More significantly, I pushed the handle farther forward at address. I was messing around with shallowing the club and I found that I can shallow the club more with more right wrist hinge. As it was, I was really cocking the right wrist up instead of hinging it back, which is why I have a tendency to get across the line. Pushing my hands farther forward kind of presets the motion for me.

 

Last thing I tried to feel was more extension by pushing down against the ground with my right foot, basically feeling like my backswing motion is controlled by my feet. I think it straightens my right leg a bit too much and maybe even turns my hips too much? I'm not sure about this one, but it just seems like I'm less athletic at the top. I might go back to the shoulder turn feel, going to have to do some more research on this.

 

Finally, I noticed that I'm missing a bit towards the heel by swinging my hands out away from me. I think I'm crowding my hands too much. Instead of letting them hang down naturally, I'm pulling them in towards me slightly. Going to try standing slightly away from the ball and let my arms reach out a bit more. Here's what I'm referring to:

The circle is where my right hand was at address. I've swung my hands out towards the ball a bit. I think I can set up with the hands out away from me more and theoretically swing my hands back near their starting position. It's probably not all that important, but it's a minor adjustment, so I'll give it a shot and see what happens.

 

Still need to get that elbow more in front of me on the downswing (among other things), but overall, I like it.

post #33 of 268

Ok I'm calling BS on the 19 handicap

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post

 

 

Finally, I noticed that I'm missing a bit towards the heel by swinging my hands out away from me. I think I'm crowding my hands too much. Instead of letting them hang down naturally, I'm pulling them in towards me slightly. Going to try standing slightly away from the ball and let my arms reach out a bit more. Here's what I'm referring to:

 

I would agree the arms are too vertical, hands too close to you at A1.  Everything else looks pretty good, keep it up.

 

post #34 of 268
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post
 

Ok I'm calling BS on the 19 handicap

I'll take that as a compliment, thanks.

 

It's legit. I think I've played around 15 rounds or so in the last 2+ years since my son was born, and most of them were with a worse version of the first swing I posted. I told myself that if I wasn't going to play more, then I should be better when I do get out, so I've made a serious commitment towards improvement. I think the latest swing is an example of one can use knowledge, good practice, and video analysis to get better. I'm really proud of it, and myself.

 

Again, I have you guys to thank, too, so thank you for giving me the tools I need to make me a better golfer.

post #35 of 268
Thread Starter 

I wanted to upload a video today of something I've been working on related to Key #4.

 

I was experimenting with some feels and discovered that I wasn't turning my hips enough in the backswing. As a result, I don't get enough shoulder turn, and fake it by pulling my left shoulder back. The problem with that is, I don't release the pull in the downswing which I believe is part of the reason I have the gap between my elbow and my body and I can't get enough pitch. I think it's also part of why I seem to have a problem getting shallow.

 

The first backswing I make is my current feel. See as I get to the top and release all the tension in my left shoulder and arm, my shoulder turn goes from 100° to something like 70°. Then as I swing down, my right elbow is clearly to my side.

 

The second backswing is where I make a deeper hip turn. When I do the same release, my shoulder turn ends up being around 90°. When I simulate my downswing, my right elbow is in front of my right hip, where it belongs.

 

I took some screenshots. I want to emphasize that these two "swings" feel the same, with the sole exception being that I turned my hips deeper on the right.

 

A4:

Even more shoulder turn on the right, though it looks like I lost a bit of extension, too.

 

A4 with left arm released:

This is what led me to believe I was "faking" my full shoulder turn. On the left, when I release the tension, my shoulders open up significantly. On the right, I end up at 90°. These felt exactly the same; I'm not purposely holding anything on the right to make a point*.

 

* (Click to show)
And why would I, anyway? This is my swing thread, there's absolutely no benefit to faking any position to make a point.

 

A6ish, it's a simulated swing:

Here you can see how it affects my downswing. It may look like the screenshot on the right is taken at a later point in the swing, but if you see where my shoulders are at, you can tell this is the exact same point in two different swings.

 

My arms are behind me on the left and you can start to see that I have start casting if I'm going to have a chance at hitting the ball (not pictured, there's no ball). If this were a real swing, the club shaft would actually be parallel to the ground already as I would have started to throw the lag away, and my right elbow would actually be farther away from my body, leaving a visible gap.

 

I like the swing on the right for all the reasons I dislike the swing on the left. My arms are more in front of me and I'm retaining the lag much better. I'm coming at the imaginary ball more from the inside, too. I know it won't look like this when I make a real swing, but it will be closer to it than the swing on the left would produce.

 

I should have done a DTL video, too, just to confirm. Even without it, I'm pretty sure that the swing on the right will have deeper hands, and shallower club, and more pitch elbow. I'm sure I learned all of this is in some combination of videos here, but this is the first time I can say that I'm starting to truly understand it and thus apply it to my own swing.

post #36 of 268
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 

I wanted to upload a video today of something I've been working on related to Key #4.

 

I was experimenting with some feels and discovered that I wasn't turning my hips enough in the backswing. As a result, I don't get enough shoulder turn, and fake it by pulling my left shoulder back.

 

Is this what happens to golf nuts when it snows?  All due respect Bill I have to disagree with your assessment of your backswing.  The first backswing is awesome.  I get you feel like you're "faking" it when you let go of the club with your left arm but you don't do the same thing in both scenarios.  In the first one (left pic) you turn back to the left and your eyeline is looking more left, on the second swing (right pic) you keep your eyes aimed right.

 

With the left pic you are "faking" that you are "faking" :loco:

Ok so here's the first swing and the one I like.  Left shoulder goes down and in, hips turn and go slightly forward (good).  You're turned well over 90* and I really don't think it's just your left shoulder "pulling back".

 

Here's the second swing, not great with Key#1, hips and shoulders are too shallow, lower center also goes too far towards the target.

Obviously you aren't hitting a ball and kinda posing but this A6 is way over exaggerated.  Ideally we want the left hand just in front of the right thigh.  Also hips and shoulders are too closed.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 

The problem with that is, I don't release the pull in the downswing which I believe is part of the reason I have the gap between my elbow and my body and I can't get enough pitch. I think it's also part of why I seem to have a problem getting shallow.

 

I think you get a gap between your right arm because the right arm stays too bent for too long and you stay a bit too closed for too long.

 

Ok so here's the "take home".

- You do a good job demonstrating a solid backswing.  Keep doing that.

- On the downswing, as the left knee transfers forward, keep the hips opening.  Right arm will feel more like you're skipping a rock rather than throwing a spear into the ground.  Going to film something for you today so don't worry too much about the last part.

- You need to work on your short game ;-)

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