From ages 5-13, I played "just to play" and never had any real instruction. My father also never had any instruction and just followed what he could learn from the pros (Nicklaus, Miller, Palmer, etc ) . So my "basics" came from hand-me-down information. Between 13-16 I started practicing and playing several times a day, several days a week. Dad built me some clubs (Golfsmith Tour Model II's with square grooves, and true temper dynamic golds). I was never really consistently good. I could shoot +9 to +18 on better days. I struggled with shanks, tops, hitting it fat, duck hooks and high fades. I put down the clubs for most of 20 years. I played here and there but nothing ever spectacular or worth talking about. A few years ago I took some lessons at GolfTec (Golfsmith) and realized some major flaws in my swing. I tilted towards the target on my backswing, re-routed my club from outside to in, lifted my head to get my left shoulder under my chin...etc etc. My instructor was trying to get me back to a more stable one-piece sort of swing. My swing looks a lot better and a lot different know. I still feel really tight in my backswing, and it's hard to keep my head from moving up and down. It's easy to start my down swing by sliding slightly foward, and it's easy to rotate my hips. But for the love of god, i cannot unwind my upper body in proper sequence. My timing is way off at contact and i'm still shanking (hozel), topping, fatting, hooking, blocking and slicing. Out of 100 balls, I hit approximately 10-20 decent shots within 10-20 yards left/right of target. About half of those are 5 yards within target.
I feel I'm having problems grasping some mind-to-body concepts when it comes to lag, releasing lag, and where my hands need to be at impact. I'm really struggling with trying to understand how to pull my arms through my upper body and keep my hands in a position where i do not hit the hozel (i do this quite often). I watch a lot of youtube videos to see if i can find some indicators on how the pros pull their arms through the strike zone, but nothing is making sense in terms of that mind-body connection (ie. i can see what they are doing, and i can understand it mentally, but physically it's not happening). So the way I would like to summarize this is, what muscles are being fired when you release lag (and for those that think you cannot hold on to lag too long you are way wrong), and where are your hands supposed to be in relation to your body (how far away from your body...think of a down-the-line shot). I know you are supposed to have shaft lean but I feel as if I'm not releasing most of my lag before impact.
Sorry for so many words.