So here's the deal. Richard hit the ball short, low, and with pulls and cuts. His contact wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible, either.
Just from that, you can kind of focus on a few things.
Short = The pieces that give you power in the golf swing (could potentially be any of the Keys)
Decent but not great contact = Keys 1-3
Low = typically tied to the same things as "short" - which is to say, any of the Keys
Pulls/cuts = Keys 4/5
In other words, you could go any direction.
I gave him what I would call a Key #1/#4 lesson.
I did not give him a Key #2 lesson. Why? Because of this:
What can the guy do from there? Could he get his weight more forward? Yeah, but how? He's practically stiff-kneed, his hips have swayed back and not turned, and he's just lifted his arms up and STILL not taken his hands very far from the golf ball.
This is an incredibly NON-DYNAMIC motion, so while Key #2 work is definitely in the picture, the first order of business is making his swing more dynamic. In doing so, we'll give this guy more power AND help his sweetspot path.
So what'd we do? Emphasized proper setup. He's stiff, tall, not rounding, not athletic. Then we focused simply on getting his right up to work up its inclined plane. This naturally tilted his shoulders more, and naturally let his torso turn more than the 55° it appears like he's gotten in the pictures above. Because his torso turned more, he not only generated more speed (both from his torso turning more and thus having more time to unwind and accelerate on the downswing, but also to move his hands farther from the ball so THEY have more time to accelerate as well), but he gave room for his hands to move more inward. The torso turning takes care of all the inward direction you need in the golf swing.
Forcing Richard's hips to work better (on their inclined angle) will ALSO help his left knee bend more (his right hip goes back and up, but his front hip goes forward and down), which sets him up to improve Key #2 without even worrying about it.
Here's Richard a few months ago.
Notice that the turn is looking NICE. He's gained plenty of depth. He sometimes forgets just how far forward his hips need to feel that they go, but you can see that even without doing it as much as he should, he's close to achieving Keys #2 and #3.
Richard currently works on three things:
- Keeping up the Key #1 work above. This is mostly easy to him. When he starts to see pulls and cuts, this is the thing he goes back to.
- Weight forward (enough hip slide). When he starts to see iffy contact, this is the thing he works on.
- Chest to the sky in the follow-through (i.e. Key #1 in the downswing - he sometimes reverts to letting his arms pull his head forward in the downswing and follow-through, like you can see in his video). When he hits the ball low, this is what he works on.
I tell Richard that he has it made because he so clearly has a 1:1 relationship with all of his pieces. He can "troubleshoot" very easily by asking himself whether he's hitting pulls/cuts, the contact is scruffy, or he's hitting the ball too low. Then he knows exactly what piece to work on.
As I said before, this may not be the "right" answer - it's just what we chose to do. But I think it's a "good" answer.
Many of you were close. I didn't see too many peg it. It is important to remember that Key #1 is not just "does his head stay relatively steady" - but rather that the head is a reference point, and Key #1 done properly involves a pivot done properly as well.