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The Wall Drill for a Proper Pivot


iacas

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Here's a student many will tell you "lacks flexibility." He thinks it (sometimes, when I haven't seen him in awhile :-D), other instructors have told him he lacks flexibility, etc.

His hips sway right, his torso turns about 75°, and he lifts his arms up to "finish his backswing."

563d2e87581ed_01Wall.thumb.jpg.bc9365191

It's a bit better in the left photo here because he's been working on this for quite some time now, but even still you can see those trademark things: hips sway back, no secondary tilt, head rises, arms lift, turn isn't great.

On the right you can see him doing the wall drill. You set up near a wall. You note how much space you have between your trail hip and the wall, and then you put your arms across your chest and make a backswing while you strive to increase that distance. Make the gap between your trail hip and the wall get bigger. Voilà! Secondary Axis Tilt, hips going forward during the backswing (yes, a bit too much, but this is a drill, exercise, or "feel"), head not going up, more torso turn.

The proof, as they say, is in the pudding.

563d2e8a2318b_02SLOWDOWNDUMMY.thumb.jpg.

It's important to note that you don't necessarily actually want all of these to occur during your backswing. This drill reverses a lot of what you do (hips swaying instead of turning, moving too far right instead of staying "centered", reverse axis tilt). It's a great drill for an 18 handicapper who sways and wants to get better now.

As always, these are actual swings, not posed shots.


2017-09-15: Edited the title. Originally it was "Lack of Flexibility and the Wall Drill". We teach this to people who DON'T think they lack flexibility, too. Even kids.

2021-11-25: There are some updated thoughts here that I encourage everyone to read.

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I need to work on this. I do not turn my hips enough. Also, I was recently asked why I was straightening out my right knee instead of keeping it flexed. What are your thoughts on that? It almost feels like I'm squatting a bit in my backswing, and I doubt my head is staying still, though I haven't recorded it yet. 

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6 hours ago, kpaulhus said:

I need to work on this. I do not turn my hips enough. Also, I was recently asked why I was straightening out my right knee instead of keeping it flexed. What are your thoughts on that? It almost feels like I'm squatting a bit in my backswing, and I doubt my head is staying still, though I haven't recorded it yet. 

Your trail knee should probably extend on the backswing.  I'm not sure what you mean by that. Should it "straighten" (i.e. lock out)? No. Should it extend? Almost surely, yes.

Sometimes it can feel like a little squat, but you don't want your head to go down and back much.

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Im always looking to turn better and I can see in by back swing that my weight goes to the outside of my back foot. I have it timed so I don't know if it's good or bad but I know it causes inconsistency.

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So finally tried this while hitting balls in the net and it greatly improved strike, unfortunately the feel is that its going to cause big blocks to the right. So need to try on range or course to see what it flght will do.  

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I've always tried to emphasize a full shoulder and hip turn away from the ball, and I think it definitely helps prevent me from swinging too far left across the line at impact (which has always been a problem area for me).  Interestingly enough, I had a dozen sessions with a physical therapist this year because of some pain at the intersection between my T and C vertebrae.  PT did range of motion tests at the beginning, middle, and end of the course of the evaluation/therapy.  My shoulder and hip rotational range is significantly more turning to my right (backswing motion) than it is in the opposite direction.  My backswing range of motion was (according to the PT) very good, but my follow-through range of motion was "restricted." 

I told him it doesn't matter at that point because the ball is already in the air.  He disagreed.  My neck still hurts, so what does he know?

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On 2/3/2017 at 1:03 PM, k-troop said:

I've always tried to emphasize a full shoulder and hip turn away from the ball, and I think it definitely helps prevent me from swinging too far left across the line at impact (which has always been a problem area for me).  Interestingly enough, I had a dozen sessions with a physical therapist this year because of some pain at the intersection between my T and C vertebrae.  PT did range of motion tests at the beginning, middle, and end of the course of the evaluation/therapy.  My shoulder and hip rotational range is significantly more turning to my right (backswing motion) than it is in the opposite direction.  My backswing range of motion was (according to the PT) very good, but my follow-through range of motion was "restricted." 

I told him it doesn't matter at that point because the ball is already in the air.  He disagreed.  My neck still hurts, so what does he know?

My wife is a PT and have to get her to manipulate my back after every range session. The area you are talking about is a very common problem with golfers backs. 

PT's have a doctorate of therapy for a reason. They are very well trained. Find a therapist that is manual or McKenzie certified. They should be able to help you get right. 

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13 minutes ago, Golfdad2014 said:

My wife is a PT and have to get her to manipulate my back after every range session. The area you are talking about is a very common problem with golfers backs. 

PT's have a doctorate of therapy for a reason. They are very well trained. Find a therapist that is manual or McKenzie certified. They should be able to help you get right. 

Good advice, and thanks for the tip.  I completed the full course of the "evaluation" period, which included initial eval and range of motion, 8 sessions of manipulation (with stretching and exercises in between), and an ending eval.  The manipulation sessions definitely felt good, but did not really affect my issue at all.  PT's conclusion was that the treatment wasn't effective.

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I did a search for wall drill and landed here but I could have sworn there was a wall drill thread to combat your head moving forward and down towards the ball.  This is something that I have been working on for over a year and cannot eliminate from my swing even with repeatedly doing this exact drill (only with my head starting about a quarter inch away from the wall).  I can do it just fine with my arms across my shoulders (my head never hits the wall as i come through my turn to the finish). but a golf club in my hand and I am still darting down and towards the ball (although not nearly as bad as seen in my first swing thread post)

Is there any other drill out there to help eliminate my head going forward?

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3 hours ago, Antneye said:

Is there any other drill out there to help eliminate my head going forward?

Put a stick beside your head (front side) and try to move your head away from it on the downswing?

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