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bjwestner

a swing "epiphany" or "breakthrough"......

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I think that everyone has one from time to time.  I know that when I first started golfing I would have what I thought was a "breakthrough" quite often while at the range or during a round where I "found" something in my swing that allowed me to hit the ball straighter and further.  Lately I have not had any of these, probably because I am guessing that the more golf you play and over time you learn more and get better and thus there are not as many of these "breakthroughs".

They feel great when they happen but it usually never ends up being the one magic thing that improves your swing/game by leaps and bounds but rather one of many breakthroughs that when added up together over time help you improve.  Anyways, so I played a lot of golf this past weekend.  I played a round on Friday afternoon and then played two rounds at two different courses on Saturday.  It was a long day Saturday as the courses were pretty far away so it ended up being like a 14 hour day from when I left the house in the morning until I finally got home that night.  Thus I was dragging Saturday night and on Sunday morning I did not feel good at all.  My stomach was upset and I was sore/tired.  I contemplated not playing but I had to play.

So I get to my country club just 10 minutes before my tee time  yesterday morning and I am not loose at all and feel very sore.  I get to the first tee, a par 5, and because I am sore, tired, tight, I just take an easy swing.  I make sure to properly shift my weight through the shot.  I swung probably about 60% of the usual force.  I am amazed when the ball travels straight as an arrow and goes about 250 yards on a windy 40 degree morning.....I continue to play my round and I am not swinging hard at all, just making a nice round swing with good weight transfer and each shot continues to amaze me at how much straighter and further the ball is going!

As this is happening throughout the round I try my best to just continue doing what works but I also want to make sure that I capture this.  I try to ingrain everything that I am doing and realize several things that seem to make this work......my swing before yesterday was much too upright and too much to the inside on the back swing.  Yesterday I had a much more round swing (I called it my Matt Kuchar swing).  I made sure that I was making proper weight transfer and just focused on making good contact without being so tense and fast.  I tried to stay loose before and during the swing.  Because I was extending my arms and keeping them that way through the back swing, this prevented me from coming over the top at all.  The weight transfer combined with this better plane allowed me to swing much easier yet be able to hit the ball much much further with my irons.

The hard part was adjusting to the new distance that I was getting.  Thus it was hard to decide on the right club.  Before yesterday morning I was hitting my 4 iron about 180 to 190.  Yesterday I hit it 210 plus.  Thus my scoring was affected but I was just kind of amazed throughout the round.  I kept thinking and saying to myself that I hope that I can bottle this and build off this.  I hope that this is not just a round where I am hitting the ball well, I want to be able to build off of this in the future.  Have you ever been at the range or in a round where you found something only to be able to not completely replicate it the next day or next time you played?  I have and I did not want this to be the case.

My friend that I was playing with was also amazed at how the ball traveled for me yesterday.  He said that the swing looked different and that I was not even making close to a full backswing (because I was tired and sore and not used to this significant swing change).  Still, even with like half of a backswing the ball was just going like crazy and it was 20 degrees colder and windier than it was the day before when we played.

I tried to pay as much attention as I could to what I was doing yesterday so that this was not some flash in the pan type thing.  Has anyone else had something like this occur to them?  If so then what was it and were you able to replicate it the next time out?

The reason that I am so concerned is because the biggest area of opportunity for me is with approach shots/second shots on holes where the distance is 160 and up.  If I can hit the ball like I did yesterday then it would be a HUGE improvement and potentially the kind of thing that could take many shots off my score per round.

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I see it so often - a big backswing isn't as important as really accelerating through the ball.      Of course, if you can combine both, you'd really have something, but not many can do this.    As for an epiphany - I'm alot like you - my good days are as yours was - easy in control swing & the ball just seems to pop.    It's just so darn tough to not overswing ...

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Originally Posted by bjwestner

Have you ever been at the range or in a round where you found something only to be able to not completely replicate it the next day or next time you played?  I have and I did not want this to be the case.

Has anyone else had something like this occur to them?  If so then what was it and were you able to replicate it the next time out?

I have had this happen quite a few times.  Like yourself, I tried to analyze what I was or felt like I was doing differently.  Overall, for myself, it seems to happen like this.  A period of hitting the ball much better than before and then a period of regression, but not quite back to the point where I was previously.  Then repeat.  The end result is that I slowly get better.

I also believe a good instructor could key in on the things that are working or need work, and enable you/me to hit the ball that well continually.

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General rule of thumb: the better you get, the less likely you are to have a "breakthrough" and the less likely you are to think you have had a "breakthrough."

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Originally Posted by iacas

General rule of thumb: the better you get, the less likely you are to have a "breakthrough" and the less likely you are to think you have had a "breakthrough."

We chased our pleasures here, dug our treasures there,

But can you still recall, the time we cried?

Break on through to the other side.

I never knew Jim was a golfer having an epiphany.

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Now you've got to try to keep that swing thought going.  I've had the same "breakthrough" a couple of times.  I find that I often go weeks swinging too hard then have to remind myself.  Quite frustrating.

A shorter backswing is probably better, too.  Hitting a ball on a launch monitor I noticed that a longer backswing added only 1-2 MPH to my swing speed and actually decreased my distances because it messes up my mechanics.

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Back on topic.

There is something to be said about having a smooth and relaxed swing. I noticed this the other day when I was playing in the wind, trying to hit the ball about 85% to reduce spin, that it started clicking. I was able to carry that feeling into the next 2 rounds with great results. If you ever go to a tour event, it is the first thing you will notice, the seemingly effortless swings that get results, at least they look that way compared to their pro-am partners. Keep up the good work!

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Its different for everyone

Look at Tiger, his swing has always been control aggression. Rory's is very much in control, smooth as silk. You look at Graeme Mcdowell, and he has a very hard swing. So the swing speeds vary. Nick Price was a very high tempo swing, very fast takeaway and very fast through the ball. Arnold had a very fast tempo. The key for them though, there in balance.

For me, i find that i can swing very hard if my mechanics are good, as soon as i loose my mechanics, i can't swing as hard, and if i try, bad things happen. For example, when my driver is rolling, i can swing hard, easy, doesn't matter, i can cut it, draw it, it feels good. If my swing is off, i can't do anything but swing easy because if i don't, the ball is out to right field, and its a long lonely walk.

So its a two way street, mechanics breeds your tempo, and tempo can keep your mechanics as well. But first and foremost you must have a good swing to harness the all the potential swing speed you can get. Its like a laundry machine out of sort, you get that thing tilted off balance, the high speed will cause it to shake all over. You get that thing in balance and tuned, you can spin that thing at high speed with no problem.

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Well, I was really talking about concentrating on the backswing. When it is relaxed, controlled, balanced, etc., it puts you in the right position to pull the trigger. When I see people swing too fast, it usually starts with the backswing getting too fast. I don't know anyone who is decent who swings as hard as they can going back.

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Originally Posted by TourSpoon

Back on topic.

There is something to be said about having a smooth and relaxed swing. I noticed this the other day when I was playing in the wind, trying to hit the ball about 85% to reduce spin, that it started clicking. I was able to carry that feeling into the next 2 rounds with great results. If you ever go to a tour event, it is the first thing you will notice, the seemingly effortless swings that get results, at least they look that way compared to their pro-am partners. Keep up the good work!

Thanks!  I read something last night that made a lot of sense.  Keegan Bradley said it and he said that he started this in college.  He said that he never hits the ball until his mouth is relaxed.  If his mouth is relaxed then the rest of his body is relaxed and not tense.

It is so easy for me to be standing over a shot and to think about trying to be loose but in reality many of my muscles are actually tense.  I like the idea of the mouth being relaxed.  I think I am going to try to use it the next time I play.....

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Quote:

So I get to my country club just 10 minutes before my tee time  yesterday morning and I am not loose at all and feel very sore.  I get to the first tee, a par 5, and because I am sore, tired, tight, I just take an easy swing.  I make sure to properly shift my weight through the shot.  I swung probably about 60% of the usual force.  I am amazed when the ball travels straight as an arrow and goes about 250 yards on a windy 40 degree morning.....I continue to play my round and I am not swinging hard at all, just making a nice round swing with good weight transfer and each shot continues to amaze me at how much straighter and further the ball is going!

The hard part was adjusting to the new distance that I was getting.  Thus it was hard to decide on the right club.  Before yesterday morning I was hitting my 4 iron about 180 to 190.  Yesterday I hit it 210 plus.  Thus my scoring was affected but I was just kind of amazed throughout the round.

This is something I 're-epiphanize' at least 2 or 3 times every year, as I commented in this post a little while ago (btw I'm still swinging within myself, but we'll see how long that lasts):

Quote:
Originally Posted by dak4n6 View Post

I am just coming off a 2 or 3 month spell of bad driving. Was pull-draw/hooking everything. The fix? It was one that I have re-learned over and over throughout my golfing life: Slow the fock down and swing within myself. When I slow down it allows time for my body parts to get to the right positions at the right times. And, I can actually control the club face and work the ball. And (of course), I hit it farther. It seems that when I am driving it well, I start cranking it up unoticeably over time until I start mishitting it a little, which will cause some crookedness and loss of distance (the old 'the harder you hit it the shorter it goes' paradox), which leads to my trying to hit it harder, until I reach the point where I am wondering what is going on, and then I back off and start the whole silly process over again.

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Originally Posted by dak4n6

This is something I 're-epiphanize' at least 2 or 3 times every year, as I commented in this post a little while ago (btw I'm still swinging within myself, but we'll see how long that lasts):

I completely agree 100%.  I wish there way to just keep that the same forever.  Why do we speed up over time?  And why does it take so long to figure this out and fix?

I guess if we knew the answer to these questions we would be much better golfers!

I just posted a long post in another thread about distance loss when the weather is cold.  What it all comes down to is getting sucked into the distance thing.  It's hard not to when you see commercials all the time about the new club or ball that is allowing people to hit the ball further and further.  I guess this subconciously means that we swing harder in order to try to get the results that we want when in reality it's only hurting ourselves.

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"For me, i find that i can swing very hard if my mechanics are good, as soon as i loose my mechanics, i can't swing as hard, and if i try, bad things happen."

"Lose" not Loose.

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Great the grammer natzi showed up. Thanks, i appreciate your meticulous nature to correct ever gramatical error you find, we need more people like you.

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Originally Posted by saevel25

Great the grammer natzi showed up. Thanks, i appreciate your meticulous nature to correct ever gramatical error you find, we need more people like you.

Yes, maybe he's being a little picky where it isn't necessary, but if you've seen his thread, you know it's a pet peeve of his.

(And I'm choosing to ignore the obvious chum you threw in the water with your post :))

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Originally Posted by bjwestner

I completely agree 100%.  I wish there way to just keep that the same forever.  Why do we speed up over time?  And why does it take so long to figure this out and fix?

I guess if we knew the answer to these questions we would be much better golfers!

I just posted a long post in another thread about distance loss when the weather is cold.  What it all comes down to is getting sucked into the distance thing.  It's hard not to when you see commercials all the time about the new club or ball that is allowing people to hit the ball further and further.  I guess this subconciously means that we swing harder in order to try to get the results that we want when in reality it's only hurting ourselves.

I think it's also a testosterone thing. I can't think of many LPGA players who look like they swing hard (Laura Davies, maybe, and Lexi Thompson takes a pretty good rip at it). That's why I always play very well for a couple months after the LPGA comes to my area. I'm usually a standard bearer, and from inside the ropes I just let the beautiful tempos, positions, and posing finishes seep into my brain. But alas, after a while, the testosterone starts to take over again...

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Great the grammer natzi showed up. Thanks, i appreciate your meticulous nature to correct ever gramatical error you find, we need more people like you.

... "Nazi"...couldn't help myself...

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