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mvmac

Change the Dang Picture!

51 posts in this topic

It's really great that the Member Swings forum has become such a popular place on The Sand Trap. We feel that the level of knowledge and advice shared really sets us apart from other golf social media sites. It's a lot of fun to see someone post how they're hitting it better or that they had a great round after receiving advice on the forum. If you haven't done so, check it out and start your own thread. And if you do, this is a MUST read thread

Ok now to the point of the reason I'm starting this thread. When changing a certain part of your swing, it's best to rehearse it slowly as @iacas points out in the The Five "S"s of Great Practice thread . We like to call it "changing the picture". Meaning when you look at your swing on video, change what you're seeing with your priority piece. Quickie example: some players get the club head too low and inside on the takeaway causing the shaft to be too shallow on the backswing and then it steepens on the downswing. So they need to feel something to change the way the club loads in the backswing so it can shallow on the downswing. What they feel isn't important to this thread (we have a bunch of feels we share), what is important is how they go about practicing it.

The mistake golfers can fall into is practicing at full speed. The changes with the followup video, if any, are usually minor. The problem is you can't really make changes just feeling something different at full speed. Changing a piece of your swing is basically changing a motor pattern, almost like if I asked you to change the way you walk, you would have to slow down and be aware of how your body is moving. Same with the golf swing.

Here's a few swings of mine from a couple days ago. I tend to have the head "drift" a little too far forward from the top of the backswing as I transition. So in this video I'm visualizing that someone has a stick against the left side of my head. I'm also doing these swings somewhere in the 20-40% speed range. I've slowed it down enough that I'm aware and in control of how my body is working to produce the picture I want. I'm "proving" to myself that I can do it, even if it is really, really slow. The point is, I'm changing the picture, it looks different than my "normal" swing and if I can do it at 40% speed, I'll eventually be able to do at full speed. Or at least come close ;-)

This is exactly how Justin Rose ingrained the swing upgrades he got from Sean Foley. First ten swings of the day were super slow swings, from address to finish, being aware and in control the entire tim e. It's also how Charles Howell III practices. Rehearsing the motion at slower speeds will also help you "catch" yourself when you do go back to full speed swings. The old flaw will rear it's head and you'll be able to feel it.

So, when submitting a follow up swing, whether it's on this site, to your instructor, for your own viewing:

- Change the picture, don't waste your time trying to make changes at full speed.

- Perform the motion at slower speeds. You don't necessarily have to make the entire swing slow, focus on the portion you are trying to improve. If you have to swing at 10% speed to make the change, then swing at 10%.

- Ask yourself, "If this different than the original swing I posted?"

- Don't be concerned with what the ball does at first.

- Don't worry about it looking "silly", this is how you get better. Would you rather continue to hit bad golf shots or spend 10 minutes a day "feeling weird" but making measurable improvements?

- You can (and should) do this at home, in front of a mirror, heck, film yourself at home. You don't have to do this on the range. Although I would suggest you do some practice like this on the range.

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Thanks for posting @mvmac .  It takes a lot of discipline to practice slower.  I have promised myself that I will do it this way this year.  I just went on a four day golf trip and I asked my Evolvr instructor Stephan, @sk golf , this very question.  I have been practicing my priority piece at slow motion, but I wondered what I should do when playing.  Stephan basically told me to warm up with slow motion to start at the range, but stop thinking about it during the round and just use the slow motion part as part of my pre-shot if needed. This worked well.

I know I have a long way to go, but I am seeing improvement.

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Really nice post Mike! Lately I've been doing "sandwiches" where the first rep is slow enough to change the picture 100% of the time (perhaps even over doing it) the second rep is faster and really at the edge of my ability so the picture only changes about 50% of the time, and the 3rd rep is slow enough that the picture changes 100% of the time...
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Can all changes be made at slow speed? For example, my latest thing to work on is my setup (foot angles, knees, back angle), with the goal of being better at key #1. Is there a way I can work on that change in slow, other than setting up and doing the full swing slowly? I figure slowly setting up probably isn't the effect we're talking about.
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Can all changes be made at slow speed? For example, my latest thing to work on is my setup (foot angles, knees, back angle), with the goal of being better at key #1. Is there a way I can work on that change in slow, other than setting up and doing the full swing slowly? I figure slowly setting up probably isn't the effect we're talking about.

Setup isn't a dynamic thing. By the very nature it isn't something you do "quickly."

I ask people how much athletic skill it takes to set up properly. They correctly answer "none." I remind them that setting up properly is often simply a matter of remembering to do it. Nothing more.

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Can all changes be made at slow speed? For example, my latest thing to work on is my setup (foot angles, knees, back angle), with the goal of being better at key #1. Is there a way I can work on that change in slow, other than setting up and doing the full swing slowly? I figure slowly setting up probably isn't the effect we're talking about.

No, the slow part is mainly for dynamic aspects of your swing. For set-up I would suggest just working with a mirror and make sure you can consistently set-up they way you want/need to. Set-up is something I need to work on a bit as well, ball more forward, slight push of the hips to preset my axis tilt a bit and making sure my head stay a tad behind the ball. I plan on setting up a mirror and possibly even marking or taping some lines on it to help me monitor the changes until it feels natural i.e.: practice it until I can't get it wrong.

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Thanks for posting Mike. I've started doing this at the range more and practicing my priority pieces a lot slower. I saw it somewhere in the forum (can't remember who posted it) but he said that "if you can't do it slow, then you can't do it fast" or something to that extent.

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Setup isn't a dynamic thing. By the very nature it isn't something you do "quickly." I ask people how much athletic skill it takes to set up properly. They correctly answer "none." I remind them that setting up properly is often simply a matter of remembering to do it. Nothing more.

This makes sense. Next time I have a dynamic move to change - and I'm sure I will - I'll be sure to practice slower. Thanks!

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Quote:

Change the picture, don't waste your time trying to make changes at full speed.

- Perform the motion at slower speeds. You don't necessarily have to make the entire swing slow, focus on the portion you are trying to improve. If you have to swing at 10% speed to make the change, then swing at 10%.

- Ask yourself, "If this different than the original swing I posted?"

- Don't be concerned with what the ball does at first.

- Don't worry about it looking "silly", this is how you get better. Would you rather continue to hit bad golf shots or spend 10 minutes a day "feeling weird" but making measurable improvements?

- You can (and should) do this at home, in front of a mirror, heck, film yourself at home. You don't have to do this on the range. Although I would suggest you do some practice like this on the range.

I really like this and have never really consistently practice this way, but it really makes sense to me. Thanks for the reminder!

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I did this on the range today. Just practicing banking the right foot over and over again, super duper slow. This is such an easy thing to forget.

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Slow fo sho...it works!!!  Thanks Mike.

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I wish I had the willpower to do this more. Do try, but if there are balls in the tray I always end up bashing away again at full speed looking for the golden ticket feel.

Truly stupid monkey.

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I have never practiced that way. Tend to do everything full speed. I am going to do this with what you advised for me in my swing. It makes perfect sense. I work in Physical Therapy and often have to teach people how to mobilize out of beds/chairs, climb steps, and exercise. I always make them do it correctly in a slow manner. I never think to do that with my golf swing. Thanks.

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I wish I had the willpower to do this more. Do try, but if there are balls in the tray I always end up bashing away again at full speed looking for the golden ticket feel.

Truly stupid monkey.

The siren song of bashing one WAY out there!

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May sound dumb, but what I did was starting out I made sure that my full swing had to start, and end no sooner than with a count of 1001, 1002, 1003...slower is even better to get the correct feel and sequence, at least for me. If I can do it, any one can.. ;-)

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I work in Physical Therapy and often have to teach people how to mobilize out of beds/chairs, climb steps, and exercise. I always make them do it correctly in a slow manner. I never think to do that with my golf swing. Thanks.

Great feedback, thanks

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I'll try this out for my next video in the "my swing" thread...thanks!

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Finally have trained myself to automatically flare both feet versus having to remind myself, took about 3 weeks to get it.

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