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Why Flaring Your Feet at Address Makes Golf Easier


mvmac

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Great post @mvmac

I would add one thing:

Flaring the feet also takes stress off the left knee for people who have knee issues.  Your knee bends more naturally during the down stroke and in bending forward when it is taking all the force and not sideways (right photo in section 3).  I have arthritis in my knees and it made a huge difference.

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Nice Post!  Yes, it was the first piece of advice I got here and I implemented it and haven't looked back since!  So simple, it baffles me how it can be a hard thing to do?

Some people think it looks stupid so they don't want to. I think hitting bad golf shots look stupid, but maybe that's just me. @mvmac , are there potential issues for flaring the feet too much? I've recently reduced my front foot flare because I believed it was one of the reasons my hips get so far ahead of my arms, causing a number of issues. My left foot was flared almost 45°.

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Flaring of the feet is great advice, wish I used this much earlier. IMHO I think one of the main reasons why many dont do it is because of Hogans 5 Lessons in which he is very clear on how he more of less despises it. he goes as far as saying when he sees it he wonders which direction the golfer is going. To be honest, it held me back from trying it also as I didnt want to commit Hogan Blasphemy, but after being told time and time again by a good friend of mine who is a golf pro here in Holland that many players do it and it will improve my dynamics, I tried it and Im sold.

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Through experimentation of my own, I like to flare my right (back) foot and keep my left (front) foot straight or less flared. I know its the opposite of what is commonly taught but it seems to work for me. When I also flare out my left foot I come out of the shot easier and don't release the club as well. My left foot ends up more open in follow through so I spinout a bit but ball contact and ball flight are better. My right foot flared helps with a deeper backswing, straight I come over the top more.

It makes for less strain and makes golf easier for sure.

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…it seems to work for me. … My left foot ends up more open in follow through so I spinout a bit but ball contact and ball flight are better.

Your feet spin out because… they're trying to get to where they should be.

You'd probably be better off simply setting them there at the start.

I looked at your swing (http://thesandtrap.com/t/73129/my-swing-mpb1472) and you would "release" better if your swing wasn't basically an arms lifting and coming down motion. You need to turn more and get more weight forward, and narrowing your stance and flaring your feet out help with both of those things.

Not coincidentally… my response to you back in March? Narrow your stance and flare your feet. You seem to have given up on any of that pretty quickly.

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Flared feet does work. My Son, who's a BIG guy, always had his feet squared up, I suggested he flare his feet out about 30 degrees, he did, and his hip turn greatly increased, along with his ball contact.

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Dont think about this much, but looking at my own swings, I do flare out both toes out , I think it helps my squat better at the top of my swing.

I do notice that I tend to have knee pain if I do try to keep my left toe perpendicular. I think i rotate so much on my left hip on my follow through that if i dont flare out my left knee takes a pounding.

However i dont have a magical amount of outflaring, I tend to have less flaring out of the toe if the ball is above my feet for some reason.

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iacas, I should have clarified my post better. The setup I described was done with my driver in a closed stance. Reverting to what felt comfortable I guess. Your reference to my swing and your advice was adhered to in my iron setup. I had my best ball striking with irons in years. I should have reported back sooner to tell you that and thanked you.
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I'm sort of embarrassed to admit that I don't flare my feet because it feels so odd to me. I know, it's different so it should feel odd at first but it's the one thing I have been reluctant to do. I was a little worried that it would put stress on my left knee because that knee definitely kicks in toward the ball on the back swing. With the foot flared out it seems like it would really twist my knee. I am obviously wrong about this, correct?
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I'm sort of embarrassed to admit that I don't flare my feet because it feels so odd to me. I know, it's different so it should feel odd at first but it's the one thing I have been reluctant to do. I was a little worried that it would put stress on my left knee because that knee definitely kicks in toward the ball on the back swing. With the foot flared out it seems like it would really twist my knee. I am obviously wrong about this, correct?

If anything the foot being turned out puts the knee in a safer position. Like if you were to do a front or a back squat, the feet are turned out to help with the knee/hip mobility. The knees being rotated inward results in a weak/unhealthy position. Like I said in the first post, the left knee should rotate inward somewhat and the knee being "bowed" outward helps keep the knee from collapsing inward. It can also help "engage" the left ankle and quad more, so it gains in flex as it rotates inward.

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So with the foot flared, do I want to feel as if my left knee is flexing in the direction that my foot is pointing? Or do I continue to allow the knee to kick in (just not as much)?
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So with the foot flared, do I want to feel as if my left knee is flexing in the direction that my foot is pointing? Or do I continue to allow the knee to kick in (just not as much)?


Well, kind of both. Your left knee won't go "directly" over your toes, it'll still kick in a little, just not as much.

Naturally. As @mvmac said in the first post, you get some things "for free" with the foot flares.

Just remember to do it for awhile. After a little time, it'll feel weird to have square toes.

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Well, kind of both. Your left knee won't go "directly" over your toes, it'll still kick in a little, just not as much. Naturally. As @mvmac said in the first post, you get some things "for free" with the foot flares. Just remember to do it for awhile. After a little time, it'll feel weird to have square toes.

Ok, that clears it up pretty well. Thank you. Looks like I have something I can really work on this winter.

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Many golfers complain about flexibility and struggle with achieving a "full" turn but typically the problem isn't their mobility, it's how their feet/knees are aligned at address. To make a "full" pivot and keep the head steady (Key #1) the lead knee gains in flex as the trail knee lessens in flex on the backswing. The knees are a one-plane joint and pointing them out slightly assists in turning the hips during the backswing. The trail knee just decreases in flex on the angle that it's set on.

If the trail knee is "kicked in" at set-up (left pic) the knee won't be able to move in a way that keeps the hips turning "in a circle". The hips will stall or even slide back (left pic below) and it typically leads to problems on the downswing.

The motion of the lead knee is also important to turning the hips and keeping them centered. As the lead knee gains flex on the backswing it also rotates inward a bit. The outward orientation of the knee regulates how much the lead knee can flex inward. On the left (foot wasn't flared at address) you can see the lead knee has collapsed inward. This can be a position that's tough to "recover" from in terms of getting the weight forward enough on the downswing.

It looks like the weight is fairly evenly distributed at the top of the backswing in the picture on the right. Am I correct? Honestly, this feels pretty comfortable to me because I feel as though I can transfer my weight to the front foot much easier.

Honestly, one of the reasons I have kept my feet square is because I feel like I can transfer my weight to the back foot at the top of my back swing. But then I can "get stuck" on the back foot and make too many compensations on the down swing.

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