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Speed from the Arms in the Golf Swing

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3 minutes ago, Puttin4Dough said:

Exactly my point Erik....everyone defines "tension" differently.   It's why the topic is too elusive to define benchmarks.

The topic is actually that a significant portion of speed comes from the arms.

So… let's get back to that.

3 minutes ago, Puttin4Dough said:

Nicklaus focused on loose arms...to say he did something else is pure conjecture to fit one's own narrative.

🤦‍♂️ I never said he did "something else."

3 minutes ago, Puttin4Dough said:

He said what he said...it's over.  I don't try to teach tour player swings because all too often what they say they do isn't what we see on video.

🤦‍♂️x10

If that post doesn't just up and smack you in the face - and by "that post" I mean the one you wrote, where you directly contradict yourself within a sentence or two - then I don't know what to tell you.

The topic is about generating speed from the arms. It's not about "tension." We'll be getting back on topic now.

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1 minute ago, iacas said:

The topic is actually that a significant portion of speed comes from the arms.

So… let's get back to that.

🤦‍♂️ I never said he did "something else."

🤦‍♂️x10

The speed from the arms is NOT generated by the arms which is what you are suggesting.

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14 minutes ago, Puttin4Dough said:

The speed from the arms is NOT generated by the arms which is what you are suggesting.

It is. And I'm not just "suggesting" it, I've studied it and know it. Did you watch the early videos and read the early posts in this topic?

And, to be clear, I am including some of the shoulder muscles that are responsible for moving the arms, too.

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Quick google search and this what I found. Arm speed/power is important.

E5729544996ebookMain.png?470615447044027

Similar to the situation with the other sports reviewed in this chapter, to isolate and identify the functions of the major muscles controlling the various body segments during the golf swing, dynamic EMG and...

Downswing phase.

Quote

Analysis of the serratus anterior muscle in the trailing arm shows increased activity during forward swing to aid in scapular protraction and stabilization (Kao et al. 1995). Electromyographic studies of the lead arm demonstrate high activity of the trapezius, levator scapulae, rhomboids, and serratus anterior as they all contribute to scapular motion and stabilization as the arms move toward the ball (Kao et al. 1995).

Of the trailing shoulder muscles during forward swing, the subscapularis, pectoralis major, and latissimus begin firing at marked levels as the trailing arm increasingly accelerates into the internal rotation and adduction. The lead arm subscapularis and latissimus dorsi are both moderately active during the forward swing phase.

Backswing

Quote

Electromyographic analysis of the scapular muscles of the trailing arm reveals relatively high activity of the upper, middle, and lower portions of the trapezius during take-away in order to help the scapula retract and upwardly rotate (Kao et al. 1995). Similarly, the levator scapulae and rhomboid muscle of the trailing arm are active during this period to help with such scapular movements (Kao et al. 1995). In the leading arm during take-away, the activity of the scapular stabilizing muscles is relatively low to allow for scapular protraction.

 

2 hours ago, Puttin4Dough said:

Nicklaus focused on loose arms...to say he did something else is pure conjecture to fit one's own narrative. 

Posted this today, check out what Jack does with his left arm as part of his trigger move. Called this his stationary press. To quote Nicklaus,

"“By firming up my hands as the final preparatory movement, I get a strong sense of affirmation of the coming swing throughout my body. This simple little device seems to alert all my muscles to the job at hand without tensing them in any way. Thus it has become a critical part of my game, a preface to every shot I play. You should work to build a similarly strong “starter” into your game.”

 

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2 hours ago, Puttin4Dough said:

The speed from the arms is NOT generated by the arms which is what you are suggesting.

100% wrong. You’re not reading any of the evidence presented nor the thread discussing this. You’ve gotta open your mind and entertain the thought that you’re thinking is wrong. No shame. No failure, just learning new things. Embrace it. 

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15 hours ago, iacas said:

1) I don't agree, and I have to work with students all the time on how tense or loose to make something. The golf swing is not as simple as "picking something up."

2) Could that be… because you're not a golf instructor, and thus, your experiences are incredibly limited compared to, I don't know, @mvmac's? (Who was an instructor, but even if he hadn't been, has traveled thousands and thousands of miles, spent hundreds of hours reading, thousands of hours learning, etc.).

3) To make it simple, my opinions are:

  • The golf swing is not perfectly relaxed, nor is it tense.
  • The right amount of "tension" or "force" or "effort" at the right times can serve a person well.
  • Feel ain't real, and feel varies by person.
  • In general, I have more people relax certain things than any of the other words in bullet point #2, but the times I have to use BP#2 type words aren't so small as to be insignificant.

4) I'm not going to try to unpack what "stable" means here, so…

5) A big part of the reason I advocate for firmer grips. You're gonna have to hold on firmly at some point… may as well do it from the start and keep the pressure relatively consistent throughout the swing.

1) Well I hope that your students are finding all the success that they seek.  The golf swing motion is as easy as picking something up because it is a human instinct to swing a stick and get out of the way so as to not injure themselves. I just gets wrecked once the lil white ball is sitting there waiting to be stuck !! I have never seen a slowed down analysis or a forum of someone swinging an ax into a tree and this is the exact same motion as a golf swing.  Many sports have similarities to a golf swing and none of them are as scrutinized as golf swings are.  Hand a child an instrument and tell them to swing it and instinctively they will figure it out pretty quickly. It then takes a lifetime of work to learn to hit shots consistently in relation to their intentions, but that is where the focus should be in my opinion.  

2) So would me being certified as an instructor automatically means that I know what I'm talking about?  You know nothing about the depth of my golf journey but you act as if no one else has anything relevant to say.  Golf journey...speaking of golf journey....I play golf right and left handed to a single digit handicap and I have never had a golf lesson ever in my life.  How many hours do you think I spent learning the game and reading and taking in every possible bit of information to try and steepen my learning curve?  I've played the game at 129 mph and 105 mph right and left handed and dug it out from the dirt.  I am also an aspiring Electrical Engineer and have a degree in Exercise Science so I grasp the D Plane, Trackman, and club design aspects, and also the athlete side of things also.  I'm not saying that I'm right or wrong...I just see things from a different perspective that I feel can help people.  

3) I stated exactly what you said in my comments and absolutely agree with most of what you said here.  I said that the body is very good at figuring out how to do a task with the minimal amount of effort.  Not to tense and not too relaxed...just the right amount.  Especially with repetition and experience.  I disagree with your statement " the right amount of effort at the right time" because that will likely be good for a time....but will not likely stand the test of time because the body is constantly changing...even in athletes in peak condition so that effort might be at the right time today, but will not likely be the "right time" a month from now, at which point everything would have to be recalibrated. I agree that feel aint real and varies from person to person and that is why I found my biggest improvement working on the thing that is the same for everyone...intended ball flight and impact...and then worked my way back from there.  I found that focusing on this dictated how I needed to position myself in relation to the ball.  I also noticed that very small adjustments lead to huge differences in strike and ball flight.  I still stand by my comment that purposely relaxing or tensing anything will be less efficient because it it taking your focus away from the main goal of sending the momentum of the swing towards a target and striking a golf ball along the way. 

4) Try swinging a golf club while standing on ice...next topic !! 

5) Like I said your body is very good at figuring this out on its own especially with repetition and experience. 

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15 hours ago, saevel25 said:

Yet, there are times when the body underestimates the required strength to hold onto something. I've been pulling my bowling ball bag behind me when the wheels hit something and I lose my grip. My grip is perfectly fine for anything other than the bag suddenly stopping.

Holding the golf club at address might be perfectly OK with a light grip, but may be way underestimating the required strength needed to control the club, or maintain consistent grip pressure during the swings movement.

I can grip a 20lb weight lightly if it's not moving. If I start to move the weight I need to grip it way more tightly.

This just sounds to me that you have no definitive way to describing what you are doing, so you are using subjective language.

What you feel doesn't matter in terms of describing what you are actually doing. You could feel something and look on video and see something completely different.

 

Guess what happens very quickly...your body adapts and becomes very good at predicting what it needs to do in the future because of what it has experienced before.  It doesn't take the body very long to realize that when the ball is in the rough that it takes much more grip pressure to maintain stability of the club face through impact. The body is pretty damn smart and very adept at doing things instinctively. Sure refinements can be made along the way but the majority of the task the body can handle naturally. Just being an athlete is sufficient in most cases.  

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4 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

4) Try swinging a golf club while standing on ice...next topic !! 

You would have to use only your arms to swing while standing on ice. Any force applied by the lower body using the ground would cause you to slip.

This is the entire point of the thread.

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6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

4) Try swinging a golf club while standing on ice...next topic !! 

2 hours ago, boogielicious said:

You would have to use only your arms to swing while standing on ice. Any force applied by the lower body using the ground would cause you to slip.

This is the entire point of the thread.

Speed coming from the arms is precisely the reason why when doing my SuperSpeed golf training, on the part where I do the swings from kneeling, I can regularly get the green club over 90mph, and my top regular swings with that club is mid 120s

The fact that ~75% of my swing speed can be done kneeling (with probably quite a bit less ground force generated than on a normal swing), definitely helps to show how important the arms are in generating speed in the golf swing. 

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Spoiler

 

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

The golf swing motion is as easy as picking something up because it is a human instinct to swing a stick and get out of the way so as to not injure themselves.

Nope. There's absolutely no evidence to support that idea, and about a billion data points against it.

My eight-year-old nephew hit golf balls for the first time recently. This past Sunday. He was horrible. Had no instinct to do anything right. Hands weren't anywhere close together. Just picked up the club and swung it down like an axe. And he watched @NatalieB and I hit balls (as well as my wife), so he saw what to do for five minutes each by all three of the people he had basically ever seen play golf.

No instincts at all to do the right thing.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I have never seen a slowed down analysis or a forum of someone swinging an ax into a tree and this is the exact same motion as a golf swing.

No it isn't.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Many sports have similarities to a golf swing and none of them are as scrutinized as golf swings are.

Unless you're being very, very generalized… nah. Hitting in baseball for example is very, very different. People love to compare the two, but contrasting them is way easier as the differences are big and important.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Hand a child an instrument and tell them to swing it and instinctively they will figure it out pretty quickly.

No they f***ing don't.

BTW, I like this thing we're doing where we just make statements without any sort of support or backing argument at all. It makes things so much easier.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

So would me being certified as an instructor automatically means that I know what I'm talking about?

No, but you making the statements you've made kinda paints the opposite picture.

And me being an instructor doesn't automatically mean that I know what I'm talking about, but I've had the experience, I've put a LOT of information out there that's been vetted and seen and known to be good, and I've seen thousands more golfers than you. I'm not big on just granting someone "authority" because of their title. PGA Tour players are often lousy instructors.

I've got a long track record of knowing what I'm talking about, and have spent thousands of hours learning this stuff. It's my life's passion.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

You know nothing about the depth of my golf journey but you act as if no one else has anything relevant to say.

No, that's not the case at all.

I know, for example:

  • You're not an instructor.
  • You're not a great player.
  • You're routinely making statements that have no basis in fact or which go against things I know to be true, or making absolute type statements when no such statements apply.

I simply disagree with you. Your statements are kinda "relevant" because they're "kinda" on topic. If they were completely irrelevant… moderators would probably delete them.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I play golf right and left handed to a single digit handicap and I have never had a golf lesson ever in my life.

We f***ing know already. I'd have to give you three a side, and I almost never get to play or practice.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

How many hours do you think I spent learning the game and reading and taking in every possible bit of information to try and steepen my learning curve?

Way less than me.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I just see things from a different perspective that I feel can help people.

I'm not saying you can't help some people some of the time. But that's an awfully low bar, and there are going to be plenty of times when you'll fail to clear even that. I'm saying the information you're sharing here, the opinions you're putting out there, are either wrong or dubious. They don't align with the facts, the way I see things, etc. You make absolute statements when no such thing is accurate, and you wander off into god knows what topics when the topic here is very, very clear.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I said that the body is very good at figuring out how to do a task with the minimal amount of effort.

No, it's not, and if it was, why should we care about "minimal amount of effort"? Golf is a sport. We exert effort. When I hit a drive, I'm giving it a lot of effort. I don't want to hit the ball 120 yards. I want to hit it 285 yards. Or farther.

Statements like this carry no weight at all. They're pointless. Meaningless. They're wrong - because we can measure what a body's muscles are doing in a golf swing, and as @mvmac posted above, a lot of muscles are doing a lot of work.

And a lot of bad golfers over-work certain muscles. Compensations are often out-of-plane and adjustments waste energy. If the body was so "good" at figuring it out, this wouldn't be as big of an issue as it is. These people are expending efforts, but in the wrong directions and/or at the wrong times. It's not efficient.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Not to tense and not too relaxed...just the right amount.

"Just the right amount." Another empty statement. How could anyone argue against doing something "just the right amount"?

You're not saying anything when you make comments like this, and "just the right amount" is going to vary from player to player. And… the vast majority of golfers DO NOT do things "just the right amount" or even you would be able to break 80 more often.

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I disagree with your statement " the right amount of effort at the right time" because that will likely be good for a time....but will not likely stand the test of time because the body is constantly changing...even in athletes in peak condition so that effort might be at the right time today, but will not likely be the "right time" a month from now, at which point everything would have to be recalibrated.

Oh brother.

You can't disagree with that statement for the same reasons I just stated. If the "x amount at y time" is no longer "right" because a person's body has changed… then it's not 'the right amount at the right time." (And no, my comment isn't empty like yours tend to be because my comment was about teaching the person "the right amount at the right time" because they didn't just "naturally" figure it out on their own.)

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I agree that feel aint real and varies from person to person and that is why I found my biggest improvement working on the thing that is the same for everyone...intended ball flight and impact...and then worked my way back from there. I found that focusing on this dictated how I needed to position myself in relation to the ball.

It led to you playing the ball over 12-15" behind just about every other good player?

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

I also noticed that very small adjustments lead to huge differences in strike and ball flight.  I still stand by my comment that purposely relaxing or tensing anything will be less efficient because it it taking your focus away from the main goal of sending the momentum of the swing towards a target and striking a golf ball along the way.

🤦‍♂️

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

4) Try swinging a golf club while standing on ice...next topic !! 

I have. Your point?

6 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

5) Like I said your body is very good at figuring this out on its own especially with repetition and experience. 

Nope. Not gonna be true just because you keep saying it.

5 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Guess what happens very quickly...your body adapts and becomes very good at predicting what it needs to do in the future because of what it has experienced before.

No it f***ing doesn't.

 

I replied to just about everything you wrote, @Righty to Lefty, before I realized… almost none of it had anything at all to do with the topic, and the parts that did were a stretch… like maybe the ice thing? Maybe?

Henceforth, replies must be on topic, or users may receive warnings and points. If you want to ramble on about your incredibly incorrect theories on golf instruction or how awesome you are as a 5 handicapper, please do it elsewhere. This topic is pretty well defined, and it's right in the topic: speed from the arms in the golf swing.

@klineka gets it. His post was on topic.

Look, I'm right here. But I know what I'm talking about, and when you come with weak stuff like you've consistently come with, it's gonna get swatted away. If anything, I waste too much time responding to too many of the pieces of your swing. I could have gone straight bullet points. You've got nothing. And you can read all of that as "mean" if you want, but to me it's not that far off from someone talking about how they think the earth is flat.

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On ‎1‎/‎2‎/‎2019 at 8:24 PM, cooke119 said:

I'll take what you showed to the range once it warms up and try using my arms more, especially my right arm.

I used the thoughts from this thread along with the thread "How to hit a driver" and I played today. I had the best game I have ever played, was driving the ball 220 to 230 yards, straight with a little draw or fade but always on the fairway. This is a 30 to 40 yard improvement in distance for me not to mention accuracy. Thanks for the info, I put it to good use. BTW it also helped my woods and irons a lot as well.

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15 minutes ago, Buckeyebowman said:

My body is, indeed, a closed system! 

In the physical sciences, for example, an open system is one that matter and/or energy may enter and exit, such as a human body.

Back to school @Buckeyebowman.

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On 1/4/2019 at 4:30 PM, klineka said:

Speed coming from the arms is precisely the reason why when doing my SuperSpeed golf training, on the part where I do the swings from kneeling, I can regularly get the green club over 90mph, and my top regular swings with that club is mid 120s

The fact that ~75% of my swing speed can be done kneeling (with probably quite a bit less ground force generated than on a normal swing), definitely helps to show how important the arms are in generating speed in the golf swing. 

Speed generated while kneeling is hitting shots with a stable base and so it makes sense that you can produce most of your max speed.  Your knees are providing stability just as your feet would so this is not a representation of the arms being isolated because you are still using ground forces to inject speed. If you want isolate your arms then don't set your wrists and stand on ice or kneel in an office chair with a swivel base and I assure you that you will see much different speed numbers. 

Kneeling and setting your wrists during the swing is not isolating the arms.  The very definition of isolate means to remain alone or apart from others thus swinging while kneeling still involves the hips, through restricted, the torso, arms and the wrists. That is in no way just the arms isolated. It is possible to isolate the arms but it would be pretty difficult to actually do because you would have to  be strapped into some type of harness, elevated off the ground, and have the wrists restricted also.  Your arm speed is not as high as you think it is...are you tracking with what I am saying?  I'm not saying that arm speed isn't important or doesn't contribute but I think that it's contribution is being grossly overestimated. 

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1 hour ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Your arm speed is not as high as you think it is...are you tracking with what I am saying?  I'm not saying that arm speed isn't important or doesn't contribute but I think that it's contribution is being grossly overestimated. 

I don’t think you’re tracking with what’s being said. You said he’s able to generate speed with his arms while kneeling because he has a stable base. Well..of course. But it’s not the stable base that’s creating the speed, it’s a source of the body that allows the arms to generate significant speed. This arm speed is what’s being underestimated by those who claim the arms are passive. They’re not by any means passive. We don’t play golf in a harness. We play golf with a stable base and are therefore able to generate significant speed with our arms.

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3 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Speed generated while kneeling is hitting shots with a stable base and so it makes sense that you can produce most of your max speed.

We play golf with a relatively stable base. Saying "imagine swinging on ice" doesn't change the fact, and it doesn't illustrate anything like you seem to think. Even @Vinsk gets that point.

3 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Your knees are providing stability just as your feet would so this is not a representation of the arms being isolated because you are still using ground forces to inject speed.

You don't seem to understand what "ground forces" are. They're reactionary - the ground doesn't "inject" anything. Your body does.

3 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

If you want isolate your arms then don't set your wrists and stand on ice or kneel in an office chair with a swivel base and I assure you that you will see much different speed numbers.

The wrists are part of the arms, and you're still missing the point with the office chair bit.

Besides, sit in an office chair with a swivel base and tell me… how much speed are you going to generate just trying to twist your torso?

3 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

That is in no way just the arms isolated. It is possible to isolate the arms but it would be pretty difficult to actually do because you would have to  be strapped into some type of harness, elevated off the ground, and have the wrists restricted also.

Incorrect. And again, elevated off the ground… how much speed do you think you're going to get just using your torso to rotate?

3 hours ago, Righty to Lefty said:

Your arm speed is not as high as you think it is...are you tracking with what I am saying?  I'm not saying that arm speed isn't important or doesn't contribute but I think that it's contribution is being grossly overestimated. 

We've talked about this thing with Ph.D. biomechanists and… they agree with us: the majority of a swing's speed comes from swinging the arms. Like us, they include the wrists.

2 hours ago, Vinsk said:

I don’t think you’re tracking with what’s being said. You said he’s able to generate speed with his arms while kneeling because he has a stable base. Well..of course. But it’s not the stable base that’s creating the speed, it’s a source of the body that allows the arms to generate significant speed. This arm speed is what’s being underestimated by those who claim the arms are passive. They’re not by any means passive. We don’t play golf in a harness. We play golf with a stable base and are therefore able to generate significant speed with our arms.

I don't think @Righty to Lefty truly understands what GRF is.

P.S. It's not like it's just us testing and saying these things. We have confirmed these things with Ph.D. biomechanists. We've done our own testing, including jumping in the air and swinging a club while airborne, in full 3D measuring labs built to analyze this stuff. Conclusions always back up what we've said.

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28 minutes ago, iacas said:

Even @Vinsk gets that point.

Super.😒

 

 

 

but...yeah.

Edited by Vinsk

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25 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

Super.😒

 

 

 

but...yeah.

Ha ha ha. I see what you mean there. 😄

I'll endeavor to word it better in the future. 😄

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2 hours ago, iacas said:

Ha ha ha. I see what you mean there. 😄

I'll endeavor to word it better in the future. 😄

I gotta chuckle out of it. But hey...I’m not conning myself...my knowledge of golf’s biomechanics is pretty slim..

Edited by Vinsk

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    • Hmm reading this made me go check out some of my face and path numbers on some of the swings when I was trying to feel a lot of rotation through the shot, and it seems like my path is decent, most of them with a 7 iron are around 2.0 or less degrees in to out, but on the huge hooks the club face gets like 5-6 degrees closed to the target, which give a face to path of like -6 to -8 degrees. 
    • I also don't think this is rolling shutter. Pretty neat to see how much the shaft flexes during a swing. I can't swing as fast as JT, but cool to see the shaft working like that. I got another round under my belt with the new shaft, but it I'm throwing it out as a data point. I was missing all over the place, and not just with driver. Fairway wood, hybrid, irons, and wedges were all awful too. I was hitting a lot of really fat shots which hasn't been an issue for me for quite awhile now. My full swing just felt completely out of sync for the entire round. I decided to make a change in my iron shafts as well, also suggested by my instructor. Right now I have TT DG in R300 from 4-GW, and I just ordered a set of TT DG S400 off ebay. I don't expect this will have a drastic impact on my game, but i'll have a little more confidence knowing the shafts are a better fit for my swing. I'll either install these myself over my upcoming holiday break from work, or take them to a club builder, depending on how much free time I have at the end of the year.  
    • I have a terrible hook miss where clubhead drops too far inside on the downswing resulting into an overly inside out club path - a push hook.  I think it results from from me trying to get too wide at takeaway, swaying too much over right side, not setting right wrist early enough at A2 and not getting to a good pizza tray at the top. It's an old habit that appears anytime it wants to. Drives me nuts.    You are doing some good work, BTW.
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