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Effington

My Swing (Effington)

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I've been Playing Golf for: 5 years
My current handicap index or average score is: 120
My typical ball flight is: Well struck hits have a slight pull and very little or no turn.  Otherwise, it’s unpredictable.
The shot I hate or the "miss" I'm trying to reduce/eliminate is: Consistent solid contact


Videos:

 

Looks like my front on view was not the right angle--I don't have the ball in front of my front foot with my driver; it feels more in line with my left shoulder.  Will work on that for next time.

Summary

  • Driving Range
    • In the video posted here, this was a bad day.
    • On good days, 8i carries 130-140, 30-degree hybrid carry 150-160.  Straight or a tiny/unnoticeable draw.
    • On bad days, the irons are a push/fade that only carry 80-100 yards.  Longer clubs are unpredictable.
  • On the course, I can’t replicate driving range results.  Usually, I get line drives with 30-degree hybrid out 150 yards, but also get some shanks and grounders.  Rarely get those on the range

Lesson History

  • One teacher for about 12 lessons over 2-3 years.  He used video to show my swing and compare to tour players.
    • Primary focus was to get swing plane more upright (I’ve failed to do so)
  • Second teacher, 2 lessons starting last month.
    • In both sessions, I hit them amazingly with all clubs, despite not doing so in practice and then not able to do it afterwards either.
    • Key observation was that on poorer shots, I was “rushing” my hands through it; focus was to stop rushing the hands to sequence the swing better.

What I’m hoping for

  • Determine the top one or two priorities to work on.
  • If it’s about swing plane, a drill or something specific to practice would be helpful as I’ve spent a lot of time working on my plane without any results.
    • I can do it in slow motion but cannot generate any power with a full swing.
    • Someone recommended a swing plane aid that looked like a full circular hoop; any thoughts?  It looked expensive ($200+) so I’m a little skeptical.

Thanks in advance for any assistance!  It's shocking and appalling to me how much time I've spent swinging a club and still haven't figured it out.  Looking forward to getting in some more effective practice.

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If your camera has a slow motion feature, it help us get a better look.

One thing I noticed right away, which is an easy add, is for you to flare your feet at address. The thread below discusses this. This could help your backswing length and downswing weight forward. 

 

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Thanks, I appreciate the advice!

Another question--I've had a couple people mention to me that they thought my clubs were too long for me.  I went to a PGA Superstore and asked them about it.  They had me swing it a few times, I hit it straight, and they said it was fine.  Thoughts?

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3 hours ago, Effington said:

Thanks, I appreciate the advice!

Another question--I've had a couple people mention to me that they thought my clubs were too long for me.  I went to a PGA Superstore and asked them about it.  They had me swing it a few times, I hit it straight, and they said it was fine.  Thoughts?

It is hard to tell without knowing your measurements. Ping has an online fitting tool that uses you height, wrist to floor and hand size to estimate club length. Other than that, a good fitter could tell.

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2 hours ago, Effington said:

Out of curiosity, is the normal speed video the reason why there's little feedback?  Proper feedback is only possible with slow-motion?

That’s part of it.

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Hi guys,

Thought I’d give an update as I obviously haven’t given any since the initial post, but have been working on my game continuously.  I’m including here slow-motion video of my 8 iron swing, as I’m confined to the indoors now that it’s winter and the 8 iron is the longest club I can swing in my home.

I had my best round in memory right before the weather turned freezing.  I carded 110, which is better than average for me, and also had the best ball-striking day in memory that made the day really enjoyable.

Essentially, I lost two shots tee to green, all in similar fashion.

  • Driver was very short; typically 180-200.  A low hook, usually in play, though!
  • Approach shots were the highlight of the day going 140-160, but beautiful looking shots with a high arc and solid or sometimes flushed contact.  This alone made the day very enjoyable for me.  I had longer clubs to try and go for the green, but have not been hitting that well so did not think that was my best chance.  I hit one par-3 green from 175 with a 30 degree hybrid, which was one of the most memorable moments.
  • I’d typically have somewhere between 10-60 yards to pitch on.  I skulled a couple short ones or bunkers, and longer ones I'd hit square but usually misjudged distance.
  • Made a handful of bogeys (mostly par-3’s), but had a couple penalty strokes or duffers to even it out to average +2 per hole.

Based on reading my summary, it’s easy to say work on the driver and short game and I’d be golden, but that’s ignoring the fact that it was my best day with the irons in memory, so I’m not expecting to drop a dozen strokes overnight—although it’d be nice!

Swing Practice

  • The biggest change in my swing from my initial post was working very hard to get my backswing more upright.  It’s been very difficult—as you can see, I actually stop or get close to stopping my club when it’s parallel to ground—this is where I used to get really flat, so have been working to pull it up.
  • If I get in a nice groove with #1 where I’m feeling comfortable, the next thing I’ll try to focus on is keeping the tempo smooth / slower.  This promotes a fuller backswing for me.  Usually I am rushed with the backswing so it shortens it / starts my downswing early, which I believe also leads to inconsistent face angle at contact.
  • One thing I sometimes notice is that I don’t keep my weight back enough on the backswing.  I feel the cause is from an improper shoulder pivot, so I sometimes work on this.  The problem with this is that now I’m into three things to think about, which is too much.  I only focus on this if the other two are working well.  This one seems to have the biggest impact on accuracy, whereas the first two deal with striking the ball solid—the bigger priority for me.
  • I do notice that I’m “across the line” at the top of the backswing, but based on the results I’m getting, I feel that this is a lower priority and having these to work on is more than enough right now.

Any insight is appreciated--if you guys notice something else I should prioritize, I'm all ears!

 

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Hey guys, was really hoping to get some feedback.  I know I'm a novice with the camera but was able to turn the previous video right side up here.  Any thoughts?

 

 

Edited by Effington

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That's a bit unique.

Have you ever done some drills that encourage more use of the lower body? It's barely turned back at the top of your backswing, and barely turned through at impact. It's done very little from A1-A7.

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36 minutes ago, iacas said:

That's a bit unique.

Have you ever done some drills that encourage more use of the lower body? It's barely turned back at the top of your backswing, and barely turned through at impact. It's done very little from A1-A7.

I haven't--do you have any favorites that you could suggest?

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I think for your driver, your swing is too flat\shallow.

As iacas has pointed out, your hips/lower body are too quiet. If your shoulders turn 90-degrees, your hips should turn about 30-45 degrees. This allows you to fire your hips during your down swing.

In your second and third videos, you tend to shrug your shoulders at the beginning of your down swing. Try to relax your shoulders more. Try to let them "hang" naturally.

Make sure all your weight is even distributed on your feet. You shouldn't have any of your weight leaning on your club while at address.

I like that you stay right above of your ball through out your swing.

Lastly, stand tall (don't be hunched over) and relax. Try to be "zen".

:-)

Edited by BallMarker

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18 hours ago, BallMarker said:

I think for your driver, your swing is too flat\shallow.

As iacas has pointed out, your hips/lower body are too quiet. If your shoulders turn 90-degrees, your hips should turn about 30-45 degrees. This allows you to fire your hips during your down swing.

In your second and third videos, you tend to shrug your shoulders at the beginning of your down swing. Try to relax your shoulders more. Try to let them "hang" naturally.

Make sure all your weight is even distributed on your feet. You shouldn't have any of your weight leaning on your club while at address.

I like that you stay right above of your ball through out your swing.

Lastly, stand tall (don't be hunched over) and relax. Try to be "zen".

:-)

Thanks, I appreciate the feedback, it definitely gives me a lot to think about and work on!

I know my swing is poor, but I’m very motivated to improve.  I’m also going to re-start lessons in January.

I’m aiming for an update here every couple weeks so you guys can keep me on track—and I appreciate brutal honesty!!

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Hey guys, thought I'd give an update since it's been a couple weeks but don't have a video.  In the last couple weeks, I've:

  • Got a custom fitting on my clubs; they were too long.
  • Bought an indoor range pass for the year; practiced 30-60 minutes almost daily.
  • Found a new instructor & starting lessons next month

As you can see with the first and then second video I posted, I am working on taking a really flat back swing and getting it more on plane (more upright) by making sure my arms travel up after takeaway and not around.  If I get comfortable with that, I also practice a better pivoted shoulder turn.  It's still not natural to me so I am going to keep at it before moving on to something else.  I have all winter before the weather turns, so there's no downside to patience.

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Hey guys, it's been a month but I have been practicing diligently.  I found an instructor and have so far had two lessons. To start, I'm doing weekly lessons to keep me practicing on the right track.

Lesson 1 was a bit of a cliche in that it was about set-up & posture, but it looked like I needed it.  Changes suggested were:

  • Ball in center of stance with 7 iron.  He noted that I was very far forward.
  • Hands in front of the ball at address.  I found that doing this also promoted more shoulder dip.
  • Change open stance to have feet square/perpendicular to the target
  • Club face aimed at target

Felt super awkward at first, which I took as a good sign as improvement.  Other things he noted to work on was keeping lag in downswing (I was using too much bicep for swing speed, which he noted has the opposite effect), and turning hips more in the downswing.  This was a bit too much for me to practice all, but I did get better/more comfortable with the new posture.

This had an immediate significant impact on ball speed; balls were flying much faster.  Huge first lesson!

Lesson 2 was about the take-away and just after that.  He noted that in my take-away, I bow my wrist right away, which closes the club face and promotes a pull (I did this consciously; I thought I was opening the clubface to prevent a pull!).  Also, I stop rotating my body about half way, limiting my engagement of "big" muscles.  Lastly, he noted that I should try and get my arms up more after the take-away.  

Similar to lesson 1, I'm not really able to practice all of these at once, but have been working on stopping the wrist from bowing at the takeaway and rotating my body more.

I went to an indoor driving range with a Trackman monitor, and was hitting the ball as hard as I can remember.  My 7 iron was logging ball speed of 97-100 and carrying 135-140; a huge jump from where I was a month ago.

I've included here a picture from the first lesson; I think it's clear the lessons were helpful.  Still a huge amount of work in front of me to get a good swing, but I'm confident to say I've made huge strides in 2 weeks; definitely the most improvement in a short period I can remember.

 

20181229_094544.thumb.jpg.fb449244924f690ed01181455acebbe5.jpg

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Hey guys, was hoping to get your thoughts on my swing; I have made some significant changes.  Worked on lower body movement a lot.  What pops out to me is how much “below the line” my backswing is; this is something that has baffled me for years.  My instructor has told me not to worry about it yet; he has been focusing on lower body movements.

I practice with a Trackman monitor, and my 7 iron shows carry of 135-145 + ~10 yards roll, ball speed in high 90’s/low 100’s.  It starts out right but has a fairly significant pull (~800-1500L spin), trajectory in the low/mid 20 degree range.  If I am on the low side of the left spin rate, the ball lands just about at a straightaway target.

I had started hitting the ball thin, so the focus of my practice has been slowing down the backswing and making sure I don’t sway back.  That way, on the downswing I can focus (“think about”) hitting down on the ball.  When done well, contact was very solid and seemed to get me a couple extra mph on the ball speed too.

I wiped the dust off my longer clubs, and I got solid contact, but they’re low trajectory and a bigger pull than the 7 iron.  I feel like I’m a couple small changes away from almost having a real golf swing, but not sure what those changes are!

 

 

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11 hours ago, Effington said:

Hey guys, was hoping to get your thoughts on my swing; I have made some significant changes.  Worked on lower body movement a lot.  What pops out to me is how much “below the line” my backswing is; this is something that has baffled me for years.  My instructor has told me not to worry about it yet; he has been focusing on lower body movements.

If you're working with a good instructor, I'd stick to that. Just use the thread to detail what you're working on, how you're doing it, etc. There are some very good people here who can give you advice, but at the same time, what you're doing seems a bit like getting a diagnosis from a doctor and asking the internet for a second opinion 😉

11 hours ago, Effington said:

It starts out right but has a fairly significant pull (~800-1500L spin), trajectory in the low/mid 20 degree range.

Be careful with your terminology here. You're hitting a push-draw (overdraw/hook), not a pull. The ball starts right and turns hard left. A pull for you (a righty) would start left.

You're swing path is too far right.

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Effington, I entirely sympathize with your situation.  The swing puzzle has a finished picture to look at, but you need special glasses to make sense of it.

(I'm far from an expert, so grains of salt are warranted)

Your first few videos definitely look like an  **outside-->in**  swing, which is a slice maker.  But your new videos look better.  I did not see you mention it in your remarks. Did your lessons focus on that at all?

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8 hours ago, Cantankerish said:

Effington, I entirely sympathize with your situation.  The swing puzzle has a finished picture to look at, but you need special glasses to make sense of it.

(I'm far from an expert, so grains of salt are warranted)

Your first few videos definitely look like an  **outside-->in**  swing, which is a slice maker.  But your new videos look better.  I did not see you mention it in your remarks. Did your lessons focus on that at all?

I appreciate the an analysis!  I’ve done a lot of tweaking with the swing.  Last year I had a teacher that was working with me on getting my backswing more upright.  I switched teachers a couple months ago and the current one has a focus on hip turn and keeping the wrist hinge in the downswing, and told me not to worry about the shallow backswing (yet).  This most recent iteration looks ugly to me on camera, but I do have better results.

I finally got a little confidence to dust off the longer clubs, and was getting good ball speed and solid contact, but it was a low trajectory with a very significant push-hook.  After seeing this most recent video, I’m suspicious that it’s from my shallow backswing causing my downswing path to be out to the right.

9 hours ago, billchao said:

If you're working with a good instructor, I'd stick to that. Just use the thread to detail what you're working on, how you're doing it, etc. There are some very good people here who can give you advice, but at the same time, what you're doing seems a bit like getting a diagnosis from a doctor and asking the internet for a second opinion 😉

Be careful with your terminology here. You're hitting a push-draw (overdraw/hook), not a pull. The ball starts right and turns hard left. A pull for you (a righty) would start left.

You're swing path is too far right.

Thanks, I appreciate the comment!  You’re absolutely correct that I used the wrong terminology, thank you for the clarification/correction.

Regarding your last comment, I see the same thing.  Against my better judgement, I went to practice today and tried to work on getting a swing path that is "less to the right".  Ended up shanking it all over.  Serves me right for trying to think I know the answer; I just hope that tomorrow I can remember how I was doing it before.

Edited by Effington

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