Posts Tagged ‘golf lesson’

GolfTec Lesson: Weight Shift through the Swing

September 16, 2008

I went in for my first lesson in about a month and was pleased to find out I could move on from a total focus on the backswing.  This time, we focused on getting my swing properly loaded up on my right heel on the backswing and then shifting weight to the left foot and ending facing the target after hitting the ball.

I told my instructor that if I picked a spot on the ground to aim at for my practice swing, the club head would consistently come through inside that mark.  I’ve had problems with lifting my upper body as I swing, so I thought that might be the cause.

Instead of upper body, my instructor had me work on this weight shifting issue because I was coming up artificially high on the backswing with my arms, not really putting my weight on my back (right) foot.  This caused my swing to kind chop down too far inside, on too vertical a plane.  What I should have been doing was shifting my weight straight down into my right heel, creating more of a wind up, so that my swing followed the natural arc through where the ball was with a weight shift to the left through the ball.

My instructor gave me a few drills to work on this:

•    Do the whole swing with feet completely together. To maintain your balance, you’ll have to do the weight shift and this will give you a feel for how it should be in your regular swing.

•    Do the backswing standing on only your right foot, and switch to only your left as you transfer your weight through the swing.

•    Use a chair to mark how far back to go on the backswing and how far forward to go on the follow-through.  Your body should be perpendicular to the ground on both the back swing and the finish, not leaning too far in either direction.

Working on this has noticeably improved my swing, particularly with irons.  The next time I went out to play, I hit the ball much more solidly and consistently with the irons.  That’s about all that improved, but I’ll take it.

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GolfTec Putting Lesson: Modified Claw Grip

September 2, 2008

My first putting lesson resulted in a totally new grip. I had been using a conventional grip with my left index finger and right pinkie interlaced. I was struggling to keep my wrists stable and had way too much wiggle in my stroke. My instructor tried out various grips with me and settled on a modified “claw” grip. My left hand goes in the club as usual, but the right hand comes in from behind the club so that the club rests in the “V” between the thumb and index finger, with the thumb and fingers all extended forward. Some claw grips have the thumb and fingers pointing towards the hole (see this Sports Illustrated story), or coming from behind but wrapped around the grip. The modification my instructor gave me seemed to provide the most stable movement for me. My instructor had me adjust my stance so that the ball was closer to my front foot, rather than in the center of my stance. He also had me get closer to the ball so that when I looked down at it, my head was basically over the ball. I have seen improvements from the increased stability of this grip. On the long road ahead, at least this is a start.