Monday, October 19, 2009

Top 100 Teacher Brady Riggs was online Tuesday at noon Eastern
to review swing videos, answer questions and offer tips..
Thanks to everyone for your great questions this week. I am sorry to those who I didn't get back to. Please resubmit your quesitons earlier next week so I can be sure to answer them. Remember, if you post a link to your swing from You Tube I will put your question to the top of list. Have a great week! Shane Roach asks at 1:24: Hi - whats the best drill to eliminate the reverse pivot that causes loss of distance and thin shots. Shane, there are two things you need to do to create the proper pivot. First, allow your head to move laterally on the backswing. This may be contrary to everything you have heard but it is a MUST. Next, DON'T move your hips laterally during the backswing. If your hips turn immediately and your head moves laterally away from the target your reverse pivot will be gone. King asks at 1:15: Please explain the arch of approach and how to ingrain it into your swing. Are you asking me this question based upon a Golfing Machine background or just in general? The arc of approach is basically the angled delivery of the swinging motion, rather than the straight line of the hitting motion. I am not sure how this will help anyone in this blog or anywhere for that matter. Maybe you can ask me the question again next week with some more specific information about what you are trying to understand.

Robert asks at 1:10: i
recently started golfing and when i swing down towards the ball my
hips open instantly before my arms barley start forward and it forces me
to come over the top any tips? thx
Robert, try to approach golf like you would any other sport. You would never throw a ball by starting your arm before you stepped to the target. The same should be true with golf. The sequence of motion should be identical. The weight should move in the direction of the target before your hips begin to open. You can use a simple step when hitting balls off the tee on the range with a short iron to get the feel of this. Take your normal address positon, then move your front foot next to your back foot. Just before you reach the top of the swing step with your front foot to the target to get the feel of moving weight. You may be surprised how well you strike the ball with this step. Once you get the hang of it, go back to your normal address position and try to get the sense you are stepping without actually doing so.
Remember to try to play golf like an athlete, not like a golfer. Mikey asks at 1:00: I finally
figured out why I was putting a hole in the palm of my golf
gloves...Researched it online and discovered that I was gripping the
club in my palm more than fingers...Question there a full-proof
set up routine to prevent me from doing this? By the way, I am left
The only fool-proof set-up routine is one that you do every time. If you look at tour players set-up you will see many different techniques from player to player, but absolute consistency from each player. That should be your goal as a player. To create a consistent routine that is easy for you to duplicate and remember. In college, we were "forced" to record our routine on an audio tape, (yes, I am that old), with detailed step by step descriptions and play it back to ourselves in the car on the way to the course. It seemed like a waste of time at the time, but I have used that routine now for 20 years. Kenny asks at 12:55: I have a
tendency to snap hook my 3 wood and driver. I'm fine with my irons
however. It's getting really frustrating. Any advice is appreciated.
This isn't that unusual to have the irons straighter for a couple of reasons. First, the woods have less loft, create less backspin and produce more sidespin and as a result, more hook. Second, the contact with the ground created by the irons can keep the face more square than the woods that don't hit the ground at all. The bottom line is that the clubface is closed as it attacks the ball. This is either the result of the grip or the left wrist position during the swing. I can't give you a definative answer until I see the swing. Please send post a link on the blog next week to your swing from You Tube and I will get you going. Barry asks at 12:48: I can't
seem to break thru to the next scoring level. When I play well, 75
seems to be the best I can do; there's always one or two hole that
sabotage my round from being really good. Any suggestions on how to
break thru?
Start keeping detailed statistics of what you are doing during the round. GIR, Fairways hit, Putts, Putts per GIR, Sand Saves, side missed when not hitting greens and fairways, scoring avg. on par 3's, 4's, and 5's, and scoring avg. on dogleg left and right. This will give you an idea of where you need to improve and how to adjust your practice schedule. Bill W. asks at 12:43: Brady,
what a great option to ask you this live (well hopefully on Tuesday).
I'm a 4.0 index, so feel pretty comfortable with the mechanics of my
swing. My mechanics go off line, when my tempo pulls them off line.
What are some of your best tips for consistent tempo.
Thanks for the compliment. Over the years I have come to the conclusion that tempo isn't as important as people think. However, I will tell you that the timing of your swing should always come from your feet. In other words, the weight should always move before your club. If this happens going back and coming down you will rarely feel off tempo wise. Like every other sport the best have the best footwork, golf is no different. Dick Smith asks at 12:21: I have
always been a poor chipper. I can't seem to keep my hands quiet and so
I often flip the wrists to help the ball in the air which is the wrong
thing to do but I can't seem to keep the hinge in my wrists. My friends
say I should just hit the chips with no wrist action like a putt.
Should I try to preset the wrist hinge or if you have any suggestions
on how to keep the hinge in my wrists and the chipping stroke smooth I
would really appreciate it. Thank you very much.
If there is one thing kids do today better than in my era it is chip and pitch. I think the strategy of straight back and through while keeping the face square reallly screwed a ton of people up. As a result any hand or wrist action became a negative, which is completely unrealistic. I think a better idea is to allow the clubface to rotate back and through like it would during the swing. This allows a natural amount of hand and wrist action that is comfortable and effective. I know it sounds a little scary to use your hands, but having them do something is much easier than trying to do nothing. Marc asks at 12:06: Here
are 2 swings of mine. I hit both of these 5 irons straight and solid.
Please critique my swing. My head dips forward at the top of my
backswing which I don't like. How much of a problem is it?
My swing: Thanks
Thanks for the video Marc. The head dipping is no big deal. Most professionals will have their head drop down during the backswing as they torque into the ground so don't worry about it. I think the big stuff in your swing is quite good. I like the clubface position and the path the club is swinging on. These are the most important things to monitor and you are doing an excellent job with them.
I would like to see the ball a bit more forward in your stance. The reason for this is that you don't get into your front foot good enough coming down. Here is a good way to check this. On your video put a piece of paper on the outside of the front shoulder so the paper runs perpendicular to the ground. When you get to impact, your front shoulder should be closer to the target than it was at address. If you look at your current swing, this isn't happening. I think this would significantly help your ballstriking, especially with the irons. This isn't as critical with the driver, but it is a must for the irons. Christian asks at 12:00: I
took some video of my swing recently and someone pointed out to me that
I wasn’t maintaining my “tush line”. I watched your video about this
and it looks to me that I am coming off the tush line at the top of the
backswing vs. on the downswing, but don’t seem to be swaying much (my
head stays steady which makes me think that it isn’t caused by me
starting with too much weight on my heels). Do you have any suggestions
as to why I am coming off the line and how to fix it? Do you see
anything else in the video that I should be working on? In the video I
am practicing a ¾ swing with a lob wedge and plastic practice ball.
Thank you.

Down the line: Thanks for the video Christian. Your issue is in the set-up. The reason you lose the tush line is because your weight is excessively in your heels when you address the ball. The strange thing about the swing is your weight will go where it isn't during the backswing. Therefore, if you start in your heels the weight will go to your toes, making your tush come off the line. This will give you less room coming through impact, hurting your ability to make solid contact while significantly reducing your clubhead speed.
I would like to see you get your knees more bowlegged in the address. This is a more athletic start and promotes a more fluid motion than the knocked knees alignment you currently have. From there, you need to get your weight out over the balls of the feet so you can allow your turn to take the weight into the right heel at the top. This keep your tush on the line going back and fixes the problem. Read past installments of Ask the Top 100 Live

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