Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Top 100 Teacher Brady Riggs will be online LIVE at noon Eastern to
answer your questions, review your swing videos and help you improve
your game. (Remember: He'll answer questions with videos first!) Leave a
question in the comments area now to be first in line! Thanks to everyone for your questions and videos. I am very sorry I couldn't get to everyone today. Please resubmit your question next week and I promise to get to it. Thanks again for checking in this morning and I look forward to seeing some new vids next week. As we move on this morning I want to give special thanks to Marc and Fred at JC Video for all their help with my digital video motion analysis software. They have some amazing products for both professionals and amateurs who want to improve through fact and not feel. Tim M. asks at 1:35: My
misses tend to be fat and a fade, slice shot. I feel like I have a good
back swing, but then I lift and come over the top at the start of the
downswing. Any suggestions on improving my swing are greatly
appreciated. Tim, that is the coolest video we have received here on the blog, congrats on the creativity and missing the car and telephone poll. Here is the problem with your motion. Your grip and set-up position isn't bad. You are what we call a classic front foot pivoter. In other words, you have absolutely no weight moving away from the target on the backswing as all of your motion occurs over your foot. There are several problems with this type of pivot. The most glaring issue is that because you never moved anything away from the target going back you cant move anything to the target coming down, it is already there! This forces you to begin the downswing with a spin instead of a slight shift or bump to the target. The bump not only produces more power, it helps the arms and club come down instead of out and over producing a more inside attack to impact. I have included a picture of Davis Love III to help you see the lateral motion that must occur to the target if you are to improve your swing. The yellow line near his left ear was against his ear at the address showing you the lateral motion present in the backswing. I have put a green line against his hip to illustrate the bump necessary to create a better path to the ball on the downswing. Brady-top

Grant asks at 1:25: Can you
please help me with my tush line, everything seems fine until I
transition into the downswing and my butt comes in away from the line
and I lose my posture and stand up a little through the hitting zone.
Any suggestions or recommendations to help me stay in posture would be
great. Thanks.
I looked at the images you sent in, thanks. You are most certainly losing your line Grant. It all begins in the address position. Your weight is back in your heels with nowhere to go but to your toes as you swing the club. Try to feel like your upper body is too close to the ball with your weight over the top of your toes in the address position. This will allow you to turn into your right heel going back and then into your left heel going through. It may seem overly simplistic but if you fix your set-up at least 75% of your issue will go away. I have included a picture of Lee Westwood to show you where the weight should be at address and impact. Take a good look at his right foot at impact and how different yours looks on your video. His foot stays down because he has more weight in the heel at the top making it take longer to come up and the weight working in the proper direction as he works to the ball. This is a huge issue for you as the rest of your swing looks very solid.  Brady-two   Mike asks at 1:15: Hi Brady,
I just can't believe that the good game Michael Campbell used to have
was based on pure luck. I still believe there must be a lot of talent
hidden somewhere in him. Based on the results the past couple of years
something strange must have happend to his game. What do you think
happend to Michael Campbells game (besides going downhill)? If Campbell
would come to you for coaching and advice, what would you tell him and
what would you work on whith him? I wish I had some insight to offer you about what happened to him. I really liked his golf swing and his class on the golf course. I can tell you that if I worked with him I would tell him the same thing I told another great player who nearly won that US OPEN at Pinehurst when he fell on hard times, lets go back to the future! When great players lose their game they have often tried to improve and lost what it was that made them great in the first place. I would get out the video of the US OPEN and any other tournament when he was playing his best and compare his current swing to the one that worked. This would give us an idea about what is different so we can start the process of getting things back on track. This is why it is so critical that we as teachers have video of our players when they are playing great so we can go back and use it as a reference. There could obviously be other issues at work with Campbell that include injury, desire, or family concerns. I think he was good for the game and I would love to see him back on the world stage. Matt asks at 1:00: I'm a
scratch golfer with a somewhat unique swing issue that I am trying to
get resolved. I have too much lag coming into the ball and as a result,
I get narrow on the downswing, I tend to hang back too much and release
the club too late. All of this causes me to rely way too much on
timing. I have tried and tried to get in a position to get my weight
back to the left side and get more on top of the ball at impact. Any
ideas? Thanks. Thanks for the question Matt. You sound like me about 20 years ago when I thought the more lag the better. There is no question that lag is a necessary element of any powerful and repeatable golf swing. However, you can overdo it. Getting it under control has everything to do with your body and very little to do with your hands and arms. When you have excessive lag you almost certainly have excessive right side tilt on the downswing (assuming you are right handed). This pushes the left shoulder up, the right shoulder down and the head back away from the target through impact. Fixing the body position should absolutely become the priority. If you can get your shoulders more level later into the downswing and keep your head up and your eyes parallel to the horizon you will clean things up quickly. When you fix the shoulders, your right arm can straighten sooner and you will see less lag as you approach impact. I have included a picture of Brad Faxon and Anthony Kim at impact to show you the difference in body positions coming down. If you can send in a video of your swing I can give you some more specific advice. 


Ben asks at 12:15: I
finally got out to the range to make a video. My swing doesn't look as
nice as it did indoors. Seems like I lose the tush line and my head
stays down for quite a long time. Let me know what else might lead to
inconsistency. Isn't it amazing how things change when a ball and a target get involved? The Tush Line doesn't look like an issue at this point so I wouldn't focus too much on it. The real issue is what you want from your ball flight. From the video it looks like you are hitting the classic "power fade". The clubface is a touch closed at the top. This is the result of a slightly bowed left wrist position and not the grip being too strong. There is the look of a slightly steep/ outside attack coming down and the anti/left finish that goes along with it. Your head stays down and your left side gets high to keep the ball from going too far left, in fact, it looks very much like Nicklaus in the finish. The real issue here is are you happy with the shape of your shots? There is no question you can play great golf from where you currently are. The only issue is you are pinned into this shot shape and could see problems develop with your back based upon the history of this type of swing over time. I have included a picture of Sean O'Hair at the top of the swing to show you a more neutral left wrist position. This would get the face more square and give you the opportunity to attack on a more inside path and release freely to the target. I have also included a picture of Darren Clarke in the finish to show you how a healthier, more right to left ballflight would look at the end of your swing. Let me know what your goals are and what the ball is currently doing so we can develop a plan of attack. Brady-four

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