Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher Brady Riggs was online Tuesday to help fix your swing. He'll be back at noon EST next Tuesday to answer your swing questions.
Thanks to everyone for your questions and comments. I regret not getting to everyone's questions, please post them again next week during our normal blog time. For more help with your game visit my site at www.bradyriggs.com Tom asks at 5:50:
I am about a 14 index. I have really been awful off the tee with the
driver (Big catastrophic blocks to the right-push slices or duck hooks
depending on the compensation) and I make poor contact with my irons. I
rarely compress the ball and take a good divot, lots of thin and fat
shots off the toe.
In my view I really struggle with two aspects of my swing:
1. Early extension/Coming off the tush line/posture etc.........If you
could fix this, I'd be unbelievably happy, as I see this as my biggest
problem, although I am curious to hear what you think.
2. I feel like transition into the downswing is initially too steep?
(Initially steep on the downswing) Is this why I come off the tush line
or is it the other way around? I am really frustrated and feel like I have tried
everything--lessons from highly regarded pros, rotating my left
leg out, the visual of sitting in a chair, setting my weight on my toes
at address, etc and it's driving me crazy. This has been going on
for at least a year. If you could get me to stay on the tush line I'd
forever be grateful. Please help. Thanks. Hang in there, Yong, there is hope. I want to clean out your mind as much as possible so from this point forward so try to forget all the garbage floating around in your coconut. The major issue that is the source of all your really big misses is that your body is significantly too OPEN and PAST the ball when you make contact. I agree that there are other issues going on, but if you can't stay behind the ball better and keep yourself from spinning around to the target you will never hit it as solid as you would like. The loss of the tush line and steep club position in the transition will both improve if you focus on the bigger issue of where you are when you make contact with the ball. Here is what you should do: We need to establish more right side tilt away from the target at address with all of your clubs, especially with the driver. This little adjustment will make it much easier for you to stay behind the ball at impact. Make sure you get your weight into the inside back of your right heel at the top of the backswing. This will help you achieve a proper turn and give you a chance to attack the ball more from the inside. There are different feels associated with staying more closed with the body on the downswing. They vary from keeping your back to the target, keeping the shoulders closed, etc. I prefer for you to get your left quad (upper leg) loaded with some weight for as long as possible coming down. When combined with right-side tilt at address this will keep your upper body tilted away from the target while your hips and shoulders avoid spinning out too quickly. When you do this properly the club will actually pass your body sooner going through, allowing the face to rotate properly at impact. You should see the ball fly from right-to-left and go significantly farther than before. Send in some new video once you have made the changes. Sean asks at 5:20 p.m. Hi Brady,
Really enjoy your blog every week. A month ago, I was playing my best golf ever (5.4 index). Kept trying to tweak my swing, primarily to get more distance. I've successfully gotten myself all messed up to the point where I feel like I've "lost" my swing. I did some swing videos (driver down the line/face on, 7 iron down the line/face on) and would really appreciate your comments and thoughts as to what I should work on. Here are a couple of things about your swing that you may or many not know but should be aware of. Your grip is on the strong side of neutral. Your shoulder turn is excessively flat when compared to your original address position. This can be seen when you look at your swing from the face-on and down-the-line views. The height of your head and the angle of the bill of your cap change significantly during the backswing. There is an obvious shift out and over as you begin the downswing. This pushes the club above what would be a neutral path as you approach impact. As a result, the club, hands, and arms work left through impact, hurting your ability to release the club properly. I will tell you that some of the "slow" release of the hands through impact isn't a bad thing considering your grip is so strong. Now that we got that out of the way. There are enough "unique" things going on in your swing to produce peaks and valleys in your consistency. The first thing you need to establish is what type of ball-flight you want to create. That will have a huge impact on how you proceed. If I had it my way I would weaken your grip slightly, keep you bent over on the angle you started with during the backswing, and get the club attacking on a more inside/shallow angle to encourage you to release the club properly. The ball-flight would be more right-to-left in nature with your divots very shallow. These changes would produce more neutral alignments of the club during the swing and prevent you from "losing" your swing again.
been working hard on my game and finally getting to be able to hit a
draw, sometimes on purpose. It seems that the release is the real
hidden secret to both power and hitting a draw. Is it true that holding
off the release and really throwing my hands will create more distance
and a draw? I don't really understand why there's so little info on the
importance of release, "getting handsy", and throwing your hands. Can
you explain? This is an interesting question Eric because we have all heard about how bad "getting handsy" is bad for the swing. The fact is an aggressive release of the club through impact is a must for good ball-striking. BUT, describing how the release "feels" can be a very difficult task indeed. While the release of two players may look nearly identical, one player could describe their hands as "passive" and the other as "active". This is why the use of video during golf lessons is so beneficial. It isn't important that I know what you are doing or supposed to do, but that YOU know what you are doing. There are certain alignments that are common to professionals in the release. There are also variations to the average based upon the player's grip, angle of the clubface during the swing, path the club is swinging on, and the desired ball-flight. It is for these reasons that I would be hesitant to tell you to "hold off" the release and then throw your hands to create more distance and draw. Without actually seeing the mechanics of your golf swing I could do you more harm than good. What I will do is show you a couple of pictures of some classic releases that you can use to help you find a "feel" that works for you.
when you look at how the hill is sloping from behind the hole is
different when you look at the slope from behind the ball. The slope
seems to be also different when you look from one side of the putting
line to the other side. Where is the most accurate view of the slope?
There are many things to take into consideration when reading a green. If you talk to a sampling of Tour players you will hear conflicting ideas about which side is best to get a read on a putt. Some will even say the type of putt (downhill, uphill, side-hill) would be the determining factor when choosing the best side. The fact that there are multiple ideas from Tour players leads one to conclude that there is no one perfect angle. I prefer the look from behind the hole and back to my ball, then from behind the ball looking to the hole in that order. On side-hill putts, especially on severe slopes, I like to stand at the midway point of the putt looking from the bottom of the slope back up to my intended line. This gives me a Triangulated view of the slope that I find to be very helpful. I would encourage you to experiment with all angles to find what works best for you. As an instructor I encourage my students to keep two specific things in mind. First, I don't want my students to "over-read" a putt. To avoid this I teach them to only go with one angle if they feel they are confident about their read. The second technique they use is to go with their original read if the second or third angle they studied begins to confuse them. In most cases, the original read will be correct. Once the read has been established their is no point in changing your mind while standing over the ball. Making a putt when changing after you have set-up is nearly impossible. Whichever angle you choose, stay committed to your line and you will have more success.