Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Many shots are struck on the toe or outer edge of the clubhead

20 Most common shot problems

Lesson 7 of 20

Diagnosis: Many shots are struck on the toe, or outer edge of the clubhead.  

Explanation:  Ask most weekend players why they are hitting the ball off the toe end of the club and they will invariably answer by saying they are standing too far from the ball. Although this can be a cause it rarely is.
There are basically two very different reasons for striking the ball on the toe end of the clubhead. By observing the direction the ball curves you can determine not only the cause, but also what corrective measure needs to be taken. 

If your toed shots curve to the left your clubface is closed (facing to the left of its path) at impact. In this position the toe end of the club leads the heel into the ball resulting in contact with the toe end of the club.
If your shots curve to the right you will know that your swing is too upright. A too upright swing doesn’t position the club far enough behind you at the top of your swing, thus the club doesn’t move outward enough on the downswing. This results in only the toe portion of the club reaching the target line and the ball.

Correction:     If your toed shots curve to the left your grip needs to be adjusted to correct the early closing of the clubface. Position your hands on the grip with both turned more to the left or counterclockwise.

               If your toed shots curve to right you need to adjust your posture so that you can swing on a less upright plane. Increase your knee flex slightly and decrease the amount that you bend your spine forward. This more upright posture will allows you to turn rather than lift your right shoulder during the backswing. The turning provides the inside element to the arms swing that had been lacking in the backswing. At the top of the backswing the club will now stop over your right shoulder rather than over your head.  The club will now move more outward on the downswing allowing the center of the clubface to reach the target line and the ball.

To schedule an appointment with Steve call Golf Rx at (615) 288-4539

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Drives start out to the right and curve farther to the right.

20 Most common shot problems

Lesson 6 of 20

Diagnosis: Drives start out to the right and curve farther to the right. Shorter irons also push to the right with little or no curve. Contact with iron shots tends to be either fat or thin.
Explanation:  This is a problem that is more prevalent among better players. The reason is they often have the misconception of the swing path being from in to out – the club moving right of the target at impact. In an attempt to swing into the ball from the inside the player leaves the left hip in the way. Rather than the hips clearing the left leg stiffens which doesn’t allow the club head to return on line at impact. 

     As mentioned in previous lessons the correct path is from inside to along the target line and then back to the inside. With an in to out path the shot starts right because the club is moving in that direction at impact. The blocking of the left leg doesn’t allow the arms to square the clubface at impact. Hence the clubface is open and shots curve to the right as well

     An in to out swing path also creates a very shallow angle of approach where the club head reaches the bottom of its arc very early. The club may contact the ground behind the ball (fat shots) or contact the ball after the club has begun moving upward (thin shots). 

Adding to the problem is the fact that players who visualize an in to out swing path often play the ball too far back (to the right) in their stance. This rearward positioning causes the club to contact the ball too early while the clubface is still open and moving right of the target line.  

Correction:     Realize the correct swing path is from inside to along the target line and then back to the inside rather than inside to outside. Move the ball farther forward (to the left) in your stance and be conscious of clearing the left hip early in the downswing. This allows the club to make contact with the ball while it is traveling along the target line. Clearing the left hip also helps return the clubface square at impact. It is important to swing the club down with the arms and hands as the hips clear. You’ll soon experience straighter and more solid golf shots. 

To schedule an appointment with Steve call Golf Rx at (615) 288-4539

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

For new readers of my blog

This is an update for those of you who are reading my blog for the first time. On Wednesday, October 17th I began a weekly series on player's most common faults and shot problems. The first five lessons are currently available and a new lesson will be posted each Wednesday for the next 20 weeks.

Each weekly topic will be discussed using the following: 
1. A diagnosis of what went wrong with your shot.
2. What your club is doing at impact as well as what it should be doing.
3. Explain how to adjust your stroke to improve your impact conditions and cure your faulty shot.

These twenty lessons are based on chapters from my latest book, The Pocket Caddy - Quick Reference. Each week's topic is explained in an easy to understand manner written specifically for the weekend golfer.

I hope you find them helpful and informative. I encourage you to share these with your golfing friends.  

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Most long shots fly left to right. Short irons finish left of target. Shanked shots off to the right sometime occur.

20 Most common shot problems

Lesson 5 of 20

Diagnosis: Most long shots fly left to right. Short irons finish left of target. Shanked shots off to the right sometime occur.
Explanation:  I discussed in a previous lesson that during the backswing the club must move both to the inside and upward. The club arcs to the inside because we stand to the side of the ball. The club also moves upward because the ball sits below our shoulders. Turning the shoulders and upper body to the right creates the inside element. Swinging the arms on a more upright plane largely creates the upward element. This combined movement creates a separation of planes between the relatively flat plane that the shoulders have turned, and the more upright plane that the arms have followed. For most players without this separation of planes it is difficult to return the club to the ball on a correct path with a square club face. 

This is because the start of the downswing is a reaction to the finish of the backswing. If the club is moving upward at the end of the backswing it will tend to swing downward from the inside on the downswing. However if the club finishes the backswing moving around to the inside but not upward, it will tend to swing back toward the outside instead of downward at the start of the downswing. The shot pattern described in this lesson is often caused by the backswing lacking the upward element. In other words you are swinging the club on too flat a plane, similar to the plane of your shoulder turn. 

This is often the result of having the ball positioned too far forward (too far to the left in your stance). This forces your shoulders to be open (aligned too far to the left) at address. From this position to swing the club to the inside on the backswing the arms must swing around the body on a too flat plane that is lacking the upward element. Because the backswing is completed with the arms moving around to the inside rather than upward, they begin the downswing moving around to the outside rather than downward. At impact the club is moving in an out-to-in path with an open club face thus the ball starts left then curves right.  An occasional shank may occur due to the club moving outward rather than downward in the downswing. The club face is moved out beyond the ball making contact on the hosel of the club.           
Correction:   Play the ball farther back in your stance with your shoulders aligned farther to the right.   This proper address position will give you the inside element of the backswing prior to swinging the club. Your focus can now be merely on swinging the club upward and downward with your arms letting your body turn only as the result of swinging the club with your arms and hands. Because the arms can now swing the club upward going back, they will swing it freely downward from inside to along the target line. The results are straighter and more solid shots and the shanks are no more.  

To schedule an appointment with Steve call Golf Rx at (615) 288-4539

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Beware of buying clubs on the internet

       The internet is a great tool and has certainly changed our lives in many positive ways. Unfortunately it also has given scammers an opportunity to prey on thousands of unsuspecting golfers. In the past year I know of three individuals who have purchased counterfeit golf clubs through the internet.
       In each situation the clubs were advertised as brand new with a price hundreds less than the normal price you would pay at a golf shop. After receiving their clubs they noticed the differences between theirs and the real thing, but by then it was too late. They were out hundreds of dollars and left with imitations made of cheap pot metal that have no value whatsoever.
        My best advice is this: If it sounds too good to be true, it almost always is! The only way to make sure you are getting legitimate name brand golf equipment is to purchase them through your local PGA golf professional.
         At Golf Rx we proudly custom fit Ping, KZG, Taylor Made and Adams golf equipment. Call Steve to schedule a fitting or to discuss your equipment needs.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Free Club Fittings through December 31st.

Golf Rx will be offering a Free Club Fitting to customers now through December 31st.    The $45.00 fitting fee will be waived to all Golf Rx customers through the end of the year.

   This is a great opportunity  to have your current clubs evaluated or be professionally fitted for your new equipment.
An "off the rack set" simply cannot accommodate the variables in player's height, strength and swing characteristics.  It makes more sense that your clubs fit you rather than adjusting your swing to the equipment.

Golf Rx only sells custom fit clubs and Steve has 25 years experience in professionally fitting golf equipment. 
We are also proud to announce that Golf Rx is now an authorized dealer and fitting center of KZG golf clubs, the #1 Custom Pro line of high quality, high performance golf equipment. 

 Call or come by to schedule your free club fitting with Steve.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Most shots start on line then curve right. Most iron shots are thin or fat.

20 Most common shot problems

Lesson 4 of 20

Diagnosis: Most long shots start on line then curve right. Irons shots are often thin (no divot) or fat (divot behind ball). Tendency is to finish swing back on right foot.   
Explanation:  As I mentioned in Lesson 2 because we stand to the side of ball the club must be swing around our body as well as up and down and up again. The club arcs to the inside during the backswing and arcs back to the inside during the follow through. The role of the body is to make room for the arms to swing along this arc by turning to the right on the backswing, and clearing to the left on the forward swing.

            The body not turning to the right on the backswing results in the inability to clear to the left on the forward swing. When the body doesn’t clear the arms are blocked resulting in the club face being open at impact. Shots will curve to the right. The failure of your body to turn forces your arms to swing nearly on a straight line with the club moving too much upward, downward and upward. This makes it nearly impossible to take turf after impact with the ball because of the exaggerated upwardness of the throughswing. 
          If your shots follow this pattern there is a good chance your posture is at fault. If your back and neck are bending too far forward at address it will position your head over the ball giving you the visual impression that the swing is on a straight line. This causes you to lift your right shoulder too much upward on the backswing rather that turning it to the right. Rocking the right shoulder up on the backswing leads to the hips blocking rather than turning on the forward swing. This blocking makes it difficult to shift your weight to the left so you often fall back onto your right foot as your left leg stiffens.

Correction:   Adjust your posture with more knee flex and your back and neck more upright. A line straight down from your eyes would now be closer to your feet and farther from the ball. Focus on turning your right shoulder out of the way to the right as you swing your arms back and up. Turning the right shoulder rather than rocking it upward on the backswing allows the hips to clear to the left instead of sliding and blocking on the forward swing. By clearing your left side your arms can know swing the club forward on the correct in-to-in path resulting in more solid contact and straighter shots.   

To schedule a lesson with Steve call (615) 288-4539