The coronavirus has really hit the US hard. Today was the last lesson at Old Chatham until at least April 1st. Unfortunately, the virus is going to get worse before it gets better. While it is on my mind consistently, I am continuing the swing change with the goal of playing sometime in May.
We switched it up a little bit today and I hit five 8 iron shots to start the lesson. Patrick and I discussed the importance of bending at the waist with my setup. I played 18 holes at Hope Valley with my nephew Jacob and there were times when I neglected my setup. I must always address that first.
After hitting some really good shots Patrick explained that I have the habit of getting “fat” or heavy in my midsection at the top of the backswing and at impact. To improve my backswing, I need to feel my lower right obliques being skinny or soft. As I get close to the top of my backswing, without using my arms, I often allow my lower right obliques to get “fat”. When I feel them being “skinny” or relaxed, there is a lot more room to drive through with them to start the downswing.
Much like with the backswing, I use my lower left obliques to get fat right at and after impact. If I can feel myself getting very “skinny” and relaxed with my lower left obliques at impact, I am going to generate a significant amount of speed. When I get close to impact, I can really feel the turn of the hips. This is not done by snapping the hips or snapping the legs like announcers say, it is by making the lower left obliques soft or “skinny” and continuing to turn with my lower right obliques.
After working on this, I did not hit the ball as well, but I could feel more space at the top of the backswing and speed at impact. After doing this for a few range sessions, I am certain I will be hitting the ball extremely well.
I have to go back to feeling as if the outside of my quads and legs are stabilizing as I bend over at the hips. If I can keep this feel with my legs throughout the swing, I hit the ball very close to the center of the clubface most of the time.
Something else very cool is the fact that the clubface looks much bigger through impact now that I am coming in from inside and square. In the past, the clubface looked very small as it was just a glancing blow from the outside.
On Friday, March 20th, Patrick and I are going to do a lesson at Knights Play and then we will have to decide on where to go from there.
UPDATE: It is now mid January 2021, I am over 210 lessons in and we are still at Knight’s Play. Patrick is not going back to Old Chatham meaning I have gotten to know Knight’s Play extremely well. I am a little torn about this because I liked the privacy Old Chatham offered. That said, Knight’s Play is a different animal all together.