We are still at Knight’s Play due to Coronavirus. Today was a HUGE day for my shoulder turn. It was hot and humid after a thunderstorm and I sweated my ass off. My hair was soaking wet and I was dripping with sweat by the end of the lesson. So, what happened?
We started with slowing down my arms on the backswing. My body should “outrun” my arms when going back. To do this, I need to get my upper thoracic turning. I am doing a good job of getting my core turning, but that needs to get up into the upper thoracic or under my lats. I can honestly do this relatively early in the backswing. I continue to allow the upper part of my upper body to turn way too late and it shortens the turn.
So, Patrick wants me turning deeper into my upper thoracic after takeaway and after my core starts the turn. When I do this, it feels like my belly button and rib cage are way ahead of my arms. In fact, it almost feels like they are so far ahead that I am going to fall forward towards the target. It is going to take a lot of reps to allow this to feel somewhat normal.
The more I can get the upper thoracic turning, the deeper my backswing is. It takes a lot longer to get to the top of the backswing but I can now feel and understand why the left lat feels like it is going to the ball of the left foot as we get deep into the swing. Patrick cleaned up the top of my backswing by making certain my right side is pulling in or sucked in and I am bent over at the hips. I feel very, very bent over at the top of the backswing.
I still need to work on my right elbow being soft at take away and throughout the backswing but Patrick was very excited about the depth of my backswing. It took me a few reps to get the feel for the depth, but I now understand why the club finishes well over your head after the swing. Patrick took a video on his phone and was very pleased with the extension and finish. Once again, there is plenty to clean up, but I am feeling much more comfortable with actual depth in the backswing.
Patrick said I was much more flexible in my lats today. The practice stretch with the elastic bands must be doing a good job. I am going to continue to use that as a practice aid instead of going to the range and hitting balls. The greater depth is much more important than trying to manufacture a way to hit the ball in my current state.
Patrick wants me to play nine holes at Knight’s Play sometime next week but I am super excited about working on depth in my backswing. We will see what he decides.
UPDATE: The depth of my backswing continues to improve with each and every lessons. It is now February 2021, I am over 225 lessons in and we will work on depth of the backswing with every lesson. While I have learned a lot more about the downswing and the hinge of the left wrist, the depth of the backswing will always be the more important part of the golf swing.