We have come a very long way in a short amount of time. I was lacking any type of confidence and had no idea how to hit the ball on Monday and today we were talking about compressing the ball and hitting an 8 iron 170 yards. With just a few tweaks and making certain my right arm and right shoulder were below the left arm and left shoulder, everything changed.
Today, Patrick explained that I was doing a great job of coming from the inside but I am not getting to the ball. In essence, I am entering the ball a few inches behind the ball when I need to be getting to the ball or even beyond it. To do this, I am to use my lower right side to get about 60% of my weight on my left side with the first move down. That said, I need to do this with patience and slowly. If I try to get fast, I pull the ball left or hook the ball. At least now I know why I am doing that.
Patrick worked with me on getting my weight more on my left side before impact. This is going to be a process for me because when I think getting the weight on my left side, I usually do it with my shoulders and arms. One way to combat this train of thought is to remember my left shoulder needs to stay on the target line as long as possible.
Patrick also explained that when doing the exercise with my arms outstretched I need to get to the top, then use my right side to get my weight to the ball of my left foot. It is ok to leave my left arm hanging where it is and not try to move it. Once I move the weight to my left side, the right side will then drive the left shoulder and left arm higher while the shoulder remains on the target line as long as I can keep it there. This makes much more sense as I was unable to keep my left arm long on the downswing and follow through while practicing earlier this week. Now I know that the arm is going to stay down and be driven up by the right side.
We also talked about the importance of going slower with the longer irons and driver. It takes longer for the club to get to the top because it is longer. The swing is not longer with my body, but the club is longer meaning it seems to me that it should take longer. I noticed that when I hit my 5 iron or 6 iron I get quick. I especially do this with my driver. I need to think about going even slower and getting to the top of the backswing before starting the downswing. I can get away with it with my shorter irons, but overall I need to work on my rhythm and slowing down so I can hit longer irons and my driver.
I am going to play a few times at Hope Valley over the weekend and work on keeping my right arm and right shoulder under my left arm and left shoulder. I will do this while keeping my left shoulder on the target line as long as I can. I may play around with getting my weight shifting and hinging my wrist, but that is a little advanced and may come later. We will see how I hit the ball with what I have.
I know the weight shift and the wrist hinge is going to add 20% to 30% more distance, but we cannot worry about that at the moment.
UPDATE: I am now 152 lessons in as of late August 2020 and I am still working on many of the same things with my shoulders. That said, my shoulder turn is much better and I am compressing the ball at impact. What I did not know in May 2019 was my legs and footwork were a mess. I went though months of improving this starting in July and August of 2019 which you will read about it later lessons.
Understand that much of this information is built upon other areas of improvement so do not think that if you simply keep your left shoulder on the target line longer you will be a scratch golfer. You won’t, but that doesn’t mean you should stop trying to get better.
This content is supported by Cary Family Dentist Dr. Leo Haydt.