Lesson #98 – January 2nd, 2020
Mikaila had her 7th lesson today and I had my 98th. She went first and got a little frustrated that her right side wanted to pull through impact. Welcome to the challenges of the golf swing. There will be many more frustrations trying to get your body to do what your mind knows to do.
After practicing over the holiday, I started to learn the importance in keeping the tension of the upper back. If you don’t turn, you will never feel the tension. Once you have a full shoulder turn, you are to keep the tension on the right side of your back to keep from ripping across with the shoulder. Today, Patrick showed me the importance of the tension in the left shoulder. While the right shoulder keeps you inside on the way down, the left shoulder keeps the upper back silent while the core can drive through the ball.
Patrick twisted me to the top and helped me to feel my right arm and shoulder being passive while my left side, especially around my left ribs, drives the body to the top. As I get more and more flexible, I feel from my chest open up turning more and more. Back to feeling skinny. Once at the top, my right nipple feels like it is behind my right tricep. I know this is not what is actually happening, but that is what it feels like.
If I can get the feel of my right nipple behind my right tricep I know I am staying on plane with my body. From there, I need to focus on keeping the tension in my left upper back while driving my belly button through and towards my left hip. If I can do this while keeping my arms and upper body silent, it feels like my right hip is miles past the ball. If I continue to drive with my right side I can come under and through. Patrick holds my hands high after impact and allows my body to come under and through; it is a very unique feeling.
I still feel I need to work on getting to the top of my backswing with my left upper thoracic without allowing my right shoulder or right elbow to do the work. I definitely feel as if my arms are becoming more passive but there is plenty of work to be done. I will continue to do exercises with my elbows in front of my nipples and my hands outside my shoulders to get more flexibility in my triceps, shoulders and upper back.
I also need to continue to practice keeping both of my lats tense at the top of the backswing and to the transition of the downswing. If I can keep them tense, my arms passive and drive my belly button towards my right hip or knee cap I can hit the ball extremely well.
UPDATE: For awhile I really tried to turn with a tense upper back. We are now in December of 2020 and I realize how important having a soft and relaxed upper body is for the turn of the backswing. I have finally gotten to the point where my elbows are soft but I still try to lift with my right side. Patrick is now kneading my right lat as I start my backswing. The more soft and relaxed by right lat it, the better my turn. I also feel the need to still keep my right elbow inside as long as possible. It is getting more natural but is still something I have to think about.