Maintain Body Angles for Consistency

Have you ever struggled with shots that just don't seem to go where they should? The ball always seems to leak right or hook left. Today's post strives to get at the root cause of why your golf swing is so reliant on timing.

One of the more frequent mistakes I see golfers make is to stand up or lose their body angles through impact - the "stand and deliver" move! The loss of body angles or posture causes the body to stop rotating and as a result the hands now assume the responsibility of squaring the clubface. Remember - if the body does not rotate to clubface square, then the hands will help out. This move is very difficult to time, especially under pressure, and often leads to the hands overworking or flipping through impact. If the hands rotate the clubface too early the shot misses left and if they're a touch late, then the shot misses right.

Consistently straight shots are achievable only when the clubface is being squared via the rotation of the body through impact.

An indicator that you are losing your body angles through impact is that your divots (if you are even taking any) are always deeper on the outside than the inside. They are toe deep. (A big reason why an "active" fitting is not always the best way to go!)

A good method to ensure that the body continues it's rotation through the hit is to work on maintaining your posture or spine angle that is established at address. Hit little pitch type shots with an eight iron trying to feel that your torso stays down over the ball while clearing through the strike. A good feel is to try and sense that the hands are low through impact - they should feel like they are actually lower at impact than they were at address. You may even have the sense that the toe of the club is higher at impact than the heel. Try this DRILL

This is something that all of golf's greatest ball strikers have in common - Nick Price, Lee Trevino and Ben Hogan all did a fantastic job of maintaining their posture through impact. This allowed them to take the hands, and timing, out of the equation - a recipe for consistently good golf shots.

Body Angles | Andrew Rice Golf

Golf Grip: Strong, Neutral or Weak?

The Vardon grip?  The interlock grip?  The ten-finger or baseball gripWhat is a strong grip? Does that mean I must hold the club tighter?  There seems to be so much confusion about what constitutes a good, functional grip that I thought I would address a few issues pertaining to our one and only connection with the club. I must first state that the grip is part of the "fundamentals' of golf.  Well, not really! While the grip and aim and set-up are important to your ability to hit a golf ball, the manner in which you grip the club is by no means fundamental - the grip is not integral.  I have seen far too many golfers with great grips hit poor golf shots and vice versa....

The club should be held primarily in the fingers with the hands kept close together.   I have no preference for the overlap, interlock or baseball type grips.   Success has been had with all of them!

A strong grip is one where both hands are rotated away from the target; a weak grip is one where both hands are rotated toward the target and a neutral grip falls somewhere in between.

 

I am a big fan of a strong grip. It encourages the ball to go further and the hands to lead the club head in to impact. When that happens there is less of a tendency to flip the club face closed.  If you are a hooker of the ball, believe it or not, but a stronger grip might just help you alleviate those dreaded left shots.  It is imperative for a golfer with a strong grip to have quiet hands through impact. Quiet hands are ultimately more consistent than active hands. The vast majority of the greatest golfers of all time employed a strong grip including  Patty Berg, the greatest woman golfer of all time, who had an exceedingly strong grip.
 
 

  The grip pictured above is non functional grip.  In this example the golfer is forced to flip their hands through impact in an effort to square the face - everything is based on timing.  This grip essentially promotes active hands through impact - just what we should be trying not to do. There was only one truly great golfer who used a weak grip (and certainly not to the extent illustrated in this photo) - Ben Hogan. It is important to remember that Hogan struggled in the early part of his career with hooking the ball and a weak grip was one of the factors he implemented to overcome that tendency.

Try to get your grip to fit into a range of acceptability; a range within which it can function.  And in my experience a strong grip is far more functional than a weak one.