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I think a lot of golfers put too much emphasis on trying to manipulate the golf club instead of relying on the Rhythm of the Shoulders to have the golf club actually be an EXTENSION of their bodies. Obviously, there’ll be times when you need to hit a certain type of shot, where you’ll need to do some form of manipulation in order to alter the clubface.

I think this concept is especially true for putting – where I see so many high handicappers try to ‘Open and Fan it’, ‘Square to Square’ – manipulate their wrists, etc.

One of the great sayings that I first heard from Hall of Fame teacher Jim Flick, whom I got to know for many years at Omni La Costa Resort was, “The Golf Swing is a ‘REACTION’ to the intended shot your mind created.” If you focus your mind on the shot, and TRUST your body to Obey the Mind, you should be able to have the club be in HARMONY with the shot; and thusly, pull off a great shot. Again, this is even more true in Putting, where the margin of error is much less than when making a full swing.

In today’s video, I’ll show you a simple ‘No Brainer’ Putting Drill that will help you put the feel back into your shoulders – and not your hands.

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Without question, there is nothing more important in the golf swing than BALANCE – RHYTHM – and (especially) TIMING! As I mention in today’s video, you can have the greatest Swing Mechanics in the world, but if your Timing is off, it won’t do you much good. And, the reverse is true: i.e., you can have poor Swing Mechanics, but if your timing is good, you’ll be able to get away with them.

The two most common places for Bad Timing to occur is in the immediate Takeaway, and ‘especially’ starting down from the top too soon, and/or too quickly. Starting down too soon, is usually a symptom of anxiety, having poor swing mechanics on the backswing where the body has too ‘catch up’, and even more importantly TIGHT MUSC LES AND A LACK OF FLEXIBILITY. Imagine a rubber band that you’re trying to shoot across the room. If the rubber band is nice and ‘flexible’ and has plenty of elasticity, you can pull it back as far as it’ll go, and it’ll react accordingly by shooting across the room. However, if that rubber band is Brittle and Tight, it won’t ‘Want’ to expand fully and fight you to achieve a full windup. Same thing in the golf swing.

Whenever my golf game gets a little off and I feel like I’m rushing it, I’ll take a few ‘STOP AT THE TOP’ Practice swings and let my body Feel it. Then, when I get up to hit it, I’ll be more relaxed and patient and not in a hurry to start down too fast.

On a side note, there were some great players who actually did Stop at the Top that had excellent careers. Cary Middlecoff, Bob Murphy, and even today’s Hideki Matsuyama comes close.

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Very seldom do I see a high handicapper who’s in a good Impact Position, and very seldom do I ever see a good player who’s in a bad Impact Position…..Hmmm?

The majority of golf instruction seems to be focused on getting into a good backswing position – so that the golfer will automatically be able to get into the good Impact position. That makes sense, but without question, the overwhelming majority of amateurs tend to get stuck on the rear foot and then be forced to flip the club in order to catch up with the lack of weight going forward. I’ve learned that where you focus, your energy will flow there. Often times, spending too much time thinking about your back swing, will sometimes freeze you up and not allow you to swing freely to – and through the ball.

A simple drill to free up your swing is to take a golf club and swing it with your trail arm only (so if you’re right handed, swing with just the right arm, and vice versa if you’re left handed). By doing this simple drill, you’ll be able to move freely and automatically shift your weight onto your front foot and rotate accordingly. If you were watching golf back in the early 90’s when Nick Price was dominating the tour, when he was coming down the home stretch, he’d do this drill before his actual shot, and nearly always hit it good.

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A Drill to Blend Weight Shift and Torso Rotation – TURN OVER THE CHAIR DRILL

Creating a better golf swing has many different facets and there are thousands of aspects that can be looked at; but in short, I believe that THE TWO major factors are Weight Transfer and Rotation. Along these lines, there are legions of different ways to make a back swing, but the majority of good players have a balanced blend of Turning and Shifting. I’ve come to call the backswing a ‘Turning Shift’. And, even here we have some exceptions as seen in the swings of Freddie Couples and Kenny Perry – who tend to ‘pick the club up’ first, then turn their shoulders later.

A drill I’ve learned to get my students turned behind the ball and get their weight shifted, is what I call the ‘Turn Over the Chair’ Drill. As I explain in today’s video, stand a few inches away from the backrest of a chair, then make a first with your Left Hand and stick your thumb into your sternum. From here, simply Turn your Left Elbow over the chair. If you look in a mirror, you’ll see that your spine angle is angled off to the right and your left shoulder will be behind the ball (Note: Make sure that your left shoulder is tilted down underneath your chin and not raised high….We don’t want your shoulders to be flat). You’ll find that after doing this drill a few times, that you’ll begin to feel a very nice Blend of the shoulders and weight shifting in harmony.

You can also practice this drill standing a few inches away from a wall.