April 28, 2011 - Ralph Cissne
I recently joined Linked:Golfers on LinkedIn and their lively golf tips discussion. There are hundreds of diverse tips from players and professionals alike, sharing their thoughts, often humorous and inventive, on what’s working for them. These varied opinions, reflected in every golf website, publication or broadcast, are testimony to the challenge golf represents and why people who are willing to challenge themselves love the game so much.
Even though I live in Southern California, I usually don’t play much in the winter months. As a result, each spring I set about sharpening my game by checking fundamentals – grip, stance, alignment, sequence – and focus on what needs the most attention. This year it’s what I call “staying in the saddle” or establishing a solid swing foundation by quieting the lower body. My swing coach Brady Riggs (see WOG links page) has a great video demonstrating the importance of reducing your leg action, which enables you to optimize posture, protect the lower back and create space at the top of your swing to facilitate the desired inside approach to the ball.
I’ve been clanking my irons, which indicates my position at the top of the backswing is off plane and my leading wrist does not match my wrist position at address. Checking it down, I focus on the impact position. If you are squared up at the moment of truth hitting it where you aim is greatly improved. Your mind prefers simple instructions so address these positions individually until you feel confident and then let it go.
At the practice range, in sequence, I set my foundation, feel the shaft light and down the line at the top and square at impact. Then I focus on making a controlled swing through the ball to a balanced finish with my chest square to the target. If you focus on this balanced finish position you’ve probably hit a successful shot. If not, ask your PGA professional to show you the way. WOG