Made Progress with the Driver

It’s far from where I want to be, but, it’s progress. These swings were taken about an hour a part. The photos on the left are the baseline swing (embarrassingly horrible) are the baseline swings and the swings on the right are after some video work. I post the baseline swing because it is SOOO bad that it should offer some encouragement that quick progress can be made by ANYONE when you’re working on the right things. Let’s take a look.

At address, I’ve been really setting up behind the ball too much in an effort to get a solid positive angle of attack. But it got a little sloppy and I started hitting the ball too high and slipped into having too much weight on my back foot at address. I now feel that my left leg is slightly more vertical and the ball is slightly back in my stance (ignore the tee height, I was tired of breaking plastic tees so I just left it on the little rubber peg). There is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to how high to launch the ball with the driver. As a rule of thumb, the faster the clubhead speed, the lower launch angle necessary to achieve maximium distance.

At the top of my backswing, I’ve turned into John Daly. This swing on the right is a slower swing and I’m thinking about coiling going back and am clearly overdoing it. This is super common when working on your swing, certain other things that may have been good before get a little loose because your swing is slower and your transition later, etc. I’m not worried about this and I’ve actually still managed to get into a much better position on the right as I’m not nearly as far on my right leg. This was, again, a result of really trying to launch the ball high – Mission Accomplished! I can now back it down and be more coiled at the top as I am here on the right and now really use my left glute to get set onto my left foot.

This is just flat out embarrassing. I’ve started the downswing with my arms (maybe I should read that golf instruction book, “The Rotary Swing”) and I’ve completely failed to set my weight onto my left side. Because of this, I’m just “spinning out”, more or less, right from the top and throwing the club away. You can clearly see that I have less lag on the left compared to the swing on the right. On the better swing, I’m more set onto my left side and my arms and wrists are very relaxed. My swing thought here was to “squat” onto my left side and feel my left glute rather than just spin out from the top.  The “bump” onto the left side I describe in the book is the same thing.

The swing on the left is ugly, but after an hour of work, I got it more straightened out, so I consider this good progress. I post this to show that:

a) everyone slips into bad and even terrible habits without realizing it
b) progress can be made quickly when you work on the correct things
c) progress still took an hour working exclusively on this one thing! (Keep this mind you are trying to change something in your swing next time!)

Wow, is that really me on the left? Just awful, I’ve lost a ton of lag and my left leg looks like it’s broken. Good on the right though, much better use of my hips to bring the club down and set on to my left side and I’m maintaining lag here still. The shaft is still stressed, more evidence that I’m not “throwing the club away” as the grip of the club is pointing vertical is still.

That guy on the left is a total hack.

More posted up at impact, it’s obviously creating a much lower launch.

In the last sequence, I have a much better release, more of a crossover release that I’m working towards. Below is a video of the swing on the right from today. As I’m working on things, these swings are a bit slow, this was 111 mph.