Course Instructor (P2)

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Golf Swing Fundamentals

Grip

  • Grip the club properly. The thumb and forefinger of each hand should form a V. The V’s formed by the thumb and forefinger of each hand should be parallel. Typically, the forefinger of the lead hand is interlocked with the pinky finger of the trail hand. While a baseball grip may feel more comfortable to some, the baseball grip may limit your ability to hit straight shots.
  • A proper grip is one in which the club is held firmly by five fingers;
    • The middle, ring, and little finger of the left hand.
    • The middle and ring fingers of the right hand. The other fingers maintain light contact with the grip for support.

Posture

Develop an appropriate static posture at address which is characterized by assuming and maintaining cervical and lumbar lordotic curves.

Setup / Address

  • Let your arms hang at address.
  • Your arms should hang under your shoulders and feel relaxed when you address the ball. Your hands should be closer to your body for leverage. You should be looking in at your hands, not out at them. Don’t feel as if you are reaching for the ball.
  • A bad setup leads to a bad backswing which leads to trying to correct the problems on the downswing. At address, your lead shoulder should be higher than the other and your head should be behind the ball.

Golf Swing FundamentalsBackswing

  • A controlled backswing, where the hands, arms, shoulders, hips, knees and feet move in rhythm, is necessary to create the kinetic energy and smooth movements necessary to initiate the golf swing.
  • Unless you possess incredible flexibilityin the shoulder and hip joints and unrestricted ability of the spine to laterally flex, rotate and extend, like John Daly, a short backswing will create greater kinetic energy than a big backswing. Power is not stored in the backswing. Power is built in the backswing, and released in the downswing. Therefore a full, big, backswing is not necessary. Shortening the length of the backswing ( a 1/2 to 3/4 backswing) will create greater power.
  • In baseball, for example, a short, quick, compact swing generates greater power than a long, looping swing.
  • Maximal stretching of a muscle reduces muscle cross bridging and creates less force. For example, an athlete performing a broad jump will achieve greater distance if their legs are bent at a 45º angle rather than a full squat position.
  • To generate optimum force from your golf swing take a short backswing (this insures that a maximal number of cross bridges remain intact); and when going from the backswing to the downswing change directions as quickly as possible (the greater the velocity of stretch the greater the amount of elastic energy).
  • Elastic Energy – In order to generate power in any movement, the muscles must be stretched. This muscle stretching creates elastic energy.
  • A muscle can do more positive work if it is stretched while being activated. An example of this would be an eccentric contraction as seen in a tricep press exercise maneuver.
  • An eccentric – concentric sequence of muscle activation produces a greater quantity of elastic energy than if a muscle merely experiences a concentric contraction alone. This concept is known as the stretch shorten cycle.
  • As the result of an eccentric – concentric sequence of muscle activation increased concentric contraction force occurs without any increased energy expenditure.
  • Elastic energy is created by the change of direction (backswing followed by the downswing) during the golf swing.
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