When the shoulders turn properly, the hands can't lift upward

When the shoulders turn properly, the hands can't lift upward

Recently I got a new student that hasn’t taken a golf lesson in about 10 years. His scores were not all that bad, considering he’s been shooting rounds in the mid 80’s. However, he came to me because he’s not fully satisfied with those rounds. His goal is to shoot in the low 80’s and start to shoot in the 70’s. After looking at his swing for the very first time and gathering some good swing video, I was confident I could get him where he needed to be. Actually, I’m very confident that I can help every golfer that gives me the opportunity to work with them.

As we started into the golf lesson and he was loosening up, I watched a few of the videos that I had taken. Overall, I was looking at a very athletic man in his mid 50’s that grew up playing ice hockey. I could see that he had really good hand-eye coordination. However, I also realized that it could be better by putting his swing into a better position at the top of his swing. This would all start by increasing his shoulder and chest turn. The first thing I needed to be sure of was that he didn’t have a past injury that would stop him from increasing his turn in his back swing. After talking with him shortly and understanding that he was flexible enough to turn, it was time to get to work.

The first thing I like to do is have him make a couple of simple practice swings and start to allow him to think about activating his shoulder and chest turn away from the ball. As he begins to make practice swings and get comfortable with this new focus, it was easy for me to see we had picked the correct swing thought for him to work on. My job as his swing coach is to be certain we are choosing the best thing for him to work on that will provide him some immediate success. Keep in mind, it may take a series of swings and attempts to get his timing back and continue to get comfortable with the change he is making.

Not long after making some swings, I could see his shoulders turn another 10 or 15 degrees and I could notice the hands swing more around his body. When the shoulders and chest don’t turn enough, generally you’ll notice an upward lift of the arms and hands. When the arms and hands lift upward, it’s going to appear that the hands are much closer to the head once the top of the swing has been reached. When looking at all the great ball strikers around the world, you’ll see that they turn the shoulders about 90 degrees and the hands are positioned over the back shoulder. It is evident the highest percentage of great ball strikers in today’s era do their best to reach this position at the top, because it helps with a better plane back to impact.

All the best in golf,

Greg Greksa
PGA Professional
Director of Instruction
Grexa Golf Raleigh
Cleveland / Srixon Staff
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