Thoughts after finishing Chapter 1

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  • Thoughts after finishing Chapter 1
  • #202205

    I just finished Chapter 1, completing it in about 10 days. I am impressed with the detail of the program and am looking forward to continuing. I just finished hitting a bucket of 60 balls at the range. I purposely waited until finishing the entire chapter before doing so. Typically, I would practice 2-3 times a week.

    Since we had only learned the body movements and not the arms & hands, I had zero expectations, but I thought this would provide a base. I also think it is important to see if I could feel the difference coming down with the surf the knees move – or if I could even do it at full speed.

    Before I give my results I wanted to provide a pre-Tathata baseline with my 7 iron. I am an average golfing, with typical scores in the 85-95 range. I considered my iron play average for my handicap. A 7 iron will typically carry 160-175 depending on how close to the center is the strike. Flight is typically very high and straight or a slight draw, never a fade. My miss is always some degree of fat (primarily) or maybe a thin once in a while.

    No expectations, but was hoping to see a more balanced finish. It seems to me the complete downswing movements in Tathata your body goes towards the target and maybe a little back when you load the front glutes on the downswing. I often finish on my toes and am off-balance.

    Results: probably the same amount of fats and thins as normal. Ignoring those shots I thought my balance was better, ending up in a nice slight crecent finish. However, the first 30 or so balls the ball flight was lower than average and always with a fade – not a slice as they all ended up in the middle of the fairway. But this was a 5-10 yard fade. Distance was less probably 150 yards average. The last 20 or so balls I was better, hitting much higher and farther perhaps 160-165 (cold and foggy day in San Francisco with terrible range balls). These looked like PGA baby fades. But still a fade. No shots dead straight and none with even a hint of draw. Even the baby fades ran out in the fade direction quite a bit.

    While this seems fine with a 7 iron, that probably won’t work with a lower lofted club, the fade will turn to a slice. Interested in your thoughts. But overall, I am pleased with the results on the one hand and a little surprised with the shot shape on the other.

    #206276

    David

    Thank you for reaching out to us, it’s great to hear your detailed feedback. I wouldn’t worry about the distance until you get to Chapter 3 (pressure and impact) and even Chapter 4 (speed and strength). These chapters should help combine your training in Chapters 1 & 2 and really add energy, vitality and speed to your swing.

    For now, let’s see if we can’t help straighten out your slight fade that might turn into a slice with longer clubs. For this, we will focus on Body Movement 7: Snap to Level. Be sure to really dial in the finish position of this movement, here are a few key checkpoints.

    – Be sure your knees, hips and shoulders finish parallel to the target line (even 0-5 degrees closed to help with your slice)

    – Be sure your front knee, hip, shoulder and hand finish further away from the ground than your back knee, hip, shoulder and hand (the more angle here, the more the tendency will be to come from the inside while you swing)

    – Finish with your front knee closer to the target than your front foot with still a bit of bend and that your front hip is roughly even with your front foot. This last checkpoint should really help to improve your contact.

    – At the start of your motion forward in the downswing in this movement, be sure the head and entire body are moving down and toward the target. This should also help improve contact.

    Let us know if we can provide any further clarity. Any other questions or feedback, don’t hesitate to reach out to us, we would love to hear from you and provide additional support.

    #207512

    Thanks for the reply. I will work on your suggestion.

    After finishing about half of chapter 2 – at least through the hand & arm and grip sections, I hit another 60 balls today and think I had a bit of an epiphany. Other instructors have routinely commented on how far away from the ball at set-up I am. I estimate this to be two fist lengths rather than one. Additionally on a scale of -100 for the weakest grip you could have and +100 for the strongest I was about a 65. I believe these two mechanics was my compensation for other improper body/swing mechanics. Probably why I finish on my toes and lose balance all the time.

    I was hitting pretty good with my 7 iron today routinely 175 carry. But with the last 20 balls I decided to go all-in on the neutral grip and closer ball position. What followed was several shanks, 100 yard pop fades, bunch of fats, and several decent looking fades that went 125 yards. Open club face no doubt. I could not take this swing to any course. But, I am taking a leap of faith. I am going to stay with the new grip and ball position. On a high note nearly every finish was with balance and club behind the eye line.

    Thanks again,
    David

    #207610

    David,

    Great to hear you are through half of Chapter 2 and the epiphany you had. More will be revealed throughout the program that may continue to help you remember the fundamentals you have always done great in your swing or even other sports and also shed light to things that may be new but almost seem common sense and simple. Thank you for sharing this, we are excited for what’s ahead for you.

    For the mis-hits that you were experiencing when standing closer to the ball, the club could be coming from the outside. We would encourage you while training to surf to level and see what it feels like to have the knees, hips and shoulders all 15-20 degrees closed to the target line with the front knee, hip and shoulder further from the ground than the back knee, hip and shoulder. This will help ensure the club comes from the inside. Also, we recommend that you play around with training Hand & Arm Movement 12: Thrust With Club with the club right-side up as a reference to help you with the new feel of the ‘neutral” grip. Be sure as in the previous post that the leading edge of the club is perpendicular to the ground at the finish of the movement when the club shaft is parallel to the ground and target line. Notice how much more the top hand may need to be rotated counter clockwise to achieve this than you are used to as you neutralize your grip.

    Incredible, thank you for the time and energy you are putting into the program!

    #209181

    Thanks for your help. I will focus on the movements you suggest and try to take a longer term view of the process. I do have one question as I re-read movement 6 and 7, I understand your knees and glutes should actually move a little back or away from the ball during this motion (finish). This seems easier to do when the movements are absolutely parallel to the target line, but your suggestion to avoid the over the top is to be closed to the target line. Does that mean my glutes would not move away from the target line? I am almmost picturing the entire lower body moving slightly toward the target line. Is it possible to move back from the target line and be closed to the target line?

    #209326

    David,

    Yes, we am encouraged by your feedback. It seems as though this could be a big help for you and your current pattern as it might be quite a departure from what you are currently doing. When you get to the top let’s say your shoulders are turned 90 degrees or so and your hips are turned 35-45 degrees or so (exact numbers are not important). From here, as you train to eliminate any slice action from your motion, you will return to a position that your shoulders and arms are level to the ground but your hips and shoulders will be 0-10 degrees closed. Exaggerate how closed all of these body parts are when they return to level to the ground to introduce some new feelings to your motion. Now how does the pushing back relate to this? Let’s say your hips are 35 degrees turned in your backswing. As you move down, keep your hips here and move them a) toward the target and b) back away from the ball. Can you feel this while your hips do not open up to the target? It’s that push that will help you as you train and will eventually work it’s way into your swing. We can’t stress enough the importance of these alignments at the finish position. Practice pushing back as you do this as odd as it might feel. When you go to swing or perform the movement, as long as your glutes aren’t moving forward in your downswing, you are pushing back enough. You will need to feel pushing back for this to happen though. Let us know how these movements go and if any other questions arise. We are excited for you!

    #209722

    Ok. I am going to seriously work on this. I can confirm that that type of move away from the target line is something i have not done or felt before. If I could guess, mine would be more the opposite or closer to the target line and on my toes during the downswing. Instructors have certainly mentioned they would like to see me get more in that direction you suggest but never put it in your words or anything that I could really feel/understand. This is like the beginning of the corkscrew sort of move at the end that I have heard on the videos. Exciting stuff to think about for sure.

    Thanks again. I will give it some real time and let you know how it progresses.

    #209727

    Thank you David, we look forward to hearing about your progress!

    #212624

    I have an important clarifying quesiton for you: Consider the initial downswing movement to near impact, such as body movements snap to level and the baseball throw in the hand and arm movement. I totally understand what you are trying to get me to do, but here is my question:

    When I go full speed, I find it nearly impossible to not come a bit over the top probably because my hand and body movements are not yet honed. But I notice if I give a slight pause at the top with my arms as my shins and knees, and hips start to move toward the target first, this gets my shaft in a better on-plane position resulting in a cleaner strike and a more in to out path. It doesn’t look like the methods you are teaching have any pause with the arms/club. Is this correct? If so, then it really is the snap to level movement that is creating the correct path.

    I guess what I am asking is should I forget about this slight pause with the club at the top, that helps, and just focus on the correct body movement to get the same job done? I don’t want to negatively impact my learning go-forward by using some kind of crutch. Hope this long-winded question makes sense.

    Thanks

    #212806

    Let me ask my question in a cleaner way.

    Im at the top of the backswing and for a moment there is no movement at all. Do I want to have a sense that the shins, knees, hips ect. are starting the initial downswing? I have a tendancy to go at the same time (or maybe the arms go first?) so just wondering if the ankle, shin sequence going first is what I need to focus on.

    As always, thanks for your help. this stuff is a little tricky and I want to make sure I am giving it my all.

    #214131

    David,

    This is the perfect time to ask this question. Thank you. You will come to find these answers in “pressure” throughout chapter three. You have already come to find and train how the body, hands and arms move. Pressure is now the glue that brings everything together. The entire golf swing, especially the downswing is driven first through the feet, shins, calves, knees and thighs. This is the root structure of the tree. The lower body, you will come to find through pressure, is strong engaged and athletically in the ground. The legs support the pelvis as we surf to level. The pelvis supports the stomach, ribs, pecs and shoulders as we surf to level. The shoulders support the neck and head while giving a reference point for the arms to react to. As you move through pressure you will come to find and train in such a way that the hands arms and body move together but most importantly are pressurized together. Imagine NASCAR for a moment. If one tire is low on air pressure then the car is out of balance. Similarly and in your case if the arms are over pressurized in relation to the rest of the body then it will feel as if the arms are dominating the swing. The movements toward the end of the stretching routine are designed to give a sense of the body moving all together and pressurized together. Be open to finding more and more answers as you move through the pressure section. The sense that there is a pause at the top of the backswing isn’t an independent mechanical section of the swing rather a reaction to the greatest golfswings of all time having strong pressure within the entire body and width in transition.

    Thank you for the questions. We look forward to you enjoying Chapter 3 and the rest of the training.

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