Feelings

Re: Feelings

Postby eagle » Tue Sep 28, 2010 2:34 am

BomGolf222 wrote:I find a gradual softening of my left leg in the backswing, is an indirect yet very natural way to load and to stay strong into my right leg, and to not rush my lower body in transition. I learned this from studying the different tensions in my legs as I walk- the leg going forward always swings softly to catch, and is never accelerated forward with force or muscular tension- try actively swinging your leg forward as you walk and see how it feels, not very good, but kind of funny at the same time(any Fawlty Towers/Monty Python fans out there?) It arrives instinctively to catch you and then gets to work and transitions to become the rear force leg. It's a bit of a different perspective to see the left leg catching you as opposed to being more actively involved, but I've found it to be quite useful and instinctive. I strike it best when I give myself the time to feel a sort of fall in transition, and softening my left leg creates what I like to call a loaded imbalance, where the rear leg takes the load before it makes it's way through the shot.
The imbalance is very alive- it's cool to experiment around with how long you can leave the lead leg soft for during the downswing. You can really get a nice load into the rear leg and it makes you go down really low in an instinctive reaction to trying to get below the falling weight, and stay 'ahead of it' as such, and catch it. It's very interesting to play around with. It can be quite strenuous so if you're giving it a go, take it easy. It's amazing what your body wont actually let you do, and as a result, the pressure you can create. Necessity is a more powerful tool than simple desire, so I like finding ways to make the body do what I want it to do as a sort of survival reaction, than have it just be my own 'frivolous' desire to hit my golf ball.
I do a drill where I try to pick up my left leg and try to fall left at the same time, right from takeaway. It's hilarious how heavily you actually get into the right leg doing that, by trying to do the complete opposite, and it's freaky powerful too, full of forward intent. It gives you a real sense of how much energy there is in your falling body. If you can time it when hitting a few balls, it's pretty cool, not to mention, powerful.
It's also a nice feeling to then gradually soften the rear leg after it's used, as the lead leg catches and braces, and we actively unwind. It's a good way to unload properly and to transfer the action up to torso rotation, and not get freaky with the leg drive. It's an instinctive way to force strength and good tension into the lead leg, and it also has a way of forcing you to go upstairs for speed. The rear leg can then act as a sort of dragging/swinging ballast as seen in the great torso rotation golf swings where the back leg drags along and slightly behind. If you imagine the force of rotation around the spine and left leg line, all going around to the left, there will need to be something staying behind and going the other way- if everything goes around then nothing will want to, at least not very fast. It wont get fully relaxed, and will eventually recapture the appropriate tension as it takes some of the load during the follow through, but that little time of softness I find to be very helpful.
Overall, it's a very nice 'feeling' for 'transferring' weight in the swing without getting too wrapped up in moving it around.


BOM, ( and others)

...where do you intend and feel to send /receive the weight on the forward part of the swing? And when does this happen?

For example: Is it the outside middle part of the lead foot that will feel the pressure? the inside middle? the big toe? the outside heel? Where is the Dantien going?

Seems to me getting this right can make it easier on the rest of the body, ie, reduce compensations.
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Re: Feelings

Postby lagpressure » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:42 am

As far as the left foot, weight will go different places depending upon how steep or flat the shoulders rotate. Ball position and alignment will effect this also.

Flatter turns will send the weight more toward the left heel. Steep shoulders will tend to do the opposite.

There would be a difference between a player who aims left with a more central ball placement, swings level... and say a player who aims a bit right, dips the shoulders more under and right arm throws it.

You can get a feel for this by just swinging a club around with different actions.

What should it do? It depends really upon what kind of swing you have. Trying to move the weight somewhere your swing is not ready for will not likely have positive results.
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Re: Feelings

Postby BomGolf222 » Tue Sep 28, 2010 11:35 am

I get all stressed out when there's too many good questions flying around because I never have any short answers. I suppose if everything is connected then all the questions, and, in turn, the answers, are all the same? Maybe that rationalization can at least get me started.
The dantien is inside of us. From my own experience with understanding and learning to relate to that area, I found the initial description relating it to the belly button to not be very helpful, as it made it's activity front side led, which isn't where the body moves from or where anything is connected. I mentioned a while ago about how the arms are connected to the back and I think this is a fundamental that needs to be understood, contemplated, and embraced. The location of our eyes is also a problem since they're also in front of where everything actually takes place. Standing over the ball, the arms also appear to be coming out of the chest, and a focus on maintaining their connection to the torso can also encourage the thinking that they come out of the front of us. But they don't really.
It seems that we're all on the same page in relation to the pull and push in the golf swing, and also the destructive nature of pushing too soon from the top. In my opinion, part of Hogan wanting 3 right hands is that the right hand isn't all that powerful in the position it's going to be at impact. The power of the pull, when done correctly, is much greater, I think, than the push. As an aside, it may also have to do with the fact that he recommended only using two fingers of his right hand, so 2 times 3 is 6, which is basically 1 hand in terms of finger quantity. If Hogan does anything, he gets you thinking.
So if the initial action down is from below, or pulling, then it has to be from ahead because you don't pull something from behind it. Even if you feel you're compressing the pivot with your arms, it's still a pulling because the arm's connection to the body is below their location at the top of the swing. Even the feeling of them falling in space, imo, is still just a feeling in terms of recognizing their actual motion. So in my mind, I want to then go to the root of the pulling. Where does it actually start? It's felt in the left shoulder sometimes. It's also felt in the legs as a squat- the squat is a pull because it's below or ahead of the thing being pulled. But for me, the legs have always felt too far away from the action for me to feel comfortable with them being the initiators of things. Maybe I'm linking RR's 'back' question with yours, Eagle, but I see them as the same thing I think.
There are a lot of muscles in the body, and I'm not even going to get into thinking that I know anything about them, but from my own digging, there's an X shape formed around the mid to lower back(I posted a good photo of this in the Small World thread), and it forms a sort of junction between the effects(I say effects because I'm not a doctor and there may be, and probably are, a million muscles in between them) of the Glutes and the Lats. The X also coincides with the location of the dantien as far as I can tell. The Lats wind up and around to connect to the top-ish of the humerus'(humeri?... I'm just not that cool :) It explains why spinning out the left hip pulls the right shoulder outward and also explains why Hogan was so good at lowering his plane because his initial move down, regardless of what he said it was publicly, was a still winding/closing fall of the lower back which elongated his shoulder turn. This is a fairly basic athletic move that has been destroyed by general golf teaching and thinking- just look at someone throwing a frisbee to learn it. IMO, Hogan had no real backswing/downswing division, which is one of the reasons why his golf swing is so nice to look at, it's all flow. As another aside, I see the basic athletic engine as the same everywhere, the skill of each sport is coordinating the force created to the point it's needed to make that sport work. That's just how I see things.
So, imo, the dantien is essentially the initiator of the down swing and the feeling is that it wants to be going down towards the inside of the front of the left foot, but riding on the right leg. But because the golf swing is rotational, the dantien also travels rotationally- it has to. So the pressure travels through/around the foot to coincide with the rotation. If the 'start' of the 'downswing' feels like you're opening up, you've missed it because you're probably going to straighten your left leg too soon. You have to feel like you're still closing or winding up as you start down. The dantien is then 'caught' by the flexing/bracing left leg, to then begin an unwind which leads the pulling of the shoulders from the back, and that upper back area takes over the active acceleration, using the pressure of the ground and flexed knees, to pull away in a massive backhand slap, which is then joined by the pushing or simultaneous 'slapping' or hitting with the front of the right side/hand which is driven out of the pressure of the right leg. But it's rotational. And you can't pull very hard off a straight left leg and you can't push very hard of a straight right leg. And I've skipped loads of parts because I've run out of time. And it's really easy :) I swear.
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Re: Feelings

Postby eagle » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:13 pm

Thanks guys.

I saw where one of Lag's students was told to try to get deeper ...more 4:30, or beyond . I figured I could stand to get deeper.

Here's what I saw.

When I try to get really open, laid off , crazy deep....even past 4:30...like maybe 5 or 5:30.....and stop.... my weight will be out towards the big toe and inside of the left foot. Less deep corresponds to the weight moving progressively rearward towards the middle or heel.

Shots were solid, with good compression. Kinda like when I play the ball way back in my stance. So this action must put me in the same position. Is this Hogan's backshift?

So I am wondering......for me...getting deep( 4:30 or beyond) seems to put my weight there( inside of big toe), and vice versa....getting my weight there seems to get me deep.
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Re: Feelings

Postby lagpressure » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:54 pm

But for me, the legs have always felt too far away from the action for me to feel comfortable with them being the initiators of things.


Try this...

as you approach the top of the backswing.. could be well before..
quickly drop or flex your knees.. as if someone pulled a chair out from underneath you and notice how the golf club changes direction.

If you believe in using the torso to keep moving through impact and beyond, this a great way to save some of that range of motion for later.

I think this is what Hogan was talking about. It certainly is what I do to trigger the change of direction.

I do very much encourage loopy transitions because this really does keep us feeling that the swing is a flow and not a start-stop-start again action.

I think this is also why some really great putters have had loops also.
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Re: Feelings

Postby Paul C » Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:40 am

When I'm practicing, I'm always searching for feels that will help me--maybe too many sometimes. When I struggle getting to and through 4:30, fat and thin shots ensue, most likely b/c I stall my pivot. What I found recently was that at address, if I rotate my right kneecap away from the target and then on the DS, the first move down is rotating the right kneecap to 4:30 down and through, and then letting everything else follow--hips, shoulders, arms and hands--consistent, accurate shots follow. It seems I have better success getting smaller body parts moving first and let them engage the larger body parts in a cascading effect. For me, it seems certainly easier to control the start of the DS this way.

I don't know... does this make sense to anyone?
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Re: Feelings

Postby lagpressure » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:14 pm

I don't think Hogan would argue with you..
The knees are in the lower part of the body... just as Ben would recommend for transition.

The bottom line is..

The ball doesn't lie.. so always trust that first.
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Re: Feelings

Postby BomGolf222 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:29 am

as you approach the top of the backswing.. could be well before..
quickly drop or flex your knees.. as if someone pulled a chair out from underneath you and notice how the golf club changes direction.


That squat drop can sometimes feel disconnected to me, which is similar to that feeling I was saying about feeling too far away from the action. I really like it in bunkers combined with a sort of simultaneous erecting of the spine- it flattens the arch really well and I can hit nice thumpy spinner shots. Because of the squat and pulling away nature of move, the club is going down but it's not digging. It's a fun shot.
In my fuller shots I like to feel like I'm going to be going from leg to leg at some point, so that Snead style downward squat, where, for me, I've always felt it in both legs, tends to make me feel stuck with nowhere to go except maybe 'up'.
I definitely think that loops are good, maybe imperative actually. Loopy down as opposed to loopy up in an ideal world. Anything to get the club off the shoulder plane and down the spine prior to acceleration has got to be good.
Paul C- In that regard, I reckon whatever works and gets you into that area is great. That's a real personalized part of the swing imo, that transition, or how the club is routed to the right area, goes a long way to making a swing look like a persons swing. I've played a lot of good golf feeling my right knee squatting in towards the target which would be on a similar angle to the 430 line. An important thing to realize imo, is that nothing goes towards the ball except the clubface. Everything works on a sort of circular train track and you don't want to cross your lines- it's kinda like Ghostbusters in that way :) From my experience, if any part inside the club face is intentioned towards that ball, then the club face will end up outside it. If you think about the circular train track you can see how that would be. The prime culprit being the hands. Developing clubface awareness has been a great help to me, because it kind of puts my hands out into the face if you know what I mean. If the hands 'stay in the hands' then they'll be inclined to go towards the ball because that's your last port of conscious coordination.
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Re: Feelings

Postby Paul C » Thu Sep 30, 2010 1:01 pm

From my experience, if any part inside the club face is intentioned towards that ball, then the club face will end up outside it. If you think about the circular train track you can see how that would be. The prime culprit being the hands. Developing clubface awareness has been a great help to me, because it kind of puts my hands out into the face if you know what I mean. If the hands 'stay in the hands' then they'll be inclined to go towards the ball because that's your last port of conscious coordination.

Bom--so what you're saying is that the hands have to travel inside, closer to the body on the downswing. Can you further define what you mean by putting your hands out into the clubface...the hands are the clubface? Thanks.
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Re: Feelings

Postby BomGolf222 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 2:44 pm

Bom--so what you're saying is that the hands have to travel inside, closer to the body on the downswing.


Essentially, yes, but that's not an end or the goal in and of itself, they do that because of the fact that the clubface hits the ball and everything should coordinate, aid and facilitate that. But it definitely helps to understand that they do travel inside and above the ball. And it's not just the downswing either, they want to be maintaining that relationship all the way through and beyond impact too. This is part of what Lag's cutting it left accomplishes, basically maintaining rpm's.
If the hands went at the ball, and actually got there, then the clubhead would hit the ground a full shaft length behind the ball- or, a touch fat. In very simple terms, if you're hammering a nail, your hand doesn't go at the head of the nail because you have a sense for where the hammerhead is and your hand happily misses the nail while it accelerates along side of it enabling the hammer to do it's job. You don't think about that because it seems easy, and it seems easy because of your understanding and feel for the hammer.
Circular is just an image btw, because the thing isn't a perfect circle, and there are more rails than the two of a train track, it's more like a vinyl record with the different tracks/songs. But taken that the overall structure is rotational, then everything out from the centre moves accordingly, and ultimately the bit at the outer edge, the clubface, will hit the ball- and will hopefully be going the fastest. Say the silence prior to track 1 is the clubface, and the hole in the middle is your spine, your knees might be the last track, say track 10- they work a version of the circle but not towards the ball, they go along side it and above it, as everything else does. Again, the swing isn't a perfect circle, and it's not flat like a record, so tracks are just representative of things in space. The thing is though, the shaft may take up 5 or so tracks so your hands could be working on track 6 or 7, so those tracks that make up the shaft have to be related to by feel and coordination, and a sense for the clubhead and face. So developing feel for the clubface, or just getting to be aware of where it is and where you need to be to put it where you want it, is basically feel or awareness. The better the player, the better their sense of that, imo. Just like your feel with a hammer. I would argue that you have the skill, it just needs developing and expanding- assuming you can use a hammer, that is :) But this takes time, like learning anything, or developing any skill.
Unlike a record though, the parts will arrive at slightly different times, which is lag, but they should maintain their place in the structure. And the other thing to remember is that the record is always going in one direction, but the sides are always going away from eachother, or traveling in different directions- this is the push and pull of the golf swing, two sides working in opposite directions for the same end.
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