Master Your Distance Wedge
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See how professional golfers hit wedge shots that fly low but stop from high spin. In addition to clean contact with new clubs and performance balls, you will see some of the common swing techniques illustrated so that you too can train this shot.
Tags: Speciality Shot, Pitch, Analysis, Intermediate
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In this analysis video, we're going to take a look at the low spinning wedge shot.
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So here we've got two examples, Jordan's beef on the right and Steve Strikker on the left.
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And it's going to be very similar to what we talked about in the distance wedge shot,
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where we'll see as the approach impact, we will tend to see more of an arm and upper body hit,
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less of a lower body hit, and we'll see that based on
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the lower body being facing the golf ball, facing the chest, there's not a lot of drive from the lower body.
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What we'll see is as they come through, you'll tend to see
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from just before impact. So the arms are kind of powering that early part of transition,
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and then just before impact, the upper body is going to continue rotating past the lower body,
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which takes the hands up and left.
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We'll see from the face on view that even though they will have a fair amount of shaft lean,
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they're not going to take a steep divot because of that upper body rotating.
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So we'll see a similar pattern with Jordan where the hands work more or less up that shaft plane,
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working up and left from that upper body rotating, not so much from the arm movement.
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So now looking at Jordan over here on the right, we can see the arms kind of power that's
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weighing, there is some lower body movement, but it's not really driving the rotational movement.
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And here we can see as you approach his impact, he has a fair amount of shaft lean,
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but you'll see only a tiny little divot go flying right there.
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You'll tend to see that the club is just going to skim the ground, brush the ground,
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but even though there's a fair amount of shaft lean, and that's because the upper body
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is going to continue rotating and support this early arm movement.
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We'll see it even easier from Steve Strikker over here on the left.
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We won't be able to see how much shaft lean he has, but we can see given where his hands
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are in relationship to his body and the fact that the ball was more in the middle of his
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stance, we know that there is a fair amount of shaft lean,
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but you'll see just a gentle brushing of the ground.
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And as he comes through on this lower check running pitch, you will tend to see that the
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relationship of the hands to the body stays relatively the same, and it's that body rotating
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that has controlled the path of the club from impact through the follow-through.
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So here we have two more examples, and I'll scrub these through so we can actually see
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the way that the shots land.
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And then we'll discuss a little bit of what they do to make that happen.
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So as they replay the shot, you'll see there's kind of that one bounce and then it'll
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really grind to a halt.
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Now over on the left we have Phil Nicholson from a few years back, and you'll see it take
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kind of one hop and then it's very fast-greens, so it doesn't grind to a halt, but you'll
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see that it kind of checks up right in there.
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So now as we look at the technique, you'll tend to see that even for this shorter shot,
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it's very hard to hit this shot if you have enough spin if you don't get your hands
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at least to about waist height.
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The ones that really just take one hop and stop are typically going to be closer to
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the lead arm parallel, which we saw with Matario shot over here.
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So you'll tend to see a backswing length right about there where the left arm is parallel
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for the ones that one hop stop, and that'll typically be somewhere in the 50-60, if you
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can really control your tempo, you can really down to about 40 yards.
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Phil is doing it from about waist height, which is pretty much as low as you can get, and
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that's why it doesn't fully grind to a halt.
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But again, we'll see this pattern of those hands rotating left, and I like this camera
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angle for being able to see how little wrist action he has through this shot.
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It's a lot more of a trail elbow straightening, because you can see when he gets into that
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He hasn't fully released that his left wrist or that trail wrist.
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It's a little harder to see on this view, because of the frame rate in the blur, but I
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wanted you to be able to see the length of backswing.
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Now here are two good examples that we can look at to see this continued upper body rotation
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through the shot, which is one of the really big keys to being able to pull off, shafling
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with having a shallow angle of attack.
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So over on the left we have Jason Duffner, and as you approach his impact, you can kind of
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see the speed of his upper body rotating, and then as he goes through between impact and
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towards that follow-through, you can see that rate of rotation continue or even look like
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it possibly increases.
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So basically what you'll see is it takes some training and some practice to be able to extend
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that right elbow without flipping that right wrist.
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When you flip that right wrist, you're going to tend to hit a higher on the face, which
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isn't going to input in part much spin, and it's going to increase your line.
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Much angle typically, so these guys have figured out how to hit this as more of a body shot,
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which they tend to like because it holds up a little bit better when you get nervous
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and more of the blood flow is in your body than in your hands.
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So here you can see the flag, so it's kind of in that 40-D yard range, and you can see
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that he's doing a good job of getting the club all the way up to about radar and parallel,
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and then you'll really be able to see that right wrist through the ball or that trail
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wrist through the ball, not really flip over.
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It's more of that body rotation.
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So here we can see certain amount of his back, and then you'll see through that shot,
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basically the amount of his body rotation is going to match the angular distance or about
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how much that club has worked around the circle.
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So that hit through the shot is going to be a lot more from that trail elbow, not so much
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the wrist, and you have to make sure that your body continues rotating through the shot
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in order to hit that low spinning wedge.
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So we'll look at one more set of examples over on the right, we have one of the best
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at this shot, Leach Ravino, and he was really big on promoting that lead wrist thing,
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inflection, trail wrist kind of extension through the hit.
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I remember him using a drill where he would put a pen or pencil up against that left arm
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to learn how to get that impact without having those wrist flip, and you can see that trail
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wrist through the shot maintains some of its extension all the way as he goes through.
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Now this is obviously very late in his career, and his body pivot action isn't as good
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as it once was, but knowing the technique, he's still able to pull off this shot because
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he has really good rate of that trail arm extending without letting the wrist bend and then
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continued body rotation through the shot.
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Over here on the left we have another great view of Jordan's teeth in the super slow
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mode, we can see we knew that from the face on view he's got a bit of shaft lane and we
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can see a little bit of a divot but not very much considering how much shaft lane he has
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for hitting the shot and then you'll see that as his body or as he goes into that follow
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through, you'll tend to see a lot more of the body rotation and shoulder movement or elbow movement
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however you want to reference it but not a ton of wrist flip. If you tend to have a lot of wrist
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flip and wrist roll, the low spinning wind shot is going to be very very difficult to hit,
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so you got to learn how to hit this shot using more of your body, hopefully we can help you
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with the drills we have within the other videos in this site.