Start a Free 3 Day Trial

Get access to 900+ instructional videos
No credit card required
Tyler Ferrell is the only person in the world named to Golf Digest's list of Best Young Teachers in America AND its list of Best Golf Fitness Professionals in America. Meet your new instructor.

Click here to join now and get full access.

Arm Extension - Timing And Direction

During the downswing, your goal is to build speed in your hands and then transfer that speed to the club head. This process involves a team approach of the body and the arms. When it comes to the arms, there are two general issues that can show up.  One is the timing of when the arms fire (almost always too soon) and the second is the direction (or the positions of the arms). For a full swing, the arms should work more across the body than down toward the golf ball. If they work more down toward the golf ball, then it will be almost impossible for your body to rotate and side bend as much as you would like.

Tags: Release, Concept, Intermediate, Beginner

00:00:00,000 --> 00:00:04,000
The struggle is arm extension timing and direction.

00:00:04,000 --> 00:00:08,000
So there's two major things that you can look at when you're watching a video and you're

00:00:08,000 --> 00:00:13,000
seeing when the arms are releasing and kind of what direction.

00:00:13,000 --> 00:00:19,000
Now, we can't see on video the intention and necessarily why your arms are extending when

00:00:19,000 --> 00:00:20,000
they are.

00:00:20,000 --> 00:00:25,000
But simply put, the more that your body stops, the more that your body kind of braces,

00:00:25,000 --> 00:00:29,000
that's going to cause your arms to extend, the more that your body continues rotating,

00:00:29,000 --> 00:00:32,000
and that's going to delay the timing of those arm extension.

00:00:32,000 --> 00:00:37,000
So if you videotape yourself and you look at your swing or you submit it and we talk

00:00:37,000 --> 00:00:43,000
about the timing of when the arms extend, this is roughly what we're looking at.

00:00:43,000 --> 00:00:48,000
What should happen is right about here, my arms are going to start extending, but my body

00:00:48,000 --> 00:00:52,000
is going to continue turning, so it looks on video like they're going to be extending

00:00:52,000 --> 00:00:58,000
more or less down through this hitting area with everything say longer than a seven-iron.

00:00:58,000 --> 00:01:03,000
The wedge is it will tend to look a little bit sooner.

00:01:03,000 --> 00:01:09,000
So the timing of it is the later we can get the timing of that arm extension, the more

00:01:09,000 --> 00:01:12,000
that we're using our body to power the swing, and the more that we're going to have

00:01:12,000 --> 00:01:19,000
a lengthy flat spot at the bottom, because the more that my arms are extending through

00:01:19,000 --> 00:01:22,000
the hit, that's going to keep that club head low to the ground.

00:01:22,000 --> 00:01:26,000
My arms have already extended, the only way that club could say low to the ground is

00:01:26,000 --> 00:01:32,000
if my upper body drifted forward like that, which wouldn't be very powerful or consistent

00:01:32,000 --> 00:01:33,000
or easy for me to balance with.

00:01:33,000 --> 00:01:38,000
So the only way for me to get a really good flat spot is to delay the timing of those

00:01:38,000 --> 00:01:43,000
arms extending and working on getting those arms to extend down through the hit instead

00:01:43,000 --> 00:01:45,000
of into the hit.

00:01:45,000 --> 00:01:49,000
So the timing piece is a little bit pretty cut and dry.

00:01:49,000 --> 00:01:53,000
We can look on video and see when that right arm is starting to extend.

00:01:53,000 --> 00:01:55,000
The second piece is going to be the direction.

00:01:55,000 --> 00:02:00,000
So I really break it down because there's only two real options.

00:02:00,000 --> 00:02:04,000
The arms could either extend straight out away from me, kind of like so or straight out

00:02:04,000 --> 00:02:09,000
in front of my right shoulder, or they could extend more across my body and head of my left

00:02:09,000 --> 00:02:10,000
shoulder.

00:02:10,000 --> 00:02:16,000
So the more that my arms extend across my body, the more that they're going to go across

00:02:16,000 --> 00:02:21,000
kind of like so, which is similar to that white movement, similar to what we teach with

00:02:21,000 --> 00:02:24,000
the open trail hand.

00:02:24,000 --> 00:02:28,000
That's going to get the bottom this way and further forward and give me a more shallow

00:02:28,000 --> 00:02:32,000
contact, but it's typically also going to open the face.

00:02:32,000 --> 00:02:37,000
So it allows me to be more aggressive with both the supination of the lead arm as well

00:02:37,000 --> 00:02:41,000
as the motorcycle movement during transition.

00:02:41,000 --> 00:02:47,000
So a lot of golfers what they struggle with is using this arm release in order to get the

00:02:47,000 --> 00:02:50,000
club pointed in the general direction of the target.

00:02:50,000 --> 00:02:56,000
Now this can be fine for wedges when I'm releasing to get the club pointed in the direction

00:02:56,000 --> 00:03:00,000
of the target like so because I don't really need a really long flat spot there.

00:03:00,000 --> 00:03:03,000
I'm actually trying to get the bottom of the swing pretty close to where the golf wall is.

00:03:03,000 --> 00:03:09,000
But with the full swing of the irons, with the full swing of the driver, if the arms are

00:03:09,000 --> 00:03:14,000
extending too soon like so, then the club is going to come start working its way back

00:03:14,000 --> 00:03:16,000
up relatively quickly.

00:03:16,000 --> 00:03:21,000
If the arms working more across my body like so, that's going to help encourage that

00:03:21,000 --> 00:03:23,000
body rotation.

00:03:23,000 --> 00:03:30,000
In fact, if you look at it down the line camera and you see that you can you kind of look

00:03:30,000 --> 00:03:34,000
like this in impact where you're not seeing a whole lot of body rotation, then trying

00:03:34,000 --> 00:03:40,000
to get that elbow to lead that wrist and trying to get that arm to work more across your

00:03:40,000 --> 00:03:45,000
body will almost force the look of rotation at impact.

00:03:45,000 --> 00:03:50,000
In fact, that's part of my contention as to why golfers tend to look like they're more

00:03:50,000 --> 00:03:54,000
rotated as because of the direction that they're releasing their arms more across their

00:03:54,000 --> 00:03:59,000
body through the release as opposed to straight out away the way we would do in kind

00:03:59,000 --> 00:04:00,000
of a short game shot.

00:04:00,000 --> 00:04:06,000
So if you're struggling with either getting body rotation or arms releasing too soon or

00:04:06,000 --> 00:04:11,000
you're struggling with really consistent contact, typically working on the timing and

00:04:11,000 --> 00:04:17,000
the direction that the arms are starting to extend can be very helpful for lengthening

00:04:17,000 --> 00:04:21,000
your flat spot and working on your consistent strike.

00:04:21,000 --> 00:04:28,000
One last little piece about this arm timing and direction is that ultimately the timing

00:04:28,000 --> 00:04:33,000
of the arm extension should be driven more from the body movements, especially how my left

00:04:33,000 --> 00:04:39,000
leg is interacting with the ground rather than a force movement of the arms.

00:04:39,000 --> 00:04:46,000
So if I get to our delivery position and then I really push with that front foot through

00:04:46,000 --> 00:04:53,000
the ground to cause my side bend that will help trigger those arms extending.

00:04:53,000 --> 00:04:59,000
In addition, if my arms are working out away from me kind of like so when that leg tends

00:04:59,000 --> 00:05:03,000
to push that can cause me to hit behind it.

00:05:03,000 --> 00:05:09,000
So the more that I get my arms working more across my body then when it allows me to create

00:05:09,000 --> 00:05:11,000
this body side bend.

00:05:11,000 --> 00:05:18,000
So again the timing of when the arms should be starting to fire is driven by this brace

00:05:18,000 --> 00:05:23,000
of that lead leg not a forced or conscious action of the arms.

00:05:23,000 --> 00:05:29,000
If you're able to connect everything to the body and what the arms are trying to do,

00:05:29,000 --> 00:05:32,000
then conjuncture with how the body gets them to do it.

00:05:32,000 --> 00:05:34,000
Ultimately that will lead to the most consistent version of your swing.

Click here to start your free 3 day trial. No credit card required.