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.

Calibrating Spine Rotation

Many golfers combine rotation with other movements. When they think "rotate" their brain actually adds sways, lifts, or side bend. Use this at home drill to train how your spine moves.

Tags: Intermediate

00:00:00,000 --> 00:00:03,000
This drill is calibrating spine rotation.

00:00:03,000 --> 00:00:05,000
So this is more of a awareness drill or appropriate

00:00:05,000 --> 00:00:10,000
ception drill that you can do at home to calibrate your spine rotation.

00:00:10,000 --> 00:00:13,000
Because there are times where as a golf instructor,

00:00:13,000 --> 00:00:15,000
I'm going to tell you I want you to rotate.

00:00:15,000 --> 00:00:20,000
And unfortunately your brain is not always going to interpret that as rotation.

00:00:20,000 --> 00:00:23,000
It may interpret that as a secondary movement.

00:00:23,000 --> 00:00:26,000
You may go in the more side bend, you may go into more extension.

00:00:26,000 --> 00:00:28,000
You may have a little bit of sway to it.

00:00:28,000 --> 00:00:30,000
You might not totally just be rotating.

00:00:30,000 --> 00:00:33,000
So we're going to do this one without a club.

00:00:33,000 --> 00:00:37,000
There are two different ways that I like to coach rotation.

00:00:37,000 --> 00:00:40,000
One is you're going to take your arms and place them across your shoulders.

00:00:40,000 --> 00:00:44,000
Kind of like the classic TPI Disassociation Test.

00:00:44,000 --> 00:00:49,000
And then from here I'm going to rotate my upper body and my lower body into a back swing.

00:00:49,000 --> 00:00:52,000
And I'm going to rotate my upper body and my lower body into a downswing.

00:00:52,000 --> 00:00:57,000
You'll see that I have a little bit of kind of natural golf movements in my lower body.

00:00:57,000 --> 00:01:00,000
But my upper body stayed pretty centered as it rotates.

00:01:00,000 --> 00:01:03,000
Many golfers, when I first asked them to rotate,

00:01:03,000 --> 00:01:11,000
what the end up doing is they'll have more of a lateral movement with their upper body while they rotate.

00:01:11,000 --> 00:01:16,000
So it's a blended movement to get this kind of golf rotation around your spine axis.

00:01:16,000 --> 00:01:20,000
So if you have a hard time feeling,

00:01:20,000 --> 00:01:23,000
if you have a hard time feeling rotation,

00:01:23,000 --> 00:01:24,000
then you can walk kind of staying centered.

00:01:24,000 --> 00:01:27,000
If you do it more like this,

00:01:27,000 --> 00:01:30,000
I'm going to show you another drill that I use using the arms.

00:01:30,000 --> 00:01:35,000
So now if I get into my golf posture with my arms kind of pointing out at the golf wall,

00:01:35,000 --> 00:01:40,000
I'm going to use them almost like train tracks.

00:01:40,000 --> 00:01:44,000
And I'm going to reach one arm away or one arm towards the golf wall.

00:01:44,000 --> 00:01:46,000
And I'm going to reach the other arm away.

00:01:46,000 --> 00:01:49,000
So I'm basically going to go just like this.

00:01:49,000 --> 00:01:51,000
Now if I put my arms across my chest,

00:01:51,000 --> 00:01:53,000
you can see that I rotated there.

00:01:53,000 --> 00:01:59,000
Many golfers won't feel the spine rotation when the upper body stays centered like that.

00:01:59,000 --> 00:02:01,000
They'll say, no, I just move my arms.

00:02:01,000 --> 00:02:03,000
I didn't really rotate my spine.

00:02:03,000 --> 00:02:07,000
But you can see clearly from this face on camera angle that I'm rotating my spine,

00:02:07,000 --> 00:02:09,000
a good amount.

00:02:09,000 --> 00:02:11,000
From the down line, if I do that same thing,

00:02:11,000 --> 00:02:17,000
what you'll see is that my chest is kind of opening up and facing the camera just like so.

00:02:17,000 --> 00:02:20,000
So there are two times where this is critical in your golf swing practice.

00:02:20,000 --> 00:02:23,000
One is in the backswing and two is in the downswing.

00:02:23,000 --> 00:02:27,000
Those are the two times where we need to rotate our spine.

00:02:27,000 --> 00:02:34,000
This one pretty much mirrors a drill that we use here for kind of feeling that backswing rotation.

00:02:34,000 --> 00:02:38,000
But many golfers when they try to first start rotating into the backswing,

00:02:38,000 --> 00:02:43,000
they're going to have a little bit more of an upper body shift or going to more of a side bend movement.

00:02:43,000 --> 00:02:50,000
You can see neither of those would really match that pure spine rotation

00:02:50,000 --> 00:02:55,000
where the arms are working on those train tracks.

00:02:55,000 --> 00:02:59,000
The opposite would be or the other side would be in the downswing.

00:02:59,000 --> 00:03:03,000
So now what I'm going to do is I'm going to have a little bit of the Jackson 5 little pressure shift

00:03:03,000 --> 00:03:08,000
where my upper body is getting into kind of that good flex posture.

00:03:08,000 --> 00:03:10,000
And now I'm going to do the same thing.

00:03:10,000 --> 00:03:17,000
I can either rotate my upper body while my hips continue rotating or moving in the direction of the target.

00:03:17,000 --> 00:03:21,000
So kind of like so or I can do the train tracks.

00:03:21,000 --> 00:03:23,000
So I'm going to get into that left side.

00:03:23,000 --> 00:03:28,000
And now I'm going to reach the right arm towards the golf wall and I'm going to pull that left arm away.

00:03:28,000 --> 00:03:33,000
Now if I was to then kind of lock this in place and bring my arms together,

00:03:33,000 --> 00:03:38,000
that's the same thing as rotating my spine correctly.

00:03:38,000 --> 00:03:42,000
Many golfers when they get into the downswing move.

00:03:42,000 --> 00:03:46,000
If it's not calibrated, they'll either go into excessive side bend

00:03:46,000 --> 00:03:50,000
or they'll tend to go into more of an upper body shift.

00:03:50,000 --> 00:03:53,000
So many times when I'll say rotate your upper body,

00:03:53,000 --> 00:03:55,000
you know getting into that left side and then rotate your upper body,

00:03:55,000 --> 00:04:00,000
they will tend to drift the whole center of their upper body forward,

00:04:00,000 --> 00:04:03,000
which can cause angle of attack issues.

00:04:03,000 --> 00:04:05,000
So if you're struggling with feeling pure rotation,

00:04:05,000 --> 00:04:13,000
here are a couple of awareness drills that you can do at home to calibrate more of a rotation of the spine.

00:04:13,000 --> 00:04:16,000
And your goal is to get it so that these two movements,

00:04:16,000 --> 00:04:23,000
whether I'm using my arms to help the rotation or I'm just using my ribcage and my shoulders,

00:04:23,000 --> 00:04:25,000
those two movements should match up.

00:04:25,000 --> 00:04:28,000
It's helpful if you use a mirror or a video tape yourself.

00:04:28,000 --> 00:04:31,000
If you're doing it at home, I recommend doing it in front of a mirror

00:04:31,000 --> 00:04:34,000
so that you can really check and make sure that when you rotate,

00:04:34,000 --> 00:04:36,000
you're doing pure spine rotation.

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