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During transition, the arms have two primary roles. They need to start shallowing out the path of the club, and they need to start squaring the face. Many golfers struggle with this shallowing piece and use standing up or straightening the arms to shallow it out instead. Watch how great ball strikers demonstrate this movement, and how you can apply it to your swing as well.
Tags: Not Enough Distance, Transition, Concept, Advanced, Intermediate
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In this concept video, we're going to take a look at the details of how the arm shallow
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the club during transition.
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This is one of the big movements in the golf swing that separates your high-handy
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capers from your tour pros, because if I fail to shallow the club with my arms during
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transition, it opens me up to shallowing it either early with a cast or late with early extension,
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and both of those are going to limit my flat spot and limit my abilities to start the
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So take a look at these examples and hopefully it will help you understand how and why we
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want these arms to shallow during transition.
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So now we're going to take a look at how a couple great ball strikers have described this
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down versus out movement and how amateurs typically interpret it.
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I think you'll be able to see where you might have some struggles or some issues with
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putting it into your own swing.
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But I think that it's one of those key movements that helps build proper pivot and body
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movements on the downswing, so I think it's important that we get on the same page here.
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So in this video, Ben Hogan is describing what he wants the lower body to do.
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But what I want you to do is I want you to watch his upper body as he demonstrates
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this lower body movement.
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So you'll see that basically compared to his chest, his hands stay relatively at the same
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As he goes through this movement.
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So his hands are working more or less across his body as he's demonstrating this.
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They're not really working down towards the golf ball until he reaches that delivery
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position and then lets those arms go through.
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So while he's describing this movement as all lower body, you can see that his arms
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have had this shallow move and they're working more across his body.
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Next we'll take a look at Monorman demonstrating the same thing.
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So now we have a video of Monorman essentially describing what his arms do, what he describes
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as the drop.
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But you'll see that as he does that, his shoulder compared to his body actually stays
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more or less out in front of his chest.
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His arms are not actually dropping down even though he describes it as a drop.
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And then what you'll see is as he works more into the release, you'll see that his arms
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work actually more across his body as opposed to down out towards the golf ball.
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Here he's describing how that right elbow got underneath the left and so if you were to,
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that would be similar to my concept of the don't break my arm.
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But you'll see that as he goes through this, he's basically describing this shallow move
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or this having the club drop behind you, this vision of how the arms actually shallow
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And you'll see that when he demonstrates it, it looks almost nothing like it.
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So now I want to show you a couple amateurs who I think need to work on this and I'll
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even show you one amateur working on it and how often it is interpreted.
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So now here's one of our members who's agreed to let me use this wing and you'll see
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he had kind of more of an upper body dominated swing and so he's trying to get those
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that shallow move and you'll see that the hands are actually working almost vertically
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just like so.
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And as a result, the shaft is actually tipping back this way or getting steeper.
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So even though those hands are working very much down and from the inside of the golf
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ball, that club is moving steeper and steeper and steeper during that pattern.
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That's what's commonly interpreted when you try to drop your arms or what most people
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think of come from the inside and shallow out the swing.
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I'll show you another example of a golfer who actually worked with in person and us
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going through the process.
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So here's a golfer working in sunny Colorado.
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You'll see that this is just during his warm-up so he's not really focused on this at
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In fact, he has some thoughts that are more geared towards the body and you'll see that
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those hands work very much down and the shaft tends to stand up and steep and even
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as he takes these practice swings.
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So as a result, he'll tend to have this clunky behind the ground contact like so.
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If I were to bring in, I mentioned or I showed him on video what he was doing and I said,
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okay, so I want you to try to really work on getting that shaft to shallow and he's like,
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okay, I got an idea for it.
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Here we go.
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So now he's going to go up towards the top of the swing and he's really going to get
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that shaft to shallow and you'll see that what he actually does is that shaft steepens
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come here to the other one.
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But his hands are just working more and more down back and behind him kind of like so.
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So that's commonly what a lot of amateurs try to do or what they do unconsciously in
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trying to get that shallowing piece.
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Now if you were to replay in the back of your mind what it looked like when Ben Hogan was
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demonstrating his movement.
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So you can see his arms compared to his body are closer to vertical.
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If we were to bring Ben Hogan back up and demonstrate that piece, you'll see that as he does
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this little pump movement.
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You can see that those arms are very much working more across your bodies.
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I know this is a different view, but hopefully you can see what I'm talking about.
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So now let's jump back to this amateur and when he was actually trying to do the drill.
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So basically what I did was I stepped in and made sure that his hands physically could
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not drop and he tried to drop the club.
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So I had my hands right here and I said I want you to let the club drop down behind you
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just like this.
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And so you'll see that as he practices it, hey he's actually getting it to shallow out
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some and look a little bit more like Monorman and Ben Hogan.
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Obviously the club faces not in the same position but you can see that the shaft is working
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And so as a result of him when he feels that movement you'll see when he actually goes
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to swing the contact with the ground is much more shallow.
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It's no longer clunky and slamming into the ground and it's going to ultimately give him
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a much higher margin for air as he works on the club face.
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So I think that a lot of golfers struggle with this cast pattern or who struggle with
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early extension in the downswing can benefit from this shallowing move during transition.
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And while I have a couple of videos such as downverse out, the water bottle transition,
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things like that, I still think it helps to visualize.
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So hopefully this helps you understand how to apply those drills properly for your swing.
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So if you're the average golfer that's probably all you need is just to see the video
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and see what it looks like.
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But I know that we have a fair number of instructors and kind of what I consider the
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golf nerds who love to study the few who wouldn't win.
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So I'm going to show the 3D graph that essentially shows how we look at this downverse
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So here's this is lead arm lift.
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So this line is basically showing how much the left arm for a ray hand golfer is either
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raised or depressed compared to the thorax.
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So basically if we look at the one on the left, you'll see during the take away, it pretty
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much stays the same and then it starts lifting during the backswing and it's still lifting
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until you'll see this vertical line represents top of the swing and you'll see it's still
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lifting until just after top of the swing and then it starts working back down towards
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Over on the right you'll see more of that kind of dropping and steepening move where you'll
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see it has similar pattern during the take away and then gradually lifts during the backswing.
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But you'll see that just before the top of the swing it starts working down.
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This will be one of those golfers who's going to look like the club is steepening and
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the arms are dropping straight down behind him so it'll feel like he's coming from the
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inside but it doesn't have very much of a shallow piece.
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So I like to give you as much information as I can hopefully this helps you understand
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why this golfer on the left who happens to be a accomplished tour pro.
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It's the ball a lot better than this golfer on the right part of which is what they
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are doing with their arms during transition and how the arms are controlling a big piece
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of the shallowing of the swing.