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When it comes to hitting an iron, there are certain movements that are more important than others.
Important movements for iron play
- Motorcycle/leading edge control
- Sternum slightly ahead of set up
Things you can "get away with"
- Upper body dominant swing
- Arm straightening too soon
- Forward lunge
Tags: Iron, Intermediate, Beginner
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In this concept video, we're going to go over the specifics of hitting an iron.
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So there's a few things that are going to be really critical if we want to make solid
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contact and hit a relatively straight shot with an iron.
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The first thing in the most obvious is controlling the low point.
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If you remember from the solid contact video, the center of the club is roughly the fourth
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groove up, which is where the sweet spot is.
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The only way we can get that on the back of the golf ball, if it's in the fairway, is
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if we have a little bit of shaft lean.
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The only way we can have a little bit of shaft lean is if the upper body is in the right
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place so that the hands can be applying this force on a golf ball in the proper way.
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So the things that I think are the most critical for hitting an iron is the location of the
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sternum and what you're doing with your hands.
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So what I tend to see with good drivers of the golf ball is that sequencing can be a really
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There are a lot of really good iron players who don't have the best sequencing of the
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parts of the lower body, but they have an outstanding release and they're really good
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at controlling how the hands are applying the golf ball or the golf club onto the golf
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So when we're checking this sternum piece, which is going to happen before the arms,
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we want to make sure of two things.
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One, we want to make sure that that iron man movement is pointing out in front of the
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golf ball, but we also want to make sure that our power source didn't cause this upper
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body to start pointing way out away from the golf ball compared to my body.
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If it starts pointing out there, then what'll happen is the only way that I can get my arms
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down to the golf ball is if they're fully straightened and that will leave no more slack
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or no more give for my arms to extend and straighten through the golf shot.
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So pay attention to where this is and you can use drills like the merry go round or the iron
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man movements to get used to that upper body being closer to the ground because the closer
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the upper body gets to the ground, the more that my arms have slack to get out ahead,
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the more that they stand up, these lines up or the club and my arms form a straight line
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and I no longer have any margin of air of getting my arms to straighten through the shot.
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The other thing that will help make sure that I can get my hands ahead is going to be
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that motorcycle move or the bowing of the left wrist or the flattening of the left
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The critical move for hitting irons.
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As you'll see in the driver video you can get away with scooping a little bit with the
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driver because it's teed up with the iron in order to have the leading edge coming in
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the golf ball with my hands ahead.
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The club face will be slightly closed compared to the grip which means I have to have
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done a little bit of this motorcycle move.
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Now the last thing as far as a critical factor is you can't have your path coming too
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much from the inside.
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If you're really good driver with a golf ball but struggle more with the short irons,
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there's a very good chance that your upper body is getting left behind and the club
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is coming too much from the inside.
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If you remember from the shot shaving video, since the club is hitting the golf ball
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on the way down, the path is inherently out to the right.
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So if I wanted to have a true straight path or close to a straight path, that means that
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on video, the appearance of the path is going to be a little bit more outside to in.
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The other important piece of information to understand with the iron is not necessarily
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what's best but what can you get away with?
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So what might you be doing in your stock swing that allows you to hit an iron well but
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prevents you from hitting a driver well?
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Things that you can get away with with an iron are going to be having your arms straight
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and too soon.
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So if I have a little bit of a cast movement that will let the club come from the outside
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in which because I'm hitting down doesn't make a huge difference.
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As long as I get my lower body ahead and keep my upper body down, I can still take
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a little bit of a divot and hit relatively solid pretty good iron shots.
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The other piece that kind of goes ahead goes with this arm straightening is I'm going
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to be able to have more of an upper body dominant swing.
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So if I'm working on the Jackson 5 with my driver and working on getting a little bit
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more push through the ground with the trail leg push drill, I may not need to use those
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and I can get all my speed kind of from my arms and from my upper body.
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You'll see that my tendency is always to use my leg so it's hard for me to demonstrate
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Those last ones where I'm just using my arms would probably be an okay or at least a solid
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That was wouldn't work too well for the driver.
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So the big ones are the upper body spin, the arm straightening too soon and what can go
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with that is what we call a forward lunge where if you go to the top of the swing and that
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upper body tends to drift with the lower body, now these two are lined up but I'm ahead
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of the golf ball.
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Not a problem with an iron where I have loft and I'm trying to hit down.
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So there's a few things that you can kind of get away with with the others but they'll
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kill you with your driver if you were to try to do them.
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So let's talk about a few of the pieces that you can get away with with your driver and
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what you would struggle with if you did with an iron swing.
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They're actually just the opposite of everything that we've talked about.
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So if I were to have too much lower body, this can cause me to create too much of an
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access to it which is great for hitting a long drive but moves the bottom of my swing back
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and gives me some contact issues where I'll tend to hit a little bit more fat or thin
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shot and I will tend to hit more of a hook with my iron compared to the driver.
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The other one that you can get away with with your driver that is a lot of trouble with
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the iron is that scoop or letting the left wrist break down or the right wrist flex.
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So the left wrist right wrist coming towards you.
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So where you'll see that show up if I were to get down like so and then flip that flip
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is going to cause the bottom of my swing to move backward and with the iron it's more important
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to have the bottom of the swing forward.
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So if you get lost if you start struggling with your iron just review the pieces that
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I've talked about and you should be able to figure out and trouble shoot which one is
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causing you the most trouble by paying attention to what feedback you're getting when you
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take your full swing.