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Loss Of Posture Overview

Many golfers have been told to keep "there head down" by well meaning golfers.  This video explains how raising your head in the backswing can be missinterpreted and how the solution to keep your head down will rarely fix it.  The cause of loss of posture in the backswing is either

  • The upper body raising in the backswing
  • Not enough left side bend during the backswing

Reasons for loss of posture in the backswing

Lack of side bend- As with all of the patterns we are discussing, there are a variety of reasons why a person will gravitate toward a certain pattern. Loss of posture is simply a change in elevation or posture during the backswing. This gives the impression of “standing up”, but “standing up” is really a lack of what is called side bend. Many golfers have been told to rotate their spine, but neglect the direction the shoulders should point in a proper back swing pivot.

Lack of arm rotation- If you remember from the backswing portion, the second half of the swing involves some standing up as the arms rotate into position, fequently, players will not side bend because it means that they don’t have to rotate their forearms as much and it puts less stress on their upper back.

Grip- A second common reason to stand up is when the grip is too much in the palm and you can’t hinge or set your wrists.

Power- if your idea for creating speed in the downswing is based around a crunch and chop movement, then I can make the case that standing up in the backswing will help make that more effective.  If you want to change your loss of posture in the backswing, you need to work on the way you power the swing in the downswing.

To learn more about the proper movements of the backswing, please check out the backswing section in the stock swing program.

Playlists: Stop Standing Up In Your Backswing, STS - Faults and Fixes

Tags: Standing Up, Concept, Beginner

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In this concept video, we're going to explore the loss of posture swing pattern.

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So the loss of posture swing pattern is a very common amateur swing pattern and it's essentially

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a lift of the thorax during the back swing.

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So when we look on video, we'll look from the down the line and typically a loss of

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posture will look like this.

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It will look as if my body is kind of standing up as I'm making this back swing.

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But it's important to understand what this loss of posture actually is so that you can

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find the easiest way to correct it.

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Because it tends to limit both power production as well as consistency.

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And since it's a backswing issue, it tends to be easier to work on and have faster improvements

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than say an early extension or a cast swing pattern, which is more of a down swing and

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power driven movement.

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So with this loss of posture, basically I'm bent to certain amount at a setup position.

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And a lot of amateurs and beginners tend to think that I'm going to stay in the same

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flex and I'm going to rotate.

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And if I did, you could see it would end up looking like this and my shoulders would

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be more or less level to the ground.

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But if I did that facing you, you can see that my upper body shifted a whole lot in order

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to do that.

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So in order for my upper body to rotate, I actually have to stand up a little bit during

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the backswing.

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Now while I'm doing this little stand up move, I'm replacing it with left side bend.

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Because this loss of posture is really just a lack of left side bend for a right hand

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to golfer.

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So when I make my backswing, you'll see that you are now facing my chest.

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So if I was to lift up, it would essentially be bringing this left shoulder up or going

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like this.

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So during the backswing, what you'll tend to see is there is a blend of rotation and side

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bend and extension in order to stay in more or less a centered pivot position.

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A lot of amateurs struggle with this side bend movement, partly because of what muscles

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this side bend movement would load.

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The side bend movement would load more of my rotational muscles in my core and my hips where

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this stand up move tends to load my flexing muscles.

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So if I feel like I want to create most of my power from a chop or most of my power from

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kind of a crunch, almost like I'm using an axe, those two movements would actually be

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encouraged for me to have this loss of posture.

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So because it's a backswing issue, it tends to have less of an influence on the face

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and path, at least neurologically, but it can reveal what you're trying to do during the

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downswing as far as power production.

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So loss of posture is typically going to be, I'm not going to create a lot of speed

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rotating my body instead I'm going to create speed with more of this upper body crunch

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Now from a technical standpoint, there are three major reasons why I tend to see this loss

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of posture during the backswing.

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The first one is going to be one of the more common, which is a lack of forearm rotation

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during the backswing.

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When I'm set up to the golf ball and I'll actually do this facing you, when I'm set up

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to the golf ball, you can see that the club, if I was to just hinge my arms like so, would

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work very vertically.

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In order for it to more or less match my spine angle, my left arm is going to have to rotate

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kind of like this.

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And my right shoulder is going to rotate slightly like that.

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So typically what will happen is amateurs will get in their setup posture.

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And if I was to keep my arms in the same orientation compared to the club, and I made

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a backswing, it would look something like this.

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Well, if I don't know or if I'm not comfortable rotating this because it tends to open

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the face and can cause me to hit the ball off to the right, unless I know what to do during

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transition, well then another way that I could correct it is by standing up.

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That now gets the club underneath my hand so I can support the weight of the club.

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And it's given me this look of a kind of a on-plane backswing.

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Unfortunately, it has made it very difficult for me to make my lower body, lead the

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downswing, shallow it out with my arms, and all the other good transition pieces that we

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talk about in the transition section.

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So number one for working on this loss of posture is letting your arms rotate some, whether

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it's 40 degrees, 60 degrees, letting your arms rotate some during the backswing will

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create a really flat shoulder or a really flat swing path unless you were to balance it with

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having a little bit more of that left side bend.

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The second most common reason that I'll see this loss of posture pattern is going to

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be gripping it in the palm.

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So we have a few videos to help you understand how to grip the club in the setup section.

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But if you're gripped in the palm, essentially what will happen is that will limit how

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much you can use your wrist.

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So when I limit how much I can use my wrist, I'm not going to be able to create that

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lever and create a ton of speed for my wrist.

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So I'm going to use more of my elbows, more of my shoulders, and more of my back.

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So it ends up looking, I get to a point where I should bend my wrist, but I can't.

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So I can't because of how I'm gripping the club.

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So then I end up lifting up kind of like so in order to finish the swing.

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And that's somewhat similar connected to the third piece, which is more of a physical issue,

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which is a lot of people who struggle with this loss of posture tend to struggle from weakness

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in their mid back.

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Now obviously I put the technique first because I think that a lot of it is this concept

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and what you're supposed to do and not really understanding that.

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But if you know what you're supposed to do and you still have trouble, it's either going

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to be not creating speed in the downswing the right way.

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We're having a weakness in my mid back and this loss of posture is actually taking some

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of the stress off of my left shoulder blade and redistributing it more into my lower back.

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So that would kind of look like this where if my arms are somewhat wide and out in front

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of me kind of like so, my mid back muscles are actually holding a weight that's quite far away

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from me.

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So it takes a little bit of strength for them to do so.

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Oftentimes if I was to raise this left shoulder and bend these arms, it brings everything

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closer to me and now my back doesn't have to support the weight nearly as dramatically

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as if I was in my good posture.

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So those are the three main causes for this loss of posture.

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As you'll see in the analysis video, there is one great model you can

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look at who's Kenny Perry, who is a great ball striker who has this issue, but you'll

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see that what he does is very different from what amateurs do.

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So go through the drills in the analysis video in this section and hopefully that'll help

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you understand what I think is one of the big fundamentals which is how to control this

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steady pivot because there are very few elite gulp for us who don't have a very steady

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pivot and there are many, many amateurs who don't.

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Because this is a backswing issue, you should be able to make relatively fast improvements

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and we'll have big effects once you figure out what your barrier is to staying in your posture.

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