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Set Up Analysis - Pros Vs Ams

In this analysis video, we discuss what makes a quality set up position, and what are the signs that something critical is off. We will cover the positions of the body, and the arms, and how they work together to correctly and consistently get you in a good starting position for the swing.

Tags: Set Up, Analysis, Concept, Intermediate, Beginner

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In this analysis video, we're going to look at setup.

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Now, we're going to start the video by looking at the body.

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So we're going to look at the spine, the hips, the knees.

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And then we're going to look at the arms.

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So we're going to look at the shoulders and the grip strength.

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And then lastly, we'll look at ball position.

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So first, let's look at the spine.

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Now, it's very hard to see exactly what the spine is doing when looking at video.

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But we can get a general idea.

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And one of the easy ways that we can look at spine is if you go

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from the base of the neck to the top of the belt.

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So kind of base of the neck or the collar to the top of the belt.

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And if you do this, you'll see that the spine is roughly

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parallel to this line.

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There'll be a little bit of a curve kind of in the mid back.

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But it's roughly parallel to this line.

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You don't see a big gap between the lower back and the line.

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And you don't see a huge rounding in the mid back.

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Now, over on the right, we have a golfer who's demonstrating

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a form of seaposter.

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So you can see that there's a little bit more of a rounding.

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And you can see a little bit more space between the back or more of the curve

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is kind of on the outside of that line.

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The place where you can really identify the discolfer is in a little bit of seaposter

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is if you look in the lower back.

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So if you're looking somewhere in this space,

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you can see that the belt line is almost parallel to the ground

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where Jason Daze is pointing much more out in the direction of the golf ball.

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That's an indication of using the hips to get down to the golf ball.

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Where the amateur on the right has used more of the rounding of his mid and upper spine

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to get down to the golf ball because his pelvis is almost parallel to the ground.

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And now here on the right is a golfer who is demonstrating what we refer to as s-poster

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where you can see this general soft sort of s-shaped curve.

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And you can see that there's virtually no space between the lower back and the line

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as opposed to what we saw when we looked at Jason Daze over here.

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You can see a much more pronounced kind of hump in the mid back.

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And you can see that the lower spine is pretty flat to this.

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So essentially what he's doing is in order to get down to the golf ball.

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He's sitting into his lower back which inhibits both the abdominals and the glutes and makes

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lateral stability a real issue. Also because of the curve in the lower back,

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in order to get his upper body to face the golf ball hands up having a pronounced rounding of the upper back.

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Rounding of the upper back will activate more your pecs, your upper trap, your anterior delt

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as opposed to your lats and your serratus. So you get this rounding of the arms which makes it

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hard to use the spine to create the backswing. And now on the right we have a golfer who has a fairly

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good spine curve, pretty neutral maybe slight sea but pretty good. What we'll see here is some excessive

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knee flex. So he's in his setup posture and then as he gets ready to take the club back,

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you'll see a pretty big bounce and set into the knees where if I have a line that's drawn up from

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the toes you can see that his knees are almost approaching that line. Where on the left I have

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the line dry enough from the toes of Jason Day and you can clearly see that he doesn't

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excessively bend those knees. excessively bending the knees is activating the quads to create

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stability as opposed to sitting into the hips and using the glutes. Unfortunately the quads are not as

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sensitive for lateral movement of the pelvis and so many golfers who struggle with too much

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knee flex and setup will then struggle with too much lateral movement of the knees and feet during

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the backswing. The next piece we're going to look at is arm hang and here we've got

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Amescott and Jason Duffner and basically I've just drawn a line straight down from the outside

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of the shoulder as well as from the armpit or the crease of the shirt since it's a little

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tricky to see the true backside of the shoulder while they're wearing clothes. You can see that their hands

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fit very nicely right within this corridor. With the irons you'll tend to see them fall

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more or less within this corridor and with a drierial tendency it's just on the outer end.

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And here are a couple of tour golfers. Adam Scott and Jason Day demonstrating what I mean by

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they'll be just on the outer edge so there'll be more right in the midline of the outside of the

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shoulder as opposed to between the armpit and the outside of the shoulder. And here we have a couple

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amateurs that are demonstrating kind of the opposite. So here we have a golfer on the right with

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driver who has his hands a little bit more right in the middle of that window and then here we have

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a golfer on the left two has his hands a little bit more in that driver position. So it can

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tend to cause issues with a retention of posture when we get into the backswing and downswing.

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And this next piece we'll take a look at is alignment. Now if you're going to look at a

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alignment based on video you have to be very careful that you're making sure that the camera is

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somewhat in line with the direction that they're aiming because you'll see on a good quality video

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you'll see the ball roughly take off a parallel to the screen or straight down the middle of the screen.

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If you have a if you take a video and you happen to see the golf ball either shoot off more to the

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right or typically it'll go more to the left. That's a pretty good indication that

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especially at this level of golfer that you don't have the camera set up in a proper position

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to look at their alignment. But now let's take a quick look at alignment of Zack Johnson and Charlie

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we hear. What you'll typically see is that the the hips the shoulders the knees the thighs

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will roughly be parallel to where they want the ball to start. In addition if you look at the

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forearms you'll typically see a little bit of the lead form so you'll typically see a little bit

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of the left forearm on the top side just like so. That happens from having a little bit more

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bend in the trail or right elbow for right hand golfers than is in the left arm and you can see just

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a little bit of that space on each of these two general. And here a couple more golfers to demonstrate

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this importance of camera angle also to look at triggers because what you'll see is

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here both of these two golfers look like their forearms are barely parallel. Yes you can see a

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little bit of Jason days for arm right there but they for all in ten purposes they look like

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they're pretty parallel. Now if we we take Jason day to that frame right when the club starts to

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move back which is there you can now see there's a little bit more of the forearms showing.

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So part of his triggers the preset some of this rotation. We can see a similar movement over here

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with Tom Watson if you wait until right there where the club starts to move you can start to see

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the forearm appearing. So don't be fooled by the position that they're in before they start taking

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the club away. Check to see exactly when you in your video are starting to take the club away.

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And here are a couple of examples of amateur's who tend to aim their upper bodies and

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forearms a little bit more to the left and varying the degrees. So over here on the left you can see a

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golfer and as he goes to initiate his take away which happens right there we still see the left arm

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underneath the right and it's not until the club is right about there about a foot behind the golf

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ball that we start to see that left forearm indicating that the left shoulders as well as the

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forearms were pointed well to the left before he started to take the club away. Over here on the right

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you'll see it much more subtly. This is a pretty good mid level handicap and you'll see

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that here he's starting to take the club back already and we still can't see the left

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forearm and then there we go. So again about in that foot behind the golf ball range

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now if you were to look at him this is the shoulder position that it looked like Jason Day Adam

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Scott and some of those other golfers were in but now he's got the club about a foot behind the ball.

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So this could just set you up slightly to err on the side of hitting some poles or slices if that's

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your preferred ball flight. And here a couple more examples just to demonstrate the principle that I

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talk about where I think that the closer you are to the club or the closer you are to the grip

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the more important the line minutes. So here are two offers is Tommy Gany and an amateur that I teach

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who if you look at their upper body if you look at their forearms if you look at their shoulders

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they're roughly parallel to where the ball's going to start. If you look at their feet they're a

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little bit closed. I think it's fine to have your lower body be a little bit closed or open that can

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actually help account for tell this height, leg length issues, all those kind of things but I rarely

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see golfers who succeeded a really high level who have their upper body in forearms completely out of

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alignment. And now we're going to look at the face-on position so that we can look at grip strength

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and ball position. So first we're going to look at ball position and if we look at ball position there's

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a couple things that I like to do. You're going to draw a vertical line up from the back of the line

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and you're going to draw a vertical line up from the back of the ball and then you're going to draw

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a horizontal line from the tip of their left foot and the horizontal line from the tip of left foot is

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just a confirm the camera angle. If you look on the left you can see that roughly the tips of

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both feet of Jason Duffner are touching this line. So unless he has a closed stance which we could

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always check from the down line we know that this camera is pretty much perpendicular to the

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direction he's trying to hit the ball if the ball is in the center of the screen. If you look

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over on the right you can see that not only is the ball not in the center of the screen but there's a

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pretty good amount of distance or space right there where I made a few little hash marks. There's a

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pretty good amount of space between the left and the right line. So essentially this is not a very

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good camera angle and if we were to look at his ball position from here it would look like it's

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pretty much in the middle of his body and in the middle of his stance. Now we have a video of Adam Scott

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where the golf ball is more in the middle of the screen and we can see that his toes are much closer

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to parallel to this line. As a result we can see that the ball position he's hitting with the

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driver is much more towards the front half of his body or almost even with the outside of his

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left knee left shoulder where with the iron Jason Duffner has a little bit more of a mid stance and

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mid chest or right off of a logo if you had one on your shirt and right off the inside of the

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inner thigh. We'll look at a few more. And here we have Justin Rose both with an iron on the right

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and a driver on the left so that you can see the difference in ball position and setup. So on the right

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you'll see that the line up the back of the golf ball goes roughly through his shirt pocket or

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just of a left of his zipper or just on the inside of his right thigh and also of his left here.

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All those are pretty good acceptable ball positions for playing your typical iron shot.

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Now over here on the left you'll see the ball position just outside of his left ear or more in line

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with the left shoulder or almost the left knee. And here we have Roy McAuret. So on the right we have

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him with the iron pretty good camera angle. Balls roughly in the middle of the screen and you can see

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if we draw the ball position line roughly goes through his left eye. So as we get into the shorter

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clubs you can see that it's going more and more in front of the face and less and less in front of

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the shoulder. Here we have decent camera angle. The toes are roughly parallel so the lens is pretty

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parallel so the golfer but the ball is positioned forward in the screen so it'll make it look like it's

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a little bit more forward of his body but we can see it's well front of where he is playing his iron.

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So just something for you to factor in when you're taking a look at your ball position for your

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irons and your driver. And here we have an example of a higher handicap golfer and we can see that

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if we look at the driver the ball's in the middle of the screen. Stance is parallel. He's just got

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that ball pretty much in the same place just slightly ahead of where he had the iron. Both of them

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are roughly in the middle of his pelvis as well as just off his left eye or left ear.

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In general I would say that amateur tend to play the ball more further back or away from the

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target than professionals but that's a dangerous generalization. There's obviously going to be

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people who do it at both extremes. Here we have two amateur golfers, one hitting an iron where it's a

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little bit more off of his right eye and another golfer hitting a driver where yes it's ahead of his

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ahead even with his left shoulder but you'll see because of his stance it's not actually very far up compared

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to his lower body. So part of the reason why amateur golfers tend to want to play the ball further back

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is because they have trouble getting the path of the club to go out to the right and you'll learn

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more about this as you go through the system but they have trouble getting the path of the club to

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get out to the right so having the ball further back limits how much the club is swinging to the left

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naturally. In the last piece of the set up puzzle that we're going to look at is grip strength.

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Now looking at grip strength on 2D is a little bit limited I typically look on 3D to see how much

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extension is in the left wrist or in the right wrist and factor that into how I'm calculating the

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grip strength. But with 2D one of the ways that you can look at it is if you look at their hands

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and you look at either the angle of the forearm to the wrist like so or if you just look at how much

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of the glove is showing. So here we can look at the forearms of the wrist of Justin Rose not measuring

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an angle just kind of identifying and noticing that there is a significant angle or looking at how much

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of this logo of the glove you can see on the back of a left hand essentially the left hand is

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pointing more at us the golf ball or the camera than it is pointing at the target. The tour average

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that I see on 3D is going to be about 25 degrees of wrist extension with combined that with a

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little bit of rotation and we happen to see this hand pointing a little bit more at the camera with

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most golfers. Here are two more examples we've got tighter woods on the left grandma down on the right

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tighter woods has moved more towards a weaker grip well he originally moved towards a weaker grip and

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now seems to be moving back a little bit stronger but you can see how much he has right there

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and if you look at grandma down you can see the majority of his glove he tends to have a stronger grip

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believe somewhere around 40 degrees of extension on 3D. Now it's also ideal if the hands are

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somewhat working together so if you were to look at the bees on the fingers that's one way

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that is typically been taught to look at grip strength so if I were to draw a line up the

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be between the thumb and the first joint you can see that roughly it's hard to see the the joint on

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the left hand but these would roughly be parallel to each other. Where if you were to look at this

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amateur here, hey knowing what we know about grip strength we can barely see any of the back of his

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left hand is primarily facing right at the target where that bee is pointing straight up towards his

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if we look at the bee on the right hand the right hand is pointing actually outside of his shoulder so

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his hands are a little bit not positioned but the bigger problem is that the left hand is in a very

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weak position. Now if you have a weaker or hand that's facing more the target or turn more to the

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left on the club you have a weaker grip and you struggle with a ball that curves off to the right

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this is something that you should definitely look at and versely if you have a stronger grip where

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these bees are pointing more well off to the left light so or sorry turn but right on the club so

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they're pointing outside your shoulder and you struggle with a golf ball that overhooks or over

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curves to the left again that is probably something that you should at least consider.

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Here's another amateur doll from the right and you can see if you look at the back of his left hand

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you can see that while the bee on the right hand is pointing over towards the right or

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over towards his shoulder you can see that his the back of his left hand is pointing very much

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in the direction of the target as the golfer that complains of hitting fades and so having a weak

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grip has been a big problem for him and strengthening the grip has helped him overcome

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the tendency to hit and moosely a ball that curves off to the right. Now I know that we've covered a

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lot in this video so just to summarize we've looked at the spine curve we've looked at the amount of

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hip hinge and how that relates to spine curve we've looked at the amount of knee flex

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and we've looked at the armbay and then over on the left we've looked at your ball position

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how that relates to whether it's an iron or a driver and we've looked at your grip strength.

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Now I know that sounds like a lot and frankly it is but the good thing is it doesn't take any

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real athleticism in order to have a very good consistent setup it just takes discipline and repetition

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and so within the site we've broken down each of these pieces and associated drills with them

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that you can practice either at home or at the course in order to build this consistent repeat

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well pattern but anytime you're learning a movement you've got to put in a significant number of

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repetitions 500 thousand 1500 repetitions so that the brain can really refine that pattern

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and feel comfortable with it. I don't expect you to just memorize these different pieces

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and then go to the course and hope that it works out that's never going to work. You need to put

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in a little bit of training but a little bit of training helps build that consistent setup that you're

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looking for which builds the repeatable golf swing that you're here to learn.

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