Want to improve your golf swing? Start with this simple move
Want To Improve Your Golf Swing?
Start With This Simple Move
Are you struggling with your golf swing? Do you often feel yourself swinging with just your arms, resulting in inconsistent shots? Have you been told you have the dreaded "Chicken Wing" in your swing?
If so, I have a drill that can help you improve your golf swing and promote better body turn. I am referring to a drill I like to call the Hold The Basket Drill.
What is the Hold The Basket Drill?
The Hold The Basket Drill is a simple yet effective exercise that integrates your body movements into your golf swing. This drill aims to maintain a basket or a similar object between your arms throughout the swing. Doing so promotes a better body rotation, which is crucial for generating power and better accuracy in your golf shots.
How to Perform the Hold The Basket Drill?
1. Start with small swings: Make small swings while holding the basket between your forearms. Focus on keeping the basket in place throughout the backswing and the follow-through. This will force you to turn your body instead of relying solely on your arms. Depending on your mobility, you may only be able to do what feels like 25 or 50% of your full swing. Just go as far as you can to begin with. Your mobility will increase over time as your body adapts your strength and flexibility to do the new movements.
2. Emphasise body turn: Promoting body turn is key to this drill. Ensure that you are rotating your body back and through the swing to maintain the position of the basket. The basket will fall if you rely on your arms without proper body rotation. If this is the first time you have moved your body like this when swinging a golf club, then this drill will feel weird and uncomfortable. These feelings are good and should be embraced; you are changing something, and your brain needs time to work it out. Don't stop! Embrace the suck! We all need to work through these feelings to get better at anything.
3. Practice with feet together and in slow motion: In the initial stages of the drill, try practising with your feet together. Doing so will force you into better body rotation and stop you from swaying. Once again, embrace the feeling of being unbalanced and keep swinging until you get better. Your brain will work it out. Start in super slow-motion swings if you need to at first.
4. Maintain the "y" shape: Pay attention to the shape you create between the club and your arms as you swing. It should resemble a "y". The goal is to maintain this shape throughout the swing, indicating that you are using your body rather than just your arms and hands.
5. Progress to bigger and slightly faster swings: Once you feel comfortable with the drill, you can gradually increase your swings' size by turning your body more. Remember to maintain the basket position as you take bigger swings with your feet slightly apart to help with hip turns.
6. Clip the ground and let the ball get in the way: The next step is to clip the ground with your club on each swing. This will be crucial for solid contact on the back of the ball. Pay attention to where you are first hitting the ground in relation to your body, as this will be where your ball position will need to be when we introduce it. Your set-up to the ball will now be crucial to hitting a solid shot. A good swing does not equal a good shot unless the ball is set up in the right spot to get in the way of it. So now you can set up, swing while holding on to the basket and watch what happens.
7. Interleave the drill with normal swings: The Hold The Basket Drill is an exercise to help build a better overall swing motion. One thing to look out for is ensuring you don't stop using your shoulder, elbow and wrist joints to create extra leverage in your normal swings. The way to do this is to interleave the below options:
- 5 swings with the basket only and no ball
- 5 swings with the basket trying to strike a ball,
- 5 drill swings hitting a ball without a basket
- 5 normal golf swings hitting to a target.
Then repeat the above 20-ball sequence with a different club.
8. Integrate into your daily practice: The Hold The Basket Drill is not just a one-and-done exercise. Treat it like your daily medicine. Many professional golfers incorporate it into their daily practice routine to reinforce proper body turn and to maintain their swing technique from straying too far off course.
DO NOT KID YOURSELF. Knowing how to swing with your body and doing it enough times so you don't have to think about it again are miles apart.
DO THE WORK! Practising this drill regularly over time is where the magical swing you seek lies.
Justin Rose's Quote on why he does the same drill but with a Tour Striker Smart Ball
"I just want to give you guys a little bit of an Insight onto what I feel and why I do this. For me it's really about kind of making a good body turn"
The Benefits of the Hold The Basket Drill
Now that you understand how to perform the Hold The Basket Drill, let's explore the benefits it can offer to your golf game:
1. Promotes body turn: The Hold The Basket Drill forces you to engage your body in the golf swing, which helps promote better body rotation. This is essential for generating power and accuracy in your shots.
2. A more repeatable swing: You will develop a more repeatable swing pattern by integrating body rotation. This translates to better shot-making and more distance on the golf course.
3. Better Ball Contact: Practising the Hold The Basket Drill can help you hit the ground in the same spot more repeatedly. This is crucial for achieving clean, solid face-to-ball contact and improving distance and control in your shots.
4. Train your brain to swing better under pressure: You will develop the neural pathways (what most people know a muscle memory) required to repeat your new body turn swing under pressure. This move will carry over to your full swings and eventually become natural in your game.
5. Get rid of the Chicken Wing!: The dreaded chicken swing comes from a lack of lower body rotation, which means your brain will get the arms to do what they can to hit the ball, usually resulting in the chicken arm follow through you hear about. In my time, I have found that The Hold The Basket Drill virtually eliminates the chicken wing swing.
Improving your golf swing requires more than just arm movements. The Hold The Basket Drill provides a practical solution to integrate proper body rotation into your swing, resulting in more repeatable and powerful shots. Practising this drill regularly can refine your golf swing and achieve better results on the golf course. So, next time you hit the range, grab a basket, a soft ball, or a towel, and start implementing it into your practice routine. Your game will thank you for it!
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