The Minimalist Golf Swing – what it is

The Minimalist Golf Swing SYSTEM – what it encompasses

 The MGS SYSTEM (as presented at the World Scientific Congress of Golf 2012) is not merely a swing method or style or even  a scientific yet  unorthodox way to make a full-swing.

It is the world’s only 100% objective golf swing system* which results in an ‘ideal’ shot, time after time, with very little scope for error. The ‘ideal’ shot could be any one of:

-          Full-swing (straight with maximum possible distance and ideal trajectory)

-          A true-roll putt

-          A very reliable chip shot

-          A  high, soft pitch

(Shots such as fades, draws, pitch-and-run, bunker shots, cut-shots, shots with extra backspin would all be derivatives of the 4 basic shots).

Incidentally, ‘ideal’  implies that  the ball will always travel straight; the club will always arrive at the ball from the ‘inside’; and with each club’s loft appropriately presented. The only variables which would change would be the width of the swing’s arc for ball height, and the speed of the club for ball distance.

The objective three-step procedure is:

-          How should the ball travel (high or low, minimum or maximum distance?)

-          What club positions will make the ball travel as required? (swing arc narrow or wide, swing speed maximum or minimum?)

-          What body positions at address and during the backswing will allow the club to be returned correctly to the ball, time after time?

The MGS SYSTEM works for any skill-level of golfer – man, woman or child – who would like better ball-striking with less scope for injury.

The MGS SYSTEM is termed the world’s only 100% objective golf swing system because although most good golfers and golf instructors will use the first two steps, never before has enough research been conducted to develop the third step.

What is MGS

The Minimalist Golf Swing System is designed to match body-joint positions to the type of ball-flight you want. You can simply FORGET THE CLUB, put your body into MGS positions and the club WILL be delivered correctly to the ball to create the ball-movement you desire!

 For instance, if you want a soft, high, pitch shot, the club must have a narrow swing arc, arrive at a descending angle at the ball, from the inside, and at controlled speed. There are some body-joint positions at the top of the backswing which make it easy for your body to deliver the club correctly at impact.

If you want to hit the ball the maximum distance he/she is capable of; straight; and with good trajectory, better positioning of the joints makes the job simpler, with less chance for injury.

Why do body-joint positions matter? Simply because the body’s joints cannot do just anything we want them to! For instance, make a bicep curl movement, quickly, without thinking about it. Did you pick up your arm in front of you or to the side? Chances are, to the front! Try bending your elbow in line with your body, with the hand in a fist, palm facing the body. Awkward? Yes! The elbow is only designed to fold (hinge) in front of the body!

         body-joint positions    

So, what are correct body joint positions for the backswing, and how does MGS move them into place? Scroll down to try it out!

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The Minimalist Golf Swing – ‘How to’
FIRST of all, make many swings looking in a mirror, to get all the positions right.

Minimalist Golf Swing

Rotate right shoulder shut

Minimalist GOlf Swing

Rotate right shoulder shut

Minimalist Golf Swing

Isolate

MGS Set-up

(details for right handed golfers – left handed golfers please reverse)

  • Feet square, shoulder-width apart
  • Upper body forward of lower body (bend from the hips)
  • Ball position as centered as possible
  • Forearms 5-6” away from body
  • Knees soft, not bent
  • Body’s weight should look equal through both feet
  • Twist the upper body ‘closed’ to the square-toe-line – this sets the head, and right side chest, shoulder and arm, all behind and below the left (someone standing targetward of the golfer should not be able to see the chest)
  • Hands, arms and shoulders relaxed, at all times

MGS Backswing

  • MAINTAIN the TILT of the right side of the body (from head to waist – as created by the twisted shoulders) all through the backswing.
  • Isolate and lift a relaxed left arm rise steeply up the chest, literally touching it, and remaining a straight line from shoulder to clubhead (ie. no bend in either wrist so that both thumbs are horizontal at top of backswing) – this creates the very important WIDTH of backswing.
  • Feel the left arm rides ‘up’, not ‘in’ – the ‘in’ happens naturally because of the shoulder rotation of address.
  • The length of backswing: Hands go approximately as high as the chest for short clubs, and as high as the right ear for longer clubs.
  • Keep all body parts quiet, ankles, knees, hips, shoulders, head – NO MOVEMENT IN ANY PLANE.
  • At the top of the backswing:
  1. The left arm and shaft must FEEL no higher than horizontal.
  2. There is no stretch/tension in the left forearm, in fact a part of the left arm remains left of the chin.
  3. When seen face-on, the right shoulder should be hidden by the left arm, (which has climbed steeply up the chest).

MGS Downswing

  • LET the downswing happen (don’t make it) – the downswing begins with the club dropping down with gravity (not with the right shoulder)
  • KEEP the right heel grounded for as long as possible.
  • There should be NO intentional body slide/rotation until well past impact

24 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Nige Paskin (UK) on January 16, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Fantastic, Simple, Powefull, what else can I say about this golf swing…..

    Reply

  2. Posted by joe on April 4, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    At the top of the backswing does the club shaft and clubhead ever reach horizontal and point down the fairway or towards the target?

    Reply

    • At the top of the backswing – which can be as long as you like, PROVIDED the right (or trail) side of the body stays in tilt and there is NO intentional wrist-cock – the club goes past horizontal, just NOT pointing at target, but rather, away from it. The arms and shaft should (ballpark) be in a 10 o’clock position).
      Kiran

      Reply

  3. I have written you on YouTube Ms. Kiiran as ‘innercityteacher,” which I am and starting a new golf team at my high school. I have many Indian, Bangla and Pakistani students in my neighborhood in West Philadelphia so I am excited to use your materials with them, they are great kids! It almost seems like you are building a lever, the base of which is the right leg or side and the catapult mechanism is the left arm?

    I am a TGM adherent which is a complex system seeking to describe the golf swing as accurately as possible. My challenge will be to unlearn many things or translate those observations.

    Thanks for your good insights and communications!

    ICT

    Reply

    • If you’re doing an inner-city program, I could send you a (free) copy of my ebook and if you’d like to make copies of it to hand out to your junior golfers. Great job starting a new golf team, any time you need ideas/suggestions please do get in touch. Kiran.

      Reply

  4. I have tried your system and spoken about it positively to my fellow golfing friends and teachers. Yesterday, I shot an 84 on a par 71 course which should have been lower but the simplicity of your system escaped me for the first three holes and my putting was not strong.

    My front left hip is artificial and left leg has a metal rod and is 1.25 inches shorter than my right leg. My right leg always feels to have most of the weight on that side.

    While playing yesterday, I realized that any twisting would have unpredictable results, so I stuck to the right side turn which TGM calls Impact Fix which is a preview of impact. I tried to push the inside line with my left arm and then shift my belly button forward keeping a stationary head. That produced a reliable draw which really ran out. Not terrible.

    However, my game is built on a predictable fade so I turned right and in dropping the right elbow close lowering my right level, shifted my belly button back inside and then shifted it forward to right field producing a dependable Angle Hinge of the wrists and a straight or faded shot depending on ball position. Powerful and capable of a draw with proper ball position more forward.

    I have ordered and read your book which I will use as a training guide for my high school students if I have copyright permissions, on two pages at a time. last night and today though I have read several articles on your blog and realized I am not following your system! Sorry!

    I will continue to refine my use of your system. Any tips are welcome. DO YOU USE ANY FORWARD OR DOWNSWING TRIGGER HAVING SET THE CATAPULT FOR LAUNCH? ; >

    ICT

    Reply

    • It is not always easy to simply read words and understand a new concept. If you look at all the videos on this blog (golf videos) especially the most recent ones, you will get a clearer idea of what MGS is and what it’s not. Also look at the section MGS – what it is – scroll down to the bottom to see and read what the steps are. Kiran.

      Reply

  5. Very interesting information here, thank you for that.

    Reply

  6. Posted by Tony on July 8, 2012 at 11:11 am

    im confused with this statement,” no bend in either wrist so that both thumbs are horizontal at top of backswing – this creates the very important WIDTH of backswing”

    How is this possible? firstly none of your MGS demo swings show this ,the only way the thumbs can remain horizontal is if the shaft and clubhead are also horizontal and there is zero wristcock which im sure is not what you mean?.

    Reply

    • Tony, sometimes one has to phrase things differently so it resonates with different people. What I need to feel during the backswing is that nothing moves (no up-and-down movement of the body; with the right side of the body always being lower than the left, all through the backswing) – and that there is neither any wrist action nor any body twist. So, yes, there should be no intentional wrist cock, the wrist lags at the correct time, when required, during the downswing. Does that answer your question?

      Reply

      • Posted by Randy Lyons on July 24, 2012 at 10:35 pm

        The no wrist cock at the top is a key feeling. By holding the club loosely in the transition from backswing to downswing the wrists cock themselves at the right time leading into impact. The phrase “slapping the clubhead past the ball” is extremely accurate as to what I feel. The divots are shallower and the ball takes off like a bullet in a straight high trajectory.

  7. Tony, if I may, the wrists are “educated clamps” that cock and bend. You must hold the club with an educated pressure in the hands ala Ben Hogan (on the internet-please get the picture). The left wrist must be flat and the right wrist must be bent back on itself forming a wedge shape.

    I preform that wedge shape slightly as I turn and drop my shoulder. It is a preview of impact called “Impact Fix.” Ms. Kanwar’s insights are very clever in previewing the impact position and they really work. I shot an 80 on a par 71 the other day using her system with bad chipping-my fault.

    As you lift your arms your wrists will be dragged up and as you pull your right elbow down your wrists will assume the wedge position at impact. Ms. Kanwar makes her living giving lessons so I would recommend you contact her to send her a tape or video so she can sort you out. If you follow her instructions, keeping your hands firm and wrists loose, you will create a powerful, dependable whip with the club that will hit the ball nicely. That swing will be sufficient to shoot par if your putting and chipping are up to the challenge.

    No system of golf can offer more than that.

    Reply

    • Patrick,
      you absolutely GOT IT. My students come out with some gems which I never would’ve thought of, once they ‘get it’. So, that’s really, in essence what MGS does (as another student of mine in India told me a couple of years ago), it pre-sets you for impact! All extra moves (be it bending of wrists, turning of shoulders, shifting weight) are all done for you either at address (weight is placed ready for impact so no need for ‘shift’, body is rotated, no need for in-swing rotation) or in downswing (the wrist ‘wedge’ as you call it happens in the downswing, when you need it, and neither a moment to ‘early’ or too ‘late’).
      I originally thought I’d like to call it the ‘do nothing’ golf swing instead of ‘minimalist’ but then re-thought the idea, cause how many more people would I shock!

      Reply

  8. Thanks Kiran. Congratulations on teaching such a simplified yet complete system!

    ICT

    Reply

  9. Posted by doctortshirts on July 16, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Thanks Kiran, I just met you at the MPI golf seminar in chicago. You gave me a lesson with the driver and I was absolutely BLASTING the ball. I used to be really good in junior golf but since I got a few lessons while growing up I stopped having a swing I could depend on. I felt like I was close but nobody gave me the correct tools to do it consistently unless they were there every second to correct every move. My golf swing and scores deteriorated so much I stopped enjoying golf and didn’t play much because I’d shoot 90 with 10 penalty shots a round. (and I have a really good short game which makes that score even sadder haha)..I actually had a period where I hit about a fairway a MONTH..no confidence in what I was doing…The amazing part was I was very skeptical about your swing move and then, as if like magic, In 5 swings you gave me your simple 2 ‘moves’ and they repeated themselves almost ‘Too easy’ haha. I couldn’t believe the distance, penetrating trajectory, and baby draw. Thank you! I look forward to seeing if I can get back to scratch golf again! I’ll be in touch when I do! I might even have to record a video to send to you :)

    – Christian Carroll
    future DC

    Reply

    • Christian,
      There’s a lot of information on the blog (and website – http://www.yourgolfguru.com), all free, and anytime you’ve questions please post them with pictures and I’ll reply immediately. Or email me video anytime too. Maybe make a video of yourself ‘before’ and ‘after’ so others might see it too. There are over 30 videos on this blog (and on youtube) which also show how to make the moves required for the MGSS. Happy getting-back-to-golf!
      Kiran.

      Reply

  10. I have another observation to consider which is helping me. I must keep my right bicep tight against me letting Centrifugal force have the full length of the right arm to “shoot” to a TGM described “Both Arms Straight” position. The less hand and arm movement at the start of the downswing, the more potential power is available to be released. Look at Moe Norman, Lynn Blake and Ben Doyle, to see their back or trail elbows motionless so they can be carried past the ball assuring that the sharpest possible hit “DOWN, Forward, and Out” creates a divot PAST the ball! It is counter-intuitive!

    Now, there is also a “hitting” motion described in TGM which again will work with the Minimalist Golf Swing. Once in a correct set-up position, as Kiran describes, simply shoot the # 3 Pressure Point, the right index finger’s biggest knuckle, to the inside back quadrant of the ball. This proves highly effective in precision chips, sand shots,pitches and even drives. TGM describes over 10 million possible swings and the swing and hit I have described works perfectly with Kiran’s MGS set-up, in my opinion.

    Kiran’s book, which I have purchased, is simple and highly valuable to any beginner or golfer wishing to improve as is her blog. I will be using it with my inner city golf team!

    ICT

    Reply

    • Patrick,
      be very sure when you train your kids that anything you teach them is not subjective – as most golf teaching tends to be. What works for you and a few others may not be a ‘universal truth’. I personally do not like the idea of independent small muscle movement/feel, MGSS is designed to start from the ground up and unleash all power sources at the correct time and not with some mis-timing, which would surely occur with finger/hand pressure changes. These things also get messed up under pressure when muscles are tight and there is not much precision of ‘feel’ in the hands.

      Reply

  11. Posted by Mike Kenny on September 18, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    The swing has been easy to learn. I have added 20 yards or more to all my irons, and eliminated the fade on my driver. My driver swing speed has actually increased by 3 mph by eliminating all the rerouting in the conventional swing. My distance improves as my trust in the swing increases.
    I play a course regularly with trees in the middle of the fairway and near several greens. What is the best Minimalist Swing approach to produce a fade or draw when they are needed?

    Reply

  12. Posted by Tony Bumstead on September 28, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    I have been trying your MGS method for about two weeks. At first it was very sucessful with the ball going either dead straight or with a slight draw. The last couple of times I played I started to really hook or pull hook the ball. When I tried focus on making sure I maintained my tilt and did”t move my shoulders the ball went straight but to the right.
    Your advise and comments would be much appreciated as I really favour this method of swinging.
    Thank you

    Reply

  13. Posted by Rich Ellin on September 29, 2012 at 12:55 am

    Kiran,
    I first discovered the MGS when I read a copy of my wife’s Jul-Sep 12 edition of ACSM’s Certified News. My wife is an exercise physiologist and is also interested in MGS. I went to the range today and hit a small bucket of balls with a fair amount of success for my first try. I like the simplicity of the swing, and, at 57 yrs old, the less stressful turning and twisting. I actually gave much less thought on the swing than with the more traditional swing. One thing which, unfortunately, has not changed for me is the ballooning of the golf ball. I hit the 9 iron around 90 yards but very high. This is true with all the clubs in my bag. I hit sky balls and know I could gain at least 15-20 yards, if not more, if I could flatten out the trajectory some. Any training tips or thoughts you might have to help would be greatly appreciated. Also, do you have a training video which combines all your teaching? Finally, are there any other Kirans out here who believe in and teach MGS? I live in Colorado. Thanks for what you bring to those of us who will never be scratch golfers but have a strong desire to be more consistent and successful with our game.

    Reply

    • This is in reply to Tony B and Rich E’s emails.

      Tony started OK then began to hook/pull hook the ball. Rich has always had a ‘ballooning trajectory’. In both cases, ideally, if you know enough about the ball-flight laws, you should work backward from the ball flight you got (which you did not like) to which body position causes that ball flight at impact and then to which top-of-backswing position facilitates such an impact. HOWEVER, if you get the MGSSystem right, you never have to second guess what you might’ve done wrong, as it is designed to work for every golfer and every swing fault, as it not only gives you good swing moves, but more importantly, prevents the bad ones from happening.

      If you’ve simply ‘picked up’ the MGSS from youtube videos or this blog you probably have not got as much detailed-enough-instruction on it as through the ebook. If you email some pictures of your set-up just before start-of-backswing, plus half-way back and top-of-backswing, preferable from face-on, down-the-line and behind views, I can put them up and discuss where you might not be following the MGS full-swing method correctly.
      Also, starting November, I’ll be offering personalized MGSS video instruction.

      Reply

      • Posted by Tony Bumstead on October 7, 2012 at 9:21 pm

        Kiran, Thanks for your reply. I went back to the e-book and my ball flight has improved, but still have the occasional hook creeping in, I suspect its the result of some 62 years of rotating hips and shoulders on the downswing and MGS does not permit this until well after impact, if then (your words)!. As you suggested I attach nine photos of the positions you advocated and look forward to your analysis. I apologise for having the photos out of order but am not proficient enough with the software to rearrange them. Am also looking forward to the opportunity of a video analysis of my whole swing. I do appreciate your interest, thank you Tony

        [New comment] The Minimalist Golf Swing – what it is

        View photos Download all

        You are invited to view Tony’s album. This album has 9 files.

        YourGolfGuru commented: “This is in reply to Tony B and Rich E’s emails. Tony started OK then began to hook/pull hook the ball. Rich has always had a ‘ballooning trajectory’. In both cases, ideally, if you know enough about the ball-flight laws, you should work backward from th”

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