Posts Tagged ‘Minimalist Golf Swing’

The Minimalist Golf Swing System – have you GOT IT?

MGSS – have you GOT IT?                                                                                                                                          Many people get into a slightly closed set-up and think they’ve GOT IT!

NOT SO. There is much more to MGSS, and the RIGHT-SIDE-DOWN of the backswing is as – important as – or more important than – the SPINAL ROTATION of the set-up.

Sometimes making all the same movements while standing nearer – as one does for the pitch shot – is a good way to make sure you GET all the elements of the MGSS full-swing, without leaving anything out.

See the video ‘It’s NOT MGSS – The Pitch Shot’ in the golf videos section of this blog to understand it a bit better.

If a golfer does not follow the few basic must-haves of the MGSS, she/he easily reverts to old bad habits. In the case of the golfer below, the old habit is to start with a backward bend of the right wrist along with a drop down of the left side of the body.

This drop-down of the left side allows the right side to lift, and allows the right elbow to bend pointing backwards (instead of down). Now the right elbow cannot straighten out – FROM THE INSIDE – in time for the downswing, and the golfer arrives at the ball from the OUTSIDE, and OVER-THE-TOP.

The moral: TWIST enough for the shot to be made, keep the right side DOWN throughout the backswing, and start the backswing from the top of the left arm!

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Typical and Atypical situations with respect to the MGSS

Typical and Atypical situations with respect to the MGSS

All ‘typical’ MGSS shots (ie full-swing, pitch/bunker, chip and putt shots) are designed to give a golfer an inside path and wide arc (of both the lead as well as trail arms) during the backswing. Both inside path and width during backswing are concepts based on my years of research which have proved scientifically that these two aspects are important.

So, when a narrower arc is required, in order for the club to arrive steeply at the ball and thus ‘pinch’ the ball, a few minor adjustments must be made.

These are described in the video MGS from Awkward/Unusual Lies in the ‘golf videos’ section of this blog.

The bunker/pitch shot used by the MGSS provides a soft-landing, high shot without significant narrowing of the backswing arc. It may therefore be considered a ‘typical’ MGSS shot. It remains basically the same movement as the full-swing, except that it has reduced distance by cutting out the full-swing downswing body-rotation. It is able to achieve that by having the golfer stand closer to the ball.

With typical MGSS movements and not being required to ‘finish’ (stand-up-and-turn-to-face-target through impact), the chances of hitting a ‘fat’ or ‘skulled’ shot are fairly non-existent.

A video for this has also been posted in the ‘golf videos’ section.

Finally, as of November 2012 you can get an on-line video analysis to see how your MGSS is progressing, PLUS new information, not available in the ebook or website or blog. Email for details/suggestions/questions.

Stack and Tilt – the good and the not-so-good – In Anatomy

Stack and Tilt – the good and the not-so-good – In Anatomy

A fellow- LPGA Pro who knows of my interest and research in anatomy and golf-specific-biomechanics recently said, “You must see the Charlie Rose interview of the Stack and Tilt guys”.

Also, I’d asked for and received some information from S&T because they are now an LPGA-approved certification provider.

The basic backswing moves of S&T are a ‘extension, a left tilt and rotation of the spine’.

In strictly anatomical terms this means:

  1. The spine is ‘extended’ or straightened backwards (away from the ball/straightened up compared to the forward posture of address)
  2. The trunk/spine is in left lateral flexion (bending sideways towards the left)
  3. The spine is rotated – mainly thoracic and lumbar (because S&T requires a steady head)

S&T have many things absolutely correct, and some quotes from the Charlie Rose interview of 2009:

  1. Shifting weight makes the process more chaotic
  2. S&T makes the clubhead hit the same spot repeatedly
  3. No players have injured themselves in the lower back with S&T
  4. The good players do not like to make swing change, practice what they have and simply throw out the bad shots to chance

The best thing about S&T is the lack of side-to-side movement – even if it looks like a reverse weight shift – which always results in much more solid contact. Another point in the method’s favor is that because of the inside backswing path generated, it is difficult to come over-the-top with the upper body, and thus many injuries are, indeed, prevented. As body-weight stays predominantly on the target side, the club rarely connects the ball on the upswing, thus making crisp contact.

The not-good-in-anatomy factors are that the advocated backswing ‘side-bend’ requires a lateral trunk flexion with the back straightening out of posture. Then at half-way down the golfer should be back in the spinal flexion of address, before once more straightening the back past impact, at the risk of hitting the ground if the second straightening out does not happen in time.

Two factors prevent S&T from being a superior movement:

  1. It is very timing-dependent
  2. It requires a lot of re-routing of several joints. Split second re-routing! The most important ‘joint’ being the spine, which must go from a bend of the left side to a bend of the right at impact. EVERY golfer of the world has to hit the ball with the trail (in this case right) side lower, simply because the right hand is lower at address! A lot of other joints must simultaneously re-route along with the spine when going from one side low to the other side low.

See a screen-shot from the Charlie Rose interview of a former S&T user, which shows how he will require to re-route his right wrist, forearm and upper-arm.

The Minimalist Golf Swing on the other hand, places all major joints in positions from which they need no re-routing to drop the club down correctly for ideal impact.

Fading the Ball with the MGS

The Fade, MGSS Style.

The ‘fade’ shot requires a slightly out-to-in path, with slightly more body weight remaining on the back/trail leg, so that the net result is that the clubface opens through impact.

It is therefore not a normal MGSS shot. The basic MGSS shots (full-swing, pitch/bunker, chip and putt shot) will never allow the club to arrive at the ball from an outside path, which is created by a slight over-the-top downswing and thus produces less-than-ideal contact with the ball.

The adaptation to be made for the ‘fade’ should only be made after the set-up and backswing for a regular swing are easily repeated.

The only change to be made is that the golfer ‘twists’ less during the set-up. Or, as some do, twist as much as usual, then undo a bit of the twist.

A video has been attached with the same title, in the ‘golf videos’ section of this blog.

A draw is made by aiming the feet slightly right of target and shutting the clubface (as usual), and then using all the other features of the MGSS set-up and backswing. For those with a slightly forward ball-position (MGSS recommends center for all full-swing shots), that could be moved back a bit too, so as to be more centered.

This post especially for Mike Kenny.

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