Why You Need This: Today I'll show you "How to Feel Connected | without Losing Distance."
So often you're told that to be more consistent, you have to stay "under control."
Modern instruction would lead you to believe that keeping a short, compact swing is the key to playing your best golf.
What if I were to tell you that you've been led astray with these beliefs?
If you've been buying into this hype, you're leaving tons of distance on the table that's inside you right now.
In today's video, I'm going to show you why a more free-flowing swing is the better swing for you.
I'm going to help you "break out of the box" and free up your swing so you'll get more distance AND keep your consistency.
- 3 keys to a free-flowing backswing
- the one thing you must do at impact to keep your consistency, and
- the feeling you need on your follow through to maximize your club head speed
You don't want to miss this.
Let's get started....
Golf Pros Featured:
Instructors Featured: Clay Ballard
Video Duration: 17:58
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All right. We all want to hit that nice draw and feel like we are connected coming through contact. It’s a little bit counterintuitive though.
How do we get that feeling of our body, our arms, our club, everything working in complete unison?
As we make contact, we feel like our whole body is synched up, everything is nice and connected, we have tons of consistency, but how do we do that without losing speed?
A lot of times when I see players work staying connected, they actually do something in their backswing that kills their club head speed.
I’m going to go over the right way to do this, how you should actually be a little bit disconnected in the backswing, and then how we pair that up with staying perfectly connected through contact so that we can have the best of both worlds.
We have tons of speed, and we’re connected at the same time. Grab a golf club, I’m going to walk you through it step-by-step.
Let’s go ahead and get started.
All right, so we’re going to jump into the details of the correct way to do that here in a second. I want to show the incorrect way that I see a lot of players work on getting connected, so we don’t fall into the same trap our self.
Usually it has something to do with putty a head cover underneath one of your arms. If I want to keep this head cover there the entire swing, what ends up happening is in my backswing, my arms kind of stay low and across my body.
So my arms don’t go very far back, and with this shorter, compact swing, I lose a ton of club head speed.
If I go head and let my arms lift up, separate a little bit, a lot of times that head cover will fall off or it will barely slip out of there.
If I go ahead and show you one connected versus disconnected at the top, we’ll be able to see an immediate difference in our swing speed.
Let’s try one under our left arm here. In this one, I’m going to stay connected with that head cover the entire time.
All right, so that one really cut down my swing speed. I felt like there’s no way for me to make a backswing, and I also cut off my follow through there a little bit too, which really my swing speed is going to plummet on that one.
That one was swing speed of 105 miles an hour, 204 carry distance.
Now another variation of that which is probably OK, or a little bit better at least, is if I try to keep that head cover under my left shoulder in the backswing, or my left armpit in the backswing.
I make a big shoulder turn really try to load up and then I come on through, then I let that head cover fall out in the follow through. That would definitely be better, but I’m still going to be kind of cutting off that backswing.
If I keep it under my follow through, there’s no way to make a good swing at all, it’s just a disaster. But if I keep it, let it fall out on the follow through, we’ll see the swing speed goes up a little bit, so not nearly as good as it could be.
Again, I’m going to keep it under and let it fall off in the follow through. Again, really tough to do, I didn’t feel any more connected, I felt like my swing was all out of whack when I did that drill.
Couldn’t really hit it very well at all. If I grab my FlightScope the radar said 102 miles an hour, and again, 220 total, 190 carry distance. So not very good compared to what I would normally be.
Same thing with the armpit, the right armpit. If I try to keep this head cover under my right arm, my speeds are going to go way down.
Let me hit one more here, and we’ll show it under this arm. Here I’m going to feel like my right arm stays really close, and then from there I’m going to go ahead and let it actually come out in the follow through, if it falls out it’s completely fine.
Again, the backswing’s going to be cut off. I’m going to lose some distance from there. Let’s try this one out and see what my swing speed does after doing this.
So definitely the best of the three, I was able to still get fairly loaded up in the backswing. But losing some distance there. Let’s see what the swing speed is on that one.
So now we got up to 105, felt a little bit more like a normal swing. I was able to hit it 260, 258 on the carry, 266 total.
That’s the real danger there, is doing some of these drills. Even though my swing speed wasn’t nearly as high as when I started, that actually a pretty decent shot.
There’s a lot of golfers out there right now, that would love to hit one 260 that think OK, if I put this under my arm, oh that actually happened, I just hit it 260, that’s pretty good.
It gives you a little bit of you feel that solid contact, you see some decent yardage and you think that’s the best way to do it.
When in reality, you’ve got another 20, or 30, or 40 yards of distance and just the same amount of consistency.
As I warmed up today, I was able to hit almost every single ball in this fairway, all of those, I was getting disconnected in the backswing.
So now let’s talk about how before I get into the connected piece, how we should actually be disconnected in the backswing, disconnected in the follow through, and the only part where we’re synched up, or the only part we feel like we’re nice and controlled is at impact.
Let’s go ahead and give one a good rip here, and I’m going to go ahead and do my normal swing.
So here, if I had this club under my left armpit, as I make my backswing that club’s going to fall out, because I’m letting my arms lift vertically to get more wound up, to get more club head speed.
Let’s go ahead and give that a whirl. I’m going to try that out here, and I’m going to do my normal swing, let’s see what happens.
There we go. So again, right down the middle. A little bit distracting because I had the head cover there, but it’s going to be a lot faster than any of those other swings that I just made.
117 club head speed, 285 total distance. So definitely an improvement, under keeping that head cover under my right arm pit or my left armpit.
Let’s go ahead and try it out one final time here, letting my normal swing happen with club under the right armpit, and again we’re going to see those club head speeds go way up, and I won’t have any loss of consistency at all.
Let’s give it a whirl. There we go again, right down the middle. Definitely better than all four of those. So on that one, we’re seeing 115.8, 297 total distance. Again, down the middle of the fairway.
The myth of I have to be short, I have to be compact, I have to keep my arms kind of glued to my body to be consistent is just a myth.
We want to have those arms really winding up. We want to be like Jack Nicklaus, we want to be like Davis Love III, Justin Thomas, Tiger Woods from the early 2000s, Adam Scott.
If any of those players put that head cover under their arms, that head cover would be flying out and they would be really free-flowing and loose.
Let’s go over now the keys to get that free-flowing swing, and let’s go over how to stay connected with that.
The hips, the shoulders, the arms, let’s get all those connected where it really matters, where I was connected, which is right here at impact.
All right, so now what do we need to do to get that free-flowing power and still stay connected at impact?
I’m going to walk you through it step by step, so go ahead and grab a golf club. We’re going to go over some real key check points here.
The first one is going to be in the backswing. What I want you to feel like, is as you load up in the backswing I really want to get my shoulders, my chest turning, and I want to feel like my hands are going to be facing up here toward the sky.
I really want those to get nice and high. The reason for that is, the longer I can get my hands to go back the more time and space I have to accelerate this golf club in the downswing.
That means if you’re not all that flexible, if you’re not all that fast, if you’re not 6’5”, if you’re not in fantastic shape, you can make up for a lot of that speed by just making a bigger, more free-flowing swing.
You’ll hear me talk about this time and time again, but I want that left heel to be nice and soft as I’m doing this.
When I have my arms nice and high that allows my hips to rotate, so if I’m not very flexible I can still hit these positions.
As you go to the top of the swing, I want you to make five practice swings here going as high as you can. Get those arms towards the sky, soften up that left heel.
Again, five swings, you’re just trying to get those hands as high as you can get them in the backswing as you go.
You’ll notice that left heel stays nice and loose, and if I go one toward the camera here, watch this left heel.
As it comes off the ground, that allows me to make a better rotation going back. If I keep that left heel down, now I’m kind of short and tight, because I’m not all that flexible.
So if you’re not very flexible, definitely loosen this up, get those hands to the sky. Now let’s do five more reps in the follow through.
When I’m coming through the shot, I am connected at contact which I’m going to go over here in a second. But after contact my arms fly away from my body.
I want my arms and hands to again, to be coming up toward the ceiling here. If my club head was going to, if I was swinging indoors, let’s say there was a 10-foot ceiling above my head.
I want to feel like my arms and hands fly up here, allow that club to kind of poke through that ceiling, and I would put a hole into the ceiling there.
Now you may ask why does that really matter? In the follow through the ball’s already hit, it’s well on its way down the fairway, why do I need to even worry about what I’m doing in my follow-through.
Well the reason is, if you’re trying to have that idea of really staying tight in here all the way into the follow through, if you’re going to end up cutting off your follow through, cutting off your acceleration through contact, your club’s actually slowing down prior to contact so that I can stay in this position.
If my club speeds up through contact, it’s going to want to fly away from my body. I don’t want to feel like I’m very tight into the follow through like this.
Sometimes I’ll hear players even talk about I want to get those hands and arms to fold up really quickly over my left shoulder and kind of have this type of a motion where I fold my arms up.
That’s not going to be nearly as much speed as continuing to accelerate on through and let those arms fly away from your body.
So five reps feeling like the club head is going to poke through that 10-foot ceiling, really let that thing go. Once we’ve done those, if you’re in your living room, you’re good to go.
If you’re at the driving range, hit a couple shots, five shots high hands in the backswing, five shots club poking through the ceiling in the follow through, and you’ll notice how that really loosens you up.
Let’s go ahead and give one a whirl. There we go, and another one right down the middle of the fairway. Couldn’t be happier with that one.
So now that we’ve got this a little more free, let’s talk about now when we are connected. That’s what this video, the title, is all about. How do we feel connected through contact?
I did feel that, I felt like my arms, my body, everything was working in complete unison through contact. How does that happen? Let’s go ahead and walk through it step by step.
All right, so again, this is not a video that you want to just sit and watch. Grab a golf club. If you don’t have a golf club, grab an umbrella.
Make some swings with a broom, whatever you need to do, let’s get the motions down, that way when you hit the driving range next, you’re going to be that much farther ahead.
Let’s start off with the big pieces here which is the hips. Now as I come through contact here, the most important thing is I have to have my hips opening up.
If you can imagine my belt buckle, if there was a laser shooting straight out of my belt buckle, as I come through contact and I’m actually hitting this golf ball – let me go ahead and get where I would be while I’m hitting it – my hips are going to be about 45° open.
Now that’s really important. When my hips are open, my chest can stay a little bit open through contact.
When my chest is open, now my left arm is really tight and connected here which we’re going to get to in a second.
But it’s tight and connected with my body, and my right arm, my upper bicep is tight and connected through my body there through contact.
Now the reason is, my hips are leading the way, my hands and arms are just catching up and releasing that club through the golf ball. Now what happens if my hips are too square?
I see this all the time, players don’t open their hips. They start their downswing, their hands and arms start to go from the top, and now my hips aren’t opening, I have to do something to keep this golf club moving, and I use my hands and arms to push it past my hips, to push it past my body.
That’s where you get the chicken wing. This is very disconnected here. That’s where I get this flip with the right hand. This is very disconnected.
So if I want to stay connected, that’s the core piece there. My hips have to be opening up, that way they’re leading the way and everything through contact, my upper body, all this can be working together as a unit.
If my hips are back here like this, I have to push that club past, I’m going to chicken wing, I’m going to get very disconnected, it’s going to be a mess.
All right, so do five more reps for me. I want you to go to the top, nice high hands at the top of the backswing. Don’t worry about being connected back there, we’re going to worry about being connected here.
We’re going to pause at impact five times making sure your hips are open. Once you’ve done that, let’s move to the next piece, the shoulders.
Now again, this is a very misconstrued look on camera. When you videotape your swing, if you look from the down the line view, it’s going to give the appearance that your shoulders are kind of square, they’re facing down the line toward the target, the direction that you want to hit.
Now in reality, that’s just because my left arm is across my body. If I get in that good connected impact position, my hips are open and if I take my left arm off my club, and just let it go behind my back, you’ll actually see my shoulders are open too.
PGA Tour pros are about 20° to 30° open with their torso, or their ribcage at contact. Again, if my shirt buttons are at here, had a laser shooting out of them, it would be in front, 20° or 30° in front of this golf ball.
Now if I do that, that’s going to allow me to have this left arm tight against my body. I feel very connected here. I feel like my body’s leading the way which is really nice, and I feel like my right arm can be very connected too.
Do five more reps like that again. All the way to the top, free-flowing swing. Pause at contact, my chest is opening, it’s just my left arm across that makes it feel like, look like it’s not open.
So if I take that left arm back you’ll see how open my shoulders are here. If I put that left arm on the club, that brings my shoulder around and now I look very square from the angle of the camera.
Five more reps, and then as you come on through, let those arms go all the way around. Five reps, now let’s focus on another link up the chain, the left arm.
Same body positions here. Nice, free-flowing backswing, impact. Hips open, chest open, now as my left arm comes across, you’ll see how there’s no chicken wing here.
I can keep this arm nice and straight, and I feel like I can still accelerate on through there, because my body was leading the way.
Five more reps pausing at contact, feeling like right here this connection between my left bicep and my left pec, that’s really tight.
If I did have a glove or a head cover in this swing at that point, which this is completely fine to do on practice swings.
If I put that head cover under here now, when I pause at contact, I’m going to feel really tight like I could smoosh something.
If this was an orange and I had it under my armpit, I could actually squeeze the orange. There’s going to be that amount of pressure coming through there.
I want to feel that connected. After contact though, that head cover comes out. That’s completely fine. Same thing with the right arm. Five final reps here, let’s get the whole body together.
We’ve done the hips, we’ve done the shoulders, we’ve done the left arm, now let’s do the right arm. As I got to the top of the swing again free-flowing, as I come down to contact you’ll see how my right arm is kind of bent, that elbow’s a little bit bent there.
It’s kind of in toward my body. So many players that cast get that elbow out, the head cover would fall out. That’s bad news, that’s over the top cast move.
I want to feel like for me, I could put that head cover there, and as I’m coming through contact, that’s really cinched in.
Again, if I had an orange, a piece of fruit under there, I would actually be able to smoosh that with the amount of pressure that I have there. Again, as I come through the follow through, that’s not the case.
That’s going to fly out, I’m letting all that energy go down the fairway. So we’ve done these practice swings, we’ve done these practice reps.
You’ve gotten the feeling for it, now let’s put it together, let’s actually hit one more golf ball here. Notice when you look at slow motion of my swing, pausing at contact, how everything’s connected.
If you look at the top of the backswing, if you look at the follow through, it’s free-flowing, it’s loose. I’m getting that easy speed by making a bigger hand path here.
Let’s go ahead and give it a try, let’s give one a good rip. Now there’s one missing piece to this. We’ve got some great instruction today about how to really load up in the backswing, feel free-flowing to build that speed.
We talked about how to stay connected with the body to deliver that club and everything feels like it’s working together.
But one mistake that I see players make when they do this, they get this big, long swing which is great. They stay connected which is great.
But they have a tendency to come a little bit over the top, to not shallow that club in in the slot, and come from the inside. So as they try to stay connected, and they get their hips and their body more open, that more open feeling gets them cutting across the ball.
That’s where we need to add The Move to this. If you can do The Move where you actually learn to shallow that club out, get it coming from the slot from the inside, square that face up early so that you can hit that nice draw, that’s when you get the true one-two punch with this.
Your body opens and leads the way. It creates the momentum, and then your hands and arms are coming in from a good position to be able to release and compress that heck out of the golf ball.
So if you want ingrain that, work on the drills we talked about here today, then go to The Move section on the website.
Go to the Instruction tab, go down to the Top Speed Golf System, click on The Move, work through those drills, you’re going to be able to get that club slotted in.
You’re going to be able to stay connected and still hit that nice, powerful, really good draw out there. So best of luck, let’s work through it. I’ll see you in The Move.