Friday, June 20, 2014

Pure Force Golf

Our video, Pure Force Golf, is helping thousands to hit the ball long and straight in as few as two swings!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Simplifying golf swing physics

Parametric acceleration is the inward pull just like you do when twirling an object on a string.  To make the object go faster you have to pull harder and faster on the string.  In a golf swing, the object (club head) and the string is the entire unit of the club shaft and lead arm which is attached at the shoulder.  The shoulder is the center of that circle not the spine.  I demonstrate this in a  The faster the left shoulder moves up the faster the club head travels.  Caveat; in doing so the club face will open dramatically so there must be a compensation in holding the club to account for this.  There are two circles in a swing.  The arm swing and the body turn.  The swing center for the body turn is the tail bone. Hogan told John Schlee (his only pupil) to get his tail bone over his left heel as fast as he could and then turn toward the target.

Conservation of angular momentum and a decrease moment or inertia come into play with the body motion adding to acceleration.  Simply put, conservation of angular momentum is what we see when an ice skater spins.  To spin faster the skater pulls her arms close to the body thereby increasing the speed of the spin.  In much the same way a golfer can use this by keeping his hands as close to his body as he can as he turns toward the target.  The closer the hands the faster the turn.  Decrease in the moment of inertia comes from shortening the radius.  A short pendulum moves faster than a long one.  To shorten the pendulum in a golf swing we bend the wrists backward creating what golfers term "lag".  This lag creates torque in the wrist.  The wrists snap out at the bottom of the swing without any effort being applied in the same manner as the bristles on a brush snap when the torque is released.  Trying to consciously apply pressure using your hands and arms to hit is tantamount to drawing an arrow back with a bow and the trying to push the arrow forward.  

I have an excellent demonstration of all this in the Pure Force Golf DVD. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

What Visualization Is

A lot has been written about the importance of visualization, however, little has been said about just how to do it.  I have the good fortune to have been a good friend and adviser to Australian Hall Of Fame golfer Bruce Crampton for many years.  In our discussions over the years visualization has always been a favorite topic.  As many of you know, I host a weekly public radio program on positive thinking and I have authored the book "Winning Thinking, how to be happy almost all of the time".  So what is visualization and how can you direct your thinking on command?

Bruce won 14 times on the PGA Tour and 20 times on the Champions Tour.  He has also won many events worldwide including the Australian Open when he was only 19 against Peter Thomson, who was in his prime.  In Bruce's rookie season on the Champions Tour he won and amazing 7 times!  He had been out of competitive golf for 6 years prior to that working in the oil business in Dallas.  His only playing for fun with Ben Hogan twice weekly.  So what was he doing that rookie season that led to all of those wins?  A few months before he started the Champions Tour he began listening to positive thinking tapes.  He worked daily on "seeing" his shots and letting his subconscious mind take over the details.  If you pick up a glass of water and drink it you don't think about what muscle groups you are using etc... You give yourself the thought or command to take a drink and your subconscious goes to work telling the body what to do.  It is the feedback that allowed you to master the skill.  Like a baby trying to feed himself, it is the feedback that trains him to get better and refine his skills.

We all think in pictures or movies.  If I ask you what color your first bike was you will no doubt know the answer in a few seconds even though it has been years or even decades since you last saw it.  How did you remember that?  How were you able to find it in your mind?  Our brain is like a computer.  It stores everything we have taken in both consciously and unconsciously.  Just as we use a mouse or pad to access information on our computers we also have one that we use for our brains.  Our mouse is our eyes.  How we move our eyes triggers the search function.  When I learned this decades ago it made everything far easier including passing the California Bar.  We use this "mouse" all the time.  Once you know where to "look" you will be able to have clear recall.

The sensations you have felt hitting the shot you need to hit at a given time can be recalled and duplicated.  This is why it is so important to practice odd lies, stances, drastic curves left or right, high or low etc...  Bruce is a master of this.  Call it getting into the zone.  You can teach yourself to do this at will.  I used these same techniques to get out of an end of life hospice situation in 2003/04 dying from cancer and a massive stroke.  This is powerful stuff indeed.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Conservation of angular momentum

Byron Nelson always said "You can't stand too close to the ball."  There is a physics explanation for why that works.  To put it simply, there are 2 circles in a golf swing.  The first is the arm swing and the second circle is the body turn.  The body turn is where the zip comes from.  It is called conservation of angular momentum.  Ice skaters use it to spin fast.  By pulling their arms in close they allow the center to spin faster just like a shorter pendulum will go faster than a long one.  By keeping your hands close to your body you can turn your body faster. 

I know a lot of people make a big fuss over "width" in a swing.  Width is a constant.  It runs from your lead shoulder down to the club head.  It ain't getting any longer than it already is, period.  Any attempt to "reach" to create width is just plan silly and leads to changing the path.  You arm isn't getting any longer nor is the club shaft.  So it is a stupid idea to think you can make it longer.  Most "experts" just aren't.  They repeat "the world is flat" and figure that will suffice.

Stand close as is comfortable.  On the back swing turn you butt to the target.  Keep your body soft with no tension.  Humans aren't rubber bands and never will be.  So turn you butt to the target then turn your belly button to it.  It should feel soft and smooth like a dance move.  

Thursday, November 15, 2012

4 o'clock to 10 o'clock

I don't believe I can more strongly emphasize swinging from 4 o'clock to 10 o'clock.  I have discussed this in an earlier post and I strongly recommend that you reread it and become intimately familiar in developing the feel for this swing.  I was rereading Byron Nelson's book on the Modern Golf Swing and he too was a huge advocate for this.

Hit 'em straight!


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Creating Club Head Speed

A golf ball is moved when force is applied to it.  The formula for force is, force = mass X acceleration.  The mass is the club head.  No need to worry about mass.  So all we have to concern ourselves with is acceleration.  We need to create speed and lots of it.  We can only create speed by swinging the club head.  This requires us to use our muscle structure in a fashion that allows our bodies to move fast as well.  For a muscle to be able to move is has to be relaxed.  If a muscle is flexed it has to resist motion in order to remain flexed.

Our natural urge, when thinking about hitting a ball, is the flex our muscles as we would to lift a sack of cement.  We instinctively equate power or force with brute force.  Power in golf is a misnomer.  Power is a conversion of energy such as a river turning a turbine, turning a generator, converting it to electricity.  We are not dealing with that here.  However, the word "power" evokes greatness in our minds.

Tight muscles are slow muscles.  So by gripping a club tightly in hand and getting all ridged ready to stop and oncoming train we are defeating our purpose.  Golf is no about throwing pianos or stopping oncoming trains.  It is about creating speed.  We need relaxed muscles that are able to move quickly and freely without any inhibition.  We need to create a whipping flowing motion.  It is a flicking motion.  I liken it to flicking a spit-wad off your thumb with your middle finger.  It is that snap or flick that creates the acceleration that moves the spit-wad.  You could make a tight fist and punch the spit-wad but it would go very far.

I can not emphasize enough the requirement that you use what Count Yogi termed a "touch grip".  This would holding the club with just enough pressure to keep it from slipping out of your hands.  The handle has been tapered to help keep the handle from slipping out of your hands.  Also, most players where a glove on the top hand to help keep the club from slipping.  On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being squeezing the handle as hard as you can, I would recommend at grip pressure of no more than 2.5.  You can't create club head speed by squeezing the handle.  Loosey goosey as Nicklaus said.  Grip it tight and the ball goes right.  If your left handed, too much heft and the ball goes left.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Hogan's turning point

I have spent the past few months reviewing films of Babe Ruth and Ted Williams.  My observations revealed that their power source is essentially their buttocks.  I recall many years ago talking with Tom Kite asking him how he managed to hit the ball so far for an average size guy.  He said, without hesitation, "I hit it with my butt."  I recall laughing.  I know that Hogan was a real student of Ted Williams.  I started looking closely at Hogan's body motion remembering the important points John Schlee shared with me.  Hogan talked at length with John about his "turning point".  If you look at Hogan's swing you will see him literally almost sit on his left heel when he reaches the top of his swing.  You'll also notice that he has his back to the target.  This sitting motion places his center of gravity over his left heel as he is backing into the shot, literally.  Once his body is set over the turning point he turns his buttock hard to the left as he drops the back of his left hand down to the inside quarter of the ball letting his hands and arms fly away from his body and up.  This is why on page 88 of his book Hogan said he had to move the pane of glass since he was swing out and away from his body.  If his imaginary pane of glass wasn't move the club head would smash it.  To review, turn your back to the target as you swing the club under and up to the top, sit on your left heel as you drop your hands in front of you, and turn your butt as hard as you can letting your arms, hands and club whip away from your body up and through the ball hitting the inside quarter.  It takes a little practice to get the timing but the rewards are well worth the effort.