Pool Noodle Drill for Shoulder Elevation

Getting just the right amount of shoulder elevation in the backswing is sometimes a bit tricky. Until now. In this video, I’ll show you a simple, step-by-step drill that’ll put you into the perfect position at the top of your swing. This drill will also help stop the pushing motion that often causes your arms to get “out of the box.” Check out this video to develop a silky smooth takeaway and backswing!

  • Elevation is a slight upward movement of the arms that helps give the club lift in the backswing
  • The hands should be at about the base of the pocket at the completion of the takeaway
  • The right elbow will be in line with the bottom of the chest at the top of the backswing

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Brandon
Can you hit balls with this drill? More specifically...can you hit balls with the lower noodle there? Or will it be bringing my hands too far in front of me? I’m currently working on 9-3 left-hand release drills...but I don’t want my takeaway/shoulder elevation work to go to poop. Wondering if I can do both at the same time basically. Thanks!
February 27, 2021
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Brandon. You may struggle with getting hands too in-front and not enough shallowing out. Not really recommended.
February 27, 2021
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Robert
Had a lesson with Chris - thx u for your help. He recommended this drill and it makes good sense to me and I'll incorporate it. My question is: what is a good model for hand depth at the top? About middle of the feet or something? Thx in advance. Love the content, really help me. Be well.
June 21, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robert. Glad you enjoyed your lesson. Hands should be over trail shoulder/trail ankle. That is the window you are striving for.
June 22, 2020
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Robert
Genius and thx much.
June 22, 2020
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David
Hi Chris/Craig, still trying to get this right but have a tendency to either roll my wrists from the get go or having got into the position in this video i still want to roll my wrists from there and hence the backswing feels armsy and flat. I don't know why but this habit feels powerful and i do hit the ball a long way but when it goes wrong, it really goes wrong. Thanks.
April 30, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. Take a look at How to Fix an Inside Takeaway. Focus on maintaining the wrist cupping.
April 30, 2020
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David
Craig thanks for the quick reply. Just one other thing, if i get into the position in the video how do i stop rolling the wrists from there. I think i fear swinging too steep and always want to roll
April 30, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. I would have to see it. To see if it is more, wrist, forearm, or internal shoulder rotation.
May 1, 2020
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richard
i'm about 6'1, i watched the noodle drill, do i want my hands higher than the second noodle i notice in a lot of the swings the arms are higher and the back elbow points down but higher hands above head. how do i get there?
October 29, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. It may not seem that way on the video. But, Chris is actually around the 6'1"-6'2" mark. You only need to elevate the arms to the base of the pectorals. The higher you go the more risk you will have disconnecting the arms from the box. Try doing it lead arm only with the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video and then add the trail. Check position.
October 29, 2018
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Eric
Wow, this was really a great video. I like 4 square too, conceptually, but when I try to apply it my hands rotate in too early. This video keeps my hands outside during the takeaway and for the first time ever, my right arm just naturally drops into position, with the elbow pointing down. I have been struggling for the past two years to get rid of a flying elbow. I went to the range today and I was hitting it really well. I still hit some balls slightly left, but overall really great ball striking. When I practice the downswing release for a few moments before the swing, it magnifies the effect on my ball striking. Thank you so much. I have been just imagining the location of the pool noodles, I will be buying some this weekend. Eric
December 19, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Thanks for the compliments. Good to hear the good news. Keep up the hard work and allow those arms to work in the vertical dimension.
December 19, 2017
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Eric
Yes, life Long chicken winger. I’ll pass this on to others. Really drill the hands one inch apart, if you don’t get that right it doesn’t work. Once you have made the rotation past the first noodle, I just let my shoulder rotation take my right arm to the next noodle with elbow pointed down in line with the second noodle. Personally about my right arm flexion, it is doing it naturally after years of pulling my elbow with my shoulder horizontal to the ground. Feels great and so natural. You will notice half swings also feel loaded. THANKS.
December 26, 2017
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Gareth
Also what's a rough distance between the noodles when setting up this drill. I've tried it and found that the red noodle is set up a bit closer to the target is this correct? Rough guidelines be good thanks.
September 4, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gareth. Aim for the blue noodle to be just inside the toes. The pink noodle just to the back of the heels, going through the glutes. Chris's feet are 6 inches inside the noodles.
September 6, 2016
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Gareth
I'm working on keeping the right arm straight after my last swing review and I see Chris mentions in this video that right elbow flexion begins at the completion of the takeaway? I had not thought of it or tried to feel it this way. I just wanted to check is it safe to say right arm (Elbow) stays straight doesn't break (Flex) until after your hands are above the first noodle?
September 4, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gareth. Yes, the trail arm shouldn't begin to break till after the takeaway is completed.
September 6, 2016
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Joshua
Hello I feel like I can get to the first Noodle easily then I add right elbow flexion and get the correct height but my elbow doesn't reach the back noodle? Is that achieved by continuing shoulder rotation?
July 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Joshua. You do need to continue shoulder rotation as you add elevation and flexion.
July 21, 2016
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Jeff
What do you use to make the noodles stick in the ground. Alignment sticks etc
July 16, 2016
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Steven (Certified RST Instructor)
Jeff-Alignment sticks would work great for this drill for the noodles stand up.
July 16, 2016
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Kim
Is there a trick to using them indoors? How do you get them to stay upright?
December 22, 2018
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Kim
I just bought 2 weighted bill pins on Amazon, the sort that restaurants and places use to skewer orders
January 10, 2019
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Michael
How far should the bicep be away from the body, it has been suggested to me that they should be close like having a sponge between them or a towel.
July 6, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. You don't want to glue them to your side or pinch. A little awareness of connection. Holding a sponge in place would be description.
July 6, 2016
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Michael
Many thanks I think I have had a bigger gap as I have tried to obtain width
July 6, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. You need to maintain some awareness of connection. Don't try to create width by forcing the arms out and over. Keep that trail arm in the proper spot.
July 6, 2016
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Michael
Craig many thanks I'll try this out on the range.
July 6, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
No problem. That is where most people go out of bounds is trying to force width. If you have good rotation, elevation and proper trail arm flexion. You will have all the width you need.
July 6, 2016
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Michael
Hi Craig that seems to work better, I have been raising my arms too high I think getting a bit out of the box. On a separate note what are your thoughts about starting the downswing from the correct backswing position.
July 8, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Do you mean starting from a proper backswing position (at a stand still)? And, then starting down to train some of the downswing positions?
July 8, 2016
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Michael
I have been working on downswing including weight shift moves in the mirror and video which has improved. The issue is on the course, I have to consentrate very hard to achieve a reasonable swing otherwise I tend to hip spin and fade or block right usually into the rough the subconscious takes over due to years of old habits.
July 9, 2016
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Les
So my takeaway is right where it is supposed to be but when i try to elevate my right arm starts to chicken wing and I get across the line at the top. I understand how the arms are supposed to elevate but that feeling makes me feel like my arms and hands swing up to my head and then i get completely out of the box and the club is then laid off. So how do the arms work after the takeaway? Do they feel like the push away from the body or get deeper as they elevate? Thanks
July 1, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Les. The body should feel rotational (horizontally) as the arms work vertically. Use the 3 Functions of the Right Arm and the 4 Square Drill to not over elevate and create the proper blend. After the takeaway, you should feel that you keep rotating as you add elevation, flexion and external humeral rotation with the trail arm. You shouldn't have to push the arms away from the body to keep from getting deep.
July 2, 2016
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Loran
Ok, let me get this right. The blue noodle suggest the end of the takeaway, before the backswing? Then, the takeaway ends in a slant but not a straight line, like the parallel to pocket height suggests?
February 26, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Yes, the blue noodle represent the initial elevation required in the takeaway. The takeaway does in parallel to the pocket height. The noodles here are used to help train vertical motion. Not, perfect takeaway. While Chris is demonstrating if he would've allowed for a little more forearm rotation it would have synced better. But, the goal is to train the elevation from these drills. It might have taken the focus off of the intended agenda to add other components.
February 27, 2016
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Loran
In other words, the shoulder elevation is a diagonal slant? Not a straight up vertical ascent? I am trying to fold the elbow pit, but find myself doing other awkward moves? I am trying to not supinate my right arm and cause an across the line at the top of the swing?
June 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Shoulder elevation is vertical (4 Square Drill, Understanding Shoulder Elevation, Understanding Arm Elevation Video). The trail arm will remain in front of the body as it folds. The folding of the trail arm brings the lead arm into position.
June 29, 2016
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Dave
Can you clarify how far away from the blue noodle right foot should be please? The video suggests 6 inches but when I do that distance it feels physically impossible to rotate using my shoulder blade and right shoulder to pull, and get the hands up quick enough. The only way I feel I can is by leaning back onto the left side which is very wrong on the takeaway.
January 19, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dave. It is about 6 inches. But, everyone has different body sizes. If you feel that you need a little more room or space you can extend it out a little further.
January 19, 2016
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Loran
This diagonal line between the two poles suggests that the takeaway is a combo of elevation and rotation? This video implies that the takeaway and elevation is more critical than completing the takeaway move alone by itself? Which is more dominant of the proper swing...elevation not to come in contact with the blue stick or the proper amount of body rotation/wrist set? In all, the takeaway is an diagonal elevator and not a separate piece independent of the backswing? Hope I am getting my point across!
September 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Yes, the takeaway is a blend of rotation and elevation. You need a touch of elevation to keep the club in front of your sternum. Yes, you will rotate as the arm elevate and add gradual wrist set. Arms work vertical with rotation.
September 17, 2015
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Loran
The blue noodle suggests a steeper elevation, no? Not to take the club past right pocket?
October 30, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The blue noodle might be a touch high. But, this is helping exaggerate a little of the feel for players that have a hard time feeling enough elevation. Ideally, you are correct with the hands.
October 30, 2015
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Loran
Will this kind of steep blue noodle elevation restrict my rotation? Because it is slanted and feels far away from my right thigh? Or lead to overswing?
February 22, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. It should make your rotation easier. Feeling some width from the right thigh is a good thing. Losing external humeral rotation in the right arm or over elevating would be the only cause to over swinging.
February 22, 2016
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Preston
During right arm flexion to the top of the pink noodle, do the arms continue to elevate? I have a tendency to overflex the right arm and add too much shoulder elevation according to my instructor James. So may be i should air on the side of night elevating after the takeaway and just add right arm flexion? When I do this, I feel tension below my right shoulder blade. I think my lat. Once I feel that, is that when I should make the transition?
July 25, 2015
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james (Certified RST Instructor)
Preston, the arms will elevate to pec height, the right elbow flexion provides the rest of the height through the backswing. As you were bending the right arm your arms kept elevating to the point where your right elbow sat around shoulder height. This drill will help you with the correct positioning of the right elbow, which is at pec height. The transition will be felt more with the lower body, check the load rt glute video.
July 26, 2015
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Preston
Ok, So if I am understanding correctly, the folding of the right arm should NOT occur UNTIL I have elevated my arms completely to the base of my peck?
July 26, 2015
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robert
can this drill be done correctly WITHOUT destroying width
June 29, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robert. Yes, you should be able to maintain the exact amount of width you need in the swing.
June 29, 2015
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Loran
There is a little bit more elevation before the completion of the takeaway? Is this after the wrist cock or before?
June 2, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Elevation is gradual in the takeaway. It will feel more like you are rotating, adding elevation, and then with a little wrist set.
June 3, 2015
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richard
WILL THIS WORK WHEN TRYING TO GET A FULL ARC BACKSWING; 6" FROM NOODLE SEEMS CLOSE WHEN TRYING TO GET A FULL ARC. LO AND SLOW WON'T WORK WITH THIS METHOD.
May 23, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. It should work. Slow will work, but not low. You need the little bit of gradual elevation to keep the club in front of the sternum.
May 23, 2015
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Loran
What exactly does the blue stick represent in the video? The one where you caution not to come in contact with?
May 20, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The Blue Stick represents the amount of elevation required in the takeaway.
May 21, 2015
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Burt
Do you recommend hitting full shots with the noodles set up?
May 19, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Burt. You could try, but it might be slightly difficult. The goal of this drill is to train the new muscle awareness and learn how to elevate properly.
May 19, 2015
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Jay
I have 2 tripods I set up in front of a mirror at home, both at the right height of the noodles. I can stand 5 feet away and swing freely with a club, checking my elevation in the mirror this way. Is this method okay? Also I just thought about using tape right on the mirror for someone who doesn't have tripods.
February 11, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jay, yeah, you should be fine. As long as you have objects that are at the proper heights, you're okay. You don't have to use pool noodles, but the noodles are nice because they aren't going to ding up your clubs as you start to pick up the pace if you happen to hit one. R.J.
February 11, 2015
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Paul
what is the distance between the noodles
January 30, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Paul. Aim for the blue noodle to be just inside the toes. The pink noodle just to the back of the heels, going through the glutes. Chris's feet are 6 inches inside the noodles.
January 31, 2015
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Michael
Great video. I basically lined my bed post where the blue noodle would be. At first, my hands kept hitting the bed post, then elevated my arms so they stayed in front of the post. Wow, what a different feeling - more vertical - and I can feel the shoulder elevation. Previously, the shaft would be parallel to the ground before I felt elevation. Now, it appears that I'm adding elevation before the shaft gets parallel. Am I correct?
January 30, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Yes, you want to add gradual elevation as you rotate to reach the parallel to the ground position. Sounds like you are on the right track. You can also use the RST Pencil Tee Drill in the Advanced Takeaway Section to check that elevation.
January 30, 2015
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Howard
Hi. To get from the 3 o'clock position to the top of the back swing, is it mostly right arm flexion that gets the hands to the top? I know it's not pushing with the left arm.
January 19, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Howard. From Move 1 you need elevation, flexion and a little external humeral rotation to reach the top. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Downswing Section.
January 20, 2015
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TANISHKA
WHAT IS THE POSITION OF THE BACK NOODLE (PINK COLOUR)
January 8, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tanishka. The back noodle should be just behind the heels going through the glutes.
January 8, 2015
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brandon
Chris do you still have the promotion where i can pay pal you for a certain amount of lessons - i think you had it back in August? Anyway my email is brandonmcnally76@gmail.com ill use a cc or whatever.
December 15, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Brandon -- I am not certain that we have ever offered such a thing. The options that I have posted are the standard 2 per month reviews, unlimited review group ($167.00 per month) and private lessons. If you find some info where some sort of promotion may have been offered then by all means send it over to me via email at chris@rotaryswing.com. Thanks and hope you are making some great progress on your game.
December 15, 2014
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John
This is the best video for me that explains the elevation. I can finally now see why the club was getting behind me. Great drill ! Thank you!
December 15, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Very glad to hear you enjoyed the drill John. Now get to work on that club being deep and behind you.
December 15, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey John. Great. Happy you enjoyed the video! Get to work!
December 15, 2014
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Klaus
How many inches apart are blue and pink noodles? Is there a relation to my shoulder width? Thx.
December 14, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
You are correct. The spacing depends on body size. Aim for the blue noodle to be just inside the toes. The pink noodle just to the back of the heels, going through the glutes.
December 15, 2014
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Rodolfo
It would have helped a face on view on the video. I heard you should stand 6 inches from noodle but seems in the vid that the blue noodle is closer to Chris's right foot. Also how many inches apart blue and pink noodles are?. Should you introduce left arm rotation on the drills (to get the plane right)?
October 21, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
How far away you are from the pool noodles is determined by how long your takeaway is and if you're doing it properly, the only thing that determines the length of your takeaway is the length of your arms. So, you'll have to play around with it until you get it just right for you and how long your arms are. R.J.
October 22, 2014
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John
Toward the end of this video, if you examine your hands in the swing while holding the club in light of the "bucket drill", it would appear that you would be spilling water out of the bucket. I'm trying to reconcile these two drills.
October 14, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. Chris's right hand does get a little on top. He does require a little more rotation. However, when the club is flipped around the weight of the heel-toe balanced head isn't there to help get the rotation. You will want it more like the bucket drill. Nice and level hands.
October 15, 2014
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Alan
Many thanks, Rusty. I'll give that a go. Best wishes, Alan
October 11, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
You're welcome, sir and thank you for the wishes.
October 11, 2014
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Alan
Hi Chris, I really enjoyed this video and I am having some success with the techniques. However, where I struggle is when/where/how to introduce shoulder elevation in the backswing. Consequently, more often than not, I am too low with my club head when parallel to the target line and usually end up wth too flat a swing plane. I note in the video (down the line shot) that you raise and lower your arms but you can't do that when addressing the ball!! Can you tell me when during the backswing I elevate both arms?? Thank you, Alan
October 10, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Also, Alan, the arms are elevated by the deltoid muscles which cover the shoulder joints. So, take a weight or a theraband, if you're using the theraband step on one end and hold the other in your hand, and raise your arm directly out in front of you like you were going to shake someone's hand. This resistance will allow you to feel the muscles responsible for elevating the arms the backswing thus, you can know how to activate them to get proper elevation in your backswing.
October 11, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Alan, great question! You're actually slowly elevating your arms all the way until the moment of right elbow flexion. Here are the check points, for almost all body types, your hands and the club will be at your pocket or belt level (or about an inch below your belly button) when the club is parallel to the ground. If you're getting parallel to the ground prior to that height, one of two things are happening. You're either not elevating at all or you're setting your wrists way too much, too quickly. Both of these result in low and flat swing planes. You'll have to check the angle of your wrists and the height of your hands to determine which is causing the issue. The second check point is that your arms should be raised to the bottom of your pectoral muscle (Nipple level, not sure if we're allowed to say nipple though) by the time you turn your back to the target, then you fold your elbow from there and rotate a little more to complete the 90 degree turn. If you notice, those two noodles are set just below those check point heights. If you clear the noodles (providing they're setup properly) then you are elevating your hands enough and quickly enough in the backswing. So, focus on going from point A to point B and then from point B to point C in a consistent rate of elevation and you'll have a nice, smooth backswing. I hope this helped, Alan. Rusty
October 11, 2014
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Lee
I think i've got my posture maintained throughout now, though I do feel like my right arm is disconnecting from the body too much when I try to get shoulder elevation, is this common?
September 16, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lee. The right arm will come away from your side. The key is not too allow it to swing behind the body. Make sure you keep it in front and the connection between the upper bicep and pectoral stays close.
September 16, 2014
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Lee
Thanks Craig, I will go back and view some of the videos and try and relate this to what you mentioned about not swinging behind the body and keeping the connection. Thanks again.
September 16, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lee. Use the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section to help with the connection.
September 16, 2014
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Lee
Here is the top of my backswing when trying to get elevation: http://cl.ly/image/0N1C3f250R08 and here it is normally: http://cl.ly/image/0s2c1N2E0B0P Would appreciate any pointers etc, I feel like I lose the connection too much when going for increased elevation.
September 16, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The key is to see less right bicep. Use the 3 Functions Video and the 5 Mins to the Perfect Backswing in the Backswing Section to rotate and not move the arms independently too much across the chest. With your arms in front of you (drill position). Rotate back without adding arm swing across the chest.
September 16, 2014
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Lee
Brilliant, I will go watch that video now.
September 16, 2014
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Lee
Hi Chris, I was recommended this video after my second swing review, apparently I am not quite getting enough shoulder elevation. The problem is, when I try to get some more elevation I seem to come out of my posture more and the synchronisation of the swing in general seems 'out'. I am getting good results with my swing, I just wondered if getting more shoulder elevation might cause any issues with posture etc?
September 11, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lee. You might be lifting the body instead of the arms. I definitely don't want you losing you posture. If you physically are unable to get more, that is ok. Nevertheless, try the Drill in the Understanding Shoulder Elevation Video in the Backswing Section. See if you can train not to lose the spine angle.
September 12, 2014
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Lester
Hello Chris, I've been working (with Mr. Ritson) on fixing the right elbow and maintaining the 'tush line' for the last two weeks, and I added the "pool noodle" drill - thinking it would help produce a correct takeaway and top of swing position. I now find that my ball flight is predominantly going to the RIGHT. Before, I had a "pull" ball flight. Suggestions?
September 5, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lester. Its hard to tell what could be causing the issue from the points that you are working on. Tell your instructor during your next review. I'm sure he will spot the difference and help you get the flight straightened out.
September 5, 2014
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Lester
Thanks, Craig. I'll do that the next time I submit a video for analysis and review.
September 5, 2014
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Grant
Hi Chris, How far apart are you spacing the noodles, approximately 1 foot ? Also are you setting up right next to the shorter noodle with your right foot or 6'' away from it? I'm assuming my toes need to be on an imaginary line down the line from the shorter one. Thank you. Grant
August 23, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The spacing depends on body size. Aim for the blue noodle to be just inside the toes. The pink noodle just to the back of the heels, going through the glutes. Chris's feet are 6 inches away.
August 24, 2014
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Marion
Thanks Chris! We're going to have fun with this, because I think I will finally get my questions addressed and not be out in the twilight zone as I have been for some time. The reason you saw a deep position from me in the backswing is because the only other instructor I've worked with (he comes highly recommended by the scratch players at my club) saw me trying to get a higher position going back and said that I was only lifting the club and that was a very weak move going back. He wanted to see me "torqing" my move back so that I can wind up and store power to release it. And yes, that meant a rotation with the body through the strike as I hung on to the club and swung to the left after impact. Of course, I do this because I'm coachable if nothing else--I will work at something until I get it--and lo and behold, after some weeks of this my left hip hurts pretty constantly. So that compelled me, once I saw that these unlimited reviews came back open, to sign up with your and just hash this all out. From the position going back that y'all teach, how do I get speed? From what I understand, it comes through a proper release. But how can I achieve the proper release while creating some shaft lean and compression? And how can I do this without producing the strain on my hip? You may have caught me at the perfect time, because I've got so much info in my head from reputable sources, and I know there must be way for me to learn properly. For all my confusion there is no way I can be a single digit handicapper unless I have some ability, some potential to play this game the way it ought to be played. And the window is not as open as it was; I'm getting close to 59, and the highest swing speed with a driver I've ever produced is around 103-105 mph. So believe me, I am so motivated to get better, get out of my own way and play some solid golf! Here ends the rant....
August 5, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Marion, glad you found this drill useful for sure. We want the hands to be a bit higher in the air for several reasons. We can use gravity in the downswing from a higher position to help increase speed and not have to spin the life out of the body to make room for the hands and arms to pass in front. Shoulder elevation is a variable and some players want to put more elevation in to use the body even less. Look at Davis Love, he has a ton of elevation in his swing so that he can use the body less in the downward move. He is now 50 and has one of the highest recorded swing speeds on tour this year at 128mph!!!!! You can also use the elevation to your advantage to help create downcock with much more ease. That can help you maintain more of an angle for lag down into the hitting area. When the hands and arms are deep, it is hard to get them back out in front without pushing them, which can lead to loss of the angle. We still want to use the body to build up power in both the backswing and the downswing, but it is more critical to protect the body and make sure your load and unload of the lower half and rotation of the torso are done correctly. We will protect the hips by making sure you do not pass NJA in the downward move and put a ton of stress on the outer portion of the hip girdle. I am looking forward to having you in my group and will make sure we get you to a good spot with your swing. If you ever find that you have questions directly related to what you and I are working on, feel free to re-submit a video and post the questions in there and I will go through it with you. That is the beauty of the unlimited review process.
August 6, 2014
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hubert
Chris, would like to know how far from the pool noodles do you stand? Also what are you using to get the noodles to stand up? Great video.
June 17, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Hubert. His feet are 6 inches away. He is using alignment rods pushed through them for standing purposes.
June 17, 2014
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Barry
Hey Chris, Love this video. I'm confident it will cure my shocking horrible take away. what are you using to anchor the noodles to the ground? Thanks for your help. Barry
June 12, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Barry. Chris used alignment rods pushed into the noodle, then into the ground.
June 12, 2014
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mike
Chris, How far apart are the pink & blue noodle from each other and are you feet 6'" from the blue noodle? It look like your toes are almost touching the blue noodle.
June 7, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The spacing depends on body size. Aim for the blue noodle to be just inside the toes. The pink noodle just to the back of the heels, going through the glutes. Chris's feet are 6 inches away. I can see how it would look like he was closer. Good trick photography.
June 7, 2014
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Ryan
Oops sorry Chris scratch that my cell didn't load all the comments and now I see the perefct answer!!!!
May 20, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Ok good, glad you found the solution. Let me know if you need any further help.
May 21, 2014
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Ryan
Hey Chris great stuff as always and I was scanning thru the comments looking to see if this could be answered but was unable to find a clear answer. As per me I'm a stickler for absolute perfect positons for ME and my swing!!!! I wish we had a Face On camera view so as I could get an exact idea as to where we want to position the noodles. I know you say 6 inches inside the small one but if we were Face on would the big and small be in a direct line. So really could you just elaborate a little bit for me as to postioning the noodles in perfect position for each individual??? Of course you can't see everyones body so just clear up how far back and in each noodle should be!!!! Thanks Keep up the great Stuff!!!
May 20, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Ryan, thanks for the kind words and glad to see you found you answer.
May 21, 2014
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Sam
This video is excellent! In 45 years of playing no one has ever talked about elevation, yet it makes so much sense! How have other viewers anchored the belt height noodle (1) into the ground ? The second noodle is easy, because it is taller than a normal alignment rob, but the first is shorter. Fiberglass rods are not the easiest to cut without splintering ... If you have any ideas, I'm all ears.
May 15, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Sam, the shorter alignment rod I had to push way down into the ground. Obviously that is not going to be easy with different surfaces. You could possible have a steel shaft cut to the length that you need as that would be easier to cut for sure.
May 15, 2014
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Sam
Thanks Chris & Dan for your ideas !
May 16, 2014
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Dan
Here is what I did. I bought two wooden paper towel holders. The kind that you place on the table. This way I can do this drill at home or in my cubicle at work. Here is a picture of one. I found a cheap one that did not have a ball on top so I can easily slide the noodle on. Even if you buy a wooden like this, you can cut off the top so the noodle can slide on. http://photos.tradeholding.com/attach/hash24/15896/jd_n104.jpg
May 15, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Great stuff Dan! Thanks for sharing that for the members to see. I have seen some pretty interesting setups so far. hahah
May 16, 2014
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Dan
What is the distance between the two noodles? Or is there some other key that determines that distance?
May 1, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
The best way to set it up is get the takeaway noodle in the ground first. Then stand with the toes right to the front 6" inside of it. Go into golf posture and elevate the right arm only to where the elbow is at the bottom of the pec, then flex the right arm to 90 degrees and hold it. Then rotate all the way to the top of the swing (big shoulder turn) and put the noodle right underneath the right elbow. It can be slightly different for each person but that is the best way to set it up for sure.
May 1, 2014
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Dan
Excellent. Thanks again, Chris.
May 1, 2014
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Mark
I am a little confused about the lift portion in conjunction with the spine tilt to keep from the reverse pivot. I guess I am thinking too much but, in trying to use the big muscles of the body in the take away and keeping the right arm as straight and as long as possible to clear the first noodle it would seem that i have to use the arms to lift up which seems to make sense. I guess my question is in the transition from the take away until you lift how far is that? I have a problem of coming back too low and a flat plane which I am trying to correct.
April 29, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Shoulder elevation should be a gradual move during the entire takeaway and entire backswing. Always make sure that you have your rotation spot on first and then when you work a drill like this, focus first on rotation and then a slight bit of elevation into the takeaway and then continue to focus on elevation as you add flexion and elevation into the backswing. Rotation always comes first. REF! Rotation-elevation-flexion
April 29, 2014
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Loran
Should not the first concern be not swaying the hips in the takeaway and creating a stable base for proper hips rotation and torso?
September 17, 2015
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Mark
Thanks for the reply.
April 30, 2014
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Greg
Best backswing video ever. Simple and perfect visuals. Thank you. Would like to see similar type videos for downswing.
April 28, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Gregory! We have some really exciting content coming out this summer. Stay tuned.
April 29, 2014
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nathan
Awesome drill! And the cheap training aids show great feedback at the reference points.
April 26, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you like it.
April 26, 2014
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Carver
I spend more time on swing plane than anything else and offer the following: 1) In CQ's Trace The Plane Line video, the aid he uses is on plane with the shaft that goes roughly through the belt buckle. I have studied TW's DTL swing and drawn that line and his club head traces that line briefly before moving up more vertically. It never stays on that line up the entire back swing which would get the club very deep. 2) Clay had advocated tracing the line from the hozel through the elbows. When TW's swing is viewed with this line, the club head stays on this plane line almost to the very top. Same swing just different lines. All this is consistent with CQ's swing. 3) I was confused on where to actually place the swing plane aids in reference to my stance. This is absolutely key to tracing the plane. It is not fully explained in CQ's swing plane video and I asked Clay to clarify, which he did. Perhaps he should share that with everyone. 4) Chris, what you demonstrate is consistent with both CQ's video and Clays plane through the elbows. The key is proper placement of the plane sticks or noodles and then trace the line correctly, depending on which one you use. Your drill makes it easy.
April 25, 2014
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lonnie
Where is Chucks plane line drill? I didnt find that video.
April 25, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Lonnie, Dean is probable mentioning the creating a swing plane video or trace the plane line which is dedicated to the downswing section
April 26, 2014
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Dean (Certified RST Instructor)
it appears this drill would have you take the club back to far outside. I like Chucks Plane Line drill better!
April 25, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
This is a just a reference point drill as the function of shoulder elevation is quite often misunderstood around the site. The whole point of the drill is too lay out some reference points for the gradual movement of elevation in the swing. Chucks plane line drill is great as well, no doubt about it. When stand about 6" inside of the takeaway noodle with your toes to the front of it, you will not be taking the club out side by any means when getting the hands over the first noodle. That would actually have you moving the club up the plane beautifully barring you didnt have some sort of crazy right wrist hinge.
April 25, 2014
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John
That is a great video! I have been practising the take away but thought the elevation came at the end of the back swing when the arms raise. This shows that I need to elevate my arms during the takeaway which I didn't realise before. I've got the noodles,now I need to set them up and try this.
April 25, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you like it John and glad we were able to pass along some clarity on elevation during the swing.
April 25, 2014
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Bob
I'm unclear as to 'keeping the right arm straight for more turn,' and right arm flexion? Do we flex the right arm on purpose or does it happen naturally when attempting to keep the right arm 'straight' in the backswing to achieve width. Thank you.
April 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Right arm flexion will need to happen at the completion of the takeaway to move the club into the vertical plane. Keeping the right arm straight to turn is addressing those players that collapse the arc very early with the right arm breaking, which in turn creates momentum in the clubhead and then shuts down the rotation in the shoulder line. You will need to make some conscious flexion of the right arm at first.
April 25, 2014
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rick
That's a really easy way to ingrain takeaway and shoulder elevation! I'm buying some pool noodles tomorrow.
April 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Awesome Rick. Glad you found it useful
April 25, 2014
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carl
Aren't you too steep at the top of this video?
April 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Carl, I really just wanted to show how to set up some reference points in regards to elevation. We have a lot of students that know where the height of the elbow needs to be at the top of the swing and this drill is really geared towards reference points to make it a gradual process. it wouldn't have looked as steep had i rotated fully but that wasnt the goal of the video this time.
April 25, 2014

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