Anna Nordqvist - Weight shift and rotation

One very common issue for amateur golfers is being fixated on swing plane as well as the hand and arm positions in the backswing. Well, hand and arm positions and swing plane are certainly important however, your focus on these areas could be costing you tons of speed and consistency. In this video, I will show you how important it is to prioritize your backswing around weight shift and rotation. I'll also show you what to look for in your own swing so that you know exactly which area of the swing you need to work on first.

  • Make sure you have proper axis tilt at address. Spine just inside your lead knee. 
  • Shift your weight to help start the swing.
  • Focus on rotation before you work on hand and arm positions at the top of the swing. 

64x64
Thomas
Hi Craig, I understand your point. Nevertheless I wonder, how she can be so successful even winning tournements when not she does not meet the reqirements RST claims to be fundamental...
February 9, 2016
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Thomas. RST claims certain things to be fundamental in a bio-mechanically efficient golf swing. Best results with not hurting or wrecking the body in the process. However, there are many ways to skin a cat "in this instance swing a club - no cats allowed unless it's a Tiger ." Jim Furyk has a very unorthodox swing. Not very powerful and would put most people in traction. But, he has made over 50 Million on tour and had a very successful career. Because he is very good at repeating his move and getting into impact. He knows his swing very well. He is able to compress the ball and manipulate the club properly just before the strike. However, that doesn't mean his swing would work for everyone. It works for him (even though he has been sidelined for most due to injury). We are simply putting forth the information that would be 100% based on anatomy. That if the body had no other influences. How would the body want to move the club as efficient as possible to reach impact.
February 9, 2016
64x64
Thomas
It seems as if she moved her right knee quite a bit to the right. Her left foot comes forward quite a bit. Not neccessarily moves I thought RST suggests...
February 9, 2016
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Thomas. Her trail knee does lose a little flexion and the lead knee externally rotates too much. However, the purpose of these reviews are to show some of the commonalities good ball strikers have. There are some areas we would clean up if she was our student. Nevertheless, there are lots of good properties of her swing one can take good thoughts away from.
February 9, 2016
64x64
Bill
She seems to get that right elbow and behind her. I do the same and it works for. When I try to correct it, I lose distance and start slicing. With the higher hands and elbow more inside, I find it harder to get back to the left side and can't help but fall back. Is the cure worse than the disease?
June 28, 2015
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bill. There are a few reasons we promote the trail arm positioning staying in front of the body. However, without boring you with all the details. When the trail elbow fly's away it changes the position of your scapula. It rotates it counter clockwise for the right handed player. Once, you lose this engagement it is very easy to over swing and not be able to add core rotational speed on the downswing. There are a lot of good players that play with it in the flying position. But, at some point coming down they have to manipulate or re-engage their scapula to maximize speed and efficiency.
June 29, 2015
64x64
Ron
I believe this video highlights some issues that appear to conflict with RTS. What I see is not a hip stack but a muscle load and this has to be so due to her wide stance. In reality the feeling from instep to groin is the key because you know you are loaded no matter where the hips are (I'm bow legged an know that). Her right elbow position at the top is questionable but the key to her power, along with the loading, is the drop of that elbow to the right ribs on downswing. She is also 6ft tall and long arms = faster club head speed.
June 13, 2015
64x64
Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Ron -- These tour videos are never intended to point conflicting information from what a player does in their swing vs. what we teach at RST. We try to focus on 1 or 2 particular areas of a players swing and relate it to some of the videos that we have here on the site. This allows students to see areas that they may want to become better in and and then they can get some focus points to help them stay committed to 1 area of the swing at a time. Now, Anna does load muscle groups very well in her golf swing and she does them in proper order. Her arms dropping down into her ribs as you say can be accomplished by just shifting the weight and unwinding the hips a bit into the lead side. All of what you say is pretty good info but not the focus point of this analysis.
June 30, 2015
64x64
Thomas
looks just like me except she is prettier. Haha
June 5, 2015
64x64
Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
I definitely know prettier than myself.
June 5, 2015

We are back with this week's tour analysis. We are actually going to be shifting our focus over to the LPGA Tour this week, where Anna Nordqvist was able to pick up her first victory at the Shoprite this past weekend, so congratulations to her. And obviously no offense to Steven Bowditch in the PGA Tour player, the winner of this past weekend. Just wanted to be able to focus in on two really critical areas that are going to allow you to become a much more consistent player in your golf game.

        So let's go ahead and get started. All right guys, so as I said in the opener, we're going to be focusing on two really critical areas of the golf swing that I think need to be prioritized long before a lot of the other things that you're starting to try to work on in your golf swing. I think a lot of the times we see as a big mistake is that people really get fixated on hand and arm position at the top of their swing. They want to have this beautiful, on plane looking swing and they want to just focus right on that. And when they do this, we find that they shut down two really important factors of the golf swing that are going to help us get good width and good rotation and good power built up, so that we can in turn use that for club head speed.

  Yeah, hand and arm positions are really important at the top of the swing, of course. We're not going to argue that. We understand how the cause and effect of some of the positions of your hands and arms are a little bit deep, or a little bit too vertical, we understand those things. But if we can still shift our priorities over to these two really key areas, in turn you're going to become a lot more consistent and you're also going to be able to set yourself up so you can build a lot more leverage in your golf swing.

  All right, so let's go ahead and take a look here from a face on perspective. Let me get into the pause here for us. Hold on one sec. .... Okay, from a face on perspective, if you're not seeing that you have axis tilt at your address position, then you need to make sure you have that in place. Access tilt is a really critical, because it allows you to put the head in behind the golf ball. It allows you to be able to put the right side, or your trail side, in the less dominating position, and it also allows you to be able to rotate around your access properly without causing yourself to possibly over-rotate and have your spine leaning more towards the target. That can actually be very detrimental. That can hurt the body. That can put a lot of pressure on your lower part of your back.

     So you want to make sure that you have access tilt. And I'm going to do some recommended videos during this process, and our recommended videos are to the right hand side of the video player where it says recommended videos. Just click on that tab. All these videos that I discuss during the analysis will be in there. So just click that and see all the videos. You'll see hip bump access tilt in there. It's a really good video that talks about how to get proper access tilt at your address position. And I think this is one of the biggest overlooked features of the setup position and it's really, really important.

    So the next two things that I want you to be able to understand, or I want you to be able to see in your golf swing, before you start thinking about a hand and arm position, because yes, you know, Anna's right elbow is a little bit on the deep side. Her hands are a little deep in relationship to the center of her chest. That's where we would be, you know, from a rotary swing standpoint we would just still want to correct that. But what she does do well in her golf swing is she does the two big things. And if you look at the whole mantra behind the rotary swing is that we want to think of it as a big, big body turn and a teeny, tiny little arm movement. All right? So here are the moves that we want to focus on. If you don't see your golf swing having weight shift in it, so watch her right side here. She's going to shift into that right side. Really important. One of the more things we would consider the crux of the golf swing, in a sense, is weight shift.

So you gotta be able to shift your weight. That's the first and foremost. And then you gotta be able to make sure that you're making a big wide turn. A big body turn. So you can see that she's made a good, full turn and she's shifted her weight into that trail side. So she's loading things up here. Now if we focus on rotation, and we focus on weight shift, then take away positions become a lot easier. And I know that's one of the things that people are like, how do I fix my takeaway? My right arm breaks really early, my club gets inside, but again, if we're hanging onto the golf club, at the address position here, okay? Our arms are attached to our shoulders, and if we just shifted our weight and we just rotated our shoulders by pulling our shoulder blade or our scapula here like we're pulling it in towards our spine, and turn, that's going to rotate your shoulders and move your hands and arms. And it does so, so well. So watch here as she works into a takeaway position.

 Pretty much textbook here. You can see her club shaft is parallel to the ground, you can see that both arms are really straight, really relaxed. She's just turned her body nice 45 degrees. Really, probably one of the better takeaways I've seen out there. She's got a very, very good move, very fundamental. If you look at it from a downward angle perspective, for all those people that are plane-ologist, or really fixated on swing plane, let me show you this. So this is an elbow plane line up from the hosel of the club through the base of the elbow. So you can see that she gets this club on the plane line ... and all that club movement right there was facilitated by body rotation.

    So if you understand how to move your body and you understand where your priorities need to be, then golf becomes a lot easier. Don't try to focus on getting your hands and arms into certain positions. Focus on moving from the right parts. That's what we do at rotary swing. That's what we want you to be able to focus on, all right? So I'm not saying that you don't have to work on hand and arm position at the top of the swing. I want you to make sure that you have the two really big variables in place first before you start trying to correct those things. Don't put the cart before the horse, I guess is the best expression here.

    So a couple videos I want to help you out with guys, this week is going to be obviously hip bump axis tilt, and then there's also going to be the right hip line. That's weight shift number two video. Right hip line. I'll do a ... keep the right arm straight to turn and we will do five minutes to master rotation. I think that will probably keep us pretty busy. Those videos will really kind of stay in line with how to prioritize and make sure that you're getting a full turn. And always, guys, if you're not seeing these things on camera, in a mirror, then make sure you have the important things down. Access tilt, weight shift, and rotation, and you will be well on your way to playing some of the best golf of your life. All right guys, so let's get out there, let's work on it, and let's make it a great day.

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