Step 5 - Add the Trailing Arm

Finally, we can add the trailing arm back into the 5 Step System.

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Kyaw Thet
If I mess up at this step-5, should I go back to step-4? If I have to go back to step-4, how many more reps do I need to do?
July 19, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyaw. Your swing is pretty solid. Enough reps at Step 4 where you can nail it while telling someone what you had for breakfast.
July 19, 2020
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Kim
Having difficulty with the "posting up" through the swing while trying to stay in posture. Does straightening of the left leg occur as a result of turning the hips or from actively trying to straighten the left leg? I'm sure I tend to get too much right leg involved when trying to post up causing me to stand up and lose the tush line. Thanks.
June 18, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kim. Both. The pulling back of the lead oblique and push from the ground to straighten the leg. Some players can overdo the "up" part of the post. Leading to the straight left, but not enough hip clearance. Or, hip spin and not straighten the leg. If you look at impact and your hips are cleared without trail foot push. But, the lead leg is bent. You may need some more active motion.
June 18, 2019
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Bernard
Hi, I’m ok with all Steps including adding the club, but with Step 5 I want to swing the club back instead of turning and raising the left arm. Should feeling be the same with Step 5? Essentially is the right hand just a passenger?
February 20, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bernard. Yes, the trail hand as the passenger. Making sure though that it is staying straight and not overly adding flexion too soon.
February 20, 2019
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Bernard
Thanks Craig, think that’s key I’m missing as all other steps and sweep drill etc. I feel turning my body and swinging the lead arm, whereas when I add the right hand the feeling is different all of a sudden. So right hand does nothing other than some speed at impact?
February 21, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bernard. It will help with some support and maintaining width in the backswing. But, the main function will be to add speed.
February 21, 2019
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Matthew
I had a bad injury on my lead (left) arm two months ago and when I returned to golf, I noticed that my trail (right) arm/hand was completely trying to take over the downswing -- what a disaster!! This particular video has been a (golf) life-saver and got me back on track VERY quickly! In fact, I'm actually hitting the ball better than EVER before! One thing that I noticed while doing these drills is that my complete right upper body has now relaxed -- including hands, arms, shoulders, AND shoulder blade. So... here's the confusing part: how does the shoulder blade glide relate to this drill? When doing the shoulder blade glide, it feels like the origin of movement for the takeaway is the right shoulder blade pulling FIRST. With these drills however, it feels more like the ENTIRE upper body rotates back together and I have no sense of the actual right shoulder blade initiating any motion. What is the proper feel and origin of movement? I would really appreciate your insight here!
July 4, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matt. The movement is still in the core. You are probably feeling more as a torso rotation which is using the obliques, abs, and lats. The trail lat is what pulls the trail shoulder. More than likely, you are still using it to rotate, but having more awareness that it is the entire torso. Not a problem.
July 5, 2018
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Mariam
Hi, as shown in the pictures, when I add right arm to 9 to 3 drill (even when just touching the club with right arm), the frame at impact looks different (right shoulder is below left compared to shoulders being pretty flat when just using left arm). I had thought this was a bad thing (I have been working on left arm only to not pull my upper body past square), but Chuck appears to have the same appearance on his 9 to 3 drill. Could you let me know why this happens/whether it's ok? Thanks so much!
April 19, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jay. I don't have any pictures on my end. When you shift the weight there will be an increase in secondary axis tilt. The shoulders shouldn't be level at impact with both hands on the club. The trail shoulder will be lower.
April 19, 2018
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Mariam
Ok thanks! I think I have a tendency to want to pull my left shoulder through impact (which I'm trying to fight), but on video, doesn't look like I'm doing that on left arm only at least.
April 19, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jay. Definitely don't want to keep ripping it through impact. Your post up needs a little clean up, but shoulder tilt is fine. When leaving the trail hand on the club the trail shoulder will be slightly lower than shown here.
April 20, 2018
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John
I am having reconciling the passive addition of the training arm with the ideas of throwing the club head at the ball or and the baseball drill presented in other videos. Please help me understand.
April 2, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. The vast majority of players overuse their trail arm/side. The trail arm videos (ball) are geared more towards players that already use the lead side with dominance and can start adding more throw/push to gain extra speed. With the notion it still cannot takeover the lead arm. I rarely have to tell a player he needs to use the trail arm more, but there are some cases when you can.
April 2, 2018
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Ed
I'm also struggling with the right arm. When I use just my left arm, at the top I'm slightly laid off and when I start down, the club traces down the elbow plane pretty well and at impact my hands and club are on it. When I add the right arm, even as lightly as I can, at the top my club is parallel to the plane and hands slightly higher. As I start down, the club steepens slightly, then stays above the plane and I'm getting a more in-to-out strike. Any suggestions? I've fought this for years and now I'm trying to fix it. Thanks.
February 7, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ed. You have to keep repping until you become so lead arm dominate you don't even realize your have a trail arm. You need to find the middle ground when you lose it. If you can mirror with trail, and finger tips. But, lose when the hand is on the club. Rep a lot more of finger tips until you can add. This is one of the biggest humps to achieve, but also the last hurdle.
February 8, 2018
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don
I am left handed and golf right handed. I do not feel my right hand and arm participate in the swing. My dominant feeling is pulling thru with my left side. Is lack of participation of the right hand and arm detrimental. Don
July 12, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Don. It's a great thing that you have a dominant lead arm. If you tend to pull too hard or have too much lag. Take a look at the Throw the Ball Drill and the Sledgehammer Drill.
July 12, 2017
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David
A major grip manufacturer is selling a new grip which " ... features a larger lower hand and new softer rubber material. The grip simulates 4 additional wraps of tape on the lower hand to encourages lighter grip pressure, reduced tension, and increased power." I assume the intent of this is to reduce trailing hand involvement in the swing. Does RST have any thoughts as to whether this might be an effective approach?
April 12, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. It may be an effective approach. But, the tendency is the larger (fatter) the grip. The less wrist set to be had. I would have to test out the approach before giving a full or non endorsement.
April 12, 2017
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sambhu
What is the role of the trial arm ? Please advice..
January 17, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sambhu. Not much. It helps with stability and holding the club at the top of the swing. There is a little power that can be derived from it, but more often than not over used for power purposes.
January 18, 2017
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Paul
Yes. it takes awhile to get used to this.
April 18, 2017
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sambhu
So weight shift moves the club half way down and the rest is rotational power and release from left side ?
January 18, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sambhu. Sounds like a good plan to me.
January 18, 2017
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Yuefeng
Happy new year guys! I would like to clarify the correct feeling of downcock. Is it correct to feel increased pressure of club pressing on the left thumb as a result of the club traveling further backward and wrist angle increase during transition? I even got a blister at the center of my left thumb during the recent practice. Thanks.
January 3, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Yuefeng. Happy New Year as well. Thanks for the well wishes. You will feel some pressure there. The key is to not fight it and push away with the thumb. But, to maintain relaxed control.
January 3, 2017
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Ryan
Not sure where to post this but I have been hitting my irons great (mostly focusing on the backswing I've gotten to where I feel like my body can't help but unwind correctly). The day this started I was also hitting beautiful penetrating drives. Since then I have done nothing but top my driver or hit a gross pull hook. I'm going to get a video up for review but was curious, is this a common problem? I don't know if I'm just swinging too hard or not, although it would definitely seem that I'm coming over the top. Should the driver backswing feel flatter? If I can get this figured out I would easily be playing the best golf of my life!
September 16, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ryan. You might feel the shoulders rotating a little flatter, but the swing plane should still remain the same. It sounds like you could be adding too much secondary axis tilt and lack of weight shift. That usually is the culprit of hitting the top. Take a look at the LADD Video and Level Shoulders Drills. Make sure you are shifting the weight (not trail side push) and that you don't add too much secondary tilt. With the driver you will add more tilt at address, but not try to create more coming down.
September 16, 2016
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Yuefeng
Hello, when I tried left arm only, I did get satisfactory amount of lag, however, as long as I put back my right hand onto the club, no matter how passive I can feel about my right side during the swing like the video suggested, the amount of lag is always notably smaller. It occurs to me the right side is hindering the left side to swing freely and swiftly by just attaching to the club (like a drag to the club). Is this feeling correct? What's the silver lining here to really make it the same way as one-arm swing? thanks!!
August 26, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Yuefeng. Yes, it sounds like the trail arm is hindering the ability to maintain better angle. The key is practicing the lead arm enough to were it is the dominant figure in your downswing. It takes time an patience. You have to think about how long you have been over using the trail arm. It is ingrained to over use itself early or hinder lag. Make your self lead arm dominant and trail arm passive. If there were a shortcut I would be happy to tell you. Start by adding back just the tips of the trail hand fingers and progress from there.
August 26, 2016
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Yuefeng
Thanks Craig. Could you clarify 1) what's the major role of the right arm? Is it just to provide support/stability of the club during the backswing? Anything it can do majorly to help complement the left arm during downswing? 2) is there any notable difference at all between left arm only and two arm swings? I'm asking because apparently for follow through without the right hand the shoulder can stay square after impact while the shoulders will have to turn more when the right hand is attached. Is there any other major difference in backswing and downswing that one should be mindful of?
August 27, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Yuefeng. Basically, the trail arm in the backswing is for support and proper placement of the scapula (plane, power, vertical motion). 99.9% of golfers over use it on the downswing. There are a few things it provides in the downswing stability wise and retaining angle, but he really should be a passenger. With the trail hand on you should still be able to reach square at impact. The key is keeping it back through the release to transmit the power versus pushing it through. There shouldn't be much difference between your lead arm only and two handed swing.
August 27, 2016
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Yuefeng
Hello Craig. One last question: if I swing the club upside down like Chuck suggested, I did get much better lag and angle. Fact is if I do one-arm normal swing, I feel I can hardly generate not even half of swing speed as compared to if I swing the club upside down. Does this suggest my left side is too weak to handle the weight of club head? What kind of strength training is good for this purpose? Thank you very much.
August 28, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Yuefeng. I really haven't had a student yet that has required strength training to use the lead arm properly. Its more about motor patterns and repetition. That isn't a unusual feeling you are experiencing with the speed.
August 29, 2016
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david
Hey Guys, this series is a good step by step process. I am an overswinger that casts the club early with a bit of a chicken wing. I love the way I look and feel through each step, all the way to adding the trailing arm -- it looks like a tour swing. However, when I hit balls, even though it feels very different and feels the same as the practice swings without a ball, my video of my swing shows that my bad habits are still their (although a little less pronounced). Any advice on how to keep my brain from over-riding the new moves when hitting the ball?
August 24, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. You need to practice at pace. You have to start small and with shorter distance shots. Gear down the effort to where the swing is good with a ball. Continue quality reps until you can add little pace and not lose your good/new positions.
August 24, 2016
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Adam
Great Series. However, when I try to "post up" in an actual swing it looks on video like I start thrusting my hips out. I've been hooking or shanking everything. What is the feeling to correct this?
August 3, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Adam. Take a look at the Chair Drill and You Hit the Ball With Your Legs Video. Both should help with feel and clean up the outward hip thrust.
August 3, 2016
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Scott
I have a question about the left arm. When I do this drill, sometimes I "feel" like my left arm doesn't "drop" into the right slot as I shift my weight. I feel like it moves too far out, and then I either pull the ball or (if the clubface is open) slice it. How do you find the slot -- or as Chuck calls it the "hitting area" -- into which the left arm is supposed to fall before you start releasing the club?
July 20, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Scott, the position you are in at the top of the swing can dictate the direction or area that the hands and arms moving in the downswing. By the sounds of it, you might be spinning your shoulders too much from the top causing things to get too far out in front. Rotation or too much trail hand action are really the only things that can cause the hands to move too far out. We would need to take a close look in a swing review for you to better determine. If the hands and arms are in a good spot at the top and you use your legs to pull them arms down, you will see they work right into the "slot" that you are seeing Chuck demonstrate.
July 22, 2016
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Scott
Thanks Chris. Does early extension also cause the arms to move too far out?
July 23, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
No problem Scott. In most cases to would make the hand and arms work more from in to out in the downswing.
July 23, 2016
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Matthew
When looking at chuck from face on at the top of the swing the right arm is hidden behind the left arm. When I look at my swing from face on at the top of the swing you can see my right arm or elbow underneath. Does this make a difference or do you know how that may become an issue?
July 8, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matt. You might be able to see a little depending on genetics (leg length, arm length, torso, etc..) However, It sounds like you may be over rotating the lead arm and pushing down the trail elbow (losing the elevation point at base of pectoral).
July 9, 2016
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Brenda
I Know I use my right side way too much, and of course it's stronger than my left. Question - when I work out with weights, should I put double the effort and reps on my left side to try and offset my dominant right side?
June 22, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Brenda. Doubling the weight more than likely won't help you over come the trail side dominance.
June 22, 2016
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Anthony
Does the right side do anything in the downswing or is the downswing all left side and left arm dominant.
June 19, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Anthony. The lead side is the main show in the downswing. Advanced players can add a few elements from the trail side. But, that is a goal much further down the road. It is important for the trail shoulder to be in proper position though (in the box and depressed) because it will allow for the ability to add core rotation speed on the downswing when linked with the body.
June 19, 2016
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Scott
After practicing this series, I've noticed a great improvement in my shot consistency. Just shot a 78, my first time breaking 80! Thanks for that! One negative that I've noticed though, is that my right arm inside elbow is sore after each round now. Do you know what could be causing that? Am I adding stress to that area due to the shallower swing plane and additional lag? Thanks again!
June 8, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Scott. I apologize for the late return. For some reason this question wasn't listed on the board. Odd to have pain in the area you are mentioning. What I would check is the elbow pit alignment at address (Right Elbow Pit Video). Then, that you are adding external humeral rotation properly (3 Functions of the Right Arm). Keep us posted if all those are proper and still having issues.
June 13, 2016
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Stephen
Hi Craig, I have noticed that when chuck drops his right hand of the club he has a straight right arm by his trail thigh. Does this mean he has fully released the right hand. Should I try and have a straight right arm by th right thigh, as I try and hold on to the club with a slightly bent right arm? Thanks Stephen
May 31, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Stephen, you are Chucks arm move to straight position because it is coming off the club early and gravity and a lack of tension are pulling the arm into this straight position. You should try not to focus on what position the right arm is in and focus more on letting go of the club early enough so that the left side is controlling the face and release. Then once you become more proficient, start hanging onto the club long and longer. The right arm should have some flex in it way down into the hitting area. You will see that natural develop by taking the time in going through the primary focus points of this video in a slow fashion.
May 31, 2016
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Stephen
Thank you
May 31, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
My pleasure Stephen.
May 31, 2016
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Charles
What shall we think & feel about the roles of the trial hand? Does it provide 1) support; 2) club face rotation and close; 3) speed through club release; 4) all of the above? The challenge for me is to understand the roles so I can practice accordingly. I understand the trial hand shall be relaxed, passive and swing along with the lead hand. However, if the trial hand is too soft, it will impact the swing stability sometime.
May 27, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. Chuck and myself have shown countless students how the trail hand truly needs to be passive or not even involved by hitting shots lead arm only. You can play great golf that way. However, the more advanced you get it does provide some support and stability when the swing speed starts ramping up. Take a look at the Golf Swing Release Video to help with trail hand involvement. I would say you can feel it for support, but don't feel like it is controlling face angle.
May 28, 2016
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Charles
Thanks much Craig. I can hit balls by the lead arm only but the ball will not go far. I need to add the trail arm for the support to hit a full shot, but the trail arm will be off the club in the follow through. I feel the trail arm only used for the takeaway (pull) and support at the top. Can one hit full shorts by the lead arm only?
May 31, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. You can hit full shots, but they won't be as far. You sound like you are on the right track. Leave the trail arm as a passive conduit with the lead side doing the work.
June 1, 2016
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Dean
This 5 Step Series is Excellent. Due to an injury I hadn't swung a club in 5 months when I submitted by swing for Video Analysis. Craig Morrow recommended this series to get me back on track. Not only did these 5 videos get me back on track but my insight and understanding of the RST swing grew exponentially. Most important once I started hitting balls I noticed the consistency of my ball striking was improved immediately. I've finally been able to get that tour like extension through impact through weight shift, rotation and post-up while keep the arms and hands very relaxed. I didn't realize just how much I was over using the right hand and push-off from the right foot. Many thanks!
May 22, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Dean. Glad to hear this series is making a difference in the game. Thanks for the post and keep up the good work! Get that tour extension.
May 24, 2016
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Nicholas
Once we feel confident with this 5 step series as far as the movements go, do you suggest working into hitting balls in the 9 to 3 motion to master these things in a smaller swing first?
May 11, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Nicholas. You may always use the 9 to 3 to help master the movement patterns with specific positions. However, you might need a little more backswing to help you have enough swing length and momentum to get the full value of putting all the pieces together.
May 12, 2016
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Andy
Team, - great series of videos, ive just hooked up with Steven in my unlimited review group.. and the first review (yesterday) he pointed me to this series. Outstanding!!!. After 36 holes over this last weekend and playing the worse golf since I started the game 10 years ago, I had fathomed how a 7 handicap golfer could shoot a basketball score.. but I managed it yesterday. I came home, sent 2 videos and to be honest a long cry to Steven about how bad I was and that the world felt like stopping. With the time zone (im in UK and Steven is in US).... I woke up this morning to find a great review in my inbox, with this recommendation. Ive cleared some of my meetings today to watch the whole series and spend 90 mins practising drills from it. I will hopefully get another couple of videos back to steven tonight. Chuck - Your clearly a very good instructor, so thank you. I will be practising until my muscles are sore tonight with a new found enthusiasm to get this golf swing of mine in shape... Steven, thanks also for the review and pulling (no such thing as pushing in the golf swing ) ) me towards these vids...
May 3, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
thanks Andy, it took me 25 years to develop the RST system and I continue to develop it further everyday, I'm glad you're excited about your game again and I'm certain this will get you moving in the right direction just in time for the golf season!
May 3, 2016
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gary
These are world class videos!!
April 28, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Exactly! Thanks Gary. Chuck is a brilliant teacher that I and the other instructors are very fortunate to learn from.
April 28, 2016
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Douglas
For some reason, there seems to be an issue with the audio on this one, compared to the rest of the videos in this series. I'm using 1080p, so the is my highest quality option.
April 28, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Douglas. It is working well on my end. Are you using Chrome and/or Firefox? Try logging out and refreshing your browser. If that doesn't correct the issue, let me know.
April 28, 2016
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Roderick
Great series; great program for that matter. After 30+ years of golf, 25 years of serious study, the contact with your site is the first time I was aware of any other release than a passive hand and arm body release. When I would see video evidence of the kind of release you teach, I just thought it was the pros doing an exaggeration of a good release. Didn't know they were slowing down their turn for a more aggressive hit thru. My point is when I tried to use this drill with a club and hit some balls, I felt that slight hip turn into the post up move, and reverted back to a hip controlled swing: turn back, turn thru with the hips controlling the swing. I had the worst ball striking practice since I started RST. Then I went back and watched this video again and noticed the part about holding the right shoulder back just like all the other teaching and drills. I just wanted to comment that most of our problems arise from misapplication of the drills you provide for us. Keep up the good work. (have you heard of the Whippy Tempomaster? Same as the orange thingy but you can hit balls with it)
April 27, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Roderick, YES! That's the reality, the drills teach you the same moves the pro's and really most any great ballstriker does, and if the results you're experiencing aren't what you hoped, it's not the drills fault! lol The reality is most everyone on the planet spins their shoulders through to hit the ball and nothing will work right then. Your shoulders do nothing on the downswing. As for the whippy, I've used it a fair bit and I like it, but your tempo has to be really slow to hit balls with it and I don't care for that part of it.
April 28, 2016
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Roderick
thanks for the response and the excellent explanations of where your body needs to be when and most important...what movements will allow that position. I think that is the difference between this and other coaches I've followed; that you and your staff don't just tell you "this is what to do" but how to get there step by step. Still it is not easy to train out a giant rush from the top of the swing to the finish! I would start with a weight shift and a massive effort to smash the ball into oblivion. I still calmed it down enough to play to a higher end single digit hdcp. I'm stll working the drills and it's coming around slowly. My ball flight is way down with a piercing trajectory and about 20 yards added to my 7 iron. Still trying to calm down a "bum rush" on the ball though from the top. Thanks a bunch
April 28, 2016
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Scott
Wont this drill promote pushing the club back versus pulling it back, which is what I thought you wanted to do?
April 27, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Scott. You are still shifting your weight and pulling back with your trail side. The lead arm will be reacting more due to momentum of your shift/pull.
April 27, 2016
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Terry
Chuck, this set of videos includes the "new" info that I missed previously in the transition videos, that being the upper body is passive on the downswing. It all makes sense as you explain it here. I know that the difficulty lies in trying to overcome bad habits or learn to relax a portion of the body that has always been tense. That is a significant piece of information that when developed properly will provide the means for serious improvements in ball striking and ball flight. When you say maintain tilt after impact, do you mean maintain the spine angle?
April 25, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Yes, you maintain your spine angle until the club pulls you up into a follow through.
April 25, 2016
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Howard
Great series Chuck. I've been a member for over a year, and this is the best series of all. I'm a high handicapper, but have dropped down about 10 strokes since I joined. It's still a work in progress, but this series gets me back to the fundamentals.
April 25, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Howard, 10 strokes is awesome!
April 25, 2016
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Tony
Thanks for this series, it clarifies and simplifies things in short form without having to go through lots of other videos. Taking unlimited reviews with Aaron and making massive progress. Your approach makes sense and works. Sooo enjoy my golf now. Love this site and appreciate your efforts and professionalism.
April 23, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Tony, keep up the improvements!
April 23, 2016
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Lance
Awesome series for me after working with rst for 6-7 months!! Thanks so much for the fundamentals and drills from setup to release. I love the mirror drill with right hand. Also the weight shift back to left side and into post up was an eye opening explanation to see how the left arm gets all the way to impact by the proper core movements.
April 21, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you're enjoying it Lance!
April 21, 2016
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joseph
Man am I screwed up now ... Chuck keeps changing the cart and the horse ... I've gone from the lateral weight shift to neutral joint alignment while suppressing hip rotation (DON"T CALL ME A HIP SPINNER) to now being told to turn. How much of the downswing is pure lateral hip movement and when does the hip turn start? Half way down? Just before impact? When I let the club react to the weight shift while keeping the shoulders passive I hit either shanks or fat shots. Regardless of the outcome I always feel like the club is way late ... I'm almost 100% weight on the left side at impact. By the way I'm left handed playing right handed so getting the left side to lead the swing is no problem. Thanks
April 21, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Joseph, not sure what you're referring to here, but nothing has changed at all regarding weight shift, or anything for that matter! You always shift back in to neutral joint alignment at impact as that's the safest and most stable position to be in. The amount of lateral shift you do is simply the amount required to get you back into neutral. If you're hitting shanks and fat shots, likely culprits are hanging back, firing the arms too soon, too much right arm or left thumb push. Also possible that your arms are getting a little deep in the backswing that can make all these problems worse.
April 21, 2016
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joseph
Before I reply let me say you and Chris do a great job and have a lot of enthusiasm for golf instruction. Either I'm dumb as a rock or my body just can't do what is required. For the past year I have been swinging without any hip rotation to cure any relapse to hip spinning ( I used to turn my hips in the backswing, raise the left heel a tad, replant it and hit decent shots). My macro view of Rotary Swing (the principles of which make sense to me) is rotate the upper body in the backswing, the lower body moves only laterally in the downswing (the Al Consolo video), and the body stops before impact so the arms can be flung into a release (Clay Ballard and your videos). All counter intuitive to what I used to do (I'm 68 and at one time a 5 handicap). Shanks, fat shots, and at best a big flip at impact are results. My only recourse to dribbling the ball somewhere in the fairway is to rip the lower body as hard as I can (I have no idea if I'm shifting properly, spinning out like crazy, or just getting lucky). Aaron says I look great at impact. Ball flight says otherwise. Regarding my uncooperative body, my lesson with Chris never progressed beyond the backswing. When I move the right shoulder to my spine a reverse weight shift happens. I have to cheat and move my arms first to just outside the right foot before I turn the upper body to get on the right side. Also have to cheat on setting the wrists a bit. If I rely on body rotation to set the wrists, either wrist set is very minimal at the top or I get hugely laid off. I could go on but enough whining. I think there a subtleness in the instruction that I'm missing. For example the Al Consolo video. The move to NJA looks like a huge lower body move - 6 to 8 inches of lateral movement. I make a big move in order to mimic it ... and get a big miss. Is it that big of a move? Despite all this you and Chris are more valuable that the local big name guys in my area ... you know ... great swing Joe! When can I schedule you for another lesson (while my hands are still stinging from the mishit)?
April 21, 2016
64x64
Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
The lateral shift in the downswing is about the entire width of your pelvis so yes there is quite a big shift and about 30-45 degrees of rotation as well. Your hips should also rotate about 40-45 degrees in the backswing. It sounds like you might be being too restrictive with ur body movement and just over doing restricting movement.
April 21, 2016
64x64
joseph
Chuck make a comment in an above Reply that the NJA occurs at impact. Is this true? My impression is that NJA occurs most immediately after the downswing starts. That's what I'm trying to achieve ... weight transferred to NJA even before the shoulders and arms start to move
April 22, 2016
64x64
Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Yes you will be at NJA BEFORE impact
April 22, 2016
64x64
Anthony
It looks like when you perform the downswing the right shoulder does move down. Also, it looks like the right hip, right elbow and shoulder are under the left hip, left elbow and shoulder. Almost looks like the body is shallowing out causing the arms and club to shallow out, is that a good way of looking at it. Thanks
April 20, 2016
64x64
Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
the right shoulder does move down, remember it's more or less rotating perpendicular to your spine which is tilted forward. As for the other parts being lower than the left side, you have axis tilt as well, which will drop the elbow and shoulder, the hip will also be slightly shallower in most cases.
April 21, 2016

All right, guys, it's graduation day. You've gone through the first four steps of the RST Five Step System. Now it's time to add the hard part. This dreaded right hand, the hand that you do everything in your daily life with, the hand that you're so used to using and you've been probably dominating your entire golf swing with it, we've got to slowly start adding it back in because we need it there. It's a good conduit. It's a good way to transfer energy from your rotating and powerful trunk to the golf club, but most people way overuse this right hand, way, way overuse this right hand. That's why we just take it completely off at first. Your right hand will tend to screw things up more than it'll help. If you've been doing these drills a lot, you should be getting to the point where you're like you know what, maybe I don't need my right hand in there. You should be moving correctly and powerfully just from your trunk. Everything else is starting to kind of settle into place. You look at your swing on video, it's looking really good. This right hand can start messing all that up. If you find that, be very, very slow in the next few steps that I'm going to give you to add this right hand back on.

                The first thing that we do is we call the mirror drill. All that means is we just mirror the movements of the left hand with the right. I don't even want you to touch the club. I want you to open palm it and the drill remains exactly the same from the beginning, shifting our weight, turning, using the momentum to help swing the left arm up. Then, this guy still is not touching the club. Then you're going to shift and come back down to impact. The right hand still is not touching the club. It's just mirroring the movement. The movement is still dominated by the core out and the lead arm. This guy is not doing anything yet. Once we do that, we get comfortable, and we shift back down. Now, you do that, you get comfortable with it, nothing is changing. Your videos, your drills look the same in the mirror, look the same on the videos.

                Now you get to touch it with your finger tips. No, I'm not kidding. I literally want you just to touch it with your finger tips. The second part of this drill is even more important. Finger tips, and then as you go to the top I want you to let your finger tips come off halfway down. You can either stop at impact or release it, it doesn't matter. If you're comfortable with releasing it, let that puppy go. That's the fun part, anyway. Finger tips only, rotate to the top, shift back down, let your hand come off. What you're going to start doing with this is start holding onto the club longer and longer. At first, if you find that you go to the top of your swing and all of a sudden things start looking really different, well, you need to let this right hand come off really, really early right at the top because you're going to start screwing everything up. You may start letting go up here because that's where you're starting to mess it up and starting to push against the shaft. But if you get comfortable with it and you feel like you don't have to use it, you can start holding onto it longer and longer.

                I'm not really doing anything against the shaft, but by the simple fact that it's touching it and my body is turning, it is transferring energy from my body to the club. It's helping speed it up without me having to actively huck my arm at it. That's where everybody gets really off. They start trying to really overuse this right arm. Once you get comfortable with that, you can wrap your fingers very lightly around the club, same drill, same procedure. You're going to let it come off as you get down at impact. Notice that my hand is still coming off before or right around impact area. As I get more comfortable with this, I'm going to start holding onto it longer and longer. This is the key. As you start getting comfortable putting all of these pieces together, you're going to start working on keeping this right shoulder away from the ball and away from the target as long as humanly possible. If you start pushing your right side into it, everything that we've just done and worked so hard on, building these world class level moves, is going to be thrown into the garbage. Keep this out. I want you to think about keeping your chest open, not contracting this peck and delt and trying to drive in with your right side.

                As you start down and you start releasing, notice that my right shoulder is still behind where the ball would be. At this point in the release, it should be. Now what I want you to do is start, just like in the Five Minutes to Perfect Release video, start reaching under while keeping this shoulder back. This is really what you're trying to learn to do as you start holding on longer and longer. Notice that my shoulder's going to get steeper. They're not going to turn really flat. This is a very right side dominant look and you're going to wipe across the ball and slice it and chicken wing it and cup it and scoop it and everything else under the sun. If you keep this shoulder back, you release it, as I start holding on longer and longer, you'll notice that my right shoulder doesn't look like it's really moving that much. It's not moving out toward the target unless I push really hard off my right side. We don't want to do that. We want to release this club and throw that club at the ball for maximum speed. That right shoulder stays back and the right hand is releasing it. Think the VJ Release video.

                Let's look at this from down the line. The first thing, I'm just going to mirror it. Go to the top, not touching it. Come down, release it. Here, just relax my arms. Everything's working out just fine. Put my finger tips on it here, shift, and release. Finger tips just helping support it. I'm just barely touching it, helping support my left arm. That's really what your right arm's job is, help support this left arm at the top of the swing and throughout and help transfer energy from your body. As I start getting more comfortable and nothing's changing, my drill still looks really good, I'm going to go ahead and start taking my normal grip very lightly with my right hand so that I can let that hand come off. Everything else staying the same, so as I get down to impact, I'm still squaring up with my shoulders. My chest is still square. I'm not driving in there with the right side. I'm throwing the club head for maximum speed here without any effort, just letting it release.

                Those three steps are really key for helping you re-introduce this right hand. I do want you to hit balls doing this drill. At first it will be a little challenging. You'll find a couple little things as you keep working through the nuances, you'll get it, but this is the final step. Once you can put your right hand on there and do all these movements correctly, you have a world class golf swing. Your ball striking will be completely different than what it is right now, most likely, unless you're already playing on tour. Then, maybe it'll just be a little bit better. But either way, as an average amateur golfer, these are world class moves. These are the fundamentals of the golf swing that all elite players do really well. Work through these in this very specific sequence and you will see amazing results in your ball striking. 

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