Square the Clubface Early

Learning how to properly square the club face at impact is something that most amateur golfers struggle with for as long as they play the game. They have no idea that the best players in the world have a simple secret that makes a square club face at impact simple to reproduce time and time again.

  • Squaring the club face early prevents a last-minute "flip" to fix an open club face
  • Start flattening the left wrist at the top to reduce rotation speed (degrees/second) at impact
  • The back of the hand rotates through the downswing so it points down, not out, by impact

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Mikko-Pekka
Here's the picture of it.
July 23, 2021
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Mikko-Pekka
As I subconciously fear that face will be open at impact and thus I cast it would the early squaring of the face help? I did some experimenting indoors and I think I was in a better position even with the ball.
July 23, 2021
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Kevin
Top of backswing for post below - I need to figure out how to stop the overswing. I tried cocking the wrists a little earlier to pitch it up on plane but still long and deep
October 22, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Cocking the wrists typically won't fix deep. You are going to need to slow it down and get the arms better in sync.
October 23, 2020
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Kevin
I like your thoughts on syncing things better - I worked more on swing the “arm unit” with my chest and added the swing gyde. On video it looks like my shoulders finish their turn but the arms keep going as I start back left - any advice on how to sync the arms to stop earlier and not have so much “run off?” Picture below is the top of the backswing
October 23, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. That would be just letting the trail arm get deep. It must stay in front of the chest. Don't allow for any fly.
October 23, 2020
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Kevin
Hi Craig - I Just rewatched this video after your comments on my need for a more gradual release - this appears that it will also help zero out the path more - less in to out. This is something I do NOT think about at all but need to drill in front of a mirror to engrain more
October 14, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. This will make is more gradual for sure, but don't over cook it.
October 14, 2020
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Kevin
Craig I’ve working on this indoors and went to hit balls today and they were mostly hard left. I took this video of my normal swing and my tush line seems better but the club is still way behind me and I think open? Mostly hitting blocks with my irons from here.
October 22, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Tush line much improved. Hips look a little bit late into post up. (Little bit). It you are hitting hooks then the face is shutting down. You are manually manipulating the face closed too much.
October 23, 2020
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Kevin
Thanks Craig - on this shot I blocked it - when I worked on squaring they face early they went left I feel and it looks like the arms are late / stuck behind me which leads to flip release and my inconsistency based on timing. Should I focus more on the right arm position in the backswing or on pulling my arms more in front of me on the downswing?
October 23, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Could be a little bit of both. However, the less deep/stuck going back. The less you will have to work on getting the arms in front coming down.
October 23, 2020
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Shinji
Is my understanding correct that you will not lose the approx. 7 mph speed from rotation of the club face by squaring it early?
October 4, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Shinji. The club face is always rotating. Performing the move above will not slow down your clubhead speed.
October 5, 2020
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Tom
How does one square the face early without bringing an early release/cast into play?
August 22, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tom. Those issues can come into play. The key is a very gradual move without thumb push. Your image is that the face is always rotating. Not trying to add power from the top which would tend to get your right side dominant, steep, and pushy. Unless you start bringing the right side into it most players don't have the musculature effort to really steepen the plane with the left arm unless the right is helping. Lower body still leading the way with gradual squaring. Not a quick lets get the face rotated move.
August 22, 2020
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Aman
I know this goes against all the fundamentals of the rotary swing but the only way I can square the club face is by uncorking my right wrist on the downswing. It seems like my right wrist square the face. Any ideas on what I can do? This is really holding me back from enjoying good contact. Thanks!
September 16, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Aman. The trail side is the power side and the lead side is the control. Sounds like you are spinning your shoulders and having to save it with the trail hand. You must practice the lead doing the releasing. I would work on 2,3,4 of 6 in the Play the Best Golf of Your Life in 6 Weeks Series. This will help body sequence to allow lead to square the face.
September 16, 2019
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Frank
Great video and concept but I need drills to master this move! This move helps me maintain lag and open my hips more but I’m now hitting way left and right. Need process to regain consistency. Thanks
September 9, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Frank. Squaring the club face early shouldn't have much to do with the hips opening up. The inside "body" process should already be working. For more information on rotating the face down gradually take a look at the Trace the Plane Line Video.
September 9, 2019
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Nicholas
I feel like I have the face square or slightly shut halfway down, yet sometimes still lose drives to the right. Do you think this could be from pushing from the right side?
July 12, 2019
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Nicholas
Looks like this
July 12, 2019
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Mikko-Pekka
Hello Nicholas. When you replied to your original post the system didn't notify instructor. However in my opinion your position looks good. You can compare your position to Chucks in Self Analysis tool. If you are worried about your driver swing send that for review. I tend also loose drives to right and that is caused by spinning the shoulders. Keep the Rear Shoulder Back video should help with that.
August 6, 2019
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Kevin
I had a lot of two misses and some shanks when I worked on this - this particular shot was a block
July 8, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. It's hard to tell from just this particular still. But, it looks like you are pushing some with your trail side and moving towards the ball. Take a look at How to Cure the Shanks. The release and tush line issue in that video I think would be 2 vital components you need to tackle.
July 8, 2019
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Kevin
Thanks Craig - definitely an inside shank and my knees are breaking down - the drill in the shank video reminds me of the “throw the ball drill”
July 8, 2019
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Shane
Great video, I tend to try and "time" the release so this will help. One problem I've noticed is that I get alot of pain around the lead elbow when I consciously try to flatten / bow my left wrist. Any thoughts on what could be causing this?
May 20, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Shane. Take a look at Cure Golf Elbow Pain. Make sure it is in the properly alignment and the trail isn't over working.
May 20, 2019
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Shane
Thanks Craig, I'll take a look now.
May 21, 2019
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Sean
So I learned late last year that I had a tendency to really leave the club face open during the transition and this would lead to some high/weak right misses when I held off or didn’t fully release the club or some snap hooks when I tried to recover too quickly. This year I am really concentrating on eliminating the big miss, I am a 5.4 handicap mostly because I have 1 or 2 tee shots a round that leave me either OB or really scrambling to make a bogey. The whole degrees of rotation makes perfect sense to me. The one issue I do seem to have is when I concentrate on getting my left wrist pointing more towards the ground I start the transition with my arms/hands instead of what I do quite well when I leave it open and start with the weight shift and lower body. I am trying to find that happy medium where I can work of getting the face square early so timing is less of an issue while remaining in that good position at parallel which I do easily when I leave the face too open. Any suggestions would be great. Thanks
April 4, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sean. Take a look at Trace the Plane Line. Still work on starting your body sequence correctly coming down with a little of zeroing out the path into the strike.
April 4, 2019
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Giap
If the release is a passive release then where do I get my speed from?
January 23, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Giap. You get your speed from the leverage, width and rotation to the swing. It's not how fast you can move your hands through the hitting zone. 60% or more just comes from the release of the leverage from your wrists. Golf is not dependent on how strong you can muscle the ball out there.
January 23, 2019
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Giap
So I shouldn’t be using my hands too much through impact. Then should I use the post up move to release my club?
January 23, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Giap. The post up will trigger the release of the club. In the beginning, you may need to train manually to allow your forearm to rotate properly (5 Minutes to the Perfect Release). With the forearm trained your goal is to get out of the way and let the release do it's thing.
January 23, 2019
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Giap
When the club gets down to the right pocket the clubface is square. Afterward I tried to rotate the club face through impact and it ends up being a hook. What should I feel through impact after my hands reach the right pocket?
January 23, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Giap. A gradual rotation of the wrist. It sounds like you manually flipped the club. The release will be a little more passive. The face will rotate on it's own if you allow it too. Flip vs. Release Video.
January 23, 2019
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Barry
Can you explain in more detail what the lead and trail hands should be doing in the downswing to twist the clubface square early. I.e. Increase grip pressure in the last three fingers of the lead hand, and painting the grass with the right hand? And how do we ingrain this conscious effort, 1000 reps per week? Thanks and great site, Barry
November 26, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Barry. Thanks for the positive comments about the site. Minimum of 100 reps per session and at least a 1000 to start becoming proficient. 3000-5000 to master. The last three lead will be in control. And, I would like the vast majority of awareness being the lead forearm turning down as the trail follows. A good drill to help you with the above feelings would be the Trace the Plane Line Video.
November 26, 2018
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Stan
I assume this squaring with the left hand applies to all clubs including the driver?
November 14, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stan. Yes, the lead side is responsible for squaring the club face.
November 14, 2018
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Christian
Do I have to actively try to square the face or just shift my weight and let me arm to be passive ? I am confuse
November 9, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christian. Some players that need a little extra boost of rotation in the beginning will have a bit of a manual feel. In the long run you are allowing positions to happen.
November 10, 2018
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Joseph
Wouldn't rotating the left arm early steepens the golf swing? Don't we want to shallow the golf swing in the transition? What's a nice balance between shallowing the golf club (to maintain lag?) and squaring the club face early? In my opinion, those two are contradicting each other?
November 7, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Joseph. The key is understanding that the face is always rotating. Yes, there does need to be a balance, but it gradually rotates back and through. Rotating too much of the lead too soon can steepen the plane (Trace the Plane Line Video). Conversely, doing nothing will shallow the plane (How to Fix Plane and Path and Keep the Rear Shoulder Back). Typically, players that pull well in the downswing need to feel the steepening (Trace Video). And, trail side pushers need to feel the shallowing.
November 7, 2018
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Ian
Hi Craig. In doing the 9 to 3 drill it has become very apparent that I have problems squaring the club face . In fact it is an old consistent fault . And so I have added to my daily practice the square the clubface early drill. However I have found that as I square the club face I lose lag . I have watched a number of lag building videos and, for example using the downcock pump drill , I notice that Chuck appears to have a cupped wrist until the moment before release when the hands are waist high and then as part of the release progressively squares the clubface. I am not yet specifically working on lag but do not wish to do a drill that creates another fault . As an idea could I stack the two drills together and if so how.
June 25, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hell Ian. The downcock pump drill focuses on the exaggeration of creating lag. You don't need that much in an actual swing to where the wrist would cup. You will gradually lose cupping from setup all the way into impact. You can still achieve plenty of lag this way. Sounds like you may be over rotating the face too soon. The big key with Rotary is not to stack too many components too soon. Why do you feel the need to square early? In doing a 9 to 3 you shouldn't be too concerned with squaring it up as fast as possible.
June 25, 2018
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Ian
Craig. Firstly you should not be working at close to midnight . A week ago I had my first round of golf for a number of years and spent the entire round trying to square up the club face . This is an old fault accompanied by a slight chicken wing . I decided to do all I could to resolve it once and for all- hence my interest in the square the club face early drill. I am planning to play regularly now so fixing it quickly seems like a good idea. What do you think?
June 26, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ian. Sadly, I am a 24 hour worker. But, I do appreciate the kind concern. The beautiful thing about the design of the club is that it wants to release. It is designed to rotate. When I start hearing players concerned about getting the face square and the chicken wing it leads me to believe there is a different issue other than just lack of rotation. Because with proper body movements and lack of tension the face will square in the impact zone. Do you have a swing review available of your current move? I would suggest a review of a swing that you feel is in error. Or, check to make sure you aren't spinning your shoulders and steep coming down.
June 26, 2018
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Ian
Hi Craig. I have today sent videos of my swing as it is at present . Would you also like my left arm only swing and my 9to3 swing ?
June 28, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ian. Let me look at the review to come up with a game plan.
June 28, 2018
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Joe
Fantastic video. I immediately saw improved contact by doing this motion with my left hand. Between this and the Left Arm Downswing Drill, my ball striking has been so much better. Thank you for sharing this FUNdamental.
May 8, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Joe. Great to hear. Keep up the hard work and happy you enjoyed the presentation.
May 8, 2018
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James
Got thank Aaron Mannes for pointing me to this video. I have been having issues with my left hand cupping just after impact and was thinking maybe it was being caused by my creating early lag but after seeing my review video he pointed me to this tip from Chuck. I have worked on it indoors and it is working fine with my left wrist bowing at impact and square. Can't wait to get on the range and work on this hitting balls. I really feel comfortable with that slow left rotation of the left wrist/forearm routine that Chuck points out here. Thanks Chuck and a big thanks to Aaron for pointing me to it.
April 24, 2018
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
James, Thank you for the comment! Glad it is working out. Keep up the good work.
April 26, 2018
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Marc
Hi Craig, what do you think the right shaft lean should be for me at impact with a 7 iron given my swing and my height? Chucks talks about a range between 6 and 12 degrees but that seems a pretty wide range. It seems to me that whatever angle is being targeted I should at least rotate the left wrist by this angle during the downswing as without the early bowing, the face will be open at impact unless I actively flip the hands to bring the club face around. The more bowing pre release the more shaft lean I will naturally have at impact and the lower the ball will go. Best, Marc
January 22, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marc. I don't want you having too steep an AOA and hanging on to the face through the strike. Around a -3, or -4 AOA. I would estimate around 7 - 8 degrees would be good for what we are trying to achieve. All things considering what your numbers are.
January 22, 2018
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Brian
Hi Craig, Should the club face be toe up to the sky after the takeaway is finished or still looking back at the ball? Think this will help me understand if I am taking it back open and making it harder to square at the end? Many thanks. Brian
January 9, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Brian. At the end of the takeaway the club should be toe up. You don't want the face matching your spine angle or facing the ball.
January 10, 2018
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Brian
Manyg thanks Craig. Brian
January 10, 2018
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Jacob
I am really working on this with my wedges to flight them down a little better. But it seems like when I do I don't catch them solid and hit a lot fat. Is this a common problem?
August 29, 2017
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Too much right hand is the likely cause, making you come down too steep.
September 5, 2017
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Hector
oh my god, he is describing me in this video, trying to keep lag and pushing down with my left wrist try to keep it straight and the flip of my wrist at the moment of impact. I understood the video but when I try to do it the club face is pretty closed at the moment of impact with a hook. do you think is the grip? when I should start squaring the club face in the downswing? how I do the down cocking drill for lag but at the same time square the club face? for me are 2 different movements with different vectors of movement.... help
March 17, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Hector. It may be a grip issue. Nevertheless, as I responded in your last post. The key is figuring out your path and lag. Knowing if you have the tendency of steep/cast versus under/excessive lag will be the key to understand when you should start feeling the squaring of the face.
March 17, 2017
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Loan
I'm a bit confused between watching this video and the video on how the grip affects the lag because in the grip video,, you say that the wrist will be cupped with a strong grip in a down swing and that is how I can keep the lag. So does rolling the wrist at the start of the down swing will cause early release? I found that when I start to roll my wrist at the start of the down swing then I tend to lose the lag and have an early release (I have a strong grip). How to balance between the 2 moves? Thanks, Loan
September 1, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. You might be trying to square the club too soon. It is gradual process. This video is geared more for the player that under utilizes rotation of the face coming down leading to a weak slice. If you overly roll the wrists too soon you can lose the lag a little early.
September 1, 2016
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Christian
wow great video ! It makes me compress the ball... for the first time ! and i gained 2 clubs... and i take a divot in front of the ball... my shoulder are more level at impact than before cause i was always hitting high shots
August 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christian. Fantastic. Thanks for the report of good news!
August 29, 2016
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Kevin
This video makes it seem like a Dustin Johnson type bowed wrist at the top would be easier and the down cock video would be counter productive to squaring the face at impact. What are the downsides of bowing my wrist, lost lag?
August 24, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Bowing the lead wrist too much at the top will tend to lead to a shut club face. With the club face shut at the top players will be more prone to use a body release versus arms/hands.
August 25, 2016
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edwin
New to your process. This may be a solution to the problem I have in taking the timing I developi on the practice field to the course. Question is how to integrate the closing of the left hand with the drop of the arms when creating lag.
August 2, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Edwin. The vast majority of face rotation will take place down in the hitting area. This is geared for players that stop the natural rotation of the face in the downswing. Focus first on shallow and lag. Once, you have those pieces down. Then, you can start Tracing the Plane Line and maneuvering the face.
August 3, 2016
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Malcolm
I have lots of whip, but can spray it because all my rotation was at impact making timing very difficult. This is great. Do you have a drill to help rehearse this? I would like to introduce this to my swing, but am worried that I may begin casting the left wrist rather than supinating the left forearm. Is the thought process to supinate the left forearm or extentally rotate the the left wrist (even though in effect both are taking place)?
July 22, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Malcolm. Take a look at the Trace the Plane Line Video and the Left Hand Release Drill. Combine the feelings of both.
July 23, 2016
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Marc
Great video. I don't understand though when exactly the left hand should start to rotate anti clockwise since at the beginning of the downswing the hands and the forearms will rotate clockwise in order to shallow the swing plane. How early can you start to rotate the left hand without destroying the swing plane and coming outside? Thanks, Marc
July 10, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marc. It all depends. The face will always be rotating and some players have to start feeling the squaring up sooner than others do. The vast majority of face rotation will be from the trail thigh and into impact. That is when most players will feel the counter clockwise rotation.
July 11, 2016
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Marc
Thanks, understood
July 11, 2016
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William
Fantastic video - now I'm beginning to see... And I reckon being 'cuppy' would really kick in the right side. Thanks, William
June 26, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you enjoyed the video William.
July 5, 2016
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Greg
Is the same rotation of the left arm Chuck uses with the iron apply to the driver? When I try this the club face comes in too shut. What am I doing wrong?
April 26, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Greg. I believe you might be overdoing it with the driver. The club needs to shallow out a little first. You could be throwing it to soon. The face is always rotating, but some players that have really good control of their face can over do it too quickly. Take a look at the LADD Video and watch how (with weight and good lead arm control) there will be some shallowing early. Take the focus off for right now trying to square it up straight from the top.
April 27, 2016
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William
Will the left hand naturally start to square up on the way down if u allow the club to release, or is there a certain movement that must be made in order to start the club squaring. Have watched squat to square video but club keeps coming in under plane and left wrist has not squared at point of impact. Any videos u would recommend ?
March 8, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello William. If you start rotating the lead forearm/wrist properly on the way down during the release, then all should be square. Take a look at the Trace the Plane Line Video for help on under plane and squaring. You may need a little feeling of spinning the shaft.
March 9, 2016
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Jian
Hi, just to follow up your answers to David, you are saying that the club needs to shallow out on the downswing after the weight is shifted to the leading side. Do you have any picture to illustrate why the clubs needs to be showlloed, is there any physics to justify the movement? I don't doubt your answers to David, but I think more detailed explaination will help me understand. Thanks, Jian
February 3, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jian. When you start shifting to the lead side an initiating the downswing the arms have to drop from their elevated position. If you want to maintain better angle and path the club needs to shallow back on plane to follow the proper swing arc. You can see some dimensions of this in the Proper Golf Swing Plane Video, LADD, and Stop Coming Over the Top Video.
February 3, 2016
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Djamil
Hi, Maybe a stupid question but why do we need to square the club face ? Isn't it possible to keep this club face square during all the backswing and downswing ? I am sorry but don't understand. If we need to square it, that means for me that at the top of the BS it's open and we need to close it. So why is it open at the top ? Ty
January 23, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Djamil. It's not open at the top. The club is always rotating. While Chuck is talking about squaring the face. It is making sure you allow the continued rotation of the face into impact without impeding it. Some players will reach the top position and hold the face squaring it with rotation of the body versus the arms and hands. Take a look at the Rotating Body versus Released Video.
January 23, 2016
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Peter
I'm so glad you've got to this. We can do everything correctly until we get to the right thigh, and then...For me (I've been pooping around with this for 60 yrs), the light went on when I couldn't force my clubface square by impact, but it could happen if my wrists remained almost floppy loose. (a.k. Veejay). And BAMGO. The release made sense. Chris will tell you my golfball swings have been far between, but, for the first time, I understood what "release" really was. It's easier said than done, especially as we watch Tiger's seeming explosions, et al. But their "explosions" evolved from the bullwhip-ish but almost effortless translation of power from feet to legs to glut's to... I had to forget it all, and find the speed hidden in my wrists and forearms as they became the fulcrum of my own whip. Congratulations on your successful, wonderful Site. (If you get bored, U kin try my new book, "Medicine Man memoir of a cancer physician" on Amazon or at bookstores. With deep gratitude, and excitement at being there to watch YOU guys grow. Peter Kennedy, M.S., M.D. 1734 Lorain Rd. San Marino, CA 91108 peterskennedymd@gmail.com
January 15, 2016
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Jonathan
Would this help fix an out to in swing path too?
December 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jonathan. It could, but wouldn't be the best option for out to in path. Try the Stop Coming Over the Top, Over the Top Stick Drill and the Sledgehammer Video.
December 17, 2015
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Dan
This is a great video. It's really helped to alleviate the small flip I have through impact and helped me realize the release is really with the rotation of the forearms. What I've noticed is that I've really had to slow my body down in order to execute this properly and therefore my clubhead speed (otherwise I hit it off the heel or right). I'm certainly hitting it more solid and consistent than ever, but hitting it a bit shorter than before. Is it just a matter of practice before you can add more speed?
August 10, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dan. It is a matter of practice. Also, slowing down the body isn't necessarily a bad thing. It will help down the road with the Kinetic Sequence. Take a look at the Vijay Release Drill in the Advanced Downswing Section. Let yourself get a little more snap.
August 10, 2015
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Damien
Hello I started trying this approach recently as I have a very bad tendency to push and slice my driver (either a push slice or a straight flight and then slice). However when a pro saw me doing this she said that this would not allow the face to be square at impact and that I needed it to be cupped at the top of my backswing. What is the correct approach for me?
July 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Damien. Some food for thought. Next time you see your pro. Ask her this or just think about it. Why does your lead wrist have to be cupped to hit a straight drive? What's the purpose? Dustin Johnson actually has the polar opposite with a bowed lead wrist at the top and seems to square the club easily (hits it ridiculously far too)? If cupping was the best way to square the driver, then why do the majority of top drivers have a flat lead wrist? When you hear advice the first question you need to ask is why. Give me definitive proof that it is better or that it is correct. We promote a flat lead wrist and squaring coming down because it matches our anatomy better for a pain free and effortless release. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently and Effectively in the Advanced Introduction Section for more info.
July 16, 2015
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Damien
Thanks for the response Craig. I agree, I though I was starting to see some results with flattening the wrist, so I am going to go back to it. As a checkpoint, when trying to flatten out at the top of the backswing, how should the club face be in respect to the ground and the sky?
July 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Damien. The club should be matching the lead arm. It won't be completely facing the sky or toe down. Matching the lead arm and roughly a 45 degree down from the sky.
July 17, 2015
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David
In the LADD video chuck talks about internally rotating the left arm from the top and in this video he sounds like he's saying the opposite? in fact according to the LADD video the move he describes in this video will cause you to come over the top, what am I missing?
June 7, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. The lead arm will internally rotate as you start down from the top of the backswing. This video is geared towards players that have a really hard time squaring the club face early enough. The feeling to them might be a lot of the face is shutting down early. But, in actuality it isn't because they are too used to doing the opposite and never allowing rotation.
June 7, 2015
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David
Thanks Craig, if I want the left forearm to internally rotate from the top then when would I start squaring the clubface? I think If you could explain in your own words exactly what the left arm does from the top it would make more sense to me.
June 8, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. If we start talking about the explanation of the downswing in "my" own words we could be here for a long time. Take a look at Proper Muscle Activation in the Introduction Advanced Section. When you shift your weight to the lead side the club needs to shallow out onto plane. The usage of gravity and a little pull with the lead arm initially lets the club come from a inside plane versus over the top. The term "Let the Arms Fall from the Top". This gives it time to internally rotate just slightly to not get steep coming down. Shift, fall (pull and gravity), then start to square the club up into the impact.
June 8, 2015
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Matthew
Chuck - Why no mention of how the arms/hands slowing down as they guide the squaring of the clubface?
May 24, 2015
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Matthew, Not sure that sort of movement directly pertains to this video. We want gradual rotation of the club face throughout the entire move. Somewhere between 300-400 degrees per second should suffice and not up in the ballpark of 800-1200 degrees per second, which can be really tough to time.
May 25, 2015
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Matthew
Hey Chris, Chuck talks about arm and wrist action through impact in this video...doesn't he? But he fails to talk about when the arms/hands begin to slow down to enable squaring the club face. He does say in the video, "not to rip hands through" but he fails to talk about how the arms and hands slow down...just as the hips and shoulders do...to enable a good release and squaring.
May 28, 2015
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Yes Matthew, he does talk about the wrist action from the top down. I am simply telling you that this video is geared towards creating gradual rotate of the club face through the hitting area. I'm not sure why the speed of the hands and arms is at all relevant towards this sort of move. The speed of the lead hand in the hitting area should be trained with 5 minutes to a perfect release or left hand release drill. This will trail you how to control the hitting area with a proper release without having to worry about how fast or slow your hands are moving through the hitting area. Then, you would want to learn how to sequence your downswing and pull your hands and arms down into the hitting area with your lower body movements and maybe a touch of gravity and then you are ready to release it.
May 29, 2015
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Matthew
Yes Chris, I am simply telling you that both the video's title and its description is geared towards a discussion of squaring the clubface. The title of the video is "squaring the club face". From the video's description, "Learning how to properly square the club face at impact is something that most amateur golfers struggle...". And the slowing of both the arms and hands is key to making both a proper release and to squaring the clubface.
June 1, 2015
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Donald
I understand squaring club face early but how do I incorporate this early squaring with the LAG drill? When I do the LAG drill I square the club face LATE which requires perfect timing. This is just what you recommend NOT doing in the Square club face video.
September 7, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Donald. You have to pick an choose the battles. Is squaring or lag more of an issue right now? The face will always be rotating is the point Chuck is trying to teach. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently Video in the Advanced Introduction Section. Work on the LADD Video in the Downswing Section. Train the lead arm to swing properly and and square it up. Then work on adding some good lag and release. Your training will blend it to your lag swing.
September 7, 2014
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Tony
thank you verk mach. i've hade som big problems wish This. can want to do the drill.
September 6, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Tony! Get to work!
September 6, 2014
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Dany
Hi, I was fighting against an over the top swing. Now it is not as bad. But i really have problem to understand how I can square the club face earlier without being over the top? I also have problem to understand how to get lag with this move ( in another video you talk about keeping some wrist cup in the downswint allowing to get lag). Thanks!
August 17, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dany. If you are an over the topper. Don't focus so much on squaring the face. You need to make sure you are on plane first. Get the shallowing out and weight transfer first. The LADD Video in the Downswing Section will help with the shallow and weight, but also the understanding of face rotation.
August 17, 2014
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John
When I rotate my left wrist the shaft gets very steep. What should I be thinking to keep the shaft on plane while squaring the club face early in the transition? Thanks
August 17, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
If you are tending to get steep while rotating the wrist, the trail side might be coming into play too much. Keep the trail side very passive. Unless, you are flipping or over rotating the lead arm. It shouldn't work too steeply with weight transfer and pull from the left.
August 17, 2014
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Ken
I broke my wrist a couple of time as a kid riding dirt bikes and I have a really hard time keeping my wrist flat(I have stability issues with my Ulna) at impact. Are there any aids or drills you recommend? Basically I can't stop cupping my wrist at impact, even though my wrist looks ok at the top of my backswing. I don't have a problem with hinging in regards to lag...flat at impact is where I struggle.
August 15, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ken. Sorry about your injuries. Try the Exaggerated Lag Video in the Advanced Downswing Section. Practice the exaggerated flat left wrist/bow. Also, the 5 Minutes to the Perfect Release to get the wrist releasing.
August 16, 2014
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richard
Hey Guys, I've noticed that my body turn does a lot to square the face and typically intentional "squaring" results in a closed club face. Also, when I look at any of the model swings on the site, the back of the left wrist/hand is pointed directly perpendicular to the swing path as it passes the right thigh - not turned down as shown here. It seems like watching the hands without watching the body turn leads me to overuse the hands - Any thoughts?
August 13, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. Some players leave the face open too long and never rotate the face. The exaggeration of this feeling getting the club to rotate helps square the club. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently Video in the Advanced Setup Section to understand the face continually rotates. If you body is squaring the face, you might be over using the shoulders too much. Use the 5 Mins to the Perfect Release in the Downswing Section to get the Left Wrist Flat at Impact.
August 13, 2014
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richard
Hi Craig, Chuck's open and closed face in this video is more due to his cupped versus flat / bowed wrist and less due to his hand rotation. Also, in just about every swing video the center of his chest his pointed in front of the ball at contact (not square to the path). His wrist is (almost) parallel with his the left side of his body at impact and maybe 30 degrees from vertical about half way down - so maybe thirty degrees of rotation to impact? Even this is tough to figure when his body is turning from closed half way down to slightly open at impact. My best results have been achieved by turning through while minimizing any conscious rotation. At no point in any real swing does the release look anything like the release drill. Is this just a real versus feel drill?
August 14, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
I don't have any exact numbers for you right now about the degree of rotation. However, feel and real are a battle in the golf swing. For your feeling, you might be releasing more than you think. Have you uploaded a swing for review. I/We would be happy to take a look and get it sorted out for you.
August 14, 2014
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Jon
I'm recently working on getting a more neutral grip as i had a strong grip before but am now hitting hooks due to the club face coming in closed from the previous grip. What's the feeling i need or drill to get the face square and start to get used to this new grip?
August 9, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jon. 5 Minutes to the Perfect Release in the Downswing Section. Learn how to get the back of the wrist facing the target at impact.
August 9, 2014
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Scott
Is what this vid describes appropriate for a driver?
August 8, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Scott. The face will always be rotating. You can use this drill with a driver.
August 8, 2014
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Daniel
Is this for all clubs? it seems easier to square the club face on shorter the club
July 18, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Daniel. Yes. I understand how it would see easier with a shorter club.
July 18, 2014
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Doug
perhaps you can help. Now that I have a much more solid takeaway (which "feels" like I'm taking the club very inside) I get a bit confused at to the path coming down. I'm hitting a lot of blocks left (I'm left-handed) so the clubface is open at impact so I'm swinging more out to 11 o clock (on a watch dial). Should the path be more down the line (to 12 o clock or even 1)? Would be great to have a vid for this (maybe you do?) Doug
June 9, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Doug. The path will be more down the line, then continuing on its arc around your body. Take a look at the Trace the Plane Line Video in this section to understand ideal plane and path into the ball. Also, take a look at the Release Videos in the Downswing section to help clarify squaring of the club face and path through impact.
June 9, 2014
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Larry
when trying to do this by having the feeling the back of hand is almost looking down, my club face is very closed. my grip is neutral. realize I am over rotating but cant seem to release club if I don't over rotate. any suggestions
May 22, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Try using an impact bag and stopping at impact. Making sure the hand is too overly rotated. Use the Left Hand Release Drill and 5 Mins to Perfect Release in the Full Swing Downswing Section to understand the goal of what we are trying to achieve at impact and letting the club rotate. We don't want to force or overly rotate that left hand. Let momentum do some of the job, not actively forcing rotation.
May 22, 2014
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Greg
When Chuck refers to releasing the club head at the inner left thigh, the left wrist is already square (ie. back of the hand toward the target) and the release is the rolling over of that bowed left wrist. Correct? Since we want this transition to square to be in a gradual manner, is the right hand adding speed in a downward manner or rotational?
May 19, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
The wrists should always be rotating into the backswing and into the hitting area. Squaring the face early stimulates a gradual rotation so that there is not excessive amounts of flip at the bottom. The left wrist should be square (glove logo faced down the target line) and flat or slightly bowed depending on the desired flight at the left thigh and they are rotating at this point. The arm is adding speed at the bottom of the swing with the release of the angle in the arm as well as adding aiding in the speed of the rotation during the release.
May 20, 2014
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mike
In other videos they talk about creating lag by having a 90 degree angle between the right arm (left-handed golfer) and the club shaft when the right hand is lined up with the back leg. If you are squaring the club face with the method described in the video does that mean you will not have the 90 degree angle between the right arm and club shaft when the right hand is lined up with the back leg?
April 6, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Mike, when you are having the right hand approaching the trailing thigh, you do not want to be hanging on to angle that steep otherwise you will not have enough time to release the angle. Lag is one of those areas that can be overdone very easily and can be very hard to get rid of in the hitting area. Work on making sure that your release is really sound in 5 minutes to a perfect release. When we are teaching students that have a nasty casting problem, we will try to have the exaggerate lag to to help eliminate any flipping at impact.
April 8, 2014

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