Day 1: Impact Control

Controlling impact is EVERYTHING in the golf swing and we're going to show you how to do it so the ball will start to listen to your every command.

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Robert
If the golf swing is essentially over after impact why is the release important? I know you don't want to just stop after impact so there will be a continuation of the swing, just wondering why work on a structured follow through.
June 25, 2022
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Because the release is starting long before impact
June 25, 2022
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Dan
Chuck, Thank you for my first swing review. Very helpful and of course a bit frustrating. One thing I am confused by... With the backswing, should I feel most pressure in my right glute (sitting down), or the left side of my core torqueing in order for the automatic unwinding of the core?
June 4, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Daniel. You will feel more load in the trail glute, but also a stretch in the core. You don't want to stress yourself out with full x-factor torque.
June 4, 2020
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Dan
Chuck, I'm a former Class A Professional. At my best I was a decent 2 handicap. So, never a tournament player. I am now a bad 8 handicap... I learned of rotaryswing in July and have been religiously working through the steps. I have probably done 10 thousand or more reps of each including the dead drill. I have begun full swings over the last few weeks and I will say that I have regained 10 mph of clubhead speed and truly feel I have made incredible progress. Question: (I have not sent any videos in, but I will..) At this time my path is inconsistent. I either come slightly over the top .1 to 2 degrees and have a slightly closed face for a strong pull hook, or I come slightly from the inside and my face stays slightly more open for a push fade. Centeredness of contact seems to move from heel - center - toe. I feel like I am making a really good pivot and move through the ball with each shot. Any clues as to how from swing to swing I am having this inconsistency with path?
December 13, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Daniel. It sounds like you are still manipulating a little bit of the club face and have some active shoulders. My suggestion is the swing review you mentioned. Both should be visible errors. In the meantime, I would work on maintaining a good fulcrum position, lack of chest spin and release. Combine the work from the Moving the Fulcrum Video and Play the Best Golf of Your Life in 6 Weeks Video 2 and 4 of 6. This will help stabilize the shoulder movement and take out any steer that may be in the release.
December 13, 2019
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M. (Certified RST Instructor)
Hallo Craig, Marcel here. I hope you can help me understand things better or explain what I miss to understand it. In the earlier video's about release Chuck explains that if you let gravity do it's work in the release the toe of the club will rotate up. Now, in this video I understand that you need to actively rotate your lead arm to make a good release. Where do I go wrong? Thanks for helping!
July 29, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marcel. When you are trying to manipulate ball flight you will have to add some control in with the lead hand. Stock/Standard shot release you don't need to force anything. The club will release on its own if you get out of the way. In the beginning, (5 Minutes to the Perfect Release) you may have to manually train getting out of your own way if you are used to holding onto the face too much.
July 29, 2019
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tim
Hi, I've noticed that I have a straight (but relaxed, not rigid) left arm at address but it becomes slightly bent at impact. I think this is preventing me from releasing the club properly, as it is far easier to rotate the left forearm consistently when the arm is straight compared to when it is bent. Am I correct in this assumption and is it best to have a straight left arm at impact? If so, what do you think I might be doing wrong and what is the solution?
December 13, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tim. Yes, the lead arm should be straight. I would take a look at the Golf Grip Checkpoint Tips Video to make sure placement is correct with the grip and arm/hand position.
December 13, 2018
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Allen
This is so eye opening. How to hit a cit vs. a draw with body movement. You are amazing
October 20, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Allen. Thanks. Glad you enjoy the information.
October 22, 2018
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Patrick
This question may be for Aaron as he did a swing review for me. Aaron, thanks for pointing out my takeaway problem. Question, how would you drill impact with a Driver? Left arm only, 9 to 3. What are some of my thoughts? I just want to work on stock shot now.
October 14, 2018
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
To be honest. I’d really focus on the takeaway and getting that close to 100% That is my thought about that. But with that I’d move to 9-3 but only when the takeaway is near perfect. Thanks! Aaron
October 16, 2018
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charles
Having trouble hitting in the center of club. Have been a member for a couple of years and don’t see any drills? Cheers and luv your site.
August 29, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. Glad you are enjoying the site and thank you for the compliments. Are you experiencing a heel, or toe issue?
August 29, 2018
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charles
more toe I think. not getting clean hit.
August 30, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. More of the toe hit sounds like you are steep with an over rotating face. Work on shallowing your swing path (How to Fix Plane and Path - Keep the Rear Shoulder Back). And, not flipping at impact (Flip vs Release).
August 30, 2018
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Sam
Could you tell me if I am understanding correct in achieving different fades...................Stock fade: open upper body during release, ball stock. Low fade: open upper body, bow wrist, ball back. High fade: open upper body, cup wrist, ball up.
June 3, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sam. Yes. Except high fade your ball doesn't need to be passed stock position.
June 3, 2018
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Michael
I started playing golf 4 years ago, using an all hybrid set. I made decent contact and with Rotary Swing have lowered my handicap to a 17. I recently switched to a new set of name brand irons in the hopes of stepping up my game. It has only been a week, but I am hitting the new long irons (4,5,6,7) fat with the leading edge often hitting the ground first. What is causing me to do this?
September 27, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Typically, a lack of weight shift, loss of lag and improper release. Take a look at the Taking a Divot Video to understand the components you must have to achieve a proper divot.
September 27, 2017
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michael
I am left handed 8-handicap trying to get to the impact position and release shown in the video. When I get to the release with two hands how do I ensure I am releasing with my lead hand - left and not my trail hand - my right. Since feel is not real I do not want to "flip" and wonder if there is a feeling or way to make sure I am releasing properly. I am doing the one-hand drills but when I put the trail hand on the club - is there some way to know that I am still releasing with my left hand and not flipping with my right? Michael
September 12, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. It will be hard to judge without a camera or mirror. Typically, the ball flight will start curving too much and high. If you are prone to flipping. Work hard on the low shot with both hands on to make sure you keep a good bow.
September 12, 2017
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Gerald
What does a swing look like if it is too shallow?
August 23, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
From down the line, you would see the butt end of the club facing to the right of the target line (assuming you're right handed) as the club works down into the hitting area. You can also use an elbow plane line and see if the clubhead is tracing way underneath it.
August 23, 2017
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Tom
Chuck - Thank you for another excellent video. Tom
August 22, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tom. I'm glad you liked the video.
August 22, 2017
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Gerald
Please define what a swing that is too shallow looks like. Thanks
August 21, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gerald. A swing that is too shallow goes more on a swing path too in to out. Typically, you will see the club drop under the plane line and the club falling beneath the trail forearm halfway down. Causing the player to swing out towards the right of the target (for a right handed player).
August 21, 2017

As I mentioned in the intro video, you don't have to think about trying to hit every single ball perfectly, to shoot a good round of golf. In fact, the opposite is true. You have to realize that you're going to make mistakes, and it's all about learning how to manage those mistakes, and preventing the big mistakes from happening in the first place, that's going to allow you to shoot the golf scores that you want to shoot.

                                One more story I want to tell you. When I first started playing professionally and won my first tournament, I had a friend of mine, who was a member of the website, come down, and wanted to play a round of golf with me. I was like, "Yeah, sure." Never met him before, but we had talked quite a bit online and so become buddies, and he came down. We played a golf ... A round of golf here in Orlando, and I played what I thought was a normal round of golf. I managed my game, I shaped the ball a little bit to get the ball to do what I want it do, give me the greatest margin of error. He went out there and tried to pound every ball past me, because he's playing with a pro, wants to beat the pro. Put a lot of pressure on himself. Tried to hit every ball right next to the hole. Didn't manage his game well, even though he was a good golfer. And he stru ... And he didn't break 80 that day.

                                And when we got done, he went to add up my score, because I have no idea what I shot until we add it up at the end. I don't keep track of it. So we got in there, he's like, "What did you shoot?" And I said to him, "I don't really know, let's go add it up." And he's like, "Well, it looked like you struggled out there a little bit, you didn't ... you weren't draining any big putts, and didn't hit the ball that close to the hole, but what do you think you shot?" And I said to him, "I don't know. Let's add it up." And when we added it up, I shot a 68. Four under par, and the reason was, that it looked really boring, and that's how golf should be when it's done really well. It should be boring. There shouldn't be this drama where I'm smacking a snap hook out of the woods to try and save a par, or trying to bomb some drive 320 yards carrying it over some bunker, risking all this trouble. That's how you start shooting 80s and 90s instead of in the 60s and 70s.

                                So the first step of this is understanding how to control impact. That's the most important thing, at the end of the day, in golf, hands down. What that club face is doing when it strikes the ball is all that matters. So when we start understanding how to train ourselves how to do that, that's when we're going to start knowing where that ball is going to go every single time. Now of course, I have a bunch of videos on impact, and the Five Minutes to the Perfect Release is my favorite video for that, and I want you to go back and check that out. If you haven't looked at that video, it's one of the most important videos on the site and honestly one of my favorites, because it covers everything you need to know about getting the ball to start on line.

                                So I'm not going to go over that type of stuff in detail. The assumption is that you've already watched those videos. But what I am going to do is show you how to start working on that on the course, and start thinking about things in a shot-shaping perspective. So of course in the Five Minutes to the Perfect Release video we stop at impact and then go on to the release and add the right arm and so on and so forth. We're already past that stage, so what we're going to talk about here today, is how to start getting the ball to shape, even along the ground on these super short shots.

                                When we start getting the ball to shape on 10, 15, 20 yard shots, now of course the ball's not going to curve that much at all. But it's going to start teaching you the feeling of the release, so that when you stack on and you go 40 yards, 50 yards, 60 yards, a hundred yards, so on. That's when you're going to start doing it. But when you ... Everybody tries to go from zero miles an hour to the Indie 500 kind of thing, it's not how anybody really learns. Just like you, I'm going to start out and I'm working on hitting a little draw here. I'm going to start checking my fundamentals. I'm going to make sure that I've got the club fully released. From your perspective up the line, when I'm doing this left hand only, I'm going to release the club more than I would when my right hand's on there, because my right hand is simply not going to allow ... It's not going to flip over that much.

                                So you want to over-release with the left hand to get that club face in this position. Now the reason I emphasize this, is that nearly every single amateur that's gone through our golf clinics, when they work on this drill, they look like this. If you want to hit a weak, slappy cut, that goes really high and doesn't go anywhere, that's what your club face should look like at this point. But we're wanting to learn how to hit the ball powerfully and with control, so we want to get these knuckles to rotate under like this. So when you look at your left hand, it's releasing the club face in this way that allows the club to rotate through the hitting area. And that's how you're going to start hitting the little draws.

                                We're going to start with just the impact control position only. So I'm going to hit a little baby draw here. It went a little bit left. Club face is rotated shut. Perfect. So as I hit a little draw, and that went six inches off the ground. I'm learning club face impact control first. So as I work up from that shot to hitting 50 yard shots, 60 yard shots, left hand only at first, that's starting to teach me club face control, which is critical for us learning how to start shaping the shots. Which is going to become even more important as we start talking about course management in the upcoming videos here.

                                So now when we go to hit a cut, most of you guys are already good at this. We're holding off the release a little bit. There's a little trick that I want to add to this, and I've talked about this in How to Hit a Fade video, so I won't go in-depth on it here, but I do want to talk about, is how to put it together with a little bit, a little bit of chest rotation. Now understand that club face angle, at impact, what direction this club face is pointing, is the primary determinate of what that ball's going to do. It's about 80 to 85% club face angle, and only 15 to 20% path that determines ball flight.

                                So many people think if they come way from the inside, that they're always going to hit a draw. The club face is a much more important factor. And that's why we start with club face angle here first. Now to keep this club face from rotating closed through the hitting area, like we did when we wanted to hit a draw, and we wanted to release it. Now we actually ... It's okay to add the feeling of a little bit of chest rotation. Now again, talking tiny amounts. I'm not telling you to look like Jim Furyk at impact. It's so small. We're talking a couple of degrees difference. But the reason that having a little bit of chest rotation is okay when you're starting to hit this little cut, is that it delays the release of the club face, because your chest rotation pulls the hand through the hitting area. It's very easy for your chest rotation to overpower the hand.

                                And that's what we're trying to accomplish, is we want to guarantee that we hit that cut. The worst thing in the world that you can do, when I go to ... In the upcoming videos I'm going to show you how to set up for hitting these shots, is that you set up to hit a cut, and then you hit a draw, or a straight ball. Now you're in trouble. So you've got to ensure that no matter what, that ball cuts. That's the most important thing. And same thing, if you're going to hit a draw, you have to slow down your chest rotation to give your hand that extra little fraction of a second to release. The cut's the opposite. You want to speed up the chest rotation, get a little bit in front of the ball, so now as I go to hit this little bit of a cut shot, the little baby cut, I rotated through just a little bit, and now as you look at the club face, it's open.

                                That's going to determine a cut or a draw. It's that simple. And I want you to start out hitting these little baby shots first, left hand only, so you start getting the feeling of letting the club freely release, and then holding it off just a little bit so that we can start building on these skill sets to start adding in the next few pieces.

                                Of course, just like in the Five Minutes to the Perfect Release video, eventually you add the right arm and you go through the same scenario of drills here, that's going to give you those release positions. But first, it all starts here. So I want you to work on every day, 10 to 15 shots at 10 to 20 yard intervals. So what I mean by that, is you wake up in the morning, you go to the range, you're loosening up. 10 yard shots, 10 of them. Draws, cuts. Draws, cuts. Notice the change in trajectory as you do this stuff. Then as you add ... You feel a little more loosened up, you hit 10 good ones, you go to 30 yards and then 50 yards and so on. And you keep adding a little bit more speed.

                                At some point you can put your right hand on there, when you're comfortable. And start doing the exact same drill, so if I want to go ... I'm up to, let's say I'm going to hit this one 90 yards, this is a seven iron. So I'm going to do just a little baby shot, and now I'm making sure that I still released it here. When I want to go to hit the cut, it's the exact same thing, but I'm going to get my chest a little bit more open. And I hit a little five yard, maybe eight yard, cut. I rotated my chest through, this ... On the draw, I keep my chest back and let my left hand release properly. If you put those two together, you start building up baby shots, and you slowly, slowly start working up to a full speed shot, and then you'll be ready for the next pieces of this series. 

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