Posture's Effect on the Takeaway

Posture at address is something that Tiger Woods always does right and it's something that can be done right every time by all golfers. However, once you setup to the golf ball correctly, you must ensure that your equipment works with you and not against you. I regularly see that most students have clubs that are too long for them once they are in the correct posture and they are then forced to manipulate the club during the takeaway rather than just glide their shoulder blade as I demonstrated in the Takeaway Video.

  • Many golfers use clubs that are too long for them
  • Correct club length depends on individual proportions, not just height
  • Get into your ideal setup position, then add the club in and see if it fits - don't adjust your posture to suit an ill-fitting club!
  • If the club is too long you'll tend to stand up too straight, won't get the club up on plane, etc.

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Eric
I try to do a good bend from the hips with legs locked. I have to work on not letting my shoulders round, when I do that my spine locks and I start pushing from the left. Something else that I have figured out is the need for pelvic tilt. I can lock myself smashed into my pelvis. I saw a video encouraging pelvic tilt in stance by putting the bit of the club at your pants button. If the club is straight there is not tilt. They also encourage keeping the the shoulders back. What do you think?
October 2, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. The shoulders should stay back. Connected and in the box. The pelvis should be placed in a position to flatten the lumbar spine. You don't want excessive tilting locking the hips and adding lordosis. Curved lumbar spine.
October 2, 2020
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Konstantin
Hiya! But the height of the grip (so that the posture) can be the same with long and short shafts. It’s the matter of lie angle. Same posture for 9 iron and 3 wood... How should we determine the ideal club length?
September 29, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Konstatin. For single length clubs it would be hard for me to advise you on that. As you go through a standard set of clubs. You will have to get slightly taller to make up for the added length.
September 30, 2019
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Doug
Is this why I was fitted with the green dot Ping Irons? I am 5' 8" with a longer torso and shorter arms and legs. I believe my shafts are all stiff and standard length. Is there a Rotary Swing instructor in Nashville, TN?
July 9, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Doug. The dot code has been changed over time. But, to current standards. Typically, with your height and measurement from wrist to the floor. You would still fit in the standard length of iron with a more upright lie angle. I would think you tend to have a pretty steep swing plane and the fitting was based on you being a slight "over the topper." With the upright angle trying to make adjustments for that. We don't have any instructors in Tennessee, but we do have instructors in Kentucky and Georgia.
July 10, 2019
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Doug
Never been an over the topper. More of a draw hitter. I have been thinking of getting certified to teach rotary swing. Sounds like I am needed! Loving this program. What are the requirements? I played all through high school then went into music and never really reach my potential as a golfer, but would love to in my 50’s. I am still active and pretty healthy after losing 50 pounds. Any thoughts?
July 13, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Doug. I will give you my extra 50 pounds for free . Glad you are enjoying the process. There are a few steps. But, the first would be passing Level 1 Certification Test. 100 Plus question exam covering the Manual and Videos on the site. From there you could work into other levels.
July 13, 2019
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herman
If setup is dictated by posture, wouldn’t every club be the same length? If not, doesn’t ur posture or distance from the ball have to change-hands under chin, elbows under shoulders, etc.?
May 10, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Herman. Distance from the ball should remain the same (How Far to Stand Video). Your hinge will change just slightly from club to club because of the length. However, not a whole bunch. Most players tend to overly hinge from the hips.
May 10, 2019
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James
Bit of a conundrum here for me. When Chuck says close your eyes and bend from the hip and then let your arms hang and your posture will be correct surely depends on what club you are using is dictating the amount of bend from the hips. There surely is a difference of bend between a driver and an 8 iron or less? With your eyes shut the amount of bend what Chuck shows here might be ok for say an 8 or 7 iron but what about a driver or 3 wood?
August 22, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Yes, the longer the club the more you will have to adjust the hinge from the hips. A driver you will be slightly taller than say an 8 iron. The goal from this video is to start gaining some kinesthetic awareness for proper posture and hinge. There are a few variables when going to a longer club. But, the goal is to start learning your balanced position.
August 22, 2018
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Robert
How about simply chocking up on the club before the expensive option of buying a new set of irons?
May 31, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robert. Before buying a new set. Choking up on the club is fine to experiment with to see if your posture improves. Then, you will know if you need to go shopping.
May 31, 2018
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Dave
Hi Craig I am trying to assess the implications of this video. My first reaction was that if I need to shorten the shafts on my existing clubs that does not seem like too big a deal. But of course as soon as I started to research the issue I discovered there modifying existing clubs appears to be very complicated. So much so, reading between the lines it looks like if you want your clubs to fit properly you should by a new set. Anything else sounds like very expensive tinkering with no guarantee of success. What is your view on this?
May 23, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dave. I disagree that you would need a whole new set. Unless you are cutting a half a foot. Most of the parameters aren't going to change with a half inch here or there. My question, do you need to cut them? Do you feel there is an error (too long) in the club that is affecting your setup? Also, graphite or steel?
May 23, 2018
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Dave
Hi Craig Thanks for your response. Yes. I jumped the gun a bit there. At 5 foot eight and a half inches I was sure I'd be one of the 80%, but having checked myself properly I think that I am OK. At address with an iron in my hands the club is toed up, but only by a whisker. I don't I'll lose any sleep over this. Thanks again for your help.
May 28, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dave. Slightly toe up is where you should be. Sounds like at this time you are okay.
May 28, 2018
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Louay
Hi Chuck, I know this could be a much broader debate, but what's your take on single length single lie clubs? or more precisely, what does the science say? Thanks,
January 16, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Louay. We've had this discussion on many of the other forums. When you start lengthening, or shortening the clubs there will be a difference in swing speed. However, with todays builds and technology you can make compensations in loft's, shaft kick, balance, etc. There is a real big science component that can make the single length perform about as well as normal iron sets distance wise. But, some factors of ball flight control and effortless power (maximizing your radius of the swing) will be missed.
January 16, 2018
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Louay
Hi Craig, thanks for your reply.
January 16, 2018
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Richard
Any thoughts on the arched thoracic posture advocated by Tathata golf?
November 15, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. I haven't researched much into Tathata Golf. However, when I hear the word arched, or curvature when talking about the spine it send me some red flags. Ideally, you want the spine to remain as neutral as possible.
November 15, 2017
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James
Chuck refers to shutting his eyes and adopting the correct posture and then holding the club to see where it sits on the ground. Surely this posture will be affected by the club you are going to use. e.g. if I were to play a wedge I would be bending more from the waist as compared to when I play a 5 iron, where I would be standing taller? So using Chuck's analogy of shutting your eyes and then adopting your posture that I have adopted the correct posture for any particular club surely can't be the same for each club?
November 15, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Yes, there will be slight changes in the amount of forward hinge depending on the length of the club. Closing the eyes however will give you some better kinesthetic awareness and keep you from trying to round the shoulders as you hinge from the hips.
November 15, 2017
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Michael
Right now I'm using standard clubs. Does it mean RST method is more effective when club fitted and less effective when not?
September 18, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. What we are trying to convey is that most people actually miss too long with iron length causing them to make unnecessary adjustments in their swing. A properly fit club will help with RST. But, if they aren't perfect. Don't miss overly long.
September 18, 2017
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Michael
Im just focusing now on the weight shift. Maybe club fitting will be for me in the long run. Just need to learn basics of RST. Thanks for your input
September 18, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. I agree completely.
September 18, 2017
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Pete
sorry to be a contrarian Chuck, but for every half inch you cut off a shafts length you lose 2-3 swingweight points.. ie- a 6 iron around d3, would be way to light in the head, AND, it would will stiffen the shaft considerably, ie from a R flex to an S+..how do you make up for the 6-9 swingweights you lost? and how are you getting the right flex?. Id like to know what shafts are in your irons. weight flex, etc.. and how you got them to fit you? thanks..
August 7, 2017
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
I played with C2 swing weights for years
August 14, 2017
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don
if club too long is ok to just on the club an inch or so rather than have a fitting? don
July 10, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Don. You may choke down right now for training purposes for sure. In the long run though you would want to have them checked.
July 10, 2017
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James
Are the tables that are used by club fitters accurate? These usually use your height and the distance from the ground to your wrist to determine how long each club should be. I see one problem with this: wouldn't using shoulder height rather than overall height work better, since the length of your neck-head shouldn't affect your setup?
April 24, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Using your shoulder height could work better because as you are correct that your neck length shouldn't be changing much. But, there are some variations between club fitter to club fitter. That is why it is important to find one that is extremely good and well seasoned in his or her profession.
April 25, 2017
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Gary
and how does one find this person?
August 10, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gary. Search for one in your area with good recommendations or reviews. Or, ask some better players where they get their work done. Not a real easy answer for this one.
August 10, 2017
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Andres
Hello. I'm 5'4'' and have always played with standard length. I just bought a brand new set of miura irons with Accra i60 shafts. I wanted the shafts in regular so the seller built them an inch longer so that they are Regular flex. Accra shafts can be manipulated si that they fit different flexes. I'm really worried this will be a problem for me. Any suggestions ?
April 21, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Andres. They could be a problem. But, I wouldn't stress over it too much if you can get the posture as close to normal or what we recommend. You can always start the swing build and gauge in the future if the clubs are hindering your progress.
April 22, 2017
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Andres
Thanks for the reply. That's a relief since they are brand new and expensive ! How can I tell if they are affecting my game or posture ?
April 22, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Andres. You will tend to stand a little too upright and have a hard time getting the club up on plane going back. And, it could change the dynamics of your plane and release down. Staying a little too rounded and shallow for a more pick type shot. Not being able to achieve a good divot.
April 22, 2017
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Chase
I struggle with setting the club too early and have been told in my swing reviews that I have too much wrist hinge/wrist cocking too early. Could this be because my clubs are too long? I'm 5'9" and the clubs I'm fit to are standard length. I've tried choking up on the club and it feels more controlled; however, I'm worried about losing distance, clubhead speed, etc. Chuck says his clubs are 1.5" short and he hasn't lost any distance. Can it be expected not to lose distance by choking up on the club? Or should I have my clubs shortened and the swing weights adjusted?
February 19, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chase. You might see a slight difference in choking up. But, the benefits of making a proper swing are greater and you might not lose any distance due to more swing efficiency. I would choke up slightly first before getting to crazy with changing the weapon.
February 19, 2017
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Antti
Must the club head lie grounded or toe up in the setup position? If the toe lies up a little are the shafts too long or must you change the face angle?
February 14, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Antti. If properly fit the toe will sit a little above the edge of the ground. It shouldn't sit perfectly flush at address.
February 14, 2017
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Rockford
If your getting measured for clubs how would you know if the person fitting you does know what they are doing?
January 29, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Rockford. Really good question. Sadly, there isn't a very good answer. Finding a good fitter can be tough. Your best bet is to look for good referrals and fitters that tend to fit more experienced players.
January 29, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Rockford. Really good question. Sadly, there isn't a very good answer. Finding a goof fitter can be tough. Your best bet is to look for good referrals and fitters that tend to fit more experienced players.
January 29, 2017
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Asle
If the club is too long - how about gripping down a lttle?
January 25, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Asle. You may grip down a little. Overall, you might lose a hair of club head speed. But, no problems with a slight choke on the club.
January 25, 2017
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Zafiris
Does this apply to the driver? Manufacturers have been lengthening the driver shaft as technology has advanced the size of head possible and hence a bigger sweet spot that facilitates solid hits with a longer shaft. This makes sense from a physics point of view.
November 2, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Zafiris. Yes, it may apply to the driver. You can get more speed with a longer shaft. But, it will affect the efficiency of the body movement from a safety standpoint.
November 2, 2016
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Chuck
With all the clubs being different lengths, I am confused about what length would be ideal. How do I go about getting the right length. If I had my arms straight for a shorter club, my club would need to be at an angle for the longer club. I am confused as to how to check my clubs proper length. I have a set of Mizuno MX-23 that I could have cut down to try to get the best length for my body.
October 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chuck. Finding the proper fitting instructor is the best way to check. Your posture will tend to raise the longer the club gets creating more space and the lie angles not having to deviate too much from club to club.
October 22, 2016
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Chuck
I just got fit for clubs at Calloway. They had me get clubs 1/2 inch longer. I always struggle with how far I should set up from the ball. It seems like one of my clubs I hit usually good shots. I don't understand why all the irons are not the same length? If my 6 iron is longer, I must be getting more club head speed but I have a problem hitting behind the ball. I am just starting your lessons so this may be something I will learn. I know I don't have any lag yet.
October 19, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chuck. The length of club will help you have more speed in the swing. Chuck talks about this in the Vijay Release Drill. Also, take a look at the video How Far to Stand from the Ball to help with relative distance.
October 20, 2016
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Nick
I have been staticlly fitted. I'm 6'2" with wrist to floor of 38". Long legs short torso and short arms as Chuck mentioned in the video. I play +1/2" and 3up. I'm wondering what effect on the takeaway, or the entire swing if I hinge from the hips too much? Would the the club travel too far to the inside? I do have a tendency to come out of the shot and hit off the toe. Would this be because of too much hindge from the hips as well? Thanks guys!
April 30, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Nick, typically hinging too much can make you swing appear to be more upright. You need to make sure you are hinged enough to see the ball, remain in true balance, and allowing the arms to hang freely from the shoulders regardless of the club. The spine angle will change very slightly from one club to the next based on the length of the club. Fixing your setup video walks you through the process on how to get set up perfectly. Hope that helps.
May 1, 2016
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Jacques
does it change the lie angle ?
February 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jacques. Yes, choking down on the club to a certain degree can effect the lie angle.
March 1, 2016
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Jacques
I am 6 foot tall. Always played with regular length clubs. But my best iron strikes are those where I choke the club about an inch. I always wonder why. My divots are squares and I feel more over the ball. Is it because I bent more or because it changes the lie angle?
February 28, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jacques. It probably provides a more comfortable setup and feel for the club. I usually have my players if anything miss a 1/4 or 1/2 inch shorter with their clubs.
February 29, 2016
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gary
Very interesting. I have the same exact build at 5 foot 10 with average length legs and a long torso. How do you know about the long torso you may ask. Well when you sit next to others your own height see how " tall" you are sitting next to them. If you are taller than them sitting down that means you have a long torso assuming they have average legs and an average torso. What is amazing is that in my first video review my instructor questioned if my clubs were to long. I have been fitted several times and the result is always standard length and even the wrist to floor measurement indicates standard length clubs. However when i use my 7 iron for a self analysis my DTL arms and club is 60 degrees. Extremely upright. Many of my fellow golfers also comment on my upright stance and steep swing angle. I trimmed an inch off an extra set of clubs I have and regripped them. With the longer clubs the butt of my clubs pointed at my solar plexus. With the shorter clubs in now points to by belly button which is a step in the right direction. I will let you know what the self analysis DTL numbers look in the next few days. By the way I have been using the single length iron system for about 4 years (from a company that makes club heads specifically to be played the same length) . In theory once I get the club lengths dialed in and my swing mechanics tuned I should be able to repeat the swing time after time! Bryson DeChambeau is a golfer that is having great success on the PGA tour as and amateur with single length irons. Check him out if you members want to find out more about the single length club concept.
February 7, 2016
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Russell
I live in North Carolina. Where can I go to get properly fitted to make sure my clubs are the proper length?
September 2, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Russell. I don't have any good recommendations for you. However, depending on where you live in NC. Golf Digest puts out a list of the Top 100 Club Fitters in the US. 3 are in NC. Easily found with a quick Google Search.
September 2, 2015
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Robin
If my clubs are too long will it help to choke down on the grip until I can get fitted?
July 9, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robin. Yes, for the short term choking down will help.
July 9, 2015
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Christopher
does that mean 1.5" of the wedges as well. just to be clear?
July 3, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christopher. More than likely if fit correctly you won't need to shorten the wedges by 1.5". However, make sure you have the lie angles correct.
July 3, 2015
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Christopher
I've got short legs, long torso and long arms so will need length taken of my clubs. chuck has 1.5" off his 6 iron will that be the same across his bag?
June 28, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christopher. It will follow that protocol for the irons. Chuck's driver is just a half inch shorter.
June 29, 2015
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Loran
I notice when I have a tilt at address, my right knee does not get flexed as much in degrees like the left knee. Is this a normal phenomenon according to the laws of physics? Also, how much knee bend should I get at address, summed up in degrees for me?
May 27, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. The knees should be relatively flexed the same at setup. The degrees can vary from person to person due to body size. The key is you want the back of the knee in line with the center of the ankle joint.
May 27, 2015
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Alejandro
Hi! Very interesting subject. I think I might be having a club fitting problem. My divots are deep, always between my feet and the ball, and I mostly hit hooks. However, I have one question. Since all clubs from the SW to the driver have different lengths, I'm guessing our ideal posture has a "comfort range" or it has some sort of flexibility between "too upright" and "too bent over". This is because in every golf set there are clubs with different lengths. For instance, I have the standard Callaway X18 irons from like 9 or 10 years ago. I'm thinking of going to a clubsmith and just bend them all (actually, it would be more like "stretching" them up) until I get the ideal lie angle for my swing as opposed to go and "cut" them all. What are your thoughts on this ? I think I'm just like Chuck (only not as fit ), long arms, short legs. My height is about 5ft 8in
May 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alejandro. Bending the lie angle may help. But, you might not be able to bend them enough to make up for if the club is too long. A club fitting professional will easily be able to tell if cutting them down is necessary for your body size.
May 18, 2015
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Alejandro
Cook. Thanks Craig!
May 18, 2015
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Kristen
If one's shafts are an inch or so too long for your body proportions why not just club down an inch or two on your grip so that the length of the club is in effect shorter without having to go through the expense of shortening each club or having the lie angle adjusted? When they shorten a club do they remove the excess length from the grip side or the club head side?
May 9, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kristen. Clubs will be shortened from the grip end. You could grip down, but then you might be playing a guessing game. How much choke down is enough? Can you choke down to the same place every time? You will also be giving up control from the tapered end of the grip. The grip is a little fatter at the top for a reason. In the short run you can choke down to see if it makes a difference. But, it would be best to have the length and lie correct for a standard setup positioning.
May 9, 2015
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Brandon
If I cut 1" off the butt of the club will that affect the shaft frequency? If yes, is it better to custom order the clubs one inch short from the vendor?
January 23, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Brandon. It can affect the frequency. Ordering from the vendor would make the match better. But, a real good custom club fitter should be able to make the proper adjustments.
January 23, 2016
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Scott
I was feeling pretty good about my swing and have been putting it off for a couple of years and I wanted to get a club fitting. I went to a local club fitter that has been written up in 2 major golf journals. They upshot was that I was fitted with clubs that are +1/2" and 1 degree upright. After watching this I am concerned that I wasn't far enough into the process to have this done. I am 6' 3" with long arms. Thoughts?
April 24, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Scott. That is tough without seeing your build. Being 6'3" you might require a little longer club. The upright doesn't bother me at all. You have long arms, but couple them with long legs and you might need a longer stick.
April 24, 2015
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Scott
I understand. Thanks for all your help! You and your team are awesome. The clubs I ordered should be hear in the next week or so. Thanks again!!
April 24, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Scott. Thanks for the compliments! Good luck with the new sticks!
April 24, 2015
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Christian
I am a tall guy with long arms. I asked a club fitter if I should get extentions. He mentioned with my long arms that I should be fine with a standard length clubs. I like what you said about your irons being an inch and a half shorter for more control. Watching your videos, I have been making posture changes in my swing. This makes sense to have the ball the distance away according to your posture. I am curious where my clubs sit now. Can you do a video on club fitting?
January 31, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christian. Thanks for the suggestion. We try to keep the content more swing/body movement based. But, if we have enough demand. We can start expanding into other areas. This would be a good topic to start on.
February 1, 2015
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Nathan
Chuck says his 6 iron is 1.5 shorter than standard. He mentions that he does this to make sure he can be in the proper posture. My question is then: If all his clubs are 1.5 short, how are his long irons (3,4,5,) still not too long and his (7,8,9) still not too short? Thanks
January 20, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nathan, With most golf manufacturers the clubs are scaled so that one measurement can be used to fit a golfer for a whole set. So, if a golfer is a normal height, but has longer arms, his hands are closer to the ground. So, he wouldn't need as long of a club. So, for Chuck, he needs -1.5" on each of his clubs, whereas someone who is a little taller, like myself, I would require +3/4" for each of my clubs. Standard just means someone who is between 5'10" and 6'0" with normal arm length. R.J.
January 21, 2015
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Nathan
Again...video paused at 1.46. If I take Chuck's 6 iron away and replace it with a 3 iron (assuming Chuck's hand height from the ground does not change) the club will either be in the ground or angled out away from his body such that the lie angle will need to be bent down drastically. I'm assuming that neither is the case and that Chuck will be a little more upright with a longer club and more bent over with a shorter club. Is this the case? PS. Thank you RJ for helping me figure things out.
January 21, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nathan, You're welcome. R.J.
January 21, 2015
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Nathan
To be clear. I can get into perfect posture with my 8 iron (36.5" in length). Everything feels right and looks like Chuck's posture (also the toe of the club is neither too low or high). My 4-7 irons are too long to maintain this exact posture and my 9-LW are too short to maintain this exact posture. Does this make sense?
January 21, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nathan, You can't just simply pause the video and substitute in another club. The longer the club is, the further from the ball that you'll be and slightly more upright. And with a shorter club, the ball will be closer to you and you'll be slightly more hinged. Which confirms your thoughts when you continued your explanation.
January 21, 2015
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Caleb
Is there an exact degree of spine angle for a given club? I would guess somewhere between 35 to 45 degrees? Is there a formula to measure the correct length of a given club based on height, arm length (wrist to shoulder), torso (neck to hip) to hip to floor percentages? Should the amount of spine angle be based on where the shoulders would be if a straight line were drawn straight down to the feet and that line would be in the middle of the foot?
January 17, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Caleb, You should be able to draw a straight line through the sternum to the inside of your left knee joint and that will give you perfect tilt every time. It is detailed in most setup videos. Keep working hard! R.J.
January 18, 2015
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Caleb
I am not sure I understand this line? Are you saying from a rear view of my stance; I should be able to draw a line that goes through my sternum (by sternum, I assume you mean where the rib cage meets in the middle?) and hits the inside of left ( not sure why the left and not the right, should they not be equally bent?) knee? I think my sternum is past my inside knee joint?
July 12, 2016
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Nathan
R.J. Can you explain that to me again? Where exactly on the sternum? If I were to hold the butt end of the club to my sternum, where will the head end fall in relation to my body (assuming correct posture)?
January 20, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nathan, The club will intersect the lead leg at the inner half of the lead knee when placing the club directly on the sternum. This will provide the proper amount of axis tilt. Check out the videos in the Full Swing Program Setup section and you'll see plenty of examples of how to achieve this position. R.J.
January 21, 2015
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Nathan
R.J., Caleb and I are talking about spine tilt from a down the line viewpoint. (bending forward at the hips). I assume you are referring to spine tilt as viewed face on. (which this video is not covering) 1:46 of the video. If you pause the video and draw a line...from where to where to determine proper spine tilt?
January 21, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nathan, You're right, my apologies. I misread the original post. It's pretty simple to get the proper amount of spine angle (which the setup videos show as well). All you need to do is drop your hips back behind you and hinge from the hips until you can comfortably see the ball without dropping your chin to change your eye level. Then how much hinge you get is based on how close the ball is to you, which is determined by how long the club is. Basically, you want to see the ball comfortably without dropping your head, you want your arms to hang below your shoulders and for the toe to be slightly off the ground at address. Then you know that you have the perfect spine angle. R.J.
January 21, 2015
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Keene
is there an advantage to shortening the club vs choking down an equal amount? Does holding the club nearer the end have any physical benefits (physics or biomechanically). Would choking down have any counterbalancing advantage for the release?
December 31, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Keene. Take a look at the Vijay Release Drill in the Advanced Downswing Section. You will learn more about the club length, tapering, etc. The tapering will help you hold on to the club better with the last three fingers to produce some good snap and speed at the ball.
January 2, 2015
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Nick
I have a tendancy to have a shut clubface during the takeaway (1/4 swing). The club face is parallel with my spine angle and i have a tendency to get flat. Ive noticed that all videos show the clubface points perpindicular to the ground. In order for me to do this it feels like i have to open the club face during elevation. Is tgere some face rotation during the takeaway to get the club on plane?
October 24, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nick, It's not face rotation, per say. It's forearm rotation. You want your thumb nails pointed towards the sky when you finish your takeaway. If you club face is really shut at the end of your takeaway, there's a chance that you might have too much hinge from the hips without the hips dropping back. If you're too far bent over, it'll feel like your right shoulder rotating towards the sky and this will give the appearance of a shut club face at the finish of the takeaway. R.J.
October 24, 2014
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demetrios
I'm in tampa, whom can you recommend for a good fitting? Or is it something you guys offer during a lesson? thanks
September 13, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Demetrios. Unfortunately, I don't have a good person to refer you to. However, we are looking into providing fittings for students in the future.
September 13, 2014
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Dennis
So is there a way to determine if my clubs are too long versus just needing to change the lie angle?
August 20, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Other than the lie angle and the hands at address (too high/too low). Getting fit is the only way.
August 20, 2014
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Dennis
But wouldn't the toe be too high at address if the hands were in a good position but the club was too long?
August 20, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Dennis. Yes
August 20, 2014
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Dennis
Ok,so if you had this imaginary club's lie angle adjusted to be flat,it's still be too long,right? So once again I ask, how do I know if the lie angle needs adjusting,or if it is simply too long?
August 21, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
If your club is too long the tendency would be for the toe to be up. If you arms are hanging correctly underneath the shoulder joints at address and in the correct position. Grip the club from there and if you have to adjust your hand height up to make the lie angle flush. It is probably the lie angle. If you can't grip it in the proper location without choking too far down the club it is probably too long. The only exact way to figure out is to get your measurements and see how close your arms are to the ground. Find a lie board and some tape to check the lie angle.
August 21, 2014
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Dennis
Ok then,why do people adjust their lie angle? If the toe is up,it's too long,and if the heel is up,it's too short,right? "The only exact way to figure out is to get your measurements and see how close your arms are to the ground." This might be what I was asking.Where do you measure from?
August 22, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dennis. You can have the proper length club and the lie angle off. If the toe is up and the club length is correct. The lie is too flat and vice versa. You would measure from the top of the wrist to the ground.
August 22, 2014
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Dennis
Measure standing upright,or at address?
August 22, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Dennis. Standing Upright. Barefoot preferably.
August 22, 2014
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Julien
Interesting indeed. I'm small with medium legs/torso and long arms and I always had the impression of having to manipulate the club a lot a soon a I was holding a 7-iton or longer. I do have 2 questions: 1) If I follow the proper setup procedure then I get one unique hand-to-ground distance. With this distance, Which club should I use to determine the length adjustment to be applied to the whole set of clubs ? Do I have to use a mid-iron (7 or 6) or a shorter iron (8 or 9)? 2) I have tried several fitters here and there, all recommended to have 1" shorter than standard length and go to 3deg flat lie. I never got a shorter 2" and 2deg flat for instance. Why is that ? What is your opinion ?
August 14, 2014
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
Julien, Great Questions. And being 6'5 I have had an obsession with proper fitting. The short version is it is complicated. Lets look at facts. You hit a sand wedge and you hit a 3 iron. One is many inches longer than the other...so how can they both be fit to you. Lie angle. So having those two variables fit to you will allow you to hit many different lengths of clubs. So here is where the video helps us find that ideal. If we have a pretty constant variable which should be our set up. Our clubs no matter sw or 3 iron should fit. Because the lie angle on a 3 iron with the longer shaft is much flatter than that of the sandwedge. And the ball is further away from you with the longer club so our setup can stay the same. A mid iron is a good place to start. So if you take your 7 iron, and you put it aside and get into setup then have someone hand it to you. Does it feel right? or is the toe way up? is the toe way down?? The part in the video where chuck extends his finger tips and they touch the tops of his knees..that is a general good position to try to get into. That should feel comfortable for most people. Lets take me for an example. Im 6'5 ....so in my set. I have all my wedges the size and specs of my pitching wedge. Getting any shorter for me started to get a little uncomfortable. Ive played standard length with upright lies and found that i was standing out of my spine angle to easily, so giving me that extra inch and having standard lies allowed my spine angle to not be as hinged and i could keep my angles better. The real question for you is this. You want to hit the longest clubs you can hit the sweet spot 9-10 times. If a 3 iron and a sandwedge can both be fit for you with length and lie and any length inbetween can work. We all know a pw is easier to hit on the sweet spot more often than a 3 iron. Short equals more control. Length equals a little more speed, but the number ONE determinant of distance is hitting that sweet spot. SO thats where using a middle ground club, like a 7 iron can help you find the best length where you can hit that center more often than not. Hope this hasnt opened pandoras box for you! And this is only length and lie, dont get me started with weight and flex! haha. Send in a swing review. We'd love to take a look.
August 14, 2014
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Mariam
Great post! This really helps a lot, although I can't say I completely understand. Looks like it has been at least a year or two since most of the posts on this chain...any developments on recommendations for club fitters? Anyone in Virginia or Indianapolis areas? Thanks so much for your help.
June 20, 2017
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
Do you have any specific questions. I dont know any fitters down there. I have a great one up here in CT. Thanks
June 21, 2017
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Mariam
Hi Aaron, Thank you very much for response. I am 6'3 1/2. My wrist to floor length is 38 1/2". I looked at a chart which told me that I should have clubs 1 inch longer than standard with 1 degree up-right lie angle. My clubs were supposedly fit for me and are longer than standard but I will have to check whether a full inch longer. I'm struggling with posture and am wondering whether it is because of my clubs. I have more tilted spine angle than Chuck and club is more vertical. If I setup like Chuck (standing taller with club more shallow at address), it appears that I would need VERY long clubs to reach the ground. Alternatively, I either need to bend at hips more to reach ground or steepen shaft angle at address. I know it is difficult without visual, but I just figured that since you are tall and mentioned interest in club fitting, I would give it a try. Your comment about "standing out of spine angle too easily" is something I am struggling with, especially with shorter irons, and I wonder whether my clubs have something to do with this. Thanks so much for any light you might be able to shed on this!
June 22, 2017
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
Nope not difficult. I am 6'5 so I GET IT! I or you will never look like chuck at setup. I believe also Chuck has long arms as well which then in turn affects his hinge as well. Chuck's 8 iron posture looks like my driver posture. All my wedges are my PW length which is +1 from standard. Different bodies will have different looks at setup. The important part is how you get there. Hinging from the hips, comfortably. I hate the standard Chart approach. I should have this. It is a good rule of thumb but there are many ways to create a set of irons. Find a really good fitter and they can help you for sure. Unfortunately for us tall guys its a bit more difficult to stay in posture with the short clubs! That is an enormous move for the spine to easily do. Hence why i didnt want my wedges any shorter than my +1 pw. pw,50,54,58 are all the same length and lie.
June 24, 2017
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Mariam
Thanks so much for the thoughtful response. I really appreciate it! Will do.
June 24, 2017
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Julien
So, you recommend to adjust length and lie of clubs using a 7-iron matching chuck's proper setup. Am I correct ?
August 14, 2014
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Aaron (Certified RST Instructor)
Send a picture of your setup with a 7 iron. Down the line view.
August 14, 2014
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Julien
Do you want a picture of me in proper setup with 7-iron toe way-up (like the one in my profile, worth noting that the 7-iron I'm holding in this picture is a minus .5" and 2deg flat already and still it is toe way up ? Or in setup modified to get the club correctly lying ? Could you also tell me how I can include a picture in the forum thread ?
August 15, 2014
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richard
Hi folks My question is if my clubs are too long could I compensate by choking up on the club? There seems to be some disparity between this and other videos that note the benefit of maximizing a club's shaft length. Pardon my confusion. Regarding the rest of the instruction I am all in. Thanks rke
July 24, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. For now choking up wouldn't hurt you. But, it would be recommended to have optimum shaft length. Even missing a tad short is better than too long.
July 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
So if I set up properly and find my club to be a little long, would it be appropriate to choke up slightly versus getting the clubs shortened? Sometimes I worry about resale value. But would that be a big negative to choke up?
June 5, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
There isn't a big negative on choking up. We realize golf is an expensive, but fun game. If you were to shorten them slightly, in the future putting small extensions in the shaft shouldn't be that costly.
June 5, 2014
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David
Would the same thing apply for woods and driver???
May 22, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Yes absolutely!
May 22, 2014
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David
Very interesting...that's exactly what I have been experiencing when I set up! My body type is similar to chuck's my arms hang down to my knees. Thanks for the tip u guys r the best!
May 22, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Glad you got some clarity from this video and thanks for the kind words.
May 22, 2014
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Ryan
GReat stuff Chuck as always!!! As a scratch golfer the simple fact that I've always fit myself and done a decent job at it but can be difficult unless we let someone else do a professional fitting. As a former assitant pro I can't tell everyone ou there how often I see people with clubs that are either to long, short, flat and upright. It's not super difficult to find a fitter near you just make sure you ask the correct questions to make sure they are educated enough to make the best decisions for you. I've found that True Temper uses mainly the variable of how each person LOADS the club which was kinda foreign to me at first but realizeds its a fantastic variable to get in the correct shaft esp for my core clubs!! A standard launch monitor can be very helpful but not the end all for final decisions! ITS SO IMP TO BE FIT FOR ALL CLUBS INCLUDING PUTTER AND NOT JUST PLAY OF THE SHELF FROM LOCAL CLUB RETAILER... Thanks CHuck as ALways amazing quality, Ryan Crisman
May 20, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
good stuff Ryan. Thanks for the comments.
May 21, 2014

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