Golf Backswing, Completing the Golf Backswing

Once you've mastered the setup, weight transfer and takeaway, it's time to progress to the top of the backswing. The RST Backswing is really a tiny move, for some it will feel like the smallest move they make, yet everyone is so concerned with their position at the top that they often ignore common mistakes on the way there. In this video, we show you how simple the movement really is to achieve a position as good as Tiger Woods at the top of the backswing. However, make sure you have mastered the takeaway before moving on to the backswing.

  • Move 2 continues the pulling motion of Move 1
  • Moving the shoulder blade farther back pulls the hips along for a total of 90° shoulder turn & 45° hip rotation
  • Checkpoints: Right lat, right heel, right glute
  • The arms' only job is Elevation, Right Elbow Flexion, Upper Arm Rotation
  • The hands will cross center, but the arms remain in front of your chest


The golf backswing is where most golfers begin to look like they're trying to perform a yoga move rather than an elegant golf swing! It's here that many golfers have very odd or extraneous movements that make a perfect golf downswing nearly impossible to perform.

The good news for you is that RST makes the backswing a very simple move that only requires normal flexibility and coordination. You don't have to be Gumby-like with your flexibility to get into a tour quality backswing position like I show you hear. It's very simple movements.

The backswing, getting all the way to the top of the swing, what exactly do we have do in rotary swing? Again, we're trying to move as efficiently as humanly possible, the fewest moving parts absolutely possible to hit the golf ball over 300 yards in the air, but still have no stress on our body or as little stress as humanly possible and as few moving parts as humanly possible. With the back swing, what we're really focused on is the REF, an acronym that I created, rotation elevation flexion. We're going to rotate our body. We're going to elevate our arms at our shoulders and flex the right arm, and this one's going to rotate a little bit, and this is the whole movement during the back swing while turning and shifting our weight. That's it. The movements can't get any simpler than that.

                When you start trying to make your arms do all kinds of crazy stuff or you start worrying about swing plane, start trying to manipulate stuff, the golf swing can seem like a never-ending black hole. You're going to keep struggling forever because trying to manipulate what this golf club is doing is the worst way to try and swing a golf club. You don't need to do hardly anything with your arms and hands, and to further prove that, I'm going to show you just how simple it is to get to the top of the backswing with rotary swing. I'm going to elevate my arms, flex the right arm and let this arm rotate. You'll notice my elbow's going to rotate a little bit. This would set the club on plane. Now if I just hinge forward, get into a perfect golf setup, get some axis tilt, and just focus now, forget about my arms. I couldn't care less about them. I'm going to shift to the right while starting to pull my shoulder back and rotate from my ribcage. Done. All of that just instantly moved my arms to a perfect position at the top.

                When we look at it from down the line, you're going to see the same thing. I'll start standing straight up here. I'm going to rotate back and transport my arms to the top with my body movement. As I add a club into this, it's going to look the same way. That's how easy it is to move the club to the top. Rotation, elevation, flexion creates a perfect swing plane. You don't have to try and do that. Swing plane is a byproduct of moving the rest of your body correctly. To get to the perfect position at the top, go to the Five Minutes to the Perfect Back Swing video. It walks you through how simple and easy it is to get to a perfect backswing position every single time and it's incredibly easy to learn.

                It's one of the most frustrating things that most golfers struggle with, trying to get a reasonable position at the top so that they have a chance and a prayer to put the club on the back of the ball properly, but if you're in a horrible back swing position, you'll never be able to hit the ball consistently. The reality is getting into a good back swing position is incredibly easy with RST. 

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Venkatesh
Hi Chuck. Love RST!. Been struggling with my swing in recent times. I have a fundamental question with regards to the back swing and the shoulder movement. When I rotate do I start the motion like a putter motion with the right shoulder up as I rotate or simply rotate the shoulders to the back of the head? I have tried both and now really confused and clobbering all the hard work over the past 6 months. Went from a 12 handicap to now a 16. Please help! Thanks. - Venkatesh
May 25, 2021
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Venkatesh, you want the shoulders to rotate perpendicular to your spine. So, the right shoulder will move up and behind the head and the left shoulder will work underneath the chin. Double check that you do not see any downward movement from the head when rotating back, this would be an indicator that you are turning the shoulders too steeply in relationship to the spine at that point.
May 26, 2021
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Venkatesh
Thank you. That helped.
May 27, 2021
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Gregory
I watched the backswing videos and this one and did all the drills but I can't get the club into this position consistently or comfortably. I can't keep a straight left arm because of my shoulder mobility and rotator cuff issues, and it feels like I have to really pull on my left wrist with my right hand to get it flat, which is uncomfortable. I find pulling it makes me bow my wrist which is uncomfortable and definitely not easy, unlike the drills. I'm surprised nobody ever mentions the left wrist -- flat, cupped, bowed, and how important it is. If I just let gravity take over, my wrists get turned over by the weight of some clubs and cup other times. Most of the instruction just says don't manipulate the hands, so is this okay?
February 15, 2021
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gregory. You would like for the lead wrist to be flat at the top. When you start adding a lot of cupping/bowing you will have to make manipulations at some point. Rotator cuff in lead arm? The lead should gradually flatten as you make the backswing. Maybe your grip is too strong, or the trail hand is doing more than you think. Take a look at Using the Wrists in the Golf Swing, How to Avoid Cupped Left Wrist and Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video.
February 15, 2021
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Gerry
I just finished watching “5 minutes to perfect backswing” and “Simplify your backswing with shallow arms”. Am I going crazy or do these two videos contradict each other? In the 5 minute video we talk about the lead arm only elevating in front of the torso. In the simplify video at the end Chuck is talking abou the lead arm stay pinned against his ribs. When does the lead arm come across the body if it is supposed to stay in front of the torso?
November 18, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gerry. They aren't contradicting. Think less elevation, and not pushing the arms deep. The lead arm won't be pinned against the chest like a shoulder spinner. Just less elevation so it won't come away as much as a high hands swinger.
November 18, 2020
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Christopher
Craig, In my last swing review you mentioned "maintaining the right knee" could you briefly explain to me Thank You
October 15, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Christopher. The trail knee was almost locked out straight at the top. It is okay to lose some flexion, but try to maintain yours a little more.
October 15, 2020
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Mike
Chuck, I'm having a real problem going smoothly and correctly from takeaway into backswing. Could you do a video, stacking arms, club, etc that starts from a correct takeaway to the top of the backswing? My takeaway looks correct in the mirror and on video but I am over complicating the backswing I think
August 4, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Take a look at the 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing and Why Your Practice Swing and Real Swing Aren't the Same. See if they help alleviate the change when blending. Also, the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video helps simplify the whole process.
August 4, 2020
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Mark
During Chuck's slow motion backswing (see the video), it appears from the side view that the back is almost vertical and that the spine angle is not being maintained. It appears that part of this is due to the trail leg being angled. Is it okay in the backswing to pass through points where the back looks to be somewhat vertical where at the end of the backswing, the proper axis tilt is clearly reached and shown in the side view. I ask this question because my own side view videos show a nearly vertical back for part of the backswing.
May 25, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. I don't know which slow motion one you are referring too. However, you must maintain in proper spine angle/shoulder plane to the top. It may appear that Chuck lost it from Face On, but I can assure you he is maintaining posture.
May 26, 2020
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Mark
Craig, In the attached excerpt from his slow motion video from the side view, Chuck's back seems to be very vertical. In some of my swing reviews, when I got in "about" this position, you observed that I was losing my axis tilt. I am trying to maintain, like Chuck, a setup with a slightly angled trail leg and a more vertical lead leg, In part, to cut down in the distance needed to get my weight to the left side more efficiently. I am trying to find out if is it okay to pass through this nearly vertical back position during the backswing, as in Chuck's attached video, or should the back always be more angled. I have seen other videos of Chuck's swing where his back is always more angled. I have uploaded the video of Chuck that i am referring to in my self analysis section of rotary swing. This web sit won't let me send my file to you
May 26, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. I can't access that file in your Self Analysis. I apologize. I will be happy to on your next review though. You will tend to lose a little axis tilt in the backswing. Why we setup with so much. As long as you aren't breaking the trail hip line and completely vertical you may be ok. But, I wouldn't want to give you the go ahead without visual confirmation.
May 26, 2020
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Mark
Craig, The video I am referring to is entitled "How to Practice Your Golf Swing Indoors - Slow Motion Face On" and was sent out in an April 18, 2020 email. Look at the backswing as Chuck's arms hit parallel to the ground and the club is nearly vertical. Also, see how vertical Chuck's back is during this process. With Chuck trail leg angled during the backswing (which is part of the proper setup with axis tilt), it is clear that the proper shift to the right ankle occurs, but with the back a bit more vertical. In my swing reviews, when I passed through a position close to this, you cautioned me about being too vertical. Am I misunderstanding the slow motion backswing?
May 27, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. Chuck is still retaining tilt there. The issue is you have a tendency to reverse pivot. So, my word of caution is to not slide back into your old movement. It may not look like it, but h has a fair amount of tilt here. If you maintain the same spine from parallel to the ground -- finished backswing. All is well.
May 27, 2020
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Bruce
Hi Craig - could you please help me understand when the vertical arm raise happens. I had a lesson that suggested you start lifting your arm when shoulders have turned 45 degrees - so arms go straight back. - is this consistent with RST? Thanks
April 24, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bruce. You have to have a little elevation in the takeaway, or the arms start to go behind you. Take a look at the 4 Square Drill and RST Pencil Tee Drill.
April 25, 2020
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John
Does REF occur after the "takeaway"? or is REF considered part of the takeaway as it blends itself into completing the backswing? Most of RST's takeaway instruction indicates to turn/rotate the body in the takeaway (with moderate wrist set and forearm rotation) to get the club to the P2 (first parallel position)....is it then that we use REF to complete the BS? Thx!
February 12, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. REF is the entire backswing. The takeaway will have rotation and a little elevation, but you shouldn’t have any flexion.
February 13, 2020
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Rob
I having been working on the back swing for a couple of weeks now and am starting to feel like I get it. It appears that a small problem has arisen in that the left wrist appears to be cupped at the top of the backswing. My grip may be sightly strong at address but not overly and I feel and it appears I am moving into the backswing properly. Any ideas?
February 8, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Rob. Take a look at How to Avoid a Cup Left Wrist Video. Sounds like a trail arm/hand issue.
February 8, 2020
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Shreeraj
I can do the takeaway properly by mostly moving my upper body, but once I try to continue into the backswing, my hands and wrists rotate to open the club quickly. My grip is fine (even tried it with a very strong grip), but I still just naturally rotate the wrists open about 3/4 of the way back. Any cure/suggestion for this as even when I try the REF method, I do the same thing? When my wrists don't rotate, I hit it fine, but when they do, I tend to hit really low stingers, often to the right (not slices).
October 12, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Shreeraj. Take a look at Wrist Cock vs Wrist Hinge Video. You may be too passive with allow for the setting of the club up on plane.
October 13, 2019
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Robert
Hello RST Team. In my set up, I feel like I'm in the box (both shoulders are down and scapulas prevent the shoulders to fall forward). I understand that the right shoulder stays down during the back swing (staying in the box, scapula engagement). But at the top, my left shoulder tends to move out forward-out of it's socket. Is this correct? Or should the trail shoulder stay the same as you turn?
October 12, 2019
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Mikko-Pekka
Hello Robert. In the LADD video Chuck briefly mentiones that left shoulder comes out of its socket A LITTLE BIT. Hope that helps.
October 12, 2019
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Harold
I am having a issue with the left hand coming off the club in the back swing. I have tried the golf tee between the pinky finger and all i feel is that it makes me grip the club to tight. any suggestions ?
October 10, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Harold. Are you playing left handed, or right handed?
October 10, 2019
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Harold
I am a right handed player
October 10, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Harold. Sounds like too much in the palm. Are you sure you have it enough in the fingers?
October 10, 2019
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Richard
Hi I tend to push the left hand across my chest after completing the takeaway in good shape.As much as I try to correct it ,it creeps back in so I looked at Chuck;s back swing in slow motion and I seemed to see a move that I do not believe any one has pointed out.At the end of chuck;s takeaway the club seems to go from parallel to the ground to almost vertical while his hands seemed to stay close to the end of the takeaway position,which looks as if the wrist must be cocking at this point in order for that to occur. Is this a move that is done intentionally or is it just the result of a proper takeaway. In either case I need help because I cannot seem to get it done correctly .
September 7, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. The wrists will gradually set in the backswing. You don't need to have manual setting of the wrists unless this motion is underdone. Take a look at Wrist Cock vs. Wrist Hinge Video.
September 7, 2019
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charles
Craig. I’m working on Chucks one drill for the beta program. I followed his instruction as to the first drill which is back swing turn with arms crossed and I’m It right. It’s ok until I use my arms at shoulder level an it restricts me turning enough r To see my trailing shoulder at the top?
August 30, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. Chuck will tackle when adding the arm in the boot camp. Don't be cheating ahead . You should check that the lead arm isn't getting too deep. Pushing it across will hurt the turn. Also, you might need to allow for a little more hip turn when adding the arm.
August 30, 2019
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charles
I can turn 90 degrees with arms crossed and no club. But when I add club no way?
August 29, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. Take a look at the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video. Make sure you aren't changing your shoulder plane too much, or pushing the lead arm too far across the chest.
August 29, 2019
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charles
Craig..I'm looking for more of a stretch than the drills you gave me too get my hands and arms higher on the backswing. I feel really tight and restricted. cheers
August 14, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. Take a look at the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Videos. You don't need to get higher than the base of the pectorals. Elevation in Rotary is a variable. If you start getting higher than what is in the videos recommended. You will end up disconnecting from your core.
August 14, 2019
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charles
What drills to get hands higher in back swing. Arms are too flat. Have flat evalation hands too low. Cheers
August 13, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. 4 Square Drill, Pool Noodle Drill, and Backswing Shoulder Plane Video.
August 13, 2019
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James
Two issues in finishing my backswing: 1. I stand up a bit towards the end of my backswing; and 2. My head moves forward a few inches at the top of the backswing when viewed down the line (as does my tush line). What do you all suggest?
July 9, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Fix Your Swing Sway, Load Right Leg, and Maintain the Tush Line - Chair Drill. Combining these principles should help the issues.
July 10, 2019
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John
Hi Chris, per our swing review I am working turning back all the way & have a question. In this picture, are my arms in a good enough position at the top for what we are working on? I want to make sure I am not getting out of position in an effort to make a bigger turn. Thanks!
July 2, 2019
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi John, looks pretty darn good. Maybe just a touch deep with the arms but would have to be able to see the face on in order to see how much body turn you created with the position shown. You could give the arms a less deep appearance by taking out a tiny bit of the hip rotation BUT then again, I cant say 100% without seeing it face on and in motion. Keep going my man and great job. - Ct
July 2, 2019
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John
Ok, sounds good. Thanks Chris!
July 2, 2019
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Julie
Should I think about rotating on my take away and back swing?
June 26, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Julie. 100%. Focus on weight shift and rotation as the arms work up.
June 26, 2019
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Julie
How do the pros know how far they have to the green? How do they know if the pin is front or back? Thank you.
June 25, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Julie. Yardage books and pin sheets. In tournament play, most professionals have yardage books that have certain locations marked to gauge the correct distance. Also, pre-round given pin sheets to know precise location.
June 25, 2019
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Julie
O.k. Thank you very much.
June 25, 2019
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Michael
When doing the drills, with or without a club I fully complete the backswing. When playing I barely get halfway back before starting down. Any thoughts?
June 22, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. You are either rushing the transition. Or, not focused on rotating the shoulders. Most players stop rotating because their focus shifts to the arms/hands and club head position versus keeping solely on getting the full rotation.
June 23, 2019
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Julie
On my backswing Should I Swing straight back and across my chest?
June 15, 2019
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
We don't want to actively move our arms across our chest. We actually don't move the arms horizontally in the backswing. The horizontal movement is created by the rotation of the body. The vertical movement is created by the arms and together they make the swing plane which is diagonal. We want to keep our hands in front of our sternum throughout most of the backswing until the trail side (right side for right handed golfers) elbow bends upwards to get the hands to the top of the swing.
June 16, 2019
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Julie
Who is your favorite golfer ? Who has the best swing on Tour?
June 15, 2019
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
In the video menu section, there is a tour pro section where you can see the opinion of Rotary Swing of tour professional golfers.
June 16, 2019
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Julie
On the Self Analysis there are no tools I can use. Can you help? Thank you.
June 14, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Julie. After you upload swings. You should have a set box like I have marked in the picture below. If you don't. Please contact customer service as you should be able to use all the diagnostic features.
June 14, 2019
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Julie
O.k. Thank you.
June 14, 2019
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Alan
Hi - When I use the RST backswing method, I feel like the club is laid off a little, which is fine. A consequence is that very often I find during the downswing the club opens up very significantly and gets caught behind and I end up hitting a big push slice. Is there a specific video to help with this issue?
June 6, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alan. On plane, not laid off . Yes. Take a look at Trace the Plane Line Video.
June 6, 2019
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Anthony
Curious, Chuck mentions the left elbow rotating to get the club on plane. At one time, I could swear I saw an RST video that talked about the left shoulder rotation in the back-swing. I can't find it anymore. So the question is, "Is it the left shoulder, elbow or forearm that rotates in the back-swing?" When I use my left shoulder, I feel everything below the shoulder must rotate. Thanks in advance
June 2, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Anthony. The lead arm will rotate slightly from the shoulder socket to help set the plane (How to Keep the Left Arm Straight Video and Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video). All three will have a little bit of rotation.
June 2, 2019
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Jennifer
How should the hands feel at the top? I've read that the palm of the right hand should be pointing upwards like it's holding a tray, is that correct? I have a tendency to cup my left wrist slightly at the top so I'd like to understand how to avoid that.
March 27, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jennifer. The trail wrist will hinge back on itself a little, but maybe not as exaggerated as holding a tray. Take a look at How to Avoid a Cupped Left Wrist at the Top Video and Using the Wrists in the Golf Swing Video. These will help with the proper feeling/look.
March 27, 2019
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Matt
I would like to know I have been working on weight transfer and now working on the back swing but being 5’8”and not a small person I can’t get full turn should I just work on going 3/4 swing ?
March 14, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello User63830. Rotate as much as possible by reducing tension (Proper Muscle Activation Video). Once, you stop rotating allow the arms to stop with the rotation to shy away from the arms disconnecting from your body.
March 14, 2019
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Matt
My problem is not my shoulders it’s my back when I make the turn I feel it in my gluteus and my back .is there anything you know that can loosen it up
March 14, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello User63830. Take a look at Golf and the Thoracic Spine Series Intro Video. Follow the videos in that series to help with thoracic mobility.
March 14, 2019
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William J
From a DTL view should the hands be directly over the shoulder? If so, can you explain what issues arise out of the hands being slightly 1/2 to 1 hands width outside the shoulder at the top. Some times my hands get a bit outside. I have little to none humus rotation in my trail arm. Could this be why?
March 7, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello William. The lack of humeral rotation could be a culprit. More often than not it's adding too much flexion in the trail arm too soon in the backswing so the hands end up too far behind the chest. Take a look at the 4 Square Drill. The hands should be over the trail shoulder. The more the hands work behind the shoulder and into the depth dimension. You will start to get stuck on the downswing with the arms, or add trail shoulder push too soon in the downswing causing a steep/casting motion with the club.
March 8, 2019
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William J
I do have a tendency to get too much flexion in the trail arm. I noticed that my club will start to get parallel to the target line. I will try to keep the backswing shorter. This usually results in my hands getting about shoulder level but they are in line with my trail shoulder at the top of the backswing.
March 9, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello William. It sounds like a too much flexion issue. Elevation is variable in RST. If you can't quite get to the base of the pectorals with the arms, but they are staying in front and wide. You will be fine.
March 9, 2019
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Nolan
Should the lead wrist be flat or still cupped (extended) halfway back in the golf swing? Also, how loose should the wrists feel in the backswing?
February 28, 2019
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Dean
Hey Nolan, "How to Fix an Inside Takeaway " video for the cupping question. There are many details about it there. You don't want to lose it too early and it gradually gets to a flat position at the top of the backswing. Wrists and grip should to be just firm enough just to support the club on the way back and should be as tension free as possible. There is some manipulation of the club on the takeaway: rotation, elevation and wrist set, "Pencil Drill",so if they are limp the club will droop and be under plane. February 28, 2019, 6:31 pm | Reply
February 28, 2019
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Jeff
I feel like I’m doing all correctly in backswing but when hitting balls, still struggling to turn shoulders to 90 degrees and fully load - thinking the tension may be in the wrong place. What do I need to work on here?
February 28, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jeff. Take a look at the Proper Muscle Activation Video. Sounds like the upper shoulders get tense when adding back the little white demon.
February 28, 2019
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Jeff
Craig, I’m taking it back with obliques and good rotation so tension staying down in box. I think issue is not getting wide enough going back (right arm bending too early). I’m having tough time staying wide with arms while staying connected to the body to the top. Any suggestions there?
February 28, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jeff. Take a look at Keep the Right Arm Straight to Turn Video. If you focus on keeping the trail arm straight. It should act like a piston against the shoulder to facilitate rotation.
February 28, 2019
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Jeff
What if when I do this (keep right arm straight in backswing) it gets disconnected from body - how do I guard against that from happening?
February 28, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jeff. The main way to disconnect is getting the shoulders shrugging from too much tension, or lift in the backswing. Also, allowing the trail arm to fly away letting the arms get too deep. You have to watch out for upper shoulder tension, deep arm swing and over elevation. If the Keep Straight to Turn feels too aggressive for you. The 3 Functions of the Right Arm and Creating a Swing Plane can help you correct the trail arm feel and staying in the box. The Winter Golf Training Program Backswing Video would be good for the lead arm. Making slow swings when adding the ball back will help you monitor the tension issue and allow you to feel when the arms start to run away.
February 28, 2019
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Ronan
Hi ! Is it right to feel and proceed this way from takeaway to the end of the backswing? : I found easier to use gravity and the momentum of the club to set the arms at the top of the backswing. It helps me manipulate nothing with my hands, and to be relaxed at the top. From the takeaway, i would simply let the arms set themselves in the most natural position. I've never heard Chuck mentionning this feeling in the videos, do you think its a good idea/feeling to have? Ronan
February 19, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ronan. The wrist set and flexion from the takeaway is minimal and gradual. If your arms stay in front of the body the weight of the club will help set the club for you as you add slight elevation and flexion. You can use the momentum and gravity to assist you.
February 19, 2019
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Jack
I am rotating my body as per the video and elevating my arms but I find it very fatiguing with stress in my arms. My weight is through my right ankle and utilizing my right Glute, and lats on the backswing. When I do the weight shift drill with the arms across my chest it's smooth with no pressure but adding the club and REF with the arm's I feel very tight. I assume this is normal so my question is does it get easier? I am 60 with old man flexibility.
January 30, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jack. Take a look at Proper Muscle Activation Video. The arms should be engaged, but not tense. You probably are firing and using new muscles in the swing. Feeling more tension in the core and glutes. But, if the arms are overly tense we need to get them to relax a little. You shouldn't be stressed out at the top.
January 30, 2019
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Dan
What is the spacial relationship between your chin and your lead (left for righthanders) shoulder? I feel like my left shoulder is jamming against my chin at the top. Can you drop your chin so you look right at the ball or should you roll your eyes downward to see the ball? If I am jamming my chin with my left shoulder does that suggest my shoulder turn is not 90 degrees from my spin?
January 24, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dan. If you roll from the neck too much it will affect how well you can rotate due to limiting spine mobility. My suggestion is to keep the spine as neutral as possible all the way through the neck instead of rolling forward. Check to make sure you are rotating on plane with your shoulders (Golf Backswing Shoulder Plane Drill). Also, not pushing your left arm across the body (Pushing with the Left Side).
January 25, 2019
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piper
Is the position at the top different with a driver? I'm having success with my irons with this (what feels to me shorter) backswing, but with a driver I end up hitting the ground before the ball. A feeling of not having enough time for the club to get back. thanks Jen
December 30, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Piper. One swing for all shots. Make sure you are getting the proper setup adjustment. Take a look at Proper Tee Height Video. Also, you are shifting enough weight to the lead side.
December 31, 2018
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Bernard
I have a big problem with slowing down my swing speed. Consistently 2:1. Do you have and drills or thoughts in how I can get to a 3:1 swing ratio?
November 23, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bernard. Take a look at the RST Tempo Drill and the Tour Tempo Micro Video. We no longer sell the device, but will still give you some insight. Also, the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing and Downswing Video will help produce some better rhythm.
November 23, 2018
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Kevin
Does the left elbow point behind you like the right elbow does at adress? Then slowly rotate as you take the club back?
November 13, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Take a look at the Golf Grip Checkpoint Tips and Gorilla Grip Video. The lead elbow won't be locked out with excessive external rotation. But, the elbow pit should be pointed away from the chest.
November 13, 2018
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Stephen
I am working on sequencing and I can start the backswing by shifting my weight but rotation and arm movement seem as one to me as my arms are connected to my shoulders. My instructor is trying to get me to shift, rotate and forget about my arms/hands but as soon as I rotate my hands/arms move as well? How can I separate arms/hand movement from rotation in backswing?
October 27, 2018
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Tyler (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Stephen, the main focus of the backswing is making a proper shoulder turn. Many people start the swing by pushing the club across their body. What he is saying is that if your club is moving in the takeaway, it's because of weight shift and that your body is rotating (no arm manipulation). Yes your arms will follow your body as it rotates, which is the correct way to move the arms in the backswing. Check out the pushing with the left side in the takeaway video
October 29, 2018
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Eric
Does the right arm do most of the work here (as it does in the takeaway)?
October 17, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Rotation is the number one goal and minimum arm movement. However, the trail arm has to elevate slightly and add flexion. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm Video.
October 17, 2018
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Eric
Hi Craig- Thanks for the video. That video shows what position to get in, but I was meant to ask what muscles power the club into that position? The "Pushing with the Left Side in the Golf Takeaway" video seems to imply that the right arm should power things? Is that generally the case to the top of the swing (with a switch to controlling the downswing with your left arm)?
October 17, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Yes, right side going back and left side coming down. Rotation and weight shift are the two main goals taking the club back. Momentum from those will help (My Golf Backswing Secrets Video). But, it's not solely the right arm. More the shoulder and core. Very minimal arm movement. Goof weight shift and big rotation.
October 17, 2018
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Eric
Thanks- that makes it clear!
October 17, 2018
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sambhu
Is takeaway and rotation the same? That is, takeaway+ elevation + flexion= backswing?
June 17, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sambhu. Takeaway + elevation + flexion + continued rotation = backswing. The takeaway is primarily weight shift and rotation.
June 18, 2018
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Chad
Hello, Chuck always talks about big body turn, little arm move. How much vertical movement should the arms move? Hands even with chest? thanks, Chad
April 30, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chad. The arms should elevate to the base of the pectorals. Pool Noodle Drill, 3 Functions of the Right Arm and 4 Square Drill Video.
April 30, 2018
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Chad
Thanks Jackie, one more question. I see and hear all the time that you should feel like your right arm is carrying a tray like a waiter. If I do that, my right palm is facing the sky and the face of the club is closed at the top. where should that right palm be facing at the top?
April 18, 2018
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Chad. Yes carrying a tray like a waiter is a great movement that simulates what we want to achieve when we rotate. When we continue to rotate, that tray will be thrown over our head towards the target to reflect the backswing. The right palm should be facing the sky, so that is correct. The club face should be square. The only way it would be closed is if we spilled what was on the tray forward. Hope this helps.
April 18, 2018
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Eric
Hi Jackie- Looking at the videos on the site, I haven't seen any videos that show the right palm facing straight up to the sky-- there is a slight right wrist extension and a slight right arm external rotation, but the right palm does not end up pointing straight up like a waiter carrying a tray. Would you be able to clarify how much right wrist extension there should be?
October 17, 2018
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Eric! So when we use the example of carrying a tray, our palms would be facing up like a waiter would hold it (at address). Take a look at the bucket drill video. Chuck holds the bucket with his palms facing each other. With this movement (similar to holding a golf club), the right palm would be facing in front of us towards the golf ball at the top of your swing. Our right wrist will be slightly cupped at the top to hold the golf club.
October 17, 2018
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Chad
Hello, I'm doing the takeaway and backswing correctly but my club is very closed at the top? It always has been, I'm trying to get rid of it. My left wrist is flat at the top, but my club face is closed, I have to cup my left wrist to get my club face on plane. What am I doing wrong?
April 14, 2018
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Chad. The face of the golf club should be parallel to the lead arm and wrist at the top of the swing. Check to make sure you are rotating properly. There should be gradual humeral rotation of the right forearm to get that club square at the top. Sometimes the club can become closed at the top when we push with the lead arm, or manipulate the club with our hands and arms. Check out the bucket drill to feel the proper rotation.
April 14, 2018
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Paul
Regarding Load Right Glute by stepping on right heel. Must I get on my back heel? How about just feeling my right instep of anke? The problem of getting on the back heel is that the Right leg loses its flexion somewhat and with keeping the left and right knees lasered-in place getting on right heel feels like a sway. Help.
March 14, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Paul. When pressing the heel the weight will be over the center of the ankle joint. Keeping pressure towards the instep is fine. You are staying anchored to the ground that way and using the inner thigh adductors. You don't want to go to the edge of the back heel. Anchor to the Ground Video.
March 15, 2018
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Frank
Is there any video discussion of lag movement in backswing. I am interested in left lag femur. Does it rotate? If so, which direction? If I externally rotate it I seem to transition better. I’d like to know more about leg movement in backswing. Where do I look?
February 7, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Frank. Take a look at the Laser Beam Knee Drills. You don't want the lead leg to over rotate, or internally rotate too much.
February 8, 2018
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Bradley
At the top of the backswing, should the left wrist be flat or should it be slightly cupped to allow the creation of more lag?
November 20, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bradley. The lead wrist should be flat at the top of the backswing. Take a look at Using the Wrists in the Golf Swing Video.
November 20, 2017
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Chris
Shortly before the End of Backswing, I turn the left knee to the target, then I pull the right shoulder to the stop to increase the body tension. Is that correct?
October 17, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chris. You will complete your turn by pulling back with the trail shoulder blade and slightly before this happens the lead knee will externally rotate to begin the motion of shifting weight down.
October 17, 2017
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Chris
Hi Craig, thank you for your better description of the Backswing process. I will use the sequence described for my daily exercise.
October 18, 2017
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karen
I find in my backswing in my attempt to make a 90 degree shoulder turn, at the very end of my backswing I am lifting up out of my posture a bit? What is your suggestion on how to correct this, reduce the shoulder turn?
October 16, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Karen, It sounds like you are allowing the elevation of your arms to pull you up and out of your posture late in the backswing OR you are losing stability in your trail leg OR both. Focus on maintaining flex in the trail leg and I would also do a lot of reps with your arms across your chest focusing on pulling the trail shoulder towards your spine. If you notice that you are staying in posture, then do a lot of reps and slowly add the club back in and try to recreate the movements. If you find that you are still struggling, submit your swings for review and let us instructors take a close look to see how we can help. Do not try and reduce the shoulder turn as a fix for it. Hope this helps.
October 16, 2017
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karen
Thanks Chris, I just submitted two videos for review!
October 30, 2017
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Donald
At the completion of the backswing are we favoring most of the weight transfer on the right heel.? I feel my glute engages better when I do this.
July 11, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Donald. Yes, you will feel favoring towards the heel and the center of the ankle joint.
July 11, 2017
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
When completing the backswing trail (bent arm) pronates to pull the lead arm onto the proper plane, should there be a conscious effort of using the right arm to do so or more from the lead arm ? I now have a major hitch at the top of my swing that was somehow caused by practicing elevation and flexion drills. But after working through the 5-step process, we only added the right arm at the end as a byproduct of the left arm leading the movement to the proper position at the top. So is it a conscious effort to get the right arm in the proper place, or does the right arm get into the proper place due to the elevation and rotation of the lead arm?
June 15, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chris. You can certainly use weight shift, rotation and momentum for a great backswing (Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing). This will incorporate the lead arm only swinging you are referring too. The trail arm needs to work properly and some players need more training with than others. If you can perform the drill I mentioned above with the trail arm gliding along and not messing with the process. You can use that way to set up the backswing. Others need conscious training to relearn how the trail arm moves to not inhibit proper lead arm motion.
June 15, 2017
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arthur john
Still don't see the movement from takeaway to the bit before ref. Do you have elevation to get to this point. Or from the takeaway do you lift your arms and the club?
June 7, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Arthur John. You will gradually add some elevation in the takeaway. As you go from the takeaway you will continue rotation and adding some elevation as you begin into your flexion.
June 7, 2017
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Joel
I have notice on videos of my swing that my head in dipping downward during the backswing, do you have any specific videos that cover why this may be happening?
March 19, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Joel. Sounds like you are not loading and rotating around the spine properly. Work on the RSA Core Video. https://rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-basics/rotary-swing-5-step-golf-swing-system/core-rotation-left-arm-club-rsa
March 20, 2017
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John
How much strain should I feel on my lower right back at the top of the backswing? Also, should I feel really tight in my right ab and outside right hip? I am trying to determine if I am rotating further than my flexibility allows in an attempt to get coiled.
March 7, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. There shouldn't be too much strain in the lumbar spine. If so, you might need to allow for more hip turn or check your axis tilt. You shouldn't feel pressure on the trail hip socket. Take a look at the Weight Shift Video Part 2 to make sure you are rotating into the glute properly.
March 8, 2017
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Martyn
Hi Craig Again, just a question or two on your video review. Once I get to the end of the takeaway, i.e. club level with the ground, hips turned at 45 degree angle, club pointing at trail pocket ... how do I then get to the end of the back swing? Is it by elevating my arms and hinging my right elbow slightly? That feels like a much more vertical motion than I am used to, but is that a good thing? Anyway, I'll post new videos tomorrow and see what you make of my progress.
February 28, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Martyn. Yes, it will be continuing your rotation and adding elevation then flexion from the trail elbow. Feeling vertical with the arms isn't necessarily a bad thing. The arms work vertically in the swing. You want to feel the body taking care of rotation and horizontal motion with the arms working up/vertically.
March 1, 2017
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Tim
Having just watched 'move 2 - finishing the backswing', Chuck mentions pulling back the right shoulder as far as I can. I read somewhere once that if you load a muscle and put it under stress, then that muscle will want to un-stress immediately before any other body movement. My problem is that I struggle to get a 90 degree shoulder turn so in order to pull my shoulder back further i feel massive tension in my right shoulder at the top of the swing; now when i transition, my right shoulder is un stressing first and firing first causing severe casting and spinning....any thoughts?
February 23, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tim. If you struggle reaching a full shoulder turn you don't want to force it. We are using leverage, width and rotation for the power sources in the swing. You don't solely have to rely on rotation. Take a look at How to Maintain Club Head Speed as You Get Older for information on the power sources. And, the RSA Core Drill to help with the coil and getting back as far as you can. Link Below. https://rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-basics/rotary-swing-5-step-golf-swing-system/core-rotation-left-arm-club-rsa
February 23, 2017
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Antti
My hands stay too low in the end of the backswing. Am I bushing from the left side or what causes this low position?
February 4, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Antti. A few things can cause low hands. I don't want to assume, but more than likely you are pushing the lead arm too much across the chest. Use the 4 Square Drill and Pool Noodle to help get the hands higher and more in front.
February 4, 2017
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Jim
I've viewed five minutes to a perfect backswing(and done drills) and still have a bit of issue getting from 9 o'clock to the top of the swing (I'm left handed) and making it one continuous motion. I have obsessed on the backswing for years, so don't know if I'm still trying to place the top. How to go from setup to one continuous motion to top would be a huge step. FYI, Chuck is a great teacher and RST makes great sense after years of lessons, searching, playing and so on. Thanks, Jim
January 26, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jim. I would work on the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing Video. Making some lead arm only swings (using shift, rotation, and momentum) will help you feel a more continuous or smoother move to the top. Thanks for the compliments of Chuck and our Instruction.
January 27, 2017
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Asle
Do you have different backswings whether you are a hitter or a swinger in regards to how far back you swing and where the right elbow is pointing?
January 26, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Asle. One will be a little more rounded and the elbow might be a hair deeper. However, the trail elbow position you see above is the one all of our instructors and the site recommend for all players looking to enhance their swing.
January 26, 2017
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James
At the top of the swing, will the club shift be parallel with the target line?
January 25, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. The club at the top should be pointed slightly away from the target. Matching more the parallel plane of the trail elbow. The driver due to momentum though will sometimes reach parallel to the target.
January 25, 2017
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GC
I find that as I raise my arms (my backswing was very flat before), that my upper left Lats / obliques feel stretched - is that correct feel?
January 22, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello GC. You more than likely will feel some stretch being how low and loaded your arms usually tend to be.
January 23, 2017
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Richard
At the completion of the back swing does your left arm HAVE to be straight?
January 10, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. Ideally, the lead arm will be straight. But, the lead arm can be soft. You want to shy away from the the lead elbow bending too much.
January 10, 2017
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Eric
I notice on most pros swings (Rory especially), that though they say they turn their left shoulder under their chin, at the top of the swing, their left bicep is covering their chin when looked at from down the line. Sometimes, it looks like it's covering their chin and mouth up to their nose (again looking at him from down the line). I can never get in that position. I keep my chin up and my left shoulder turns under my chin fine, but then when I reach the finish, the left deltoid area actually lifts my chin and makes my head pivot even more to the right. Thanks for whatever insight you can provide.
December 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Swinging under the chin or slightly in front is fine. The problem arises when the lead shoulder starts to add some protraction and moves your head. Take a look at Left Shoulder Push in the Backswing Video. Make sure your lead arm is working properly at the end.
December 21, 2016
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james
I tend to cup my wrist at top of backswing looking for drill to keep it flat and on plane
December 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Take a look at the Winter Golf Training Program - Backswing.
December 21, 2016
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Eduardo
When I said backswing in the in my question I wanted to say DOWNSWING, I was wrong, forgiveness
October 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eduardo. "Downswing" for all the questions in the post below?
October 31, 2016
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Eduardo
Yes, sorry i wanted to tell downswing in all the question instead of backswing. In synthesis my question is In the downswing, Shoulders one should make them rotate actively ? or leave them to the more relaxed possible and passive, that move alone with the rotation of the hip ? Because I heard that professionals almost that initiate simultaneously the rotation of the shoulders with the hip on the backswing. Thanks !
November 1, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eduardo. The shoulders in the downswing should stay passive and relaxed. The downswing starts from the ground up. You don't want to start unwinding the shoulders early or too soon. The lower half needs to lead the way.
November 1, 2016
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Craig
I note that the optimal position for the hands at the top of the backswing is well above head level. I can only seem to get as far as about my ear level. Is this important and if so what can you suggest to help me elevate. Many thanks Craig
October 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Craig. Some things are relative to genetics (leg length, arm length, torso length, etc). The key will be to have the arms elevated to the base of the pectorals and the trailing arm not folded more than 90 degrees (3 Functions of the Right Arm Video).
October 22, 2016
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Ryan
When working on elevation and flexion separately from rotation, the movements with a club result in the club working up in front of my trail shoulder. If you have a problem pushing and getting the club deep after the takeaway, is it going to feel like the club is working straight up when the backswing starts?
September 18, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ryan. Yes, more than likely you will feel like it is working straight up with the club/arms as you rotate in the backswing.
September 19, 2016
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Jason
this video seemed to describe to me why at times I make this too complex;----> if I try to get a perfect 90 degree wrist set with and use a primary wrist action to do that when the left arm is at 9 o'clock, I bust through my right hip line and sway outside of right hip NJA. ---->On the other hand, If I only focus on a slight wrist set during move 1, and then think no more about any active wrist set from that point onward, and only think to continue to rotate and elevate the arms followed by right arm flexion, I seem to keep my right hip in NJA. ----> Is the key here to remember that the 90 degree wrist set at 9 o'clock comes from the start of right arm flexion rather than any additional active wrist flexion?
September 9, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. The wrist set in the swing is very gradual. Think about the wrist setting as you start finishing you trail arm flexion. Why are you trying to get 90 degree wrist set at 9 O'Clock?
September 10, 2016
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Jason
From the commentary of the Shane Lowrey 2 keys to lag video: describing that 9 o'clock 90 degree position being a good position. but it seems to mess me up to try to do that.
September 10, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. Ahh. I thought you were referring to 9 O'Clock from the 9 to 3 Drill (takeaway). Not, lead arm parallel to the ground 9 O'Clock Position. You don't have to have perfect 90 degree set, but the club at least pointed vertically. Try the drill in the Perfect Your Golf Impact 4 of 4 Video. If you still struggle, then you might be doing the set to quickly or early.
September 10, 2016
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Jason
actually that video helps. it reinforces my feeling that the straight left arm position is when the right arm starts to flex and the resulting wrist flex is about 60% of max. And he shows what it would be like to exert more wrist set at that position and how that may cause casting. So in essence, I think I know what feeling to drill. thx
September 10, 2016
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Min
I find myself having difficulty stopping the clubhead at the top of my backswing, I can get myself into the right positions/checkpoints, but the issue comes from my wrists breaking at the completion of the backswing to produce a downward dip of the clubhead at the top. While I believe I am taking the clubhead up with the right amount of wrist set, fairly neutral without any cupping or bowing, the wrist always breaks into a cupped position as the backswing stops at the top. This causes my wrist hinge to max out and cast the club on the way down. Any advice?? Thank you!
September 1, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Min. Try working on the Winter Golf Training Program Backswing Video to help with the lead wrist. 3 Functions of the Right Arm to help better manage the trail wrist set.
September 1, 2016
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Kevin
I am sure I heard in one of the videos that your left shoulder has to make its way under your chin in the backswing. I have spent some time going through videos trying to locate it without any luck. Since you guys have such an in depth knowledge of the site, would you be able to point me to the video that states that? Thanks in advance for your help.
August 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. You've stumped me on that one and I know the catalog pretty well. Try the Golf Body Rotation in the Backswing Video or the Left Shoulder Push Video.
August 29, 2016
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Kevin
I found what I was looking for Craig. It is located in the takeaway section 5 minutes into the "Golf Swing Takeaway & Drills" video. Thanks for your help.
August 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kevin. Thanks for the update.
August 29, 2016
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John
Any tips for maintaining a "straight" left arm in the backswing without engaging the left arm too much?
August 24, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. The lead arm doesn't have to be locked out straight. But, the majority of times when we see someone bend their lead arm too much. It is due to over folding of the trail arm or lack of wrist set. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm. Maintain less than 90 degrees of flexion with the trail arm. The lead arm should stay straight.
August 24, 2016
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Ryan
I can drill the body rotation very well and adding arms during the takeaway but struggle a lot adding arms and the club in after the takeaway (swing arms across my body). What are the best drills for fixing this? I can drill it perfectly and feel what I'm supposed to with my arms crossed against my chest and just arms in front of my body, and when I try to add flexion and rotation much less a club in the backswing I can't get the feel. What is the best drill for this?
August 17, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ryan. Pool Noodle Drill and 4 Square Drill. Sounds like when you add a club you allow momentum to takeover too much. Don't try to move the club. Take care of the body and arm positions.
August 18, 2016
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GC
Do the rotator cuffs move up and down during the swing? Or just side by side only?
July 25, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello GC. It would be hard to narrow it down to the cuffs only doing a certain thing, but more just up and down. Excessive elevation may lead to cuff issues.
July 25, 2016
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GC
Great video. Couple of questions: 1. When does the hip rotate? 2. Are the hips dragged by the shoulders and oblique or is it an active moment? Can we rotate the abs at takeaway and at a certain point, stop the abs rotation and then use the shoulder blades to rotate further? 3. What's the checkpoint to know if I have kept the same shoulder side angle relative to spine angle (DTL perspective on recording)?
July 25, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello GC. The hips will rotate just slightly in the takeaway, but the vast majority will be from the completed takeaway to the top. The pull from the trail shoulder blade and oblique will help rotate the trail hip. You shouldn't have to actively pull them if relaxed and pulling the trail shoulder properly. It would be hard to separate pull from the core and shoulders. The trail shoulder will always be pulling in the backswing and the core will be engaged. If you notice your head bobbing up and down, or if you add a lot of curve in the lumbar spine. Then, you are more than likely changing shoulder planes.
July 25, 2016
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david
Hi, During the "takeaway", I stay on the tush line. As I proceed further into the backswing and reach the top of the backswing, on video I can see that I have moved off the tush line, towards the target line, by around 2 inches. In other words I am coming out of posture. My trail leg extends somewhat, but I still have some knee flex. Can you recommend a drill to prevent coming out of posture in the backswing.
July 24, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi David, perfecting lower body stability, load the right leg for stability and safety, right knee laser beam drills are all good for you. Make sure that when you are shifting and rotating, your weight is locked under your trail heel/ankle and you are trying to keep the right knee flexed and facing froward. I would start without a club and work with your hands across your chest at first and then slowly add the club back in the more you nail down the movements.
July 25, 2016
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Anthony
I know you mentioned that the shoulders should not be raised, but I would like a definite answer if you don't mind. Am I to understand that the right shoulder should stay down in the socket when you are at the top? I tend to hit the ball much more solidly when the right shoulder is relaxed. When I attempt to "Raise" my arms, I run tend to run into issues.
July 23, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Anthony. The trail shoulder will stay engaged and depressed in the box. The shoulder elevation is more arm movement vertically, not shrugging the shoulders. Arm elevation can be variable from player to player. You don't have to have them all the way to the base of the pectorals if uncomfortable for you (Understanding Arm Elevation Video).
July 23, 2016
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Kyle
Thx ..you guys are great...continuing to eliminate the dominant left arm push your remarks are very helpful
July 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. Thanks. We are here if you need us.
July 21, 2016
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Kyle
Sorry that I have not had a response to the below comment...may be too complicated...but my major questions n is : after a good takeaway with the club at 9:00... What are the mechanics to get the club in position to iniatiate a good downswing Would appreciate a response..thx
July 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. I answered below.
July 21, 2016
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Kyle
What muscle groups are important in performing the additional 45 degrees of shoulder rotation ? i assume the scapula glide and the lats cause the first 45 degrees to get the club to a horizational or 90 degree position as the shoulders elevate ..at that point I assume the right arm flexes and the core muscle come into action with further shoulder elevation...My main problem has always been that my left arm wants to push the club behind me!! Thx
July 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. The middle/lower traps, obliques, and lats will help give you the additional 45 degrees of rotation. You are still using the same motion of the trail shoulder blade and obliques as discussed in the takeaway videos with continued motion. Adding elevation and flexion to create the vertical motion of the arms.
July 21, 2016
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Kyle
So I assume you do to need to further elevate the shoulders after the club gets top 9 0clock
July 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. After the takeaway, you will add elevation and flexion to reach the top. There will be 45 degrees more of shoulder rotation as you blend elevation with some flexion.
July 20, 2016
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Kyle
I have been working on the REF for proper backswing ..my question is when do you flex the right elbow....I assume the flexion is done after you rotate the right scapula inward and elevate the shoulders to a 90degree position
July 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. Flexion of the trail elbow will begin after the takeaway is completed.
July 20, 2016
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Reginald
How does lag work with this drill? Ive been working on wide narrow wide with setting wrist softly more on the downswing. Club should get to same position regardless? Thanks! Ive taken 4 shots my hc with Rotary. You guys are great!
July 18, 2016
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Chuck (Certified RST Instructor)
Great job Reginald! Yes, club gets to same position.
July 18, 2016
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Loran
After pulling the left thumb across the plane body, the backswing becomes complete and immobile, no? I do not need to jerk my left shoulder any further around my body? For some reason, I have the bad habit of adding an aditional circular movement to complete the backswing? I call it tucking my left shoulder?
July 14, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Yes, you do not need to add any additional movement by jerking the lead shoulder. Some players push the lead shoulder to try and take advantage of more shoulder rotation. But, unnecessary in normal circumstances.
July 15, 2016
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Anthony
Maybe I am misunderstanding, but in one of your other videos, you mentioned that the hands stay in front or centered off the chest forming the triangle. In this video, the arms clearly cross the centerline. So, which is it? I have one other question about being connected. A lot of other instructors teaching the single plane emphasize keeping the left armpit closed to keep the arms connected to the body to achieve or maintain the kinetic chain. I have watched over 30 of your videos as of now and never once heard you mention it. Is keeping the left armpit closed necessary to achieve connection?
June 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Anthony. As the trail arm folds the lead arm and hands will be pulled just slightly across centerline. If you keep the lead armpit too connected you will tend to have a more rounded backswing and not allow for proper elevation or forearm rotation.
June 30, 2016
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Richard
I've noticed in my backswing my wrists set so late that my arms keep going until me left arm breaks down because I don't have any wrist hinge built up... Any suggestions??
June 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. Allow for gradual wrist set (Using the Wrist Effectively and Efficiently). Also, the lead arm typically only breaks because the trail arm folded more than 90 degrees.
June 30, 2016
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Loran
What does Upper Arm Rotation refer to? Is this a natural move or deliberate? Is this separate and independent from the right elbow flex ion? How does a player perform this upper arm rotation? Is it a big move or a tiny turn o'clock?
June 28, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. As you fold the trail arm the lead arm is slightly pulled across centerline and has to rotate. You can see that in the Checkpoints Video or the Winter Series Backswing Video. Some players will have to train the motion. Others that remain pretty tension free will see the move happen more naturally or as of consequence to good backswing sequencing.
June 29, 2016
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Loran
Good...exactly, I feel as if I need a lot of tension to create that triangle up to the backswing? But my guess is there is some cross of centerline, yet subtle that does not require big movements? The last movement is the rotation?
June 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. You shouldn't require a lot of tension to create the proper positioning. While watching the video above you can see how relaxed Chuck is. Not a big movement, but the fold of the trail bring the hands/arms slightly across centerline. As you add elevation, flexion and humeral rotation with the trail arm the lead arm will have to rotate as it moves a little across centerline. It will be a blend with the rotation. Not held off until the very end.
June 29, 2016
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Loran
Some clarity. In the final movement to the top of the backswing...is predominantly the right side or left? There should be no other additional movements after the rotation? I am trying not to get creative with my swing on the golf course?
June 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. You might feel the wrists settle a little bit at the finish of the backswing. Pulling back with the trail side. Allowing the lead arm to swing and follow proper motion while allowing the wrist to settle properly.
June 29, 2016
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Steve
I have had a Eureka moment, it finally came to me while watching your videos about elevating your arms up and down, and keeping them in front of your body. This drill along with the "Throw the Ball Drill" helped me get much, much longer drives. I have always had very poor Iron play throughout my 50+ years of playing this game. I have had lesson after lesson to no avail. I realize now why I could hit woods (Metals) with great success, but never irons, and it's because I have been a sweeper of the ball, and was never better than a 12 Handicap. It's amazing how you can watch and read these drills, but your mind keeps pulling you back to what your swing has been.... no longer, I have the real image and feel of a proper swing. Thank you for the unique teaching methods I couldn't find from other pros.
June 12, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Steve. Thanks for the post and compliments of our instruction. Keep improving your distance and game!
June 13, 2016
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John
So add the arm lifting while pulling the right shoulder blade back and shifting your weight to the right side. Do you feel like at the top of the back swing you get to set point such that you could stop and then start the weight shift to the left at will or should it be an immediate weight shift to the left? Thank you.
June 3, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
You want to start transferring the weight back over to the lead side right before the completion of the backswing. Remember, we never hit positions in the golf swing, we move through positions. You will hit positions when drilling but you need to work up to making all the movements tie together. Hope that helps.
June 3, 2016
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John
awesome advise.
June 3, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks John. Let me know if you need any further information at all.
June 3, 2016
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John
Chuck, Thank you for your awesome training program. My question is about the take away/back swing stage 1, 2 and 3. I find it hard to keep a smooth back swing. When I use my shoulders to get to stage 1 I feel like I am turning in one direction and then there is the shoulder lift in stage 2 which is a vertical movement. Then there is stage 3 which is a continuation of the shoulder turn. The transition from turning to lifting is not as smooth as i feel it should be. Watching you swing you look like you are doing all stages at the same time. How important is it to do them in sequence and how can I get the transition from turning to lifting for stage 2 and 3 smoother? Thank you.
June 3, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey John, great question here. You always want your body to be rotating when you are adding the arm movements to the swing. If you have nailed down a full body turn with proper weight shift to load of the right side, which should always be the primary focus points, then the added arm moments need to be added to a body that is rotating constantly. If you focus mostly are the arms, then you will tend to shut down the body rotation. Hope that helps.
June 3, 2016
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James
Can you provide a checkpoint or two for me re: the back swing and takeaway? How far have the shoulders turned at the end of the takeaway/beginning of the backswing? 90 degrees? At the end of the takeaway the hands are waist high with the club toe up? Correct?
June 2, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. The takeaway will be a 45 degree shoulder turn with the full swing ending up at 90 degrees. At the end of the takeaway the hands are inline with the trail pocket and toe up (RST Pencil Tee Video).
June 2, 2016
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Paul
There seems to be a lot of opinion on the proper length of the back swing .The longer the back swing the more clubhead speed you can develope they say but won't that set up more opportunity for things to go wrong.
May 28, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Paul. The longer you swing back the more opportunity for error. We found through our research that the optimum length will be maintained when the arms are elevated to the base of the pectoral and the trail arm folds 90 degrees or less.
May 29, 2016
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Garret
I have taken many lessons probably 8-10 and nobody had ever talked about picking the arms up. Only until I figured it out myself did I start to notice it. I have still having a very hard time incorporating it into my swing however.
May 24, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Garret, make sure you take your time with the process and keep the primary movements into the backswing of weight shift and rotation. Possibly take a look at the pool noodle shoulder elevation video to help you gradually build in some elevation and give yourself some good reference points. Own the body movements first and then ramp the speed up when performing the movements the more you become proficient.
May 25, 2016
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James
when i look at my swing on video my shoulders are level with the ground at the top of the swing. I am also getting deep with my arms. could losing my spine angle be a reason for getting deep?
May 19, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. Could be loss of spine angle or lead side push (more likely). Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm and the Winter Series Backswing Video to help tell both arms what to do going back.
May 20, 2016
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Loran
Then, the major check point is the right lat...not the right shoulder scapula?
May 14, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. The trail lat pulls the trail scapula.
May 14, 2016
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Bob
Hi, Is it essential for the right arm to be at 12 o'clock at the top of the swing. I find this difficult to achieve and sometimes bow the left wrist when pushing to hard. Thanks
May 10, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bob. It is ideal. However, some players due to flexibility and lack of external humeral rotation may be a little outside the 12 O' Clock norm. Take a look at Fixing the Flying Elbow to test flexibility.
May 10, 2016
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Kevin
Hey team, I wasn't sure where to post this but I figure this was as good a place as any... When I practice, I take my 7 iron and my 3 wood to the range...Reason bejng, Harvey Penick said that's pretty much the only club you need t ok practice with because the swing is essentially the same..the 3 wood bc that seems to be my biggest area of weakness even before RST. So, what I'm seeing is that my 7 iron is getting to be a lot more consistent, I'm even beginning to be able to hit draws and fades controllably. But it seems that as soon as I pick up my 3 wood. My swing goes to hell and I begin topping the ball or if I hit it flish, then I block it off to the right (not slice), just block Thoughts?
May 5, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Kevin. Most players when trying to hit the 3 Wood and then start to experiencing the top shot are trying to lift the ball off the ground. You still are wanting to zero out the angle or hit a little down on it. Stay with the shot. Don't add too much secondary axis tilt (LADD Video and Level Shoulders Drill). Consistent and constant release (Curing Elbow Pain Video and Fix Your Release).
May 6, 2016
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Kevin
Thanks, Craig. I'll watch those and work on them. Should I leave it in the bag and keep working with my 7, and keep getting the fundamental 5 steps down?
May 6, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Kevin. For right now, I don't think focusing solely on the 5 Step and just the 7 iron would hinder progress at all.
May 6, 2016
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Kevin
Thanks, Craig. I'll watch those and work on them.
May 6, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
You're welcome. Thanks.
May 6, 2016
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Kip
Hi, guys. This is a question about feel in Move 2. I've always had a terrible time with the backswing, primarily Move 2 (which the entire golf universe seems to think is trivial after a proper takeaway). I haven't sent in more than one set of videos because my cat can see what's wrong in the video. I'm a habitual over-rotator, and my hands seem too low and behind me at the top. What seems to work after a decent takeaway is this: 1) My left (lead) bicep needs to stay close to my left pec during the takeaway and rest of the backswing; 2) I have to feel like I'm only elevating my arms in Move 2, and if I keep the pec-bicep connection the lead shoulder will rotate under my chin on its own; 3) The way I elevate my arms is to think of my protracted left arm as a lever or the arm of a clock, with the club extended at the top of my lead hand; 4) I deliberately hinge the toe up after the takeaway; 5) The arms feel like they're going straight up after the takeway, and all the Move 2 effort and movement is felt in my arms. Does this make any sense? I hate to work on it if the entire concept is off, and this has far more arms-awareness and effort than anyone ever talks about in Move 2. If I get in the right stop at the top, Move 3 is incredibly easy and natural. It just flows. Otherwise, using the same downswing move when starting with hands that are behind me and too low, I'm an injury or property damage waiting to happen. Sorry for the length of this and thanks for the help!
April 30, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Kip, We MUST work on getting you not to over rotate before be work on any hand and arm positions at the top of the swing. If you are over rotating, then you are going to be chasing your tail (little cat humor) in circles trying not to get the hands and arms from getting too deep. Have you worked on making sure your lower body is stable and loaded properly first and you are maintaining axis tilt at the top of the swing? These areas are mission critical before we start correcting the hand and arm movements in your swing. Send in a swing for review and let us take a closer look to see how we can help you. If we can correct the over rotation first, then we can make the arm movements much more simple.
May 1, 2016
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Kip
Thanks much for the quick reply, Chris. I needed to hear that. I'll send in a swing video, hoping I don't turn the videographer to stone.
May 1, 2016
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James
I feel the coil in my obliques during the takeaway, but that coil goes when the hips are brought around by the rotation of my upper body. Is this the right feeling? Or what would the right feeling be?
March 30, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. You should feel the load in the trail glute and the core. You may lose a little of the feeling when the hips start to coil more in the backswing because of how much the trail shoulder pull is involved in the rotation of the lower half.
March 31, 2016
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Arjan
Hi is it a correct feeling that during backswing, I feel tension in the right shoulder. It is in the muscle on the back ( above triceps). Especially when I try to keep the elbows in front of me. I guess this needs some muscle training
March 21, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Arjan. In the initial training feeling some coil or tension in the shoulder blade is common. Make sure you aren't wrenching the blade. But, feeling a pull shouldn't be any cause for alarm.
March 22, 2016
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Arjan
Thanks. I experienced that this piece of tension and coil is absolutely essential. Else i don't get the right elbow in front of me and no hip turn. Hip turn happend just automatically in my experience
March 22, 2016
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Orlando
I find that I continue to struggle completing a full backswing with my back to the target. From video, my swing looks short with my arms lifting too much in an attempt to complete backswing. I find when I lift my left heel at the top of the backswing I complete a more full backswing. Is this advisable?
March 14, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Orlando. I would shy away from too much lead heel raise at the end of the backswing. Some players have to due to flexibility. Try as best you can to not raise too much. Also, see what results you can get from the Winter Series Backswing Video and the Weight Shift Video Part 2 where you would allow for a little hip turn.
March 14, 2016
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Kyle
I recently joined..where to I find the 9-3 drill Thx
March 8, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Kyle. The 9 to 3 Drill is located in the Downswing Section.
March 8, 2016
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GREG
k
February 23, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Greg. Do you have a question?
February 23, 2016
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Bill
I have always had problems with my back swing. It never seems to be consistent and seems to change from week to week. Subtle changes may be but destructive nevertheless. Any suggestions as to how I can sort this out ?
February 12, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bill. Depends on the backswing issue. Right arm fly, over rotation, weight, etc. Does your problem start in the takeaway or is the takeaway correct then error to the top? If you can provide a little more of the issues going on I would be happy to help.
February 12, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, Thanks for your reply. I am going to post a video for review. Perhaps then you will be able to suggest what to do to sort things out. When I look at my swing the take away varies from time to time and I have no idea why.
February 13, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bill. More than happy to help with a swing review. That is your best bet to finding the culprit.
February 13, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, Many thanks for the review. When you said tighten up the right arm, you meant don't flex past 90 degrees right ? I lose some height on the backswing when I do that, but I guess that is due to lack of some flexibility ? Once again thanks for your help.
February 29, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bill. Yes, no more than 90 Degrees of Flexion in the trail arm. Flexibility sometimes can be a factor. But, you are doing a good job allowing elevation, flexion and a little bit of wrist to help with vertical movement. I don't think your height is bad at all.
February 29, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, My reply to myself, good one to reply to myself, was meant for you. Many thanks for your help I will work on all the videos. I will let you know how it goes. I will post a new swing review when I have had the chance to work on things.
February 15, 2016
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Bill
I have submitted two videos for review. One down the line and one face on. I also made some comments. I dont know if you can review or if someone else will. Anyway some help would be appreciated.
February 13, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, Many thanks for your review. A lot to work on but I will certainly give it a good go. One this I know where the left shoulder going down came from and that is because I used to get really flat with my shoulders at the top so I started to try and swing more steeply. Of course one fault to fix another fault is never the answer. I will work on all the videos you suggested.
February 15, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Bill. The shoulders need to rotate around the spine properly for the correct angle. You fixed a fault with a fault. Get to work! You have a good swing. This is just the root cause to a few of the problems and why you can't create any consistency. It will get better.
February 15, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, I have been working hard on all the aspects you mentioned I should work on. I have one point I need to clarify and that is on the takeaway the right arm must bend, but in my case the right arm seems to bend to much and what happens then is the backswing doesn't have any height. How do I know my right arm is folding correctly and how much is to much ? Sorry the right arm bending on the backswing once the takeaway is completed I mean. Thanks.
February 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Bill. The trail arm has to add flexion to help with getting the club vertical. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm. You don't want it bending more the 90 degrees. Use the Pool Noodle Drill to help with elevation while adding a little flexion to not overdo or under-do.
February 20, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, I have uploaded another couple of videos. I dont know if it will be you doing the review again on my progress. I do hope so as it would be good to get some continuity in regards to the instructor doing the review.
February 27, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, I have been working hard on all the aspects you mentioned I should work on. I have one point I need to clarify and that is on the takeaway the right arm must bend, but in my case the right arm seems to bend to much and what happens then is the backswing doesn't have any height. How do I know my right arm is folding correctly and how much is to much ?
February 20, 2016
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Bill
Hi Craig, Many thanks. I will definitely get to work.
February 15, 2016
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Loran
My right lat (shoulder) tilts backward and my elevation is too high up. What caused this type curvature and not the stack and tilt?
February 10, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Are you referring to the Reverse Spine Tilt? You could be over doing the shoulder pull in the backswing or not rotating around the spine properly. Take a look at the 5-Step Process to Fixing Golf Swing Flaws. You can see a good way to fix the reverse tilt issue.
February 10, 2016
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Donald
I have been searching for a video that Chuck created on the downswing where he demonstrates swinging with each are separately and ultimately swinging with both arms. It helps one understand the function of each arm in the downswing. Can you help me locate it in your video section? Thanks in advance.
January 25, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Donal. I believe you are referring to the Re-Shaping Your Swing for Lag in the Introduction Section.
January 25, 2016
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Andrew
What equipment does Chuck currently use? Could you please offer a list of his irons and woods, and which shafts, stiffness and lofts he uses? thanks.
January 21, 2016
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Currently he plays Taylormade blades (standard loft and lies and length) with factory stock stiff shafts. Driver is TM 430, also factory stiff shaft. Titleist fairway woods (not sure which model) factory stiff shafts.
January 22, 2016
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Tom
When I elevate my left arm on the backswing I often have difficulty with my left shoulder (I am a right handed player!) coming in contact with my chin. What would be the most likely cause and how do I correct it? Thanks!
January 20, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tom. It would either be a setup issue or you are over elevating the lead arm. It can touch the chin a little. But, make sure you aren't rounding the spine and bending from the waist too much (Proper Hinging from the Hips Video). Also, take a look at the Checkpoints: 5 Mins to the Perfect Backswing and Pitfalls Video. Make sure the elevation point is correct.
January 21, 2016
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Andrew
After we get the turn of the shoulders against the hips in move one, is move two exclusively elevation of the arms and flexion to complete the backswing? Or is there additional active turn of the hips and shoulders?
January 14, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Andrew. You will continue to pull with the trail shoulder blade (creating 45 degrees more turn) as you add the elevation and flexion of the trail arm. The pull from the blade will help the hips rotate to the top.
January 14, 2016
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Tom
I have a very difficult time keeping my right elbow down and in the box. Any suggestions!
January 11, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tom. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm and the Over Swinging Video. You are probably losing your External Humeral Rotation.
January 11, 2016
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Tom
Hi Craig, Thanks for the info. I'll let you know how they help!
January 11, 2016
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Marc
Hi Craig, I have just sent you a video of my swing. Could you please confirm something for me. I get the feeling that all I need to do at the end of move 1 if I turned my shoulders properly during move 1 and kept my right arm straight is to move my arms up. There is no need to try to continue the rotation of the shoulders whilst I am raising my arms as it results in over swinging and just bringing the arms up will complete the 90 degree shoulder turn. Best, Marc
January 7, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marc. It would be hard to say if you solely lifted the arms that you would continue to rotate. Sometimes that could further complicate the problem. Try not to wrench the right shoulder blade when rotating. It is a small move. You need it to keep turning, but don't try to force lock it into position.
January 7, 2016
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Loran
Move two, the elevation is an extension of move 1, the takeaway? This is not an up and down movement, but an diagonal elevator? Then, there is one final step of flex ion ? So, really, from the initial setup to the top of the backswing, it is more than 45 degrees of turn--not like the rotary plane line suggests?
January 2, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. Elevation will only be up and down (vertical). The folding of the trail arm will bring the lead arm across centerline giving that diagonal look. There will be 90 degrees of shoulder rotation from setup. As you rotate the arms will elevate vertically, then the folding of the trail arm will bring the hands a little across centerline.
January 3, 2016
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Loran
The club on top should feel close to my head? When I do the flex ion to get on plane, I feel however there is a big gap from my head to my hands,...something different from the four square drill!
January 2, 2016
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. The hands/club shouldn't feel beside your head. There should be some room. Ideally, the hands over the trail shoulder.
January 3, 2016
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James
Hi can I just say about my reviews its in great detail but my last review I had 5 videos I was told to work on but that is to much to learn in 2 weeks I feel like Iam wasting my reviews ! James B
November 27, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello James. When an Instructor lists more than 1 or 2 videos it is more geared for knowledge purposes and one drill might hit home better with a student than another. Focus on the goal from the review. Whether it is a turning, arm flexion, etc... Pick the better drill for you to work on. Request in your next review that you would like more specific guidance and a little over whelmed by the amount of content.
November 27, 2015
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Glen
I'm confused. I was incorrectly pushing my left arm across my chest during the take away and ended up getting the club behind me so I have been doing the shoulder rotation drills and bucket drill and improving and trying to keep my left arm from never crossing my chest even at the top of the back swing, But at the end of Chuck's back swing when he folds the right arm and this takes the left arm across the chest and also seems to increase the left arm elevation (more than the 2"-3"). So I guess the left arm does cross the chest, but not until later and the elevation is more than 2-3"? Can you explain this to me? Thanks.
November 10, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Glen. The left arm will cross center line slightly. It moves across the chest as a function of folding the right arm correctly. You only want to elevate the arms to the base of the pectoral. But, as the left arm rotates (when the right arm starts to add flexion) it will be a little higher. Take a look at the 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing Checkpoints and Pitfalls Video. Clay and I will demonstrate the proper elevation, but it will be easy to see the left arm motion.
November 10, 2015
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Glen
Thanks. That helps. I will check out the videos.
November 10, 2015
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Terry
at the very top, what does the right hand doing? Is the wrist slightly bent or does the rotation of the right forearm provide enough movement to enable a flat left wrist at the top.
November 10, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Terry. The trail wrist will have a touch of hinge as the lead wrist will be flat. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Effectively and Efficiently Video and the 5 Minutes to Perfect Backswing Checkpoints Video.
November 10, 2015
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Loran
I take it then the swing is a 45 degree angle coming to the top? The takeaway and the backswing is a combination of the golf swing (or rotary?).
October 28, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Loan. I am unsure of the question with regard to rotary or golf swing. However, the takeaway will be 45 degrees of shoulder rotation and then another 45 to the top. 90 Degrees of shoulder and roughly 45 degrees of hip for full backswing.
October 29, 2015
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Rob
HI guys, After my first video review, I have been working on a correct takeaway. I notice that the momentum of my swing takes my arms and hands way outside my body (into zone 3). I find that if I consciously engage my right shoulder muscles during the takeaway, I have a better position at the top of my backswing. I am curious if this is a good/common approach to fix this problem? I am trying to keep my grip relaxed and I am concerned that I would be adding extra tension to my swing. Thank you, Rob Rob
October 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Rob. You don't want to lock your shoulder muscles, but you need to use them in order to have a correct takeaway and backswing. Work on the 2 Inch Hand Drill in the Role of the Right Arm Video. The tension you feel in the blade while doing the drill correctly is about as much as you are looking for.
October 16, 2015
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Marc
When you stand upright and you perform the shoulder elevation, right elbow flexion and rotation, will somebody standing in front of you only see the side of your left hand i.e. they will not be able to see the back of your hand only the side of the hand (knowing of course that both hands will be at an angle). I am trying to determine the impact of the rotation on the left hand as if I was only performing the flexion of the right elbow, a person standing in front of me would be able to see the back of my hand albeit at an angle.
October 13, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marc. From your description you shouldn't be seeing the back of the hand from a front angle perspective.
October 13, 2015
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Marc
Perfect
October 13, 2015
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chad
Can you explain or point to some other videos that describe the right elbow flexion at the top? I feel this is the part I am missing. Is this what allows the right palm to be under the grip at the top? I always feel like my right hand is kind of on top of the grip at the top, making me push with the right shoulder to start the downswing.
September 20, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chad. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm, Using the Wrist Efficiently and Effectively (right wrist positioning), and the How to Create a Swing Plane.
September 21, 2015
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Marcus
Hey guys, what causes the club to get laid off at the top of the swing??
September 14, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marcus. There are a lot of reasons why the club can be laid off. Over rotation of the lead arm in the backswing. Lack of vertical wrist set. Improper flexion and rotation of trail elbow/arm. These are the typical ones though.
September 14, 2015
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Jason
Is this a correct sensation/ technique? Right shoulder pull to initiate the takeaway keeps my arms in the box and as a result, during move 1 and 2, I feel a limit to how much I can elevate my arms without causing excess tension in my back. Whereas, if I do not initiate with a pull, I just rotate the shoulders (perhaps with more of a push feeling) I find that there is no analogous limit to arm elevation. Hence it is easier to over do it, and/or, cause another angle to breakdown such as the anterior side oblique leading to a reverse "C"
September 7, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. Yes. If you don't pull and keep the shoulders in the box. Then, it is much easier to over elevate and push back with the lead arm in the backswing. The pull and proper usage of the shoulder blades will help the arms not run away as much.
September 7, 2015
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Preston
I understand staying in the box is important and having the rear lat (right lat for right handed golfer) engaged. But if I focus on staying in the box and having that engaged on the backswing and part of the downswing, how does one transition to it being a mostly left hand dominated downswing it the focus is on the tension of the right lat, right elbow flexion, and rotation. I haven't gotten this part of the swing down pat, but I feel like when I get closer to having it correct, it just becomes a more right side dominate golf swing on the downswing.
September 3, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Preston. It sounds like you are over engaging the trail lat. If you over do the pull the other muscles won't perform their proper function. Pull Right to Move Right. Pull Left to Pull Left. But, don't tense just one muscle to max capacity. Also, make sure you transition. The transition is the Neutral part of the swing. Don't slam the gear from reverse to drive. Allow yourself to shift the weight and start in sequence form the ground up coming down. Perfecting Lower Body Stability Video.
September 3, 2015
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Preston
Thank you very much! I will take a look at that ASAP
September 4, 2015
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Simon
What I am struggling with here is the position at the top of the swing . For example , you have a video on here which shows Jason day at the top of his swing, his forearms make a perfect triangle at the top and both his elbows are parallel to the ground , you could draw a straight line across them and it is as near as straight as you could get . Your methods do not do this and the right elbow is always going to below the left at the top , can you explain this please, thanks
September 2, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Simon. The trail elbow isn't always going to be below. Some players leave their elevation too much or add different aspects in their arm swing. Also, different body types, hinge, and tilt will change the appearance. Nevertheless, the goals still remain the same even in Day's swing. If you have good elevation to the base of the pectoral and maintain good external humeral rotation with the trail arm. Everything should be on par.
September 3, 2015
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Jim
I have read Leadbetters book THE A SWING, and I have found it is an effective way to play. Have the Rotary Swing personnel taken any kind of position on this method of swinging? It seems to me that it accomplishes some of the objectives outlined in the rotary swing. It is a much different way of completing the backswing, but seems to take less effort. Is there a downside to THE A SWING, specifically with respect to the backswing?
August 23, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jim. We've had many discussions about the A-Swing. Take a look at Part 5 Using the Wrist in the Introduction Section. Here Chuck will discuss one particular pitfall about the A-Swing Backswing.
August 24, 2015
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Donald
Hi. Is keeping the tricep and pec feeling connected throughout the backswing a good feeling to have..?? Cheers. Donald
August 19, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Donald. Yes, keeping the feeling that the upper bicep and pectoral maintain a little connection can help.
August 19, 2015
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Taweesak
After practice 9 to 3 drill, I feel that I do not need to do a right elbow flexion during a back swing but it will automatic happens during when I shift back at the down swing. It make me feel release more powerful. Is it correct move ? And Could it apply to a full swing ?
August 9, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Taweesak. Some players don't need to feel a lot of flexion in the backswing because it happens naturally. Just watch for the trail arm to hit the correct positions. Elevation base of pec, flexion no more than 90 degrees, and a little external humeral rotation.
August 10, 2015
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Jason
After move 1, I find I have one or two choices of swing thoughts 1) focus on arm flexion and don't focus any more on rotation: with the assumption that I will auto rotate or the other 2) don't forget to rotate shoulders as well. is there any concern of over rotating shoulders to the back as long as your right knee is "firm"
August 7, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. You would need to be very flexible to over rotate while the trail knee is maintained. You can, but it will be difficult. Maintain the knee as you add rotation and flexion.
August 7, 2015
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Stuart
WhT do you think is the preferred swing thought--using the core muscles to rotate to the top of the backswing or trying to rotate the right shoulder behind the head? Thanks
August 5, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stuart. Both are good thoughts. The core and shoulder blade will both be involved. Thinking of pulling the trail shoulder behind the head is a simple, yet effective thought though.
August 5, 2015
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David
On my backswing completion I can only get the hands maybe right shoulder high. If I try and force it higher I feel I'm too uncomfortable. I'm 64 and have never had a high hands backswing. Do I need to do lots of stretching exercises forcing the hands higher or is it a fundamental I'm missing?!
August 5, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. You can stretch to allow for a little more shoulder elevation. However, the elevation can be variable depending on age and flexibility. Don't strain yourself. Take a look at Understanding Arm Elevation in the Advanced Backswing Section.
August 5, 2015
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Alex
What are some drills/checkpoints do you have that could help with my backswing/wrist hinge. Probably my largest issue I have is the breakdown of my right wrist (i am RH) during the wrist hinge. The club becomes laid off and I have to fight it and always hit blocks or push draws when my wrists save me at impact. I always try to work on this at the range, but when I get to the course to play (I try not to have too many thoughts when I am playing), my natural swing instincts eventually take over. I know the "trace the line" drill, and even have a laser at the end of a practice club to drill this into my swing but it won't take. Any ideas on what else I can try?
August 3, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alex. The Role of the Right Wrist in the Takeaway Section should help you get the club started back correctly. Also, the Using the Wrist Efficiently and Effectively Video in the Introduction Advanced Section. This video should help a little with the feeling of getting the wrist setting correctly versus overly hinging.
August 3, 2015
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Alex
Ok. I have seen the Wrist Efficiently and Effectively Video but not the Role of the Right Wrist. Thanks, I must have skipped over it somehow. cheers
August 3, 2015
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Jason
at the end of the takeaway, how many degrees of the total 45 (for the whole swing), have the hips turned) ie, from move 1 to the start of move 2? the video above makes it appear that the hips are already done by the end of the takeaway and all that he js doing is adding more shoulder elevation followed by arm flexion. Is that more of an illusion of camera angle and from stationary examples?
July 31, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. Sounds more like a camera illusion. The Shoulders (45 Degrees) and the hips (very little). The continued pull from the shoulder blade to the top of the backswing will pull the hips open roughly 35-45 degrees at the top.
July 31, 2015
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Jason
I always have greatly appreciated the replies on the site. I have noticed that somewhere between move one and move to, I tend to still be somewhat closed with the face of the club. all I have been concentrating on is getting shoulder turn, sometimes focusing on right shoulder rotating behind me, other times just concentrating on rotation. either way, am I supposed to add a little manual pronation a little bit of the left arm? I have reviewed the using the wrists effectively video and still don't know. I reviewed the thumbnail as well,
July 27, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. The lead arm has to rotate from the takeaway to the top position. The lead arm will rotate as a function of folding the trail arm correctly. You can see the move well in the Checkpoints Video in this Section Advanced. As you fold the trail arm allow for the lead to rotate. If you have been holding it shut too much. You might feel a little exaggeration of the lead arm rotation.
July 27, 2015
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Jason
when I watch my videos I think that is happening, but I am not toe up at the end of take away and as a sidenote, if the right elbow pit is supposed to be outward, any harm in presetting the elbow at address to be more outward facing?
July 27, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. You don't want to externally rotate the arm too much at setup or lock it into an outward facing position. Make some left arm only swings while still pulling back with the right shoulder blade. See if you can feel the face rotate.
July 27, 2015
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Jason
as I learn to merge move 1 and move 2: am I supposed to have achieved a 90° shoulder turn (45° hip turn) and have completed arm elevation BEFORE I start right arm elbow flexion? -or is it acceptable to start right arm elbow flexion when you still have some remaining shoulder rotation and arm elevation yet to do? I find myself doing more of the latter than the former
July 25, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jason. The majority of elevation will be done by the time the trail arm start to fold. However, think about it as you will elevate and start to add some flexion as you continue to rotate to the top.
July 26, 2015
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Dan
July 25, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dan. Do you have an additional question?
July 25, 2015
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Dan
No...thx for the response.
July 25, 2015
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Dan
I seem to be relatively flexible and can hold my hips to about a 10% turn on my backswing and still make a full shoulder turn. I've always heard the hips should turn about 35%. Should I try to maintain a 10% hip tu to create more torque, or is that a bad thing?
July 25, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dan. The hips turning isn't necessarily a bad thing. You can create more torque by less hip usage. However, you will have to tendency to unwind them too quickly on the downswing and spin out. Allowing for a little more hip turn won't affect you ability to still produce some quality shots and power. In the RST swing they will turn about 35 to 45 degrees.
July 25, 2015
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stephen
What about tempo, should there be a pause at the top of the back swing?
July 22, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stephen. You can have a smooth transition or start the downswing before completing the Backswing. I like to think of it like a car. Reverse, neutral, then drive. Reverse - Backswing, Neutral - Transition shifting weight back into lead side, Driver -Downswing.
July 22, 2015
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stephen
Is the left arm perfectly straight at the top, due to my flexibility I find difficult ?
July 22, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stephen. Ideally, you will want a straight lead arm. It can be soft, but I definitely don't want you to lock it to maintain position. As long as it isn't overly bending or causing narrow issues a soft lead arm is okay.
July 22, 2015
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Jarek
So my takeway starts off really well but then will break down a bit once I get to about 7 oclock but then I correct it by doing a good final move here in the back swing. Struggling to get the sensation when I actually swing it back as opposed to when I watch the club eyes fixed going all the way back. Any tips? Its not drastically off line but I want it to be perfect.
July 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jarek. By breakdown do you mean the trail arm starts to fold or the toe stops rotating? If the trail arm folds early master the 2 inch hand drill in the Role of the Right Arm Advanced Takeaway Section Video. If it is the toe make sure you allow for some gradual forearm rotation. Bucket Drill and the Unleash Your Thumbnail for Power in the Takeaway and Advanced Takeaway Section.
July 16, 2015
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Dustin
Hey guys, if I'm working on ingraining my complete backswing - what is the best way to self check multiple reps? Sometimes I feel like I'm cheating using a mirror - I feel my mind auto corrects any wrong movement and may not be "ingraining" if that makes sense. Is it better to record a few minutes of 20-40 reps, replay and look for problems? Whats the best practice for ingraining move 1 and 2 while making sure positions remain sharp throughout the process? Thanks!
July 9, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dustin. Using a camera is a great tool. Make sure you own the position in the mirror and camera first. Filming some good reps after doing so to make sure they are repeated equally as well is a good check.
July 10, 2015
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Chris
Where does the hinging of the wrist occur? Is it after the takeaway and gradually throughout move 2? Is it an active hinging of the wrist or does it occur naturally, like passive hinging due to the weight of the club? I tend to overuse the hands so lately I have been trying to not actively use my wrists. On camera it seems that my takeaway is like it should be and at the top I achieve a nice flat left wrist position. Is this something you would be advocating or should I bring back in an active hinging of the wrist? Thanks and regards, Chris
July 7, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chris. The lead wrist will have some set and the trail wrist will have some hinge to it at the top of the backswing. The hinge should be more of a natural reaction versus forced. Take a look at Using the Wrist Effectively and Efficiently in the Introduction Advanced Section.
July 8, 2015
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vivek
The way we follow a sequence in downswing, is there a sequence for backswing ?
July 4, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Vivek. The shoulders will turn another 45 degrees to reach a full turn (90). The hips will turn approximately 45 degrees. The arms will continue to elevate as you add flexion and external humeral rotation with the trail arm.
July 5, 2015
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David
The shoulder movement from a forward position ( Flexion?) in the setup to the top of the back swing where is a lot less is great. Questions: At what point after completing the back swing, does the shoulder begin moving back towards the ball and when in the swing should you begin extending your spine to allow you to come through the impact zone. Does this decrease the shoulder tilt in during the back swing?
June 28, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. You will start to shift the weight to the lead side first. Followed by lead oblique pull to open the hips, then the shoulders will start to unwind while using the left lat to pull the arms back in front of the body. Once you start getting into the trail thigh position coming down you will start to straighten the lead knee to pull leverage from the ground. 5 Minutes to the Perfect Downswing in the Downswing Section and the Perfecting Lower Body Stability in the Weight Transfer Advanced Section.
June 29, 2015
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robert
When you preset with arm elevation and fold the right arm with flexion. You bend into posture and rotate your torso. The rotation feels so full with little effort. Then I try the backswing without preset the rotation seems to fall short. Am I suppose to feel the full rotation like the preset routine?
June 23, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robert. You should be able to re-create or have the same sensation from the ball. Feel like that trail shoulder is going right behind you.
June 23, 2015
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robert
I am a little confused. When the backswing gets to about chest high with left arm parallel to ground. Are the shoulders still turning or do they stop and the arms are carried to top in a relation to the plane of the swing?
June 21, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Robert. The shoulders will rotate all the way to the top. Once the lead arm is parallel to the ground there won't be a whole bunch, but just a little. In fact, due to the massive pull the lead shoulder will actually protract some. Keep rotating as you add elevation, flexion and ext humeral rotation.
June 21, 2015
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Lee
Craig, thank you for the review. I have a question. Should my right arm be determining the amount of internal rotation my left arm has instead of me manually doing it? Should I be manually doing it at all? If so I must have misunderstood a review before when I thought I needed to work on manually internally rotating my left arm. I know too though that I had been exaggerating the internal rotation of my left arm manually to try to get into the right position at the top of the backswing. Is the right elbow being moved in slightly at the top of the backswing what causes that needed internal rotation of the left arm so that you can keep the club from crossing the line at the top? Sorry there are so many questions. Thanks in advance for the answers to them.
June 18, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The folding of the trail arm allows the lead arm to rotate. Let the arm follow the adding of flexion. You manually held the lead arm from internally rotating and had the tendency to add external rotation. You just over did the work. Now, that it is working better you need to allow it to do its job versus forcing it too much. Same motion, but follows as a function of folding the trail arm.
June 18, 2015
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Seth
I get confused when I hear that the arms need to stay in front of the body. Does the left bicept not cross the chest at all? Does it not touch the chest? If it touches the chest does that mean there's too much "pushing" from the left arm?
June 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Seth. The arms only cross centerline as the trail arm folds. You don't want to manually push them across the chest. The lead bicep will cross the chest a little, but not too much. The lead bicep shouldn't be pressed against the chest at the top of the swing.
June 16, 2015
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Freddy
As the club reaches the top, I noticed that my shoulder and chin potentially make contact. Is it ok for my chin to actually contact the little pocket my shoulder creates? (Almost like an archer's knoc point) I can really feel that I'm reaching the top. Or would it be better if my shoulder was just moving under my chin ?
June 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Freddy. The shoulder should glide under the chin. Make sure you aren't rounding at the neck too much in the setup and/or elevating the lead arm too much at the top.
June 16, 2015
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Freddy
Great call, Craig. A good reminder to keep good posture, including head / chin up. So….What is the correct position for the lead arm at the top ? The Trahan "vertical swing" I was taught, emphasizes a really big lift at the top.
June 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
I actually played with/against his son a ton back in the day. A little to lift for RST. The arms should only be elevated to the base of the pectoral and the rest of the vertical motion is taken care of by flexion. Take a look at the Checkpoints Video and 5 Minutes to a Perfect Backswing Pitfalls Video. Both Clay and I will give you a good check point of left arm elevation.
June 16, 2015
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Freddy
Thanks Craig. Will check it out...
June 17, 2015
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Freddy
I've seen DJ's swing, real time and slow-mo. Setup is very Trahan-ny, but after that, it DJ's swing seems remarkably more conventional. His wrists hinge, he's past 3/4 turn, he's even a bit laid off at times. LOL. I guess he's adapting to what actually works for him. Either way, I've found the rotary swing more to be more effective for me.
June 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Yes, even back in the day his swing was vertical. But, still had some characteristics that I didn't see in the swing surgeon's theory.
June 17, 2015
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Richard
I was always a left sided player pushing that side back. The right side glide creates a good position for me not being to inside or outside. Just so I fully understand correctly, does / how does the left side assist from the end of the takeaway to the top of the back swing? I have felt the left side engaged if I rotate the left forearm and in some cases no feeling on the left side if I achieve the rotation with the right forearm. I assume there is absolutely no push from the left shoulder. Forgive the lengthy question but I have been fighting left side vs right for quite a while. Rich
June 16, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Richard. The left arm will rotate as a function of folding the right arm correctly. It will tend to rotate and elevate. There will be some left shoulder protraction at the end of the backswing. But, that will come from proper pulling of the right side. Right side to go back and left side to come down.
June 16, 2015
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Richard
Thanks
June 16, 2015
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Ray
After playing for many years as a 2 and then regressing to a 9, I now believe I have the best backswing I've ever had using the RST method. The problem I just ran into after a few days of drills and hitting balls is my right forearm and elbow are hurting like hell and I had to cancel my tee time for Friday. Is this due to making new moves or is it possible I am doing something wrong? I am flushing every club in the bag and hitting my 4 iron 200 yards with a 3 foot fade. I'm 60 and in better shape than most 40 year olds. Please advise.
June 4, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ray. There shouldn't be any undue stress on the body if your backswing is spot on. When you have pain. Do you experience it at the top of the backswing or is it more after impact?
June 4, 2015
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ben
Vijay Singh practices with a towel across the chest connecting to the armpits. If there is no separation of the arms from the chest, I find it awkward to perform the elevation step without disconnecting one or both arms. I know you say to feel the right lat connected as well as the right Glut and Heel. Can you give me a drill on how to feel connection from the arms to the body without feeling like I am boxed in. Is there a video on this I can view? Benny
May 26, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Benny. If you take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section. Chris will discuss the towel drill and the proper motion.
May 26, 2015
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Matthew
Hi, Craig. Thanks for all of your great advice on this site. It is nice to pick a person's brain who has the knowledge to know the why and results of doing certain things in the swing because it really helps me understand why things need to be done in certain ways. After doing move 1 correctly, I start to take the club back on too flat of a plane line where butt of club points out almost a foot or two past ball. Is this a result of over rotation of forearms or wrists or both? The odd thing is that I don't get deep when doing this, I just elevate more to compensate for it. Should I "feel" that the right hand always stays above the left on the way up to get steeper and on plane in the backswing? It is really messing with my downswing sequencing and my accuracy.
May 20, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matthew. Thanks. No problem . When the butt end starts to point too much out in front of the ball going back its usually related to over rotation of the forearm and lack of wrist set. The lead arm rotates as a function of folding the trail arm correctly. You don't need to manually add more. I would also check your wrist set. If you aren't allowing for gradual wrist set throughout (Using the Wrist Efficiently - Introduction Advanced Section) then a late wrist set will force you to elevate too much as a make up move.
May 20, 2015
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Alejandro
Hello! I am now working on reps of only the full takeaway and backswing. I concentrate as hard as I can in using the right arm, right shoulder blade and so on during the takeaway. Then, to complete the backswing I only continue to use the right arm and box rotation. I managed to leave the left arm completely relaxed however "tightened" by the pulling of the right arm (as suggested in the pull / push video). The problem is that I can hardly reach 15 reps before my right shoulder / arm gets tired and I have to stop because it burns. What am I doing wrong ? Can the left arm "help" a little while the right folds ? Thanks in advance.
May 14, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Alejandro. You are over stressing the pull. You need to stay relaxed. The muscle needs to be engaged. Not overly stressed and pulled down. Let the left arm rise a little. But, don't wrench the right shoulder blade in too much. I think you are pulling the lat down with too much force.
May 14, 2015
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charles
the bottom of my swing with both hands on the club is at my sternum so I align it to a couple of inches in front of the ball. But I notice i'm casting the club to. cheers and thx for your help.
May 14, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Charles. If you are casting the club that is probably the culprit. In addition to the Taking a Divot Video. I would also recommend the Re-Shaping Your Swing for Lag in the Introduction Section.
May 14, 2015
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charles
my ball position is a little left of center in line with my shirt logo.
May 13, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. You sound like you are ok. The key is to have the ball just in front of the bottom of the swing arc. As long as its not too close to the lead shoulder joint. All will be ok. Proper Ball Position Setup Section. Also, you need lag and forward shaft lean. Taking a Divot Video Downswing Advanced Section to help with the fat shot referred to earlier with your discussions with R.J.
May 13, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Charles. You sound like you are ok. The key is to have the ball just in front of the bottom of the swing arc. As long as its not too close to the lead shoulder joint. All will be ok. Proper Ball Position Setup Section.
May 13, 2015
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charles
some days on the range I keep hitting it fat others I don't. I pay attention to my weight shift. I can hit it thin just as easy. How can I fix my frustrations on the range? cheers and help.
May 13, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Charles, it's very well possible that you don't have optimal ball position. Check out the "Problems caused by poor ball position" video to see if you're putting the ball in the correct spot in your stance. R.J.
May 13, 2015
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Nacho
Thank u Craig!
May 12, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
No problem Ignacio.
May 14, 2015
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Nacho
Sorry but could it be related to a limited range of motion of my right rotator cuff. Must improve my flexibility. Thank u
May 12, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Flexibility could definitely play a part. Lifting to make up for the range of motion necessary to complete the backswing.
May 12, 2015
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Nacho
By lifting my head up i mean lifting myself up a small fraction. Thank u!
May 12, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
I gotcha. No worries .
May 12, 2015
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Nacho
Hi there! I see my head elevating a fraction during the backswing. The swing is in plane (i worked hard in the 5 min to the perfect backswin drill). Would you be kind enough to let me know why is this actually happening? If not correct could u please help me to fix it? Thank u!
May 12, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ignacio. You could be over elevating and of the weight isn't loading properly in the trail glutes. Make sure the weight placement is over the ankle joints (Finding True Balance Video Setup Section). Understanding Arm Elevation (Backswing Advanced Section). Load the Right Glute (Backswing Section).
May 12, 2015
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Taweesak
At the top of back swing, right elbow flex at 90 degree, My left shoulder seem to be a bit out of box. Should It that be? If yes, do I need to get it back to the box during the downswing and How ?
May 8, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Taweesak. The lead shoulder will have some protraction at the top, but shouldn't be overly shrugging or coming up/out of the box. It will be hard to re-engage him back into the box. Make sure your aren't elevating your trail arm above the base of your pectoral causing the lead arm to shrug up.
May 8, 2015
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Bill
With the right arm flexion my left arm rises a bit and my shoulder (I've a large chest, large shoulders) moves into my chin (not quite as bad, but like Monte) and it pushes my head up forcing my spine angle more upright. In short, a head bob - up with the back swing but down where it should be at impact (if timing is right). Help!
April 28, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Bill, I have a very wide rib cage as well so, I understand your plight. Two things may be happening here, based on the information that you're providing. First, check your stance. When you're at address, put a club up against your back. The back of your head, your spine at your shoulder blades and your rear should all be touching the club. You might find that your chin is dropping to see the ball instead of being hinged from the hips more. This dropping of the chin will decrease the amount of room your shoulders have to rotate. Secondly, you could be getting too much elbow flexion, this will pull the left arm even further across the body. What we feel is 90 degrees is often 135 degrees. You should check your angle created by your upper and lower arm at the top of your swing. This is most easily seen from the opposite of the face on view. If your arm is more than 90 degrees, then you'll know to tone down the elbow flexion. R.J.
April 28, 2015
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Bill
Thanks R.J. My stance/posture didn't meet the club against my back test. Trying to straighten my posture from the shoulder slump/back hump. Will check flexion today at the range. Any exercises/drills you'd recommend to better my posture?
April 29, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Bill, I would recommend just getting used to using your golf posture in your everyday life. Obviously not the hinge from the hips part, but the way that we stand, before the hip hinge, in the golf swing is how we're supposed to stand naturally. When I was working on my posture, I just made sure that I walked around and sat like I was getting ready to hit a golf ball. Eventually, it started happening naturally in my swing. But any of the posture/stance drills on the site should assist you into getting into the correct positions. R.J.
May 5, 2015
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David
Is the backswing one continuous movement or should I actually hit the point at the end of the takeaway then move up from there? I find if I try and make it one continuous movement then I have to rely on timing and if its off at all I can get too deep or too steep in the backswing. Thanks.
April 23, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. You want to make sure you are always rotating. You can feel that the move is up from the takeaway position. My swing for example. I feel I am rotating back. Pulling with the trail shoulder blade all the way to the top. But, from the takeaway position my arms feel very vertical versus working flat around my body.
April 24, 2015
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JONATHAN
I have been doing the backswing drills for about 4 weeks now and seem to do the drills well and finally started using a club and the videos look good. when I start trying to hit a ball the swing feels extremely steep and I go back to some of my old habits and the hands start to get behind me. Am I getting ahead of myself with the full swing? As long as there is no downswing everything looks really good and i dont know how to progress.
April 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jonathan. The new swing feels steep because you are not used to keeping the arms and hands in in front. It is typical to have this feeling when starting back with a ball. My suggestion would be to keep owning your new backswing move. Train your transition (weight shift to the lead leg) Sitting Into the Left Side Video in the Downswing Section - RST Tempo Drill Introduction Section, then start to apply the ball again. It will make it a much smoother transition.
April 17, 2015
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Mads
Ny wrists tend to keep hinging, when I reach the top of my backswing, resulting in the angle between the shaft and the right forearm becoming way less than 90 degrees (almost like downcocking). I would like to keep test 90 degree angle, like you see most better players have at the top of their backswing, as it gets the in a much better position, but I dont know how to keep the right wrist from continue hinging after my arms have stopped moving back. If I could just have a 90 degree angle, the shaft will be no where near parallel to the ground, but the right nok it sometines gets pass parallel.
April 11, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mads. Take a look at the 5 Mins to a Perfect Backswing Pitfalls Video in the Advanced Backswing Section. You are just giving up too much control. Practice gradual hinging, not excessive wrist set going back. You want to narrow coming down. Not at the top.
April 12, 2015
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Mads
Hi Craig. Thanks for your reply. When I reach the top of my backswing, and my arms stop, I have about 90 degrees, but the momentum and weight of the club head makes the club continues a bit further. I've also noticed that the grip loses a bit of the contact with the pad of my left hand around the pinky- and ring finger. All this point in the direction that my grip is too light, right? It just feels like I start casting the club a bit, if I tighten up my grip: I stop having the same amount of lag, when my hands reach my right thigh and I loses a bit of forward shaft lean at impact.
April 12, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mads. It could indicate that it is a little too light when the last two fingers start leaving the pad. However, have you tried starting the downswing sequence early? If you time it correctly, you will be adding the extra downcock more on the way down than losing angle at the top. Potential for some ridiculous lag. Take a look at Starting the Downswing Before Completing the Backswing in this Section.
April 12, 2015
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Matthew
When I complete my backswing, my head drops 3-4" from Dtl. It causes me to get stuck a lot of times and messes me up trying to get to my left heel before I make contact with the ball. It starts slowly in the takeaway and keeps progressing. I also push behind the rush line as well. I try very hard to not feel any tension in my quads, but the heel and glutes only. Is this very common and what triggers it? I don't always do it but it generally starts creeping in. I feel like I do it so that I can feel more powerful in my backswing.
April 4, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matthew. It typically is cause by push from the trail side. However, try working on your lower body stability. Take a look at the Perfecting Lower Body Stability Video in the Weight Shift Advanced Section.
April 5, 2015
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Good day to you, What drills can I work on to stop my right elbow from bending beyond 90 at the top of my swing? (Left arm slightly bends). My shoulders stop turning around 80 degrees then my right elbow bends putting my club across the line. Thank you James
April 3, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey James. A key component of keeping the arm from having more than 90 degrees of flexion is External Humeral Rotation. Take a look at the Over Swinging Video, Fix Flying Elbow and 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section.
April 3, 2015
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Eric
Hi, I have noticed in Chuck's swings and most tour pros that their head swivels a bit during the backswing. At the completion of the backswing it almost seems they are looking out of their left eye at the ball. I noticed in my swings that my head doesn't swivel at all, but does move slightly to the right which I believe is correct. I think since it doesn't swivel this may restrict my turn a bit so I have a couple questions concerning this. Is this more of a dominate eye thing? Where I just want to look at the ball with my right eye, which is my dominate eye? Secondly is this something I need to work on?
March 18, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Its due to more anatomy than anything else. The cervical spine will start to rotate some to aid in rotation. Chuck's neck is fused in the C1C2 area and needs his head to swivel to alleviate some tension. Some players allow for the same movement to take off stress and others it just comes naturally. Mine doesn't move hardly at all, but that is due to my flexibility. Nothing you need to train. Just don't restrict that move if the body is telling you that you need it.
March 18, 2015
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Darren
Hi in a recent review one of my problems was at the completion of takeaway i began folding my right arm causing what was described as too much vertical force which in turn caused the club slightly across the line at top, this was said to be because as going vertical i didnt continue turning right shoulder back and have been asked to blend more turn when elevating, the problem is i physically can't turn any further right side loaded, i feel at completion of takeaway i'm done the only way to go is upwards any thoughts?
March 18, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Darren. 2 things. You could be over turning in the takeaway. It's only 45 degrees and a 2 inch glide. Don't max out the down and in move too fast. Nice a smooth. Secondly, to aid in proper rotation the elevation will alleviate some stress on trying to reach full shoulder turn. Take a look at Understanding Shoulder Elevation in the Backswing Section. Arms and hands go up and down, body left and right. Doing elevation properly will help you turn easier and shouldn't create more of a problem with crossing the line.
March 18, 2015
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Darren
Thanks for reply another question with backswing, my shoulder plane feels very flat when I perform rst drills compared to other previous lesson where told to turn left shoulder on a steeper angle down towards ball is this part of rst module or am I turning right shoulder back incorrectly
March 19, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Darren. The shoulder plane is designated by the spine angle. There is no reason to increase the drop in the shoulders by pushing down with the left. It will feel more leveled out to you.
March 19, 2015
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Steve
As I continue to work with James Rayson on improving posture and takeaway, I want to ask about a related backswing point. I often have a sore upper left arm muscle (deltoid? - the rear side of my upper arm.) It seems to come from pulling my left arm across my chest. This video shows the left arm crossing the chest when right arm flexion pulls it there, so some of this movement seems appropriate. What am I doing wrong to cause the soreness?
March 17, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Steve. The right arm fold will allow the left arm to rotate and pull it a little across center line. You are probably just stressing it out and not allowing for a little natural motion. Relax that left arm. Allow it to rotate some and settle into place. Many in person lessons where my students think their left arm is relaxed and I show them it really isn't. On a side note, check your grip. If your grip is incorrect you will overuse some incorrect left arm muscles. Take a look at the Golf Grip and Being Out of the Box Video in the Advanced Setup Section.
March 17, 2015
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Marco
In my back swing, My club starts going way back. I tried working on keeping my left leg straight but that do sent seem to be the problem, any other explanations and videos to watch?
March 14, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Marco. Are you saying you are over swinging? If that is the case. Focus more on your trail arm positioning. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm on the Advanced Backswing Section. If the trail arm elevates only to the base of the pectoral, has only 90 degrees of flexion, and a touch of external humeral rotation. It will be hard to over swing. Also, the Perfecting Lower Body Stability Video in the Advanced Weight Shift Section would be a good one to check out as well.
March 14, 2015
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Jesse
Right heel,glut, lat
March 11, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Jesse. Do you have a question about the sequence?
March 11, 2015
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Brian
How is this move different from swaying? I am finding that completing the backswng with out reverse pivoting ( because i want to keep ky head from moving off the ball) is difficult. When i get close it really feels like a sway.
March 8, 2015
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Brian
Exactly, I reverse pivot. Working hard to change that pattern. Sometimes an inch feels like a mile.
March 9, 2015
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Brian, We do NOT want to try and deadlock hold the head still during the swing. That is a quick way to reverse pivot for sure. The head can move in the backswing. We look for it to move an inch to an inch and a half or so, that is perfectly fine. If the width of your stance is perfect, then shifting to load up the trail side should not feel like a sway. Check your width and make sure your shift of your hips is only an inch or so to load up.
March 9, 2015
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Matthew
I have played golf with an inside takeaway and a flat plane with my right elbow stuck to my side at the top of my backswing forever. It has taken me quite a while to get my takeaway directly in line with my hands from dtl. I have also managed to get my right elbow even with my pec muscle now so that my plane line is above my shoulders. I am now struggling with my head dropping nearly 6 inches from setup to the top of my backswing trying to coil for power. It is creating a very "stuck" sensation where I have no room to get the club back down to the ball and I'm hitting fat shots as well as a slight over the top move. Any suggestions?
March 6, 2015
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Matthew, if you find yourself struggling with your head dropping while you are working into the backswing like this, I would get the club out of your hands for a bit, check to make sure your posture and setup are perfect and then, cross your arms over your shoulders, shift the hips a bit to load up the trail side and then pull your trail shoulder blade in towards your spine. Check to see that you have loaded the right side properly without increasing the knee flex from where it was at address and then see if the head stayed more level. Do this for a number of reps and slowly add the club back to the mix. Hope that helps.
March 9, 2015
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John
Excuse the spelling errors writing this from the car. Lol
February 6, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Not a problem. No one is perfect. =)
February 6, 2015
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John
Hi, really need your help here, I find when I do the RST takeaway and backswing I feel like there's no tilt to my swing my shoulders feel flat and I think for the reason I can't figure out the downswing which is driving me crazy, when I. More centered with my left shoulder moving down in the takeaway I feel like the downswing is a lot easier please help I started checking out YouTube videos again and I really only want to stick with this sight. Thanks,
February 6, 2015
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
John, please check out the necktie drill on the site to fix your shoulders in your backswing. I think this will help a lot, including helping your downswing transition. RJ
February 6, 2015
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Mario
At the top of the swing my club face points to the sky. I'm working on staying connected with the body to keep the right elbow from flaring. My question is - where should the face of the club be pointing at the top of the swing?
February 5, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mario. You want the club face matching the lead arm at the top of the swing. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently Video in the Introduction Advanced Section. Chris will help guide you along to the correct position at the top.
February 5, 2015
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Martin
Flat Wrist at top of Back Swing? I have a strong left hand grip, I have tried to change to a neutral grip but it does not feel comfortable. Is there anything else that I can do to get a flat wrist at the top? It seems to always be cupped.
February 4, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Martin. We recommend a grip slightly stronger than neutral. It might be more comfortable than you think. Take a look at the Proper Grip Video in the Setup Section. If you are still uncomfortable and want to continue with a very strong grip. It will be tough to achieve a flat left wrist. It will require excess manipulation and a lot of hinge/set in the right wrist. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently Video in the Introduction Advanced Section. Understand the purpose and how the flat left wrist is achieved.
February 4, 2015
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Thomas
In order to stop a flying right elbow do I try to keep the right bicep close as possible to the pec's or actually touching the pec's?
January 14, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tom. You need more external humeral rotation and keeping the connection between the upper bicep and pectoral. Take a look at the Over Swinging Video, 3 Functions of the Right Arm, and 5 Mins to the Perfect Backswing Pitfalls Video in the Advanced Downswing Section. The first two videos will discuss the external humeral rotation and the last will discuss the connection of the upper bicep/pectoral. The connection will be as close as possible. Don't try and glue the bicep to the body. More around the shirt seem going through the arm pit.
January 14, 2015
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greg
Craig: Regarding your reply: Should I keep my upper right arm connected to my right pec throughout the swing? I'm very tall, 6'10", with limited flexibility. Most instructors tell me to let my upper right arm move away from my chest to keep my hands farther away from my body at the top of the backswing and keep my swing arc & radius constant. Thanks!
January 11, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Greg. If you allow the right arm to swing away from the chest it actually will narrow the swing. The arms will move independently of the rotation and work too much around the body. Take a look at the 5 Minutes to a Perfect Backswing Pitfalls Video in the Advanced Backswing Section. In the second topic you will see the connection to show you the difference.
January 11, 2015
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David
Hi guys I'm having trouble getting a full backswing I can only see to get my arms about 10 o'clock Is this from not being very flexible and should I just settle for a short backswing? Or is this caused from some other fault ?
January 10, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. It may be a function of flexibility. Nevertheless, take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Backswing Advanced Section. See how close you can get the trail arm to the base of the pec. If you still struggle. Just remember you don't hit the ball with the backswing. Don't worry about it being a little short. If everything is matched up and in a proper position. You can still play some great golf and hit it a good distance.
January 10, 2015
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David
Could someone tell me in the full backswing at what point should I feel like I start folding my right arm? thanks.
January 7, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. Most players feel as if the right arm never folds, even though it actually will. The right arm will begin to fold just after the completion of Move 1.
January 8, 2015
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Mark
It appears that at the top of the swing the club shaft is not particularly close to being parallel with the ground--but rather closer to being on the same plane as the left arm (see the video at 4:13). Is this observation correct? Do you advise against having the club parallel to the ground at the top of the backswing?
January 1, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. To get the club parallel to the ground most players have to add too much trail elbow flexion, body rotation and lead arm push to achieve the added length. Its more advisable to have the trail arm not bend more than 90 degrees and keep the lead arm more in front of the body to maximize efficiency into impact returning down.
January 2, 2015
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Benjamin
I have always fought a laid off position at the top of the swing. I also get the club to deep after the takeaway and I think that is a lack of elevation but i would like your opinion on both of these issues and how would you recommend fixing them. Thanks
January 1, 2015
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ben. There could be a few culprits of why you get deep at the top and laid off. More than likely it's trail arm positioning and over rotation of the lead arm going back. Take a look at the Using the Wrist Efficiently Video in the Introduction Advanced Section. Learn the proper amount of rotation with the lead arm in the backswing. Also, make sure your trail arm is spot on with the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section.
January 2, 2015
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Jeffrey
First of all since beginning Rotary Golf my game has improved significantly. So thank you. I do however still struggle with my back swing. Going from move 1 to move 2 I tend to elevate my right shoulder and over bend my right elbow which restricts my shoulder turn. I have viewed the right arm straight drill and four square drill among others. What I find that helps me the most is bending my right elbow early which sets my arms into correct position. I can then rotate my shoulders easier and get into the correct back swing position. It feels a little funny but I hit the ball longer and straighter. Just wondered your thoughts. Is this correct?
December 30, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jeff, The reason that you don't want to do this is because the right elbow flexing loads your scapula (shoulder blade) down and in towards the spine too early and it causes you to feel like you're loaded before your shoulders get rotated. You want to rotate the shoulders and torso before folding the right arm upwards in order to get the maximum shoulder turn for your flexibility. If you hold your right arm out in front of you and flex like you're doing a bicep curl, you can feel your shoulder blade moving down and in. This illustrates my point from a feeling stand point. The reason why you're getting your right elbow to flair out is likely that you're flexing your arm too much in the backswing. An arm that is flexed more than 90 degrees will allow the elbow to move away from the body more. Try it. Hold your arm out straight, try to turn your elbow away from the body. You can barely move it at all. Now flex 45 degrees. You can turn the arm a little bit, but still not a severe amount. Now go 90 degrees. Still about the same amount of separation of the elbow and the body as 45 degrees. Now fold the arm in 135 degrees of flex so that your bicep and forearm are touching. Now try moving your elbow away from your body. Very easy to do. Let us know if you need any more help with your backswing. Keep working hard! You'll be great at this soon enough. R.J.
December 30, 2014
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Soren
Hi - in what video do you explain 'the box'? thx
December 18, 2014
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Steven (Certified RST Instructor)
Soren, The video is called: connect to your Core-Getting in the box, Here is the video: http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-basics/setup/connect-to-your-core-get-in-box Steven
December 18, 2014
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Christian
up top I have always been a little flat. In looking at my videos and where my right elbow should be I am deep. This video should put my hands higher and my right elbow in position over my peck. this is a tough adjustment for me. I keep wanting to go back to my old ways. I guess just doing lots of reps practicing on putting my arms in the right place.
December 15, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Christian, I can certainly understand the frustration. I used to get deep with my right elbow as well, causing a flat backswing. This suggestion may seem a little odd, but I am going to send you to one of the fitness videos to fix your issue with getting deep in the takeaway. If you practice this exercise, your takeaway will start to fix itself in no time. Once you can do it really well with the chair, then stand straight up and get comfortable doing it that way. Then graduate to doing it in your golf posture. http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/golf-fitness/rst-level-one-program/chair-rotations Good luck to you Christian! R.J.
December 15, 2014
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marty
At the top of my backswing the club face is a little shut. I have been working on toe up in the takeaway and that looks pretty good. If I keep the little cup in my left wrist into the takeaway do I need to maintain it at the top to keep the club face from being shut? My left hand grip seems to match a neutral grip for RST standards.
December 2, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
If you have the proper grip as specified in the grip-how to, the face will be slightly open at the top of the swing with a flat lead wrist, which is what we want. The slightly open face at the top of the swing rotating to square at impact will add a decent amount of effortless club head speed. R.J.
December 3, 2014
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Dan
Very helpful RJ. As always. Thx
November 30, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, You're welcome. R.J.
November 30, 2014
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Dan
Thanks RJ for the quick response. I'm not clear how the right arm serves as a piston to turn the shoulders when the arms move vertically and the shoulders rotate horizontally. Please clarify. Thx
November 30, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, Your ability to rotate your shoulders is directly related to the distance between your shoulder blade and your spine. The shoulder blade can either be pulled towards the spine by the lower traps or pushed towards the spine by flexing the arm at the elbow; however flexing the elbow doesn't turn the shoulders like pulling the shoulder blade with the lower traps. The back and the biceps work together as a team to pull obejects towards us, which is why weight lifters work on them on the same day. If the elbow pit is facing up as we rotate, then the elbow cannot bend horizontally, which means it will stay straighter, longer. If the elbow isn't bending, that means the shoulders can rotate more because the distance between the shoulder blade and spine is being closed from rotation as opposed to elbow flexion. You want to close the gap between the shoulder blade and the spine with rotation as much as possible before the elbow begins to flex. I hope this explains why the elbow pit is the key to success for you R.J.
November 30, 2014
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Dan
I feel like the only way I can get a full shoulder blade glide is if my arms move to the right of my torso (or don't stay in front of my torso) in the backswing. Obviously that's not correct. I also feel like when I have good shoulder blade glide my right arm is pulled in and becomes less extended than my left arm. Any ideas? Thx
November 30, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, Look at your right elbow pit. That's the key for your issues. In your stance it should be pointed away for you. At the end of your takeaway it should be pointing towards the sky. This will keep your right arm straight, acting like a piston that rotates the shoulders. R.J.
November 30, 2014
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Jim
When I do this drill, at the top I feel tension (not pain) in my left hip, just above my belt. Is this normal or am I putting too much weight on my left side?
November 26, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Jim -- I assume when you say the left side that you are a right handed golfer and any sort of pain could be attributed to a number of things. Check to make sure your lower body is anchored to the ground and your posture is correct with axis tilt being perfect. After that, check to make sure that you are shifting and loading the trail side up properly and rotating the shoulders around the axis perfectly. I would suggest that you start without a club at first and see if when you shift, load and rotate the pain is gone. Then slowly add the club back to the mix. If pain persists, then get your swing in for review so that we can take a close look at things and help you further.
November 27, 2014
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Dan
When my right arm starts to fold in the backswing should I already be done rotating?
November 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Dan -- The right arm will begin to flex at the completion of the takeaway (roughly 45 degrees of shoulder turn), you will continue to rotate while you are adding the flexion and moving the hands and arms into the vertical position. Always try to keep the shoulders rotating throughout the entire takeaway and backswing.
November 25, 2014
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Jason
I'm left handed and have trouble keeping my arms in the box and left arm vertical at the top of the backswing. My left arm looks discounted and high. Any thoughts?
November 21, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jason, Try to keep your left shoulder away from your left ear as much as possible in the takeaway. Also, try to rotate your left elbow in towards your body as much as you can while you're folding your left arm up at the top of the backswing. Also, there's a good chance that you're getting too much elbow flex the top of the swing, which is making your elbow flare out. Don't get any more than 90 degrees of left elbow flexion at the top of the backswing. Let us know if you need anymore assistance R.J.
November 21, 2014
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Dan
For 20 years I used my hips in the backswing to get to the top. So now I feel like I have to restrict them when I rotate my torso or they are over-active in the backswing. That also helps me feel like I can keep my arms in front of my torso to the top. However, it also makes my backswing seem short. Any thoughts on best way to make sure the torso pulls the hips along? Thx
November 21, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, You do want your hips to rotate when you're doing your backswing, but not until after the takeaway. Also, just because something feels short, doesn't mean that it is. Your perception of length in the past was most likely the stretch you felt in your left shoulder from getting your arms too deep behind you because they were crossing the center line early in the backswing. Look at yourself on video or in the mirror. If you're getting 90 degrees of shoulder turn and your hips are turned 45 degrees or less and your arms were straight and in front of your torso during all but the last section of your backswing, then your club head will likely have traveled almost twice the distance it was for you before, even though it will feel shorter than what you're used to. I certainly understand where you're coming from though. I was a deep overswinger my whole life from 15 until this past summer, 31, and I felt extremely short when I started doing my swing properly at first. As I got used to, it felt a lot more powerful the moment I was able to properly sequence my downswing. The best thing that you can do is check the tape because the video doesn't lie, and how we feel often does. R.J.
November 21, 2014
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
When I make my backswing I am starting with the shoulder blade glide, the club travels to a good position in the takeaway as I add some elevation, then as I go into move 2 the club starts to move towards my head almost as if it want to come over the top. It looks good on camera until I get to the very top. The club isn't across the line at all and I'm dropping it just enough to hit it from the inside but sometimes I come over it. My elbow starts to flare out and I can't keep that right arm vertical at the top. What may cause this?
November 17, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jackie, You're probably folding your right arm too much. If you look at it from the backside view, you're probably getting way more than 90 degrees of elbow flexion at the top, which makes it easier to flare the elbow and can cause the over the top shoulder dominant moves. So, relax on the right elbow flexion a bit and cock the wrists more to get your club parallel to the ground at the top. R.J.
November 17, 2014
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
I looked at it, and I'm definitely getting more than 90 degrees of flexion. However, I thought RST didn't involve cocking the wrists. Doesn't the body move with rotation with the shoulder blade glide, 3-4 inches of elevation, and right arm flexion? When would I cock my wrists?
November 17, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jackie, In the RST swing, you do want to cock your wrists up and down, that's what helps you produce lag, however, you do not want to hinge your wrists sideways in the backswing. At the top of your swing, there should be a box that should be made between your shoulder level, your right arm, the club and your head as each of the lines of the box. There should be 90 degrees between your humerus and torso at the shoulder joint of the right arm, 90 degrees of flexion at the elbow between the humerus and forearm and there should be 90 degrees of cocking of the right wrist at the top. You don't want to get any more than 90 degrees of wrist cock at the top of the swing because if you're past 90, you can't increase your wrist cock at all in the downswing and if you're not increasing it, you're decreasing it. Yes, everything you said about the body is correct. At the end of the takeaway, there is a small amount of wrist set/cocking that gets the club parallel to both the target line and the ground. That wrist set/cocking gradually continues until it reaches 90 degrees at the top of the backswing. Check out this drill http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/downswing/downcock-pump-drill R.J.
November 18, 2014
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Jackie (Certified RST Instructor)
ok thanks for the response, also, I just want to make sure I am aware of the movements, the swing is initiated by the shoulder blade glide blended with 3-4 inches of elevation with some wrist hinge, then right arm flexion? It all just seems like a lot of things to be thinking about when you swing the golf club. My thoughts right now are just gliding the shoulder blade while elevating my arms which seems like enough.
November 24, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Jackie, Ultimately, you don't want to be thinking about anything while swinging the golf club, but that's why we do the reps in smaller pieces in order to ingrain the movements into our brain. The swing is initiated by either the shift of the weight into the right side, using the right groin to pull our weight over our right heel or by the pulling of the shoulder blade down and in towards the spine 2.5 inches, roughly. The right elbow doesn't flex upward until the arms are elevated to the height of the bottom of the pectoral muscle. The 2.5 inches of shoulder blade glide move the hands about 2.5 feet and the club head about 2.5 yards. So, as you can see, it really is about the small details. R.J.
November 24, 2014
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Dan
Thanks RJ. I guess I'm still not sure I'm fully rotated. When Chuck talks about being fully rotated he mentions seeing the right shoulder appear on the right side of the head from face on at the top. Although I feel fully rotated I certainly don't see my right should reappear on the right side of my head from face on. Because I'm so focused on keeping my arms in front of my torso I'm not even sure it's physically possible for me. Any thoughts?
November 13, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, Try drawing your spine angle line in the self analysis SwingViewer section. There's a chance that you're losing your spine angle and that is why your shoulder doesn't show even though you feel like you're fully rotated. Check out these videos, they should help. http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/backswing/rst-necktie-drill http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/backswing/keep-the-right-arm-straight-to-turn http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/downswing/proper-golf-swing-hip-movement-power-u http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/backswing/golf-body-rotation-in-backswing http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-basics/weight-shift/weight-shift-part-2-right-hip-line R.J.
November 13, 2014
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Dan
When I get to what looks like the proper position at the top on camera I feel very under rotated and short. Is this a normal feeling for somebody new to RST. I'm thinking maybe I was over rotating before to generate power.
November 13, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, Most amateurs under rotate but over swing, by letting their right elbow fly out and let the knees move laterally so that they can feel stretched out and loaded, when all that does is put the body in a position in which it cannot recover from very easily and will cause knee and lower back injuries/pain. So, yes, what you felt before was most likely over swing with your arms, even though you were probably rotated less then you are now, but it felt like you were rotated more by the exaggerated pulling of the arms behind the body. What you're feeling is definitely normal R.J.
November 13, 2014
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Mike
My first video submission showed my rt. elbow flying behind big time. Working on set-up, right elbow pit, and move one pull vs. push. Major improvement in the interim videos I've looked at. My right elbow is now about half way between where it was on my first submission and Chuck's nearly vertical. I'm gathering this shouldn't be painful or stressful on the right elbow to achieve the correct position. Are any of these likely causes of my right elbow still flying (albeit better). a) while I'm not pushing with the left at the takeaway, I'm still pushing in move 2., b) I've somehow stopped pulling my shoulder blade in move 2 (incomplete rotation of the core) and are swinging the arms past my center. One week to go till my next submission and I want to work on the right things. Thanks.
November 9, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Mike, I would speculate based on the information given that one of two things are happening that are preventing your shoulder turn and allow your arms to pull across your body too early. One, you aren't staying in the box at the top of your swing and your right shoulder is creeping up towards your right ear as you elevate your arms, which is common until a student is made aware of it. If your shoulder shrugs up, you won't be able to stay connected to the muscles that are attempting to rotation your torso (i.e. the obliques and lats). Two, your right elbow is bending too early in the swing. Once the right elbow starts to bend, it stalls the rotation of the shoulders because the bending of the right elbow pushes the scapula down towards the spine, which is ultimately what we want to do but we want that to come from rotation of the shoulder and less from flexion of the elbow. Which brings me to my third point about making it easier to rid yourself of a flying elbow. The more that you flex the right elbow at the top of the backswing, the easier it is for the elbow to fly away. While you're reading this, hold your arm straight out in front of you and try to "fly your elbow" with a straight arm. You can't do it. Now, flex your arm all the way as much as you can and try to "fly your arm". It's really easy now, right? You look like you're doing the chicken dance that everyone does at weddings. There should be no more than 90 degrees of flexion at the top of your backswing between your upper and lower arm. Now, I had really bad flying elbow problems when I first started this program and I never realized that I was flexing my arm too much at the top. I would do all of the drills perfectly but my arm would still fly away. It wasn't until I looked in the mirror one time and realized that what I thought was 90 degrees, was actually 135 degrees of flexion. So, when you get to the top of your swing, you should be able to look back at your right elbow and see every part of the inside of your right elbow. If your elbow pit starts to crease and you can't see it, then you're flexed too far and you'll be able to fly the elbow. What I did was put a couple of pen dots on the inside of my elbow pit and I made sure that at the top of my swing, I could see them when I turned my head back. After that, I was getting a lot more shoulder turn and I was getting my arms back in front of my body perfectly. I would also recommend watching the following videos: Keep the right arm straight to turn (Full Swing Advanced Backswing) - Keeping your arms straighter longer will allow you to rotate more and will limit the amount of elbow flexion you can get. Tennis ball drill used by Martin Kaymer (Same section) - Keeping your forearms the proper distance from each other (probably closer together than you're currently at) will make it a lot easier to keep your arms in front of you and move the torso and arms as one piece. Not to mention, more rotation that will be more effortless. And remember to keep your shoulders in the box the whole time during your swing. Your right shoulder should be as far away from your right ear as you can get it at the top of the backswing without tilting your head away from center. Good luck! R.J.
November 10, 2014
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Mike
Many thanks for such a thorough reply. I'm back on track.
November 10, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Mike, Glad to hear it and you're welcome. R.J.
November 10, 2014
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Dan
I've worked hard on keeping my arms in front of my torso in the backswing. Played 36 today with that as my primary focus and now I'm feeling soreness in the inside of my right elbow. Any thoughts on what might be causin that and any suggested remedies? Thanks.
November 9, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, The only thing I can think of is if you were trying way too hard to get right humerus rotation at the top of your swing and pushed on the elbow joint too much with the left hand as you were taking your club back. Aside from that, there shouldn't be any place in your golf swing that would cause tendenitis on the inside of your right (trailing) elbow, unless you're trying too hard to get your right elbow in front of your body on the downswing and causing your hands to lean back away from the target as your right elbow is leaning forward towards the target coming into the ball. Seeing how this issue, whatever it may be, is causing you pain, I would suggest getting an RST instructor to watch a recording of your swing as soon as you can so that we can fix the issue. I would hate to see you cause any damage to your joint. R.J.
November 9, 2014
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Dan
Thanks RJ. That is helpful. By keeping my arms in front of my chest is so foreign to me I'm challenged to do it outside the drill. The swing feels very short to me when the arms stay in front. Any additional insight on making the transition from right elbow behind to in front? Also, if your elbow is behind how might this effect the release?
November 6, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, You can get a lot of blocks and snap hooks because the arms are so far behind the body. It'll force an inside to out path, a problem for better golfers. It is possible to get an outside to in path while stuck but it's really awkward and I would assume most people would be able to feel that it isn't a good golf swing. My favorite drill to help keep the elbow in is to do your shoulder elevation and right elbow flexion before the rotation to feel where the arms are going to be at before you turn to the top of the backswing. This will guarantee to give you the feeling that you need to feel when you're at the top. Also, your swing won't feel as short if you keep your right elbow from bending a lot. Your right elbow should not be flex more than 90 degrees. This will make you feel like your swing is a little longer and it will prevent you from getting a flying elbow. 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing R.J.
November 6, 2014
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Dan
Is there any flexibility in the right elbow being behind you at the top of the swing?
November 6, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Dan, The further that the right elbow is behind you at the top of your swing, the more you have to compensate to get that elbow back in front of you in your downswing and because of how fast the downswing moves, it makes it very difficult to make this compensation. It would take a lot of practice. For me personally, my swing from the start of the downswing until impact, my club head travels on an arc about 28 feet and it does this in about a 5th of a second. That's a total speed from top to bottom of about 95.5 mph, topping out anywhere from 115-120 mph at the bottom of the swing. That's not very much time to make a compensation in the golf swing. If you can make this compensation and do it perfectly, then by all means go ahead. But if you can get 120 mph of club head speed and 180 mph of ball speed without making compensations, why wouldn't you want to? I do believe this is the direction of your question. I wasn't completely sure what you were asking so, if you were asking about something else, please let me know so I can help you out. R.J.
November 6, 2014
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Nick
I have a couple of questions. 1. To start the take way do you want me to push my right heal into the ground to start the swing? I do the takeaway very well with out pushing my right heal down. 2. When I get to the top my right elbow is not strait up and down like your pose. The elbow is slightly over about 2". I am stocky and large chest. I have trouble keeping that right elbow strait up and down. The only way I seem to be able keep it strait up and down is when I fully extend my arms at address and there to stiff. I would like to get the rotary connector. That would help.
November 6, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nick, 1. Yes, if you do not transfer your weight to the right side of the body during the takeaway, you'll have a tendency to lean back towards the target at the top of your backswing, which causes a whole host of problems. Most dangerously of all, lower back pain. Push the weight into your right heel and feel the muscles in your right buttock activate while doing the takeaway. If you do not do this, you will also have a tendency to shift your weight out over the balls of your feet in the backswing which will cause you knee pain as the knee will be baring all of the weight in your swing instead of the glutes. 2. Some people just aren't flexible enough in their shoulder and elbow joints to get the elbow under the hands in the backswing. However, this is not very common. Also, I'm 375 lbs. and also have a very large chest. I have a large chest even when I'm not such a large man and I have no issues getting the elbow under the hands at the top anymore. I used to have all kinds of problems with it. But if you keep your right arm straight in the takeaway and backswing until you get to the top and keep your right elbow pit facing towards the sky, all you need to do is bend your elbow straight up and it's already under the hands. More important than being under the hands is that the line of your forearm be perpendicular to the line of your shoulders so if you are tilted more forward at address than others, then your forearm will be more rotated forward at the top of the backswing as well so, you should be looking if your forearm is perpendicular to the shoulder line, if it is, then you're fine. R.J.
November 6, 2014
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Nick
Thank you R.J. When I get to the top of the backswing my elbows are below the hands and in perpenducular with my body. When I start the downswing motion I see the right elbow sataying bent and into my right side like the picture shows. I believe my right arm is ok now.
November 7, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Nick, You're welcome. I am glad that you have it fixed up. Keep drilling it so that you can do it more naturally without having to think about it. R.J.
November 7, 2014
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Scott
I'm left handed. My right arm continues to bend at the top of back swing. Should I lock my right arm threw out the back swing?
November 5, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Scott. You don't want anything in the golf swing locked or forced. You are focusing on the wrong side. Focus on the left arm to keep the right arm straighter. If your left arm has 90 degrees or less of flexion at the top the right arm will stay straight. Take a look at the 3 Function of the Right Arm (left for you) in the Advanced Backswing Section. Less flexion will keep the arm straight.
November 5, 2014
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Gary
I think my r shoulder rise's , oh heck , could that be one reason why I push/ fade?
October 20, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Gary, Yes, if your shoulders are raising out of the box, then it becomes very easy to block/slice the ball. When you become disconnected from the box, it becomes a lot harder to make a full shoulder turn as well. Make sure your right shoulder is as far away from your right ear in your backswing as possible. Without tilting your head, of course. R.J.
October 20, 2014
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Gary
so what is the little bit of rotation for at the top of the b/swing ? what should it feel like and what does it do to other parts like the wrist? is it very important to do this " little bit of rotation?
October 18, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Gary, It's just to finish your 90 degree shoulder turn. You're going to get more club head speed from this little turn at the top and I would try to work on doing it, however, if you find yourself incapable of turning any further, you might be as far as you need to go already or you're producing a move that is limiting your rotation. Check yourself out in the mirror or on camera to make sure that you're doing the moves like the instructors in the video. R.J.
October 19, 2014
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greg
So, in relation to John's question, Craig, The upper portion of the right arm stays connected to the chest and "In Front" of the chest throughout the golf swing? Thanks!
October 14, 2014
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R.J. (Certified RST Instructor)
Greg & John, Yes, the very edge of the upper bicep and the upper edge of the pectoral muscle on the right should be in contact with each other and the arms should both be in front of the torso at all times. This allows your arms to stay in front of the body and not get stuck behind. It also allows you to stay in the box so that you can utilize the power generated by the lower body. Allowing the right arm to separate in the throw the ball feels more powerful and natural because we are used to the throwing motion and can get the right arm back in the box out of habit. Unfortunately, when you add in the left arm, we are much less likely to make that compensation because we are not used to making that compensation with two hands. If you turn around and do the throw the ball drill with the left arm, you may feel different about allowing your arm to trail behind when you're not used to the compensation. Also, the force from the right arm in the downswing should be from extending the angle of the right elbow as the hands pass the right thigh so, if you feel like you're getting more power from reaching back further with your right arm then you're firing way too early in the downswing, which in the grand scheme of things is much less powerful. Remember, power is speed at the ball and has little to do with how powerful you feel like you are when you're doing. We are always looking for effortless speed, not stressful power. I hope this helps you guys, R.J.
October 14, 2014
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John
I can't reconcile keeping the right elbow in front on the right chest with the video about the right arm throwing motion. When I throw a ball my right elbow is well behind my right front chest muscle. Otherwise I would not have any leverage in throwing the ball.
October 14, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. If you allowed the right arm to work behind you as in a throw. It would get stuck on the downswing. The key is to minimize moving parts. With the right arm going behind you it makes it much harder to work down in front off you. You also will lose a link to add core rotational speed to your delivery.
October 14, 2014
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William J
What is the ideal position for the club face to be in at the top of the back swing? In a DTL view, should I be able to see (from my cameral/monitor) the club face pointing in a certain direction or should it be hidden (blended into the shaft)? I noticed some pictures (pg. 99, 102 & 103) in the manual that depicts the face to be very slightly shut. Is that the camera angle? Just trying to get it right and practice "perfect".
October 9, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Jeff. The club face should match the lead arm/wrist at the top. It won't be parallel. Chuck's is square to the lead arm. You should be able to see a little bit of club head.
October 10, 2014
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Paul
I have been working on this along with the other things my instructor Steven Maes pointed out on my review. In the last couple of days I have cracked 4 or 5 air balls while playing off a mat in my garage using a 4 iron. I've never cracked one before, am I striking the ball badly or actually compressing it? (For the first time ever!)
September 30, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Paul. It sounds like you are compressing it. Pushing the plastic to its limits. If you are hitting the center of the face. It's a positive, not negative.
September 30, 2014
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Gennaro
new premium member here. how high should the hands be at the top of the backswing (relative to head or shoulder) I struggle getting them high; perhaps my swing is too flat but my right elbow points straight down and all other positions look correct as compared to samples on website.
September 25, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gennaro. Make sure your elevation is correct first. Use the 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing in the Backswing Section and the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section to check that your shoulder elevation is at the base of the pectoral. The top of the hands will be roughly just above the head depending on genetics.
September 26, 2014
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Matt
Is it essential to have a flat left wrist at the top of the backswing? Are there any drills on the website to work on this? Thanks again, guys.
September 25, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Matt. The left wrist (right handed) needs to be flat at the top. Usually improper rotation of the lead arm and/or grip is the major culprit to a cupped wrist. Use the Using the Wrist Effectively Video in the Introduction Advanced Section to understand the rotation. Proper Grip Video in the Setup Section to achieve slightly stronger than neutral. And, the 5 Minutes to a Perfect Backswing to put both together. Check the wrist and forearm alignment with club in front of you.
September 25, 2014
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Martin
I'm working on my backswing coil. I'm struggling with early unwinding of coil and power. I complete my backswing and my body fires into the swing early, I can sense it's too soon but I unwind usually in a snap, very quickly, not in sequence, just a huge release of coil all at once. Usually a low right shot with open club in to the trees. Thoughts? Martin
September 22, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Martin. Take a look at the Proper Muscle Activation Video in the Advanced Introduction Section. Don't try to force as much from the top. Stay nice and relaxed. Allow things to happen. Shift that weight and allow the lead arm to swing.
September 23, 2014
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Martin
thanks for this and all other replies.
September 23, 2014
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Arnie
Craig answered a question by David regarding how far back to swing. I'd like more specifics. Craig said that taking the club all the way back to parallel-to-the-target-line would be too far. Instead, he said, "the club needs to be on plane and in line with the trail side arm." But this doesn't answer the question in terms of rotation. Isn't it possible for a very, very flexible person to keep the club "on plane and in line with the trail side arm," yet rotate back far enough that the club shaft is parallel to the target line? Having said this, two things that I noticed are consistent about the top of Chuck's backswing in all the videos: his back squarely faces the target, and his club shaft is short of horizontal by 30 to 40 degrees. Are either of these points helpful in addressing my question?
September 13, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Arnel. Yes, it is possible to achieve parallel with very good flexibility. The issue arises when people try to continue to swing longer. The goal is to make sure that when you stop rotating the arms stop with the rotation. You don't want the arms swinging independently of the shoulder rotation. Unless you are very flexible, it is hard to keep the arms in-conjunction with the turn and reach parallel.
September 14, 2014
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Gavin
Hi, i have been working on the take away and elevation and am taking it way on plane and look to be in a good position at the top. I have been hitting it well but find that my bad shot is a big hook now. recently i have been working on fattening the left wrist at the top of the swing (rotating the wrist as you call it), with this i am hitting it a lot sraighter. Can you comment as to if this is why i am no longer hooking and the imprtance of woring the left wrist into a flatter position? Thanks
September 4, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gavin. Your wrist position could've been a culprit to the hook. Now, that you have the proper rotation and on plane. Its allowing for easier squaring up of the club versus cupping and flipping. Less manipulation required to get into the proper impact position.
September 4, 2014
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Norman
Hi RST Team, let me get this straight : 1) Takeaway, bringing the club back with proper weight shift while hands are always in front of sternum (I really do not feel the shoulder blade gliding during this phase) 2) Backswing, bringing the club back with the right shoulder blade glide (with proper shoulder elevation, hand flexsion and rotation) , while lower body (including hips) remains still
September 4, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Norman. For Question 1: Try the 2 inch hand drill in the Role of the Right Arm Advanced Takeaway Video. Maintain the 2 inch gap and finger tip link. It should help with engagement. Yes, arms and hands will remain in front of the sternum. 2: Continue pulling back with the shoulder blade (scapula) while adding shoulder elevation, elbow flexion, and external humeral rotation. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Advanced Backswing Section. The hips will rotate about 45 degrees because of the pull back with the shoulder and torso.
September 4, 2014
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simon
great explanation. Can i ask if i should actually position my weight on my heels at address as opposed to my toes/balls of feet?
September 1, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
At address the weight needs to be centered over the ankle joints. Take a look at the Finding True Balance Video in the Setup Section.
September 1, 2014
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simon
ok,, do i do that for chipping and pitching also
September 1, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Simon. Yes. However, with chipping there will be about 70% of your weight on the lead leg too.
September 1, 2014
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Grant
I'd like to tell you how much I value your training videos. For years I've believed that a good golf swing was dependent on the correct muscular and skeletal movements, positions and set up. Your training program is exactly what I've been looking for. For a long time. Great job. Thank you very much. A much appreciative fan.
August 21, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Thank you for the kind words Grant. We here are pleased to have you as a member and happy to get you swinging correctly.
August 21, 2014
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David
Every instruction book/video I've seen says that you need to get the club pointing at the target at the top of the backswing. Is this still true with the rotary swing? If I do the rotary backswing, I cannot come close to getting the club on line with the target, but I definitely feel loaded in the glutes and shoulders.
August 21, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The club needs to be on plane and in line with the trail side arm. If you were to get the club pointing down the target line. You would actually be over rotating or have to push more with the lead shoulder/arm. You are experiencing keeping the arms in sync with the body. Its a good thing.
August 21, 2014
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Stephen
This video has an ad for the RotaryConnect aid but when I click the link it takes me to the store and I don't see the product. Is this item still for sale?
August 20, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stephen. I think we are currently sold out of our stock. We will notify the members as soon as it is replenished. I apologize for the wait and inconvenience.
August 20, 2014
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Dany
Hi. The way you deconstruct the move to get in the perfect position at the top is amazing. I have a question tough. When I look at top player swings, I don't see for most of them their right elbow in lign with the right shoulder. It seems a little deeper. Is it because of the momentum of the club ( so even if we aim at this position, everything continue a little bit more) or because they turn their shouders more than 90 degrees, or something else. My right elbow was too deep before and now I really feel like I just got to let my hand fall to the ball. Before I had the feeling that I had a lot to do to bring them at the ball. Is it a good feeling? Thank you very much!
August 9, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dany. That is a good feeling that the arms just fall from the top. A lot of players push with their left arm going back. Leading to the right arm getting deep. Take a look at the Left Shoulder Push Video in the Advanced Backswing Section to understand some tour player numbers and shoulder turn.
August 9, 2014
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david
Hello, I was getting real hacked off with trying to get some sort of backswing going. I punched in google "too much body turn" and up came an article by Chuck Quinton. It said that your rib cage should only turn 80 deg and then the rest should be shoulder protraction. I did this today and was 1 over after 11 holes before losing the plot. Can you tell me where this video is on the rst site. Doing this makes so much sense as you actually feel the torso winding up as the shoulders come out the box a bit at the top. Bit like a coiling effect. I guess what I am asking is this the feeling we should all have in the backswing. If so, this should be put in the in the box and backswing videos. Thanks
July 29, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello David. I think you are referring to the Left Shoulder Push Video in the Advanced Downswing Section. There is some protraction from the lead shoulder at the end. That's how some of the tour pros get ridiculous amounts recorded for their shoulder rotation.
July 29, 2014
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Kade
Hey RST! I've been working hard on the backswing portion and have a couple of questions on what I should "feel." As I'm elevating my shoulders, should I feel my right upper arm disconnect with my upper chest? When I try to keep it touching, it seems my elbows start to come closer together and then both elbow pits face out away from me and . It looks like my hands are in a good position, and definitely feel in the box, but feel like I lose my arms. Also, is it okay to have a little cupping in my left wrist at the top? Or should I work to get it flat? Any tips on that? Thanks!
July 28, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
It is ok if the right arm comes away from the chest with an upward motion. But, not a horizontal motion. You want to maintain the connection between the upper bicep and upper peck. If they start to separate, the arms will move independently of the body turn. Take a look at the 3 Functions of the Right Arm in the Backswing Advanced Section. Preferably, no cupping at the top of the backswing. It is usually a grip culprit or lack of lead arm rotation. Take a look at the Golf Grip How to Video in the Setup Section to make sure just slightly stronger than neutral. Use the 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing in the Backswing Section to learn how the lead forearm will rotate as the right arm folds correctly.
July 28, 2014
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Mike
Is elevation in the takeaway simply moving my hands from the right pocket up to belt level? Bucket drill results in my hands being very low.
July 21, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Mike. Shoulder elevation in the Takeaway will be to the base of the right pocket. Take a look at the 5 Minutes to a Perfect Takeaway to learn the reference point.
July 21, 2014
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George
I seem to be having an issue with cupping of my left wrist (right handed player) at the top of the backswing. Is this a problem with the takeaway or the backswing (or both)?
July 18, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Patterson. Usually due to the grip and improper forearm rotation to the top. Make sure the grip is correct with the Golf Grip How to Video in the Setup Section. Also, use the 5 Mins to the Perfect Backswing and Checkpoints Backswing Video in the Backswing Section to make sure when the right arm adds flexion the left forearm rotates properly.
July 18, 2014
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Luc
quick question ... I am trying to feel all the right things in my backswing; at the completion of the take-away and backswing i understand that the pressure points should be inside right angle, right glute and right shoulder blade .. should i also feel tension in my left shoulder (if backswing done right) at the completion of the backswing / shoulder elevation? (i under we don't want to push from the left)
July 14, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Luc. Sounds like you are on the right track concerning the right side. The left will have a little tension at the top, but not much. Take a look at the Left Shoulder Push in the Backswing Advanced Section. Normally the vast majority doesn't have to focus on that action. The shoulder elevation might be creating the feeling you are getting with tension. Activating un-used muscles. Will subside.
July 14, 2014
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TIM
This program is crazy good. I have never had so much success in so little time. The explanation is nothing like I have ever heard. Once I get the arm rotation piece in place the ball just rockets off the face of the club. just smoked a 3 iron 232 onto the green 4 out of 5 shot's. you are the man. worth every penny.
July 1, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Tim. We appreciate the good feedback and very pleased you are enjoying the program!
July 1, 2014
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Frank
How much wrist cock is best. I see Michelle wee and tiger wrists at 90 degrees. When I keep my wrists loose to help with lag I go well over 90 degrees. What should the wrists do at the top of the downswing?
June 28, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The wrist set is gradual throughout the swing. 25 % roughly in the takeaway because we are a 1/4 through the swing. Keep good grip pressure and supple wrist. Too little pressure. You are giving up control. Make sure they do get some set, but I would tend to stay away from getting beyond 90 degrees.
June 28, 2014
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Daniel
when i swing my hips don't move at all in the backswing I don't mean for it to happen but I have this problem where the club on the takeaway is outside . Why don't my hips move back and turn like chucks in the video
June 22, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
The torso rotation should pull the hips open. We don't want to actively rotate them back. Take a look at the Weight Shift Part 1 and 2 Video for more info on the hip turn and weight shift in the takeaway and backswing.
June 22, 2014
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Boris (Certified RST Instructor)
In the Checkpoints - 5 Minute Backswing, Clay seems to suggest a little more shoulder elevation than what is demonstrated in this video. Is this what you were alluding to when you posted: "In your situation, when you add the right arm flexion, the left shoulder may come up and out of the box a bit early." You had answered a question about adjustments that should be made for people with larger chest.
June 10, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Boris. You are correct. In reference to what Chris was alluding to.
June 10, 2014
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Anthony
I'm having trouble getting my hands high on the backswing (they only get as high as my chin). What drills can you suggest to correct this?
May 23, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Make sure that you are adding enough shoulder elevation and that you are only having between 80-90 degrees of flexion in the right arm. Check out Chris's 3 Functions of the Right Arm Video to help (Full Swing Advanced Backswing Section).
May 23, 2014
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rodney
Hi what causes the flat left wrist? ( assuming grip is correct) What feel should I focus on.
May 21, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
If the grip is correct you need to make sure you are letting the left forearm rotate properly to the top. Check out Clay's video 5 Minutes to the Perfect Backswing Checkpoints Video in the Full Swing Program Backswing Section. When the right arm starts to fold it allows the left forearm to rotate properly and start to cross center line. If we push with the left and get counter clockwise rotation cupping will start to occur.
May 21, 2014
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rodney
Hi, is the product of a flat left wrist from (assuming proper grip) the external roation of the right humerus. What should I focus on to assure this?
May 21, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
The left wrist will move flat due to the rotation and the slight amount of set in the right wrist at the top of the swing. Proper grip is always a big help as well.
May 21, 2014
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bob
So in my swing when I feel like i engage and keep engaged the right lat my swing gets flatter and the butt of the club is outside my right shoulder at the top. The lower body is good and stable but it seems like to keep the club going up in move 2 rather than around me I feel like I get out of the box. Any suggestions?
May 20, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Bob. It's not that we want to start coming out of the box to get the arms up from being too flat. We need to add a little shoulder elevation. Check out the shoulder elevation video in the Full Swing Program Backswing Section. AL should clarify things up for you.
May 21, 2014
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gilberto
Hi, Is there a way to breakdown this move even further? I have spent weeks trying to get it correct and although I see some improvement, I am no where near the correct spot and at this point not getting any better. I still over swing and cross at the top. Do not know what else to do.
May 17, 2014
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Gilberto, if your over swinging there could be a few culprits. In Full Swing Advanced Backswing Section. Check out these three videos. 1. Over swinging video. Chuck will discuss how External Humeral Rotation in the right arm may help. 2. Chris's 3 Functions of the Right Arm will help you figure out the correct placement in regards to shoulder elevation, flexion and humeral rotation of the right arm. 3. Check Out Clay's Right Knee Laser Beam Drill. In this video you will learn how losing the flexion in the right knee too soon disengages the right glute. Which leads to over turning and too long at the top.
May 18, 2014
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Mark
I have very restricted internal hip rotation and can't get my weight properly over my right ankle. Are there any compensations/tips you can give me? Love the program!!!
May 14, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Just make sure that when you start your move that you shift the hips and feel 80% or so of the weight in the right heel/ankle area and work to keep the right knee flexed. The rotation of the torso will pull the hips wound and if you are limited ROM in internal hip rotation, you need to find out how much rotation the hip can stand as the torso pulls it wound. You may want to think about getting your swing in for review so that we can take a close look at how we can maximize your efficiency.
May 15, 2014
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john
I have been taught to stand up against a wall, my rear end almost touching the wall, and swinging back and "up" so that my club does NOT touch the wall. I guess I need clarification about the usefulness of this drill - if any - to create a proper swing plane. Chuck's backswing looks as if it would "bang" into the wall before completing the full turn. I am practicing the Rotary Swing so that it does look exactly like this one here. Just want to know if this is just one theory of swing plane vs. another, or what. Thanks!
May 14, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
There are several different ways to evaluate swing plane. Generally speaking, when you here us talk about swing plane we will be talking about the elbow plane. That is a line drawn up from the hozel of the club through the base of the elbow. The biggest thing to understand about any swing plane is that it is completely consequential to the movements that you create within the body. Standing near a wall and working the club upright into the vertical plane is not recommended as that gets you focusing on aiming the club into a certain position rather than focusing on the moves. Plus, you need to be able to create big full rotation which adds depth to the golf swing and shallows the plane thus giving you that hit the wall like look you are speaking about.
May 15, 2014
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Jake
I had a question of club face at the top of the backswing. With my irons the club face is square at the top in relation to the left arm while with the driver it is open, even with a stronger grip. Is there a reason for this? How does one get to a position with a flat wrist at the top. Mine is usually very slightly cupped. Thank you
April 24, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Jake, that is something that we would have to take a look at in the swing review system to see what is happening to open the face with the driver opposed to the irons. The final bit of right wrist cock and flexion (hinge) is what allows the left wrist to move out of a cupped position and into a flat position at the top.
April 25, 2014
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Boris (Certified RST Instructor)
Finally! Someone has explained what my arms should be doing in the backswing. I have had shoulder problems because I think I was using my big chest as a fulcrum and my left arm as a lever to put my left shoulder socket in a compromised position. With that said, are there any other considerations for a person with a larger chest?
April 22, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Even with a larger chest, shoulder elevation should allow you to get into a good spot at the top. In your situation, when you add the right arm flexion, the left shoulder may come up and out of the box a bit early. Not a big deal providing the scapula gets back down and in during transition.
April 23, 2014
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Boris (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks Chris.
April 23, 2014
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damien
hi my name is damien so i have hard time to play golf i try so hard but the result came out not good so my question is why i alway hit behind the ball almost every time and my ball dint go far . can you please teach me how to avoided that thad
April 20, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hi Damien, that can be a frustrating situation for sure. Make sure that you are not casting the club early (check out 5 minutes to a perfect release) and also make sure that you are fully into your left side at impact. I would also suggest that you send in your swing for a review and we can take a close look at it to see how we can help you out.
April 21, 2014
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grant
I have been struggling mightily to stop getting so deep in my backswing, and it's come up on all 3 of my reviews. I can get in the correct position until I plan to downswing. Can you verify that my position is too deep at top of backswing? I don't see any way to submit a picture anymore.
April 19, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Who is been dong your reviews? We are working towards adding the picture function back on the sooner side so if you want in the mean time, send a picture of the top of your swing to chris@rotaryswing.com so that I can take a look at it and see. Thanks.
April 21, 2014
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David
This particular video seems contrary to the "keep the right are as wide as you can" instruction. Wide to narrow to wide won't work as well if you fold the right arm as much as you show in this video!
April 16, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
When you stay wide into the completion of the takeaway, the right arm will flex to about 90 or so degrees to pull the left arm across your center. You can still keep the arc very wide at this point as long as you haven't over flexed the right arm which would cause the left arm to break. This is how you move the golf club into the vertical plane which you can now use more gravity to help speed the club up when narrowing the arc to get ready to release the angle created for maximum speed. Some of the videos on the site are geared to help golfers that have different swing faults. The wide-narrow-wide swing shape is critical for those golfers that collapse the arc early on in the takeaway and keep it collapsed creating a narrow-wide-narrow shape. This particular video is geared directly to the RST fundamentals and shows you how to stay wide after the completed takeaway and move into an on plane ready to fire position at the top.
April 16, 2014
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greg
Rene' Cleared This Up for me with a link to Chris's excellent video about the right arm in the backswing. Thanks so much to both of You! If I understand correctly, The very top portion of the right bicep "Stays Connected" to the chest throughout the swing, Correct? That's what I'm working on.
April 14, 2014
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René (Certified RST Instructor)
Great to hear! Thank you.
April 14, 2014
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greg
Chris: I'm Confused. You say you do not want to have the right arm connected to the chest into the turn. In Chuck's article on "The Right Arm in Golf/ The Role of the Right Arm in the Takeaway", On p.2, He States," It's very important that the right arm stay straight. You should feel that the upper bicep of your right arm remains connected to your upper chest the whole time. Don't let it swing out away from you and drift away."
April 14, 2014
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René (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Greg. you are referring to an article about the Take Away (move 1) and Chris comments about Completing the Backswing (move 2) The main thing is that you should not create a gap between your (right) arm(s) and chest by initiating the Take Away (move 1) by pushing your arms. The Take Away is initiated by rotating your trunk. In Move 1 you want to feel the arms connected to your chest (not to tight) and not drifting away. A little bit of elevation occurs but the arms are still touching your chest. In Move 2 the Completion of the Back Swing the rotation continues and the arms will elevate to a higher position. So you do not want your arms to stay connected at one fixed point or bury them into your chest but gradually move them to a higher position. Chris did a great video on this that will clarify all: http://www.rotaryswing.com/videos/full-swing-advanced/backswing/3-functions-of-right-arm-in-backswing. Good luck!
April 14, 2014
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greg
I struggle with 3 main problems: Swaying in the backswing, flying right elbow in the backswing, & Too much lateral shift with my knees instead of simply "Turning" my left hip out of the way in the downswing. Should I Keep my upper right arm connected to my torso throughout the swing & not worry about the left arm connection to my chest? My bad swings are "Fat Shots" with the divots starting 2" behind the ball! Thanks!
April 13, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Greg, it is best to prioritize things by getting the lower body stable and put to the ground before anything. Then work on shifting and rotating properly during the entire move. The "mantra" of RST is big body turn and small arms movement. You do not want to have the right arm connected to the chest into the turn. You want the arms to remain passive and react to the rotation that you have created in the takeaway. Check out the bucket drill in the takeaway section and then watch the 3 functions of the right arm in the backswing section after you have got the lower body stuff down and the rotation is on point.
April 13, 2014
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James
Should your right hand feel as though you were holding a servers tray? I feel that when my hand is in this position at the top of my swing that my wrists have fully cocked (meaning both left and right wrists) and I am in a very solid position to deliver the clubhead squarely at impact to the bakc of the ball.
April 7, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Yeah that is a great way to think of the right hand at the top of the swing. We call the right arm "the governor of width and this helps keep it in a passive place until the release point of the swing. The wrists want have a good amount of set (cocking) at the top of the swing and want to remain supple so that when you make your shift, the club can downcock to help increase the angle for lag.
April 8, 2014
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gerald
This reference covers the different ways wrists can be oriented during a swing. I find it helpful to distinguish wrist cock (=radial), hinge and roll. (not in the same order as the reference). http://www.golfwrx.com/68601/the-6-actions-of-the-wrists-and-forearms/ For the 'servers tray' position, there would seem to be an implied cupping, which requires rotation back at the elbow; is that intended?
April 12, 2014
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Chris (Certified RST Instructor)
Hey Gerald, I actually just finished a series of 5 videos on the wrists and the function of the wrist during the entire move. We will be releasing those on the sooner side.
April 13, 2014