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Adam Scott vs. Sergio Garcia

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Rotary Swing Instructor Chris Tyler shows you the differences in Adam Scott's and Sergio Garcia's golf swings. You'll see why it's important to work on control before working on speed.

Video Practice Points
  • Get control by working on training your lead arm from 9 to 3. 
  • Then add weight shift and rotation. 
  • Then add lag for more speed once you have control. 

This week we are going to be doing a head-to-head comparison of Adam Scott versus Sergio Garcia, two completely different golf swings that generate tons of speed, but one golf swing is actually going to have a little bit more of a compensation in it. We're going to be discussing why lag can be a double-edged sword. If you've been battling with losing some control on the golf course, then pay close attention to today's review. Let's go ahead and get started.

                Okay, everyone. So we saw a pretty exciting finish this week at the Honda, and I wanted to spend some time this week talking to you about the importance of being able to develop a golf swing that's got lots of control first, and then slowly starting to add more and more speed to it once you have good control of things.

                And by no means is this any sort of knock against Sergio's golf swing. Sergio's always been a great ball striker, but you have to understand, in a golf swing like Sergio's, that's been really developed around tons and tons of lag, he's had to make some sort of compensations in his golf swing to help to really get rid of it. And if you look, the one glaring compensation that he has to make from the address position really comes from his very, very strong grip.

                So looking at both players here, you're going to see that Adam goes to a much more neutral grip here, where from his perspective, you'd probably be able to see two, two and a half knuckles; whereas Sergio, from his perspective, is going to be able to see right around three, almost four knuckles. Now the reason Sergio's had to develop this sort of compensation is because when you carry more lag down in the hitting area, what's the club face going to be like? Well, the club face is typically going to be a little bit more on the open side, so you're going to have to go to a little bit more of a stronger grip to help get the club face back to square.

                So my point here is that when you start to develop your golf swing, you don't want to have any sort of big-time compensations in there because you want to start to develop things more down the middle. And that's why it all can stem from your grip and your setup position, making sure that those things are in line, making sure that you've got proper width and rotation going back, and then slowly start to make sure that you've got control of your hitting area. And once you have all of those things really in a good place, then start to find ways to develop more speed by possibly adding a little bit more lag to it, adding more leverage through ground force. All of those things are really, really great, but always consider your golf swing a controlled environment first.

                So let's go ahead and take a look at things here from the top of the swing down from both players. Let me go ahead and wind Adam Scott right up to the top. Beautiful golf swing from beginning to end. Both players have great golf swings, but we did see Sergio struggle a little bit coming down the stretch this past weekend. I actually heard Johnny Miller make a comment on one of the swings where Sergio missed the green left. He said, It didn't appear that Sergio had as much lag as he normally did.

                Now, let's look at that. Let's take a step back and look at that, what that potentially could mean. If you're so reliant on being able to get rid of this angle, and the angle wasn't as sharp as it was before, and you really start to bust through the hitting area and push really hard with the right hand, then chances are you could start to miss the golf ball left. And that's what we saw Sergio do. We saw him hit a couple of wipes out to the right. And then we saw him miss a couple greens left, which is really uncharacteristic of Sergio.

                So looking at the golf swings from the top of the swing down here, let's go ahead and look at Sergio first, as he's going to shift left, very signature-style move. Now look at when Sergio's lead arm gets back to parallel to the ground, how big of an angle he's got here, where Adam's going to go ahead and shift left. You're not going to see nearly as much downcock as Adam's lead arm gets parallel to the ground. You'll see just a little, tiny increase in the angle here, where Sergio's angle is going to be more in this neck of the woods.

                Now, again, not a bad thing. Lag is a really big part of speed, but again, remember Sergio's had to make some compensations here, and these are going to make a little bit more sense to you as we get further down in the hitting area. So let's go ahead and work Adam with his hands down in front of his trail thigh here. This would be a really good checkpoint for a lot of you amateur golfers at home, is when your hands are starting to approach in front of your trail thigh, make sure that your club shaft is parallel to the ground and your toe of the club is going to be more towards the sky here.

                Let's go ahead and take a look at Sergio as his hands start to work down in front of his trail thigh. You're going to see that his angle is much more sharp than where Adam Scott would be. Again, not a bad position, but now you're going to have to rely on something to be able to get rid of this angle. And this is where you're going to see the drastic different between the two players, is you're going to see that in order for Sergio to really get rid of this angle in time, this club had to get on the ball very square. He's going to use a lot of his right arm to push the club through, so you're going to see that there's lots of separation between his wrists and his forearms now. See how he's using his right arm to really push and get rid of this angle very quickly. That's why you'll see that separation.

                Let's get Adam in the same frame here. So Adam's hands and arms are starting to work in front of his body here. Let me get his hands in the same spot. So you see that Adam's forearms are not getting separated, much like Sergio's are. So there's the big difference, is that Adam's able to control the club face from the lead wrist mostly from beginning to end, whereas Sergio now, because he had this sharper angle, is going to be relying on the right hand to really push the club through the hitting area. And in turn, that can cause you to come down a little bit on the steeper side, and it can make it very difficult for you to get the club face directly back to square.

                So I guess the big point here is that in order for you to develop a golf swing that's going to work right down the middle of things, is that I would start to work on controlling your hitting area from a hip-high to hip-high environment. I would work on swinging the golf club from hip high to hip high, so right here, all the way to this position right here, working on making sure that the club face is rotating from toe up to toe up. That's a good drill for you guys to try out at home. So when you're starting to work on controlling the hitting area, grab the club in just your lead wrist. Make sure you've got a good neutral grip like we teach on the website. I'm going to just swing the left arm back and forth with no right hand on there and control the club, getting some good grabber rotation to it, and slowly start to add your right hand back onto the club. And you'll see that you'll have a lot of good control of the bottom of the swing arm.

                Then what you'll want to do is slowly add more width and more rotation. You're still maintaining control of the bottom of the swing arc. You see that your golf ball's flying nice and tight and straight. Then, in turn, you can start to add a little bit more lag. And then you can start to add more ground leverage. So I really, strongly encourage you guys, if you haven't checked out the Perfecting Your  Golf Impact series, I really walk you through a step-by-step process, and I lay out a rep range. For those of you at home, I really want to start to get lots of good control of the bottom of the swing arc to start to work through that program. Video one, I talked about the importance of getting yourself into a good impact position and really just controlling from the lead wrist. And then video number two, I start talking about adding weight shift to that. Then number three, we start adding more and more to this mix. And then number four, we start adding lag to it. So you can see that everything is done in progression.

                So I want you guys to get out there and work on controlling the bottom of the swing arc, and do things from a very neutralized environment where you're not having to make compensations. Again, this is no knocking at Sergio. Sergio's obviously great for the sport and he's exciting to watch, and all that lag is really, really fun. But, in turn, don't try to get after tons of lag in your golf swing until you've got tons of control first. And then you'll see that you'll start playing some of your best golf.

                All right, everyone, thanks again for tuning into this week's tour analysis. For those of you that are premium members, I want to let you know that the Perfecting Your Impact series is going to be over to the right-hand side of the video player. Videos one through four, even the bonus video, will be over there for you. And that will start to walk you through this whole process on how to get good control on the bottom of the swing arc. And then I'm also going to include the down cock and pump drill over there as well over there for you guys to look at. So go ahead and click the Recommended Videos tab, to the right-hand side of the video player. All those videos will populate. Make sure you start in order. Go through the impact series and slowly start to add some downcock in there. And I promise you, you'll see that you have way more control and tons of speed at the bottom of the swing arc where it matters most. Let's get out there and play some great golf.

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