Archive for the ‘Knock down shot’ Category

My 7-Iron Knock-Down Shot!

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

Here’s an update on my re-entrance to pro circuit.  My latest swing…

Because I forgot to bring my HD camera, I took it with my SD750 then had to rotate the video 270 degrees when I got home, causing the video to get shorter and wider.  OOps.

swing-1

Anyways, setup looks okay.

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I’ve actually been working on a new “flatter” plane but this is fine.

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At the top, you might notice my club “looks” to be laid off but it’s not because I am actually not swinging full.  The camera angle also messes things up a bit as I took it from the bench they had instead of using a tripod.

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This looks good, this is where you transfer your weight to the left, turn the left hips out of the way and let your upper body follow.

Sorry folks about the bad video, I am getting a Canon DSLR 7d next week so should have a better video of my swing.

Btw, I am hitting the ball marvelous, I am actually not trying to watch myself in videos, I think it looks horrible. :p

Video of my latest swing:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

I don’t know why though but I’ve been getting a really nice “smack” sound when I hit the ball now, well, it’s a good thing I think…

Hahaha, check out some of these comments on YouTube (when I was playing golf like once a year), these guys must have no balls, I will take on any of them on the real course. :p

Also check out my swing from about the same spot almost 2 years ago. (FYI, I was swinging over the top….mostly because I didn’t practice much…)

How to Control Distance and Trajectory of Your Iron Shots!

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

This one is pretty simple but learning how to control distance of your iron shots is one of the most effective ways to control your distance and also trajectory.

For example, you have 150 yards to the pin from the fairway.  If you hit your 7-iron 150 yards with a full swing, that’d be good to use on a sunny day with absolutely no wind.

On the other hand, let’s say there’s a heavy 20MPH wind going against you on the 150 yard shot.  You could possibly hit another club and hit your 6-iron with a full shot or hit the 6 or 5-iron with a half swing, which will result in lower trajectory  and your shot won’t be affected by the wind.

Most of the time, I choose to go with the latter, choosing a much lower-numbered club and hit it with either 3/4 or 1/2 swing.  This is usually called a “knock-down” shot and it’s imperative that you learn how to do this if you want too be a good all-around player.

For example, if you play in super-windy areas like Texas, you don’t have a choice but to deal with 30+MPH winds on a daily basis.  You need to hit the ball lower but hitting a full shot won’t help you do that.

Although you could put the ball back in your stance and make a full swing at it, because you are still swinging “full”, the amount of backspin put on the ball will be too much and affected too much by the wind.

So, you need to learn to control the distance and trajectory of your iron shots.

How to do this?

Very simple actually, just take a shorter backswing.  But you will need to practice often on the range in order to “control” precisely.

Next time you go out on the range, don’t simply bang full-swings, see if you can hit the same target with different clubs, with different length of backswings.

If you have not tried doing this before, I assure you, you will won’t be too accurate, so practice makes perfect.

For example, when I go to the range, I will hit to a 150 yard target with my 8-iron. (with a full swing)  Then, I will take a 7-iron and also hit it 150 yards but with shorter backswing, which results in lower trajectory.  I will also take a 6-iron and take even short backswing.  Usually, I go about up to 3 clubs down before I move on to my next target.

This is not only great practice for your overall “feel” for distance and trajectory, now you potentially made new arsenal of shots in your golf bag.  Instead of just having 1 full shot from each club, you potentially now have multiple uses with each club.

Having more weapons in your golf bag means more ways you can attack the pin on the golf course.   Also, let’s say you have an approach shot with a tree hanging over about 30 yards out, perhaps this isn’t even a challenge to you because you have a shot in your bag with the right distance and trajectory to hit it under the tree and still get to the green.

Another great use for length of your backswing is as a swing thought.  Instead of filling your mind with too many things, simply think of the “length” of you backswing when hitting a golf ball on the course.  This will allow you to really be able to focus on one thing, that of controlling your distance.

The rest of the swing should be pretty easy and automatic if you have been practicing your fundamentals and needless to say, the less you think about your golf swing on the course, the better you play.

Well, keep practicing different lengths and trajectories by simply limiting how far you swing back.

Happy golfin!

Ben Hogan Iron Knockdown Swing Analysis!

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

I have been studying Ben Hogan’s swing for about 20 years now and I’d have to say he’s the best ball stiker in the world.

Here’s some analysis into his iron knockdown swing, which he was very good at and Tiger Woods has copied his moves.

Ben’s takeaway is simply rotation of his triangle formed by his shoulders, arms, and hands to the right. (sorta like shaking hands with person on the right)

There’s no “visible” weight transfer whatsoever here. His belly or the stomach, also turns along with his triangle.

This is probably the most important takeaway you can learn from Ben.

To put it simply:

Rotate your triangle and belly together to the right from a fixed single axis.

At top of Ben Hogan’s swing, you can tell that he’s almost doing a “reverse-pivot” by traditional teachers’ standards. In my opinion, he’s proving to you that there’s no need for a visual weight transfer to the right side. Hey, this picture proves that point.

This might be why there’s so much buzz with the tilt and stack swing when in reality, they are all derivatives of Ben Hogan’s swing.

On the downswing, you can notice Ben’s head has “dipped” 2-3 inches compared to position at address and top of his swing. This proves that the “dip” is actually a necessary natural action to a golfer’s swing provided the golfer doesn’t dip too much. Look at every top player in the world, they “dip” their head a little because it’s human nature.

Do note the fact that Ben’s lower body has aggressivly cleared to his left side while his spine tilt is actually a little straighter, meaning his upper body “moves” toward the target.

This move is inevitable to Ben’s swing in order to hit the ball square, you need to feel like you are on “top” of the ball on the way down in order to extend your arms correctly through impact.

After impact, notice how straight both of Ben’s arms are and the club dissecting between the two arms. This is something Ben is really good at.

At finish, notice how straight Ben’s lower body is and his upper body is pretty straight too. What impresses is how much his whole body is stretched on his finish while he remains in perfect balance with no sign of extra force exertion.

Bloody Ben Hogan, he’s the greatest golfer with the greatest swing ever. Even Tiger has great swing but won’t come close anywhere near Ben Hogan in my opinion.

Now, this is way back in the 50-60s when they had no cameras or any type of visual feedback for the pro golfers. How amazing is his swing when you think of that?

Very amazing indeed that Tiger’s still trying to copy Ben’s moves.

Even after 50 years, every tour pro including Tiger is trying to copy Ben Hogan’s moves, not Jack Nicklauses, not Arnold Palmer, but Ben and only Ben Hogan.  That my friend, IS amazing.

Here’s Ben Hogan’s Iron Knockdown Swing in action:

(Mind you, Ben Hogan was the first master of these knockdown shots, not Tiger. Tiger only copied his moves.)

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Junger Woods – How to Hit Knock Down Shots!

Friday, May 30th, 2008

Well, here we go again, I got the golf buzz and had to go out hit some balls again…

(more…)

How to hit the Knockdown Shot!

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008

How to hit the Knockdown Shot!

I went to the range today and couldn’t help hitting these knockdown shots.

Basically, setup with the ball in about the middle of your stance.

Swing about half-way.

Really try to swing about 50-75% of your total effort.  You need to swing easy for the knockdowns and hit it super-crisp.

Make sure your follow-through is longer than your backswing.  A lot of teachers will teach you to stop at waist-level.  That is not a good way since there’s a chance you might de-ccelerate.  The best way is to swing nice and easy but make sure you follow-through.  There is no need to abruptly stop the club.  (If you watch Tiger hit knockdowns, he makes a nice follow through.)

You also want to try to see if you can get your right arm straight like the red line.  (Obviously, I didn’t do that, still working on it…)

Adam Scott’s Knockdown Shot!

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

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Well, I was just browsing through Youtube today and found this great video of Adam Scott’s knockdown shot.

If you fast foward to the last part where Butch Harmon is standing, that’s how you should hit a knockdown shot.

Really try to play over and over to hear the crisp sound of the ball being hit.  If you listen very carefully, he made almost no divot on the knockdown shot and only the ball.  When you hit the knockdown shot correctly, you should be able to hear the “knock” sound.  It’s the sound that’s made when you “almost” hit it a little thin.

Next time you go on the range, try to see if you can make that “thud” or “knock” sound, that is the secret to great knockdown shots with minimal backspin and drop and hop action.

How to Play the Knockdown Shot! – Part II

Monday, May 12th, 2008

There has been a lot of discussions on the internet about how to play the knockdown shot. I did go over it in brief detail couple months ago but here it is again.

A knockdown shot is nothing but a mini version of your full swing.

There are variety of knockdown shots too. Depending on what kind of lie you have and what kind of results you are trying to achieve, there’s about a hundred ways to play the shot.

But for 99% of golfers and 99% of situations, you play the knockdown shot for the following reasons:

1. You are between clubs. Let’s say you hit your 5-iron 185 yards and you hit your 6-iron 150 yards. You got a 160 yard shot, you can hit a knockdown shot here.

2. It’s windy. Whether that wind is against/with you or a cross-wind, by hitting a knockdown shot, you can keep the flight of the golf ball 20-40% lower than your normal shots and not get affected by the wind. That means you don’t have to worry about how the wind will affect the shot as much.

3. You need to hit it lower than usual to avoid high hanging trees and also put lots of backspin. If you hit a knockdown shot, usually you will get a lower ball flight and get a nice hop and stop action on the ball.

Again, here’s the simplest and the most effective way to hit the knockdown shot that I personally learned from Butch Harmon:

1. Put the ball near center or slightly forward of center of your stance.

2. Swing easy, anywhere between 1/2 to 3/4 swing.

3. On the downswing, feel like you are “trapping” the ball with your body. Now, this “feeling” might take a lot of practice to achieve.

4. Try to contact the ball first, not the turf. Better yet, don’t hit the turf at all. Hitting the turf only makes the ball lose backspin. If you look at Tiger in practice (not in competition), you will see him take zero turf on every one of his ‘good’ knockdowns. If you are awed by tour pros hitting really low sand wedges and they ‘hop and drop’, this is how they do it.

This may be the most important in knockdowns since the less you hit the ground (or take a divot), the more ‘hop and drop’ backspin you will get PLUS your ball will fly a lot lower since you are not hitting down on the ball. The only way to achieve this is to really hit the ball from 0 degree angle, meaning you don’t want to hit down or up on the ball.

Now this method is great since you will be able to use your knockdowns “everywhere” once you get good.

I tend to favor it even if it’s not windy and I don’t need to hit it under a tree since you don’t have to do a full swing and stay in control of your ball flight.

Look at Tiger and he’s doing that.

Next time, I will take a video to show you exactly what I mean. These days, I don’t have much time for golf practice. I hope that changes soon and maybe I will have to try out for PGA again soon.

How to Play the Knock Down Shot

Thursday, September 13th, 2007

In honor of the British Open we would like to pay respect to the wind-cheating knockdown 5-iron. Take a 5-iron, choke up a little; open your stance about 20 degrees; play the ball toward your back foot; shift your weight forward; have your hands pressed forward; and take the club back waist high and come down aggressively on the ball with very little wrist action. This shot can be used from under trees, from out of divot, off hardpan, off loose sand, into the wind, or when loft simply isn’t necessary. The shot will produce a low roller that will keep you out of trouble.

excerpt via steveandersongolf

The above is an excerpt from a master PGA professional. Although I have full due respect for his experience, it’s in my experience through teachers like Butch Harmon and players like Tiger Woods, that that’s NOT the right way to hit the knock-down shot. First, don’t choke. Second, don’t open your stance. And third, don’t play the ball off the back foot. Finally, fourth, do not shift your weight forward.

Choking will really choke you mentally and physically. Opening your stance will only confuse you. Playing the ball off the back foot and shifting your weight forward will only make you hit down on the ball, causing the ball to shoot up in the air.

So, just take your regular stance, play the ball in the middle, have weight balanced 50-50, and do NOT come aggressively down on the ball. Just swing nice and smooth 1/2 or 3/4.

That’s my 2 cents from the best coaches and players who have played this shot. If you don’t believe me, just go ask Tiger or Butch Harmon.

Junger Woods Swing Tips – The Low-Bullet Slice Shot

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

Junger Woods Swing Tips - The Low-Bullet Slice Shot

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This is probably my favorite arsenal in my bag. You’ve probably seen Tiger on the practice tee showing off this shot too.

It’s a low-bullet slice shot. It’s great for hitting around the trees. The ball will take off very fast at about 90mph and then curve quickly at the end to the right.

Here’s how to hit it:

1. Get a 2 or 3 iron.

2. Open your stance about 30 degrees to the left. (The amount you open depends on how much curve you want on the ball. This must be acquired by practice and feel.)

3. Open your clubface about 30 degrees to the right. (same as above)

4. Put the ball in the center or back of your stance. (This depends on how low you want the ball to start. But don’t put the ball too far back, otherwise you will end up hitting down on the ball and put too much backspin which will make it go up.)

5. Rhythm is everything. Swing nice and easy about 3/4 or 1/2 swing. (A knock-down shot basically…)

P.S. You don’t have to hit down on the ball. Actually you want to sweep the ball like a Driver or a 3 Wood. The reason is again that you don’t want to hit down on the ball. That will cause extra backspin which will make your ball flight rise and beats the whole purpose of trying to hit a “low-bullet” slice shot.

You can practice this shot by trying to hit at driving range poles, yard markers, etc…etc…

Today’s swing – The 7-iron 165 yard “Knock-down” Shot

Monday, September 10th, 2007

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It’s a nice little knockdown, my swing looks horrible by the way… but a great little tool for those pressure situations.

A knock-down-shot is basically a slightly shorter backswing and shorter follow-through for distance and arc control.

Arc is the arc of the golf ball. Basically, a knock-down-shot is a knock down because the arc will be much lower than a regular full shot.

But if you can hit this shot well, it’s really easy to hit all the time…

Anyone up for $100 a hole?