My New Golf Swing – The Weak Grip/Flat Plane Golf Swing!

by Max on Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

Well, I have finally built a new golf swing after tinkering and experimenting with different grips and swing planes.  This new golf swing is probably perfect for golfers who are similar build to mine (I am 5′ 9″ 190lbs with modest muscles in my upper body and rather muscular lower body) or you can try it if it works for you too.

Another quirk I have is that I have flat foot, meaning that if I try to swing like non-flat footed people, I simply can’t but I have found using a super, weak grip and a super, flat swing plane, I can hit the ball after ball consistently toward my target and also have a great control over my ball trajectory and distance.

So, here it goes for those of you who want to try a golf swing that I’ve created.

The Grip

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The grip starts with my left hand.  The left hand grip is actually simply neutral.  Just hang your left hand down the shaft naturally, back of your left hand facing the target.

grip-2

You should see about 2 knuckles, the V formed by your thumb and index finger pointing to your chin or right shoulder.  I use the standard left hand grip but the right hand grip is where we make the weak grip. (and the secret sauce behind my swing)

grip-3

For the right hand, you will place your right hand grip “well weak”, meaning the V formed by the thumb and index finger should point to your left shoulder or slightly beyond.

This mechanism allows me to really prevent turning my right hand over after impact.  Rather, I can fully release my right hand at impact, thereby applying extra power to my overall swing speed yet be able to control the golf ball with super accuracy.

I find that traditional golf instruction only teaches the “wrong” way, where the right hand is vulnerable to turn the club over the quickly.  Why not set your right hand so it can never turn over so fast?  That’s my secret.

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Here’s the finished netural left/weak right grip.  Ben Hogan used something similar to this, I’ve exaggerated my weak right hand grip more because I hit the ball better that way.

When done right, both your arms should be straight instead of traditional golf instruction where your right elbow is slightly tucked into your body.

I find that you can feel more unison between your hands and arms when using this grip.

Address/Setup

address-1

At address, you should stand as tall as possible (like you are standing) and simply bend your knees a bit.  The shoulders here are “square” and “parallel” to your target line while the arms may be slightly open due to the super, weak right hand grip.

address-2

From the front, you should see that the hands are slightly ahead of the golf clubhead and you should “feel” the triangle formed by your shoulders, arms, and hands.  This is the most pivotal part, you need to feel that “triangle”, that is what you turn on the backswing and downswing. (or turning your body)

Backswing

backswing-1

For the backswing, you will simply turn your “triangle” formed at address in-plane.  You do not need to consciously cock your hands, they should naturally cock as the result of your body movement.  Also, you only need to go as far as your shoulders will turn about 90-100 degrees for control, there’s no need to swing to parallel, that’s only a made-up guideline, there’s no reason why you should swing so far, especially when you consider your elbow angles will go out of control and you will have to re-adjust to compensate on the downswing.   Also note, I am turning on a single axis of my upper body, that’s all I need to do.

backswing-2

For the backswing, you will need to imagine a plane formed by your shoulders and the ball and try to turn your “triangle” along that plane.  When you do that, you get what you see above.

I’ve intentionally also left out the takeaway, I believe golfers should not focus on the takeaway because it’s only result of the process of getting to the top of the backswing and it will hurt your rhythm if you try to manipulate the takeaway.  Rather, think of the backswing as one action from address to the backswing.

All throughout my swing, my hands feel “super” light, tension in your hands will kill your golf swing.  It might “look” like I am holding the club hard but in reality, I am holding it light as I can through my swing, even on my downswing.

Transition – The Hip Slide & Turn

downswing-1

Transition is the most important part of your backswing because if you don’t start the downswing with the hips, you will come over the shot, hitting a slice or a pull hook.

From the top of the backswing, I feel like simply “bumping” my hips back to the target, which starts a chain reaction of events like the shoulders, arms, and hands being pulled down to this position.  My hands still feel super light and I feel like I am ready to punch someone out.

downswing-2

Because of the super weak grip we’ve implemented here, you can really swing through as hard as you can from here without worry about hooking the ball.

Also, in this part of the swing, I “still” feel the triangle formed earlier at address.  (You should be able to feel the unison of your shoulders, arms, and hands throughout the golf swing.)

Impact!

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You shouldn’t really practice impact since it’s also result of process but at impact, this is what it should feel like, the hands still ahead of the club.

impact-2

Follow-Through

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After impact, you should really “feel” the triangle formed at address turning.  The result is that both of your arms are extended fully.

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And as you can see here, the clubhead should be in this position, meaning you are swinging inside-out.  Also note, the spine angle has been maintained.

My hand still feel super “light” though.  If you body (triangle) does the work, your hands will feel light.

The Finish

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After follow-through, feel free to let your body come up so you don’t hurt your back.  Although I have seen some golf instruction that teach you to maintain spine angle even through finish, I disagree for longer golfing life.

There’s absolutely no reason for you to maintain spine angle AFTER your follow-through because that will only hurt your back.

Notice how straight my right arm is, this means I’ve extended my right arm as fully as possible through impact and follow-through, this mean full-power and accuracy too.

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Players like Annika Sorenstam does this well, even turning their heads at impact.

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At the end of your finish, your boday should be balancing nicely on your left foot.  I’ve actually “exaggerated” my right arm to be straight but you can actually relax at this point.

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See how my body is very upright?  This is really great for hitting thousands of golf balls on the range and never hurt your back.  I believe the best and simple golf swing is also the one that doesn’t harm your back.  With this finish position, I can literally hit 300 golf balls per day without any lower back problems.

Another important thing you can check at the finish is to check how “stable” your right hand grip is.

Another reason why I changed my right hand grip to be super weak is because at finish, my right hand grip still feels super “stable”, whereas a my old neutral right hand grip was slightly “shaky” at best.

Of course, all these swing tips might not help you because you are probably not built like me.  I am just demonstrating what has worked for me and a lot of stuff I’ve implemented are those I’ve learned through golf books, instructors, and finally customizing them to my body.

Remember, there IS no perfect golf swing, the perfect golf swing is the one you can hit the ball consistently and easily without breaking your lower back.

I just hope you don’t be scared to try new grips, swing planes, just because your golf instructor tells you otherwise.

Too many golf instructors teach you one golf swing, which is completely wrong and won’t work on everyone.

I’ve found my golf swing and should be refining it soon.  And yes, definitely take it for a test drive next year at some mini-tour events.

Happy golfing, and remember, practice makes perfect.

P.S. I should have a video of this new swing soon, see my last video just before I found my new golf swing, which is pretty much the same thing.

Here’s some practice swings:

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4 Responses to “My New Golf Swing – The Weak Grip/Flat Plane Golf Swing!”

  1. Tom says:

    Very, very good swing. Looks like you have been studying Ben Hogan's swing for awhile. Your grip is very similar as is the swing action and follow through. There are a couple of points that differ from my view. Hogan sets his hands further back away from the target at address. Hogan looks a looser overall while keeping the connection with an early writst setting in the backswing. Its not a forced action but looks like a natural movement of his light grip and loose wrists responding to the weight of the club and body turn dynamics. His upper body moves away from the target and then hits a wall when he braces up against his left leg that simply does not move until the forward swing.

  2. john says:

    tom, you meant braced up against the right leg, not left leg ? didn’t you ? john

  3. Swish says:

    haha. That last part was funny when your mom was calling you. I thought you might have edited that out. lol. Good luck with swing bro.

  4. Josh says:

    I agree with the weak grip technique. Like you I am a student of the grip and truly believe that the way you place your hands on the club directly dictates the plane, body motion, and effectiveness of your swing. I concentrate on having the middle finger knuckle on my left hand pointing directly at the ground. A grip that is too strong or even slightly strong promotes swing flaws such as a wristy takeaway, flipping at impact, and too flat of a plane. I wish the definition would go from weak to biomechnically effective! Nice work on the pics

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