Posts Tagged ‘swing plane’

Ben Hogan’s Swing Plane, Tiger Wood’s Swing Plane – What you should Really Know about Swing Planes!

Thursday, November 5th, 2009

Here’s something that could be helpful for those of you who think there’s a perfect plane to a golf swing.

The simple answer, is that there is no perfect plane in a golf swing.  For one, Hogan claims in his book that the reason he used the swing plane concept was to get his backswing in a “consistent slot” but not an effort to say there’s such thing as a perfect plane.

Also, as you can notice in the pictures below, depending on your height and build, your swing plane may be flatter or more upright than the standard so there’s no use in trying to copy your favorite pro’s swing plane unless you are exactly the same height and build.

plane

plane-2

You can easily see that Tiger’s legs are noticeably longer than his upper body length compared to Ben Hogan.  Because of this, Tiger’s swing is naturally more upright than Ben Hogan’s.  Also, Tiger is 6′ 2″ while Ben Hogan is 5′ 8″.

These vast difference in physical makeup prove that there’s no such thing as a perfect plane for any golfer.

The swing plane I used in swing analysis was to simply have a reference point of how the golfer is swinging but in the recent months, I’ve began to realize that it’s not the most important factor in a good golf swing.

I’ve seen a ton of great swings that are far from golf norms, some way too flat or some way too upright.

The bottom line is, you need to build a consistent golf swing, not a swing that depends on lines drawn on the computer.

If you can hit a 200 yard target with a 4-iron 10 out of 10 times and you have what I think the worst swing in golf, I will not tell you to change your swing.

However, you can’t do that and your head is filled with swing mechanics garbage, perhaps I will tell you to focus on golf swing basics.

Golf swing basics consist of your grip, body action, and starting your downswing with your hips followed by your upper body.  In simpler terms, the more you can build a “consistent” swing, however you do it, it will work.  But you can’t really get consistency by building a perfect swing, there is no such thing.  Everyone has their own quirks and personal touch.

I’ve fiddled with a high-speed digital camera for about 10 years, trying to perfect my swing.  Sometimes I try to copy Tiger’s or Ben’s but none of those things ever seemed to bring consistency.  I threw my high-speed camera away and started building a golf swing I felt was more natural and right to me and I think I am on my way to a more consistent golf swing.

Don’t copy but learn and apply the basic fundamentals, that’s what they did too.

Lastly, a “swing plane” does help me “visualize” a consistent path for my backswing and that is really its real purpose so I can get consistent results.   If you keep drawing lines on your golf swing video/photos, it ain’t gonna help you with your golf swing.  Your swing might look “great” but underlying performance probably won’t improve at all.

Find a swing plane that works for you, find the one that you hit the best, crisp shots with both irons and woods.  Then stick with that swing plane.  It’s that simple. And I could really care less if you swung like Jim Furyk or Ben Hogan if you can hit the ball good.

Camilo Villegas Iron Swing Analysis!

Monday, September 8th, 2008

Camil Villegas has one of the simplest swings as he never swings beyond 3/4 point and accelerates nicely through the ball while keeping his rhythm super-smooth.

Today we will analyze Camilo’s iron swing and just see how he is able to come up with wins such as the BMW Championships where he beat the top players of the world including Vijay Singh, Phil Mickelson, Anthony Kim, and others.

At takeaway, you can clearly tell that Camil’s clubface is shut (or closed).  But this isn’t too big a problem as long as he gets it open at the top of his swing.

At half-way, you can tell that Camilo has nicely rotated his forearms so the clubface is square in relation to his swing plane.  He’s slightly inside the plane but that’s not a big deal here.

At the top of his swing, Camilo looks very poised and everything stretched out nicely.  Note that his hands and club are not actually back on-plane, a perfect backswing.

At impact, Camilo dips his head down a little (which most players do) but his impact is perfect.

After impact, Camilo looks pretty good.

At finish, Camilo does a great job of standing up straight.

Overall, I am impressed with this young Camilo’s swing as he never over-swings yet his retains his smooth rhythm.

What’s impressive is that this young man is capable of hitting every shot in the bag although he has a tendency to miss his drives to the right.  (probably due to his short backswing when he’s tempo gets too quick)  But with a swing like this, Camilo will never miss left, mostly to the right.

Most players who have short backswing tend to have a quick tempo but Camilo actually has a nice tempo.  (For comparison, check out Tommy Armour III’s swing analysis)

Here’s Camil Villegas’ swing in action:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Tiger Woods Swing Plane Secret Revealed Part II

Saturday, July 5th, 2008

Remember I revealed the secret of Tiger Woods swing plane secret little bit ago?

Well, here’s another photoshopped image of Tiger Woods’ backswing plane.

If you can imagine the plane formed by the red-circles I drew, you will quickly notice that Tiger is actually on an “inside-out” plane.

What can you learn from this?

Try swinging the club more inside to out. Backswing is always better suited for slightly inside-out planes than the other way around.

Anthony Kim Driver Swing Analysis

Saturday, July 5th, 2008

Okay, today, we will do a “real” swing analysis of Anthony Kim’s swing. (unlike my older post on Anthony Kim’s swing video only)

Now, this young man gas a great swing and might start taking over PGA Tour with multiple wins.

At takeaway, Anthony is a little too much inside. (This is what the “traditional” golf teachers teach you. But don’t be fooled, the follow-through will prove that Anothony “came back” to the right plane to hit the ball, which almost every pro tour golfer does)

At half-way, Anthony is still way too inside but that’s okay as it will get from here on.

At top os his swing, you can see how well his hands, and clubface are in-plane. (The four diagonal lines represent the true plane of the golf swing)

At downswing, Anthony is slightly inside the plane, which is perfectly acceptable.

At impact, notice how his left arms is straight and right arms slightly bent like at address.

Now what impresses me about Anthony Kim’s swing is not his takeaway or backswing but right after impact.

As you can see, his clubface is almost dead-on or slightly outside the plane. This movement is actually the best move. (Players like Ben Hogan and Tiger Woods do this)

After impact, it gets even better as Anthony’s club stays on-plane.

At finish, check out how controlled his right foot is, it’s barely coming up.

What can you learn from Anthony Kim’s swing?

There are many ways to swing the club. Try to focus on getting that club on-plane at the top of your swing and after impact.

Even most tour pros have completely different opinions on how to swing on-plane but their after impact positions will be the same.

Here’s Anthony Kim’s swing in slow-motion (SWING VISION):

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Nick Price Driver Swing Analysis

Saturday, June 21st, 2008

Nick Price Driver Swing Analysis

I remember seeing Nick Price for the first time on TV, his hair used to stick up all the time a lot more than most other tour pros.  Anyways, I have always been a big fan of Nick Price since the 90s, let’s look at how his swing is.

Btw, he’s a student of David Leadbetter, so he swings on the yellow plane. (We will have to term the yellow plane swingers as 90s swingers.  I also have been guilty of practicing the yellow plane for about 10 years of my life but that’s the 90s, let’s focus on the true swing plane here)

At halfway back, Nick does the perfect match with the yellow plane.  I’d rather see him more outside near the red plane.

At the top, Nick does get back on to the plane.

Surprisingly, Nick does come back to the yellow plane before impact.  This is actually harder to do and its only because Nick’s really good at it.  Most tour pros would come down the red plane line.

At impact, Nick is somewhat neat the red plane.

Now, a lot of pro golfers and teachers still rely on the 2-plane swing, which is combination of the yellow and the red plane.  This is too confusing and there’s too many moving parts.

If you want to swing on 1-plane swing like Tiger or Moe Norman, you will need to concentrate on getting your clubhead on one plane only.

Moe Norman Swing Analysis – What does Moe Norman have in common with Tiger Woods?

Monday, June 9th, 2008

If you have been a golf fanatic like me for almost 20 years, you will know that one of the best ball strikers next to Ben Hogan in history of golf was Moe Norman.

Moe Norman is a Canadian golfer who didn’t play as many US tour events as he should have but he’s regarded as the best ball striker by many people.

Another great Canadian golfer is George Knudson, a golfer Jack Nicklaus said that had one of the best swings in golf.

Anyways, let’s look at the one-swing plane Moe Norman teaches and I can tell you that it’s not that much different from Tiger’s swing except the setup.

As you can see, Moe Norman “says” he teaches 1-plane swing, but he actually is a little bit under the plane. In that regards, Tiger’s swing is more on-plane.

Mind you, Moe Norman is a great golfer and teacher but do as he says not as he does. (His swing is off-plane here as evidenced on the screenshot)

At the top of Moe Norman’s swing, you can see that Moe is perfectly on-plane. Now, Tiger swing way past 3/4 so we can compare Tiger’s 3/4 position to Moe Norman.

As you can see, there’s no difference between the two great golfers. Their start setup might be different but MOST pro tour players do end up in the similar top of backswing positions, impact, and followthrough.

Now, half-way downswing, you can see that both players are slightly under the plane, both of which are fine for crisp inside-out strike.

There are a lot of “myths” out on the internet that Moe Norman’s swing is a unique swing. The setup is unique but the other parts are the same.

So which setup is better for striking the ball?

I think that either setup is great. Moe Norman prefers to setup so his arms and hands are on-plane at address. This isn’t something natural for most golfers and I like to take the regular “hang the arms” style setup.

The fact is that at impact, your arms and hands straighten out anyways, so I don’t feel the need to setup like that unless you are a hardcore fan of Moe Norman.

At impact, notice that both golfers are pretty much identical except Tiger’s taller so he seems to be coming at a more vertical angle but in reality, both players are achieving the same thing.

The point of this post?

Well, there are a lot of instructors out there that “claim” they can teach you the 1-swing plane.

Well, folks, the truth is that the 1-swing plane is something that Tiger and many other tour players implement.

The only thing Moe Norman does differently is his setup and if you want to learn that and pay some golf schmuck couple hundred bucks, go ahead but golf in essence is same whether you learn Moe’s method or anyone elses.

My 1-swing Plane Theory

My 1-swing plane theory is not something I learned from another teacher. It has come from analyzing and studying the best players in slow-motion, at tournaments, and playing high-pressure tournaments myself to see what worked or not.

If you look at any of my video swing analysis, you will see the plane line I set from the ball through the middle of right shoulder socket. This is the plane that Tiger Woods and Moe Norman uses. It’s a great plane to follow because it allows the golfer to get back to the golf ball from the top of the backswing with minimal manipulation such as “arms dropping” and etc…etc…

I’ve also noticed that more and more players are adopting the 1-swing plane on tour. It’s simply a better way to hit the ball and puts less stress on your back when done right.

So how to achieve this 1-swing plane?

Well, I can’t tell you all the secrets but yes, I am working on an e-book that will show you some simple drills that help you achieve this goal.

Here’s Moe Norman’s swing in action for your reference but don’t go buy some stupid instructions on the web:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Luke Donald Swing Analysis – Driver

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Luke Donald has a great swing, like everyone else on tour.

Let’s look at how he does it:

At takeaway, Luke is actually on-plane. The red plane line is “Butch Harmon’s” teachings and the yellow line is “David Leadbetter’s” teachings.

Most pro tour follow the red or the yellow plane at takeaway.

At the top of the swing though, most players’ hands will match with the red plane as Luke is showing you here.

Right before impact, Luke’s body is nice and tall, ready to hit the ball from inside-out.

Take a look at how straight Luke’s arms, hands, and club form. This matches perfectly with the swing plane, Luke probably hit this 300 yards.

Luke does come up slightly early than most players but this is a good thing as he is standing “tall”.

Here’s Luke’s swing in action:

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

Swing Analysis of Tim Clark – Driver

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Swing Analysis of Tim Clark - Driver

Tim Clark is in the lead up to the 3rd round of this week’s PGA Tournament, Stanford St. Jude Championship, so let’s look at his swing.

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David Toms Swing Analysis

Wednesday, June 4th, 2008

David Toms has one of the smoothest swing in golf.  Let’s look at his swing now.

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Matt Kuchar Swing Analysis

Sunday, June 1st, 2008

Matt Kuchar Swing Analysis

Here’s a swing analysis of Matt Kuchar, winner of the 1997 US Amateur.

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