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 Understanding the Swing Plane

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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Understanding the Swing Plane   Thu Aug 06, 2009 11:21 pm

The Swing Plane has been one of the most misunderstood concepts in golf - no thanks to the amount of confllicting information that is widely available in media.

To understand what an on plane swing is, look at your analog clock from the side.
Tilt it 45 degrees.
Notice the perfect oscillation of the second hand.
Notice it stay parallel to the clockface unwaveringly.
Notice that it doesn't wobble.
Notice that one end of the second hand is always pointing to the base (the part that is resting on the ground)
The hub upon which the second hand is turning is your shoulder.



Through this thread, I hope to be able to share what a real swing plane.
When you understand this simple concept, no one can fool you anymore.
You will be able to look at swings and instead of just saying it is a one or two plane swing; say whether its off plane or not.

The plane concept should interest you as it has do with power in the swing. Swing off plane and you will always be struggling for distance.

For a swing to be considered "on plane":

1) The entire shaft must always be on the face of the plane throughout the swing, as demonstrated by my friend Bobby Schaeffer.


2) The second prerequisite for an on plane condition is:

One end of the shaft must always be pointing at the base of the plane (the plane line) or be parallel to it.



As we progress along the thread, we shall discuss stuff like plane angle variations.
Before anyone can jump in and say..."but we are humans and can't swing like a clock" - be patient, I will get there too.
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sniffydog
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Fri Aug 07, 2009 8:52 am

nice diagram! it illustrates why we should target to have the deepest part of our divots infront of the ball (4inches as proclaimed by Bobby Clampett in "The Impact Zone")
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:13 pm

sniffydog wrote:
nice diagram! it illustrates why we should target to have the deepest part of our divots infront of the ball (4inches as proclaimed by Bobby Clampett in "The Impact Zone")

Again 4 inches is only correct if you have the same ball position in relation to the upper body for all clubs.
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shotah
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:25 pm

Hi TGM, thanks for the write once again. But which is more important, the back swing or the down swing???
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:40 pm

shotah wrote:
Hi TGM, thanks for the write once again. But which is more important, the back swing or the down swing???

No problem, as long as my posts help, I will keep posting.

The short answer is the downswing will take precedence over the backswing.

My teaching philosophy is fairly simple.

1) Learn proper impact dynamics which begins when the shaft is parallel to the ground on the downswing.
2) Learn proper finish dynamics - specifically a post impact pivot.
3) Backswing

The reason for this reverse approach is this...

When you are learning 3 after you have learnt 1 and 2, you actually know where to go to since you have already know impact and the finish.

Mastering impact dynamics will shape your backswing. Your body will figure out the best way to get to the ball most effectively.
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shotah
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:46 pm

ok thanks.. but i tink you meant when your shaft is perpendicular for the impact dynamics for note 1???

Do they teach you all this in golf school? Because I feel that some of the local pros lack of such theory...
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sat Aug 08, 2009 11:22 pm

shotah wrote:
ok thanks.. but i tink you meant when your shaft is perpendicular for the impact dynamics for note 1???

Do they teach you all this in golf school? Because I feel that some of the local pros lack of such theory...

Sorry for the lack of elaboration...me bad...Smile

When I work on #1 with my players, I usually have them start with the shaft PARALLEL to the ground and the hands opposite the right thigh. This is a very short backswing if in fact we are hitting a shot...

But the idea of the drill is not to hit shots, but feel the proper sensation of the shaft loading against the hands at the downswing. So start from there and then as you have very rightly pointed out, drive that "loaded"feel to where the shaft is perpendicular to the ground.

Shaft flex is so important that my players do not progress to the next stage until they get it - irrespective of handicaps and professional or not.

Hear the sound of this shot I hit with a beautiful Powerbilt Citation HBH Persimmon. Shaft flex is key bro...see how straight the shot went. Velocity can help you hit the ball far, but only acceleration (evidenced by holding shaft flex) will help you hit it straight.


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ironfist
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:18 am

hmmm this shaft flex thing is very very interesting. most people distill it down to faster swing speed = stiffer flex (ppl like me) and flex actually has so much more impact on the swing. i'd love to delve deeper into this! Smile
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:23 am

ironfist wrote:
hmmm this shaft flex thing is very very interesting. most people distill it down to faster swing speed = stiffer flex (ppl like me) and flex actually has so much more impact on the swing. i'd love to delve deeper into this! Smile

Let's define shaft flex first...its a forward lean of the shaft towards the target.

Shaft flex has nothing to do with swing speed, but rather acceleration which is the rate of change of velocity.

You can have a slow swing speed and have shaft flex.
You can have a fast swing speed and have no shaft flex.

I would think ironfist, if you want to be a very good golfer, understanding this would be on top of your list.
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shotah
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:28 am

Thanks for the clip TGM. Pardon me but i couldn't see the ball. Anyway, I use to bring the club as in as you and that resulted in my shots having a lot of draw. SO got it corrected so now having straighter shots. Tats why i think the way every individual swing is very different, but also resulting in the same result.
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:30 am

shotah wrote:
Thanks for the clip TGM. Pardon me but i couldn't see the ball. Anyway, I use to bring the club as in as you and that resulted in my shots having a lot of draw. SO got it corrected so now having straighter shots. Tats why i think the way every individual swing is very different, but also resulting in the same result.

Thats the key...Golf YOUR way!
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samT
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:34 am

I am confused. So if golfing MY way is the WAY, then what is all the fuss about some of these golf swing theories I am paying money to learn. Plse help before I burn a bigger hole in my pocket for no reason at all.
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:36 am

samT wrote:
I am confused. So if golfing MY way is the WAY, then what is all the fuss about some of these golf swing theories I am paying money to learn. Plse help before I burn a bigger hole in my pocket for no reason at all.

No confusion.
My take is that there are things in the golf swing that are absolutely fundamental and non-negotiable. The rest are like "paintwork"and "up to you". If you can do the fundamentals well, you will be hard to beat. Holding shaft flex is the key.
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yelnats
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:37 am

I think there is a lot of wrong information out there. I quit reading swing instruction 6 weeks back.
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ironfist
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:37 am

The Golfing Machine wrote:
ironfist wrote:
hmmm this shaft flex thing is very very interesting. most people distill it down to faster swing speed = stiffer flex (ppl like me) and flex actually has so much more impact on the swing. i'd love to delve deeper into this! Smile

Let's define shaft flex first...its a forward lean of the shaft towards the target.

Shaft flex has nothing to do with swing speed, but rather acceleration which is the rate of change of velocity.

You can have a slow swing speed and have shaft flex.
You can have a fast swing speed and have no shaft flex.

I would think ironfist, if you want to be a very good golfer, understanding this would be on top of your list.

it has just made the top of my list of things to do! Very Happy

just to clarify though, this forward lean is during the downswing correct? and by acceleration you are referring to the acceleration of the club head in the downswing?

bear with me bro, i intend to pick your brain clean. haha Smile
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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:40 am

ironfist wrote:
The Golfing Machine wrote:
ironfist wrote:
hmmm this shaft flex thing is very very interesting. most people distill it down to faster swing speed = stiffer flex (ppl like me) and flex actually has so much more impact on the swing. i'd love to delve deeper into this! Smile

Let's define shaft flex first...its a forward lean of the shaft towards the target.

Shaft flex has nothing to do with swing speed, but rather acceleration which is the rate of change of velocity.

You can have a slow swing speed and have shaft flex.
You can have a fast swing speed and have no shaft flex.

I would think ironfist, if you want to be a very good golfer, understanding this would be on top of your list.

it has just made the top of my list of things to do! Very Happy

just to clarify though, this forward lean is during the downswing correct? and by acceleration you are referring to the acceleration of the club head in the downswing?

Yes to the first question.

By acceleration, I am referring to the load in your hands when the shaft drops down against your right index finger on the downswing. See this drop move clip.



bear with me bro, i intend to pick your brain clean. haha Smile
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ironfist
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:45 am

oh okay i saw a video on youtube and it explained what holding shaft flex means. so what you're saying is that those 3 points are fixed and have to be learnt, but everything else in the middle is up to a person's own physical ability to fill. makes perfect sense.

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The Golfing Machine
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:48 am

ironfist wrote:
oh okay i saw a video on youtube and it explained what holding shaft flex means. so what you're saying is that those 3 points are fixed and have to be learnt, but everything else in the middle is up to a person's own physical ability to fill. makes perfect sense.


Who do you think that guy is?
He is my coach.

Not just physical ability, but preference as well..
Some players just like a stronger / weaker grip...no biggie there..
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yelnats
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:52 am

.


Last edited by yelnats on Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:03 am; edited 1 time in total
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shotah
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:57 am

Wow... 280 yards.. who did it with a persimmon?
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ironfist
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 1:08 am

The Golfing Machine wrote:
ironfist wrote:
oh okay i saw a video on youtube and it explained what holding shaft flex means. so what you're saying is that those 3 points are fixed and have to be learnt, but everything else in the middle is up to a person's own physical ability to fill. makes perfect sense.


Who do you think that guy is?
He is my coach.

Not just physical ability, but preference as well..
Some players just like a stronger / weaker grip...no biggie there..

wow that's your coach?! haha oh gosh this has just reaffirmed that i need A LOT of work on my swing.. haha
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yelnats
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 1:12 am

.


Last edited by yelnats on Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:04 am; edited 1 time in total
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shotah
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 4:39 pm

THanks for the advice..... Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:05 pm

Hi TGM,

you have been very generous in sharing your knowledge, thank you sir.

Is it important to follow the elbow plane from 9 o'cock to impact to 3 o'clock?

if so, is there any drills for this?

I think I have a tendency to come out of this elbow plane by either standing up, or reaching for the ball...thus it ends up closer to the turned shoulder plane.

Was Moe Norman the only true one planer?
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Ssquirrel
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PostSubject: Re: Understanding the Swing Plane   Sun Aug 09, 2009 9:04 pm

Hmm.. I slow learner leh..
Still not sure what is the plane...(only tattoo on fantasy island hehehe)
Sorry.. pics could be quite big?

Some pics I see.. plane line is drawn thru the shoulders..


Some pics: thru the waist line..


Then other pics somewhere in between.
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