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Before & After Lessons

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  • Before & After Lessons

    I need help. I took golf lessons, that basically helped me with the fundamentals. Before the lessons, I could hit my long irons and not my short irons. NOW, I can not hit my long irons and very inconsistent with my short irons. However, my putting has improved considerably and off the tee!!!

    I have been told my posture is good, grip is good, my follow through is good...but I am not able to hit with my irons. Where should the ball position be when hitting long irons? A what does it really mean to keep the clubface square? How can I tell if it is square to the target?


  • #2
    Re: Before & After Lessons

    With any change in your swing you will get worse before you get better. You will need to practice the new swing and re-train your muscles so that the new swing is natural. This usually takes about 500 balls or so. Trust what your pro has tought you and things will get better with practice.

    As for be square, your clubface should be on a 90* angle to your target line.

    There are two theories about ball positions. The first is that long irons should be played slightly in the front of your stance, moving about a ball width back with each club down to PW. The other theory is that you should play every iron from the centre of your stance. Work with both and find which feels and works best for you.


    • #3
      Re: Before & After Lessons

      Hi Alassiter,

      The two thoery on ball position are here

      1. Allways just inside th left heel (right hander), then narrow/widen stance (or)
      2. Ball position moves, short irons in middle, as they get longer it moves towards left heel (right hander).

      The Ball Position Lesson is very good and explains all


      • #4
        Re: Before & After Lessons

        i practiced with my short irons today. I just slowed down and smooth. I didnt graduate to a longer iron yet.


        • #5
          Re: Before & After Lessons

          A few other things to consider:

          When looking at the ball and clubhead make sure your focus is on the bottom of the club not the top line. Your eyes can only focus on one thing clearly. This is the point of focus.

          When you take a practice swing it says much about your lie, up, down, sidehill etc. Take you practice swing next to the ball and see where your divot starts. It should be on the target side of the ball adjust your body, not your arms to get a good clean contact. You will see those shots improve rapidly.



          • #6
            Re: Before & After Lessons

            Originally posted by alassiter
            Where should the ball position be when hitting long irons?
            Aside from the 2 other ball position methods there is a third and forth. Before I discuss them let me give a simple golf geometry lesson. Your left arm and club swing around your left shoulder therefore your left shoulder is the center of your clubface and clubhead arc. The deepest point of your arc is beneath your left shoulder. Your spine or neck is the center of your shoulder turn.

            Method #3 Ė In the mid 1980ís Dr. Ralph Mann, who has a degree in biomechanics, started an intense golf swing project. Using 100 touring pros he filmed their swings with high speed cameras. Using 1000 frames per swing be traced 72 separate points. That was 72,000 data points per swing. When he finished he compiled all the data into a computer. What data matched he kept. What differed he threw out. What he had at the end was a composite model of what they all did the same. One of the things he noticed was how far forward in their stance they played the ball. From driver to wedge the ball only changed position 3 ball widths or basically 3 ĹĒ. Woods and longs irons are played just inside the left shoulder or heel, if a shoulder width stance is used. Middle irons are played 1 ball width back and short irons and wedges 1 ball width behind that. If you line up 3 balls thatís how much ball position changes driver to wedge, not much at all.

            The advantage of this forward ball position is that biomechanically itís conducive to a forward weight shift. The further forward the ball the more we must shift our weight forward to get to it. Geometrically itís also a correct procedure. If all clubs were the same length the low point of their arc and where they square up would be identical. But we play with clubs of different lengths. Since a 9 iron is shorter than a driver itís arc is smaller therefore it will square up sooner because it has less distance to travel. This allows the ball position for a 9 iron to be slightly back of that for a driver. If we micro manage this were looking at something like 3/8Ē change in ball position club to club. No one is this precise in determining ball position so as a general guideline we simply use the 3 ball widths rule.

            If you put your feet together and line up 3 balls in front of them you will notice the distance between your left and right toe is 3 ball widths! This is handy. As an address routine address the ball with your feet together. With a wood or long iron position the ball off your left toe (of youíre right handed). Between your two feet with a middle iron and off right toe with a short iron or wedge. Keeping your left foot where itís at step back with your right to give your stance width. Using this address routine you can position the ball in your stance correctly for every club every time.

            Method #4 Ė This procedure determines the correct ball position for the individual club and the way it fits you. As the club approaches impact itís toe up. It gradually flattens so the leading edge is level with the ground at impact and then goes to toe up again in the follow through. When the leading edge is level with the ground the face is square. If we tilt the club toe up the face aims left. If we tilt the club toe down the face aims right. This is why itís important the leading edge is level at impact and why clubs are fit dynamically, not how they fit you at address.

            To determine the correct ball position with this method we need to simulate impact. With your left wrist flat and your right forearm and shaft in-line slowly move the club back and forth until you find the position the leading edge of your club levels out with the ground. This is the correct ball position for that club. Using this method you can also find the correct ball position for clubs that may be too short or too long for you. This of course may explain why conventional ball positions may not work for you. It may be in the clubs.

            A what does it really mean to keep the clubface square? How can I tell if it is square to the target?
            This can be tricky because the face position at address may not be the face position at impact. There are 3 hinge actions you can use in the swing (there are actually 5 but only 3 can be used). The face position for the 3 are different at address but all are square at impact. As a general rule square to the target is the leading edge 90* or perpindicular to the target line.