The building of a golf swing that will allow a Golfer to improve their consistency should be done one step at a time. Unfortunately many Golfers are not willing to accept the one step at a time process – they’re only satisfied when everything “clicks at the same time”. Yet trying to do too much at one time with your golf swing would probably give you the same results as a pile of money being invested in the stock market on October 9th, 2007. Meaning, you aren’t doing so well with what you invested in either venture.
Regardless of what you do in the future with your golf swing – I’ll leave the investment advice to others who are much smarter than I – it maybe a good thing to go back to some important basics once-in-a-while just to make sure you’re allowing yourself to make your best golf swing. And as many eager Golfers are now focused on swing plane, swing path, two lever golf swings, x factors and every other buzz term that has been dreamed up – the question many Golfers should have on the tip of their tongue is “when’s the last time I worked on the foundation of my golf swing?”
Because if those buzz terms are important in order for you to become a good ballstriker – you may have difficulty achieving them if your foundation isn’t stable.
Luckily, in my youth – starting after my Junior Year of High School and continuing for a couple years right after graduation – I was able to spend much of my days doing some construction work. And it didn’t take long to discover one eye opening detail: Roofers really appreciate it when a house has a solid foundation.
Meaning – if the lower part of the house is wobbly – the upper part of the house is even more wobbly. And because many of the roofers I met were still wobbly from the night before – the last thing they wanted was … well nevermind. The point is – think of your golf swing as if it were a house or tall building. If the bottom of your body isn’t secure (or out of balance) – what’s happening with the top half of your body?
So the question I pose to you today is: Is it possible that many of your swing faults are caused by an unsecure foundation?
And as obvious as that is – it isn’t obvious enough to millions of Golfers that struggle round after round, year after year, as they search for a glimmer of consistency. Listen, every Golfer can hit a great golf shot – the key however to playing consistent isn’t the ability to hit one-great-golf-shot-every-once-in-a-while. So yes, even with an unsecure foundation – you can hit a good golf shot. (Just as the stock market is down big time since October 2007 – it has had some good days). Though how many good shots in a row (consistency) can you hit with an unsecure foundation?
As all the smart people in the construction business know – if the foundation of the house isn’t secure – the top of the house is even less secure. And as (hopefully) all the smart people in the golf instruction business know: Your upper body is only as secure as your lower body allows it to be.
So the question that begs to be asked right this second is: How secure is your foundation? And the answer is: It’s probably just as secure as you are consistent. Or to put even more perspective on this, you could say: It’s probably just as unsecure as you are inconsistent.
So, as just about every Golfer that gets in a struggle with their golf swing starts to blame the much over used malady of – “I think I’m coming over the top” – could this “I think I’m coming over the top” problem be triggered by an unsecure foundation? If your bottom isn’t secure – wouldn’t that cause your top to be even more all over the place? And “all over the place” could translate into a “I think I’m coming over the top” golf swing.
This is not to say that all these bad things are caused by an unsecure foundation – it’s just to say: When’s the last time you checked your foundation? This is also not to say that a good solid foundation means not allowing your lower body to move – it has to move – movement is essential in a consistent golf swing.
Now, because I know I’m probably going to get a ration of “Well, instead of telling me what I’m doing wrong – why don’t you tell me what I need to do” emails. First – I’m not telling you what you’re doing wrong because most likely I’ve never seen your golf swing. At this time I personally only work with a handful of special clients – however, I’ve seen enough Golfers to know that many Golfers do have this problem. The other reason I’m bringing this up is that I’m seeing a disturbing trend in the Golf Instruction Kingdom of way too much emphasis being put solely on what’s going on at the top of the golf swing.
And I understand that it just sounds sexier when you’re talking to another Golfer that says: “Yeah, I’m working on bringing my club more from the inside.” Or – “I’m working on a bigger shoulder turn so that I can create more effortless clubhead speed.” I mean there’s not much glamour in saying: “I’m working on having a more secure foundation.” That’s like hearing a friend tell you about their trip last week to the Four Seasons inMaui. And when you’re asked what you did last week, you had to describe your trip to Tallahassee, Floridato help your In-laws paint their house.
Many Golfers are told to work on bringing the golf club down on the inside to prevent from “I think I’m coming over the top”. And regardless of how much a Golfer works on this “move” – many assuredly revert back to the “I think I’m coming over the top” movement. Why? Maybe because that movement that you’re trying to eliminate isn’t being caused by your movement at the top of your golf swing. Maybe it’s being caused by your lack of a stable foundation – which is causing your upper body to compensate, which could be causing you to create a “I think I’m coming over the top” golf swing.
Now Second – I can’t suggest what you need to do to fix this – if you are in fact having a foundation issue – for the same reason: I probably have never seen you swing. Though don’t fret – I think I do have a solution for this.
One of the great, great things a Golfer can do (regardless of if you have a bad foundation or good foundation), is to hit golf balls bare foot. It’s an incredible sensation. First, you quite possibly could discover a lot about your balance even before hitting a golf ball.
Remember, golf shoes are made for comfort. Which means – massive amounts of cushioning. That cushioning for many people doesn’t allow them to feel where their weight is on their feet. Why is that important? That’s part of your foundation!
Second – hitting golf balls without shoes can be an eye opening experience for some people. You may start to feel what exactly you’re doing with your body during your golf swing. Now, I don’t expect many Golfers to try this because I know a lot of Golfers will interpret this is as a stupid thing to do. So, for those Golfers that think its stupid – don’t do it. Though, for the Golfers that are curious – try it – I think you might find out more about your foundation in just a few golf swings than you have in all the years you have been playing.
And just in case you needed a little push – did you know that both Sam Snead and Seve Ballesteros both learned to hit the golf ball (and practiced that way for many years) bare footed? Sam Snead in the hills of Virginia and Seve on the beaches ofSantander,Spain.
Or instead of hitting a couple of golf balls bare footed – you could try another method that was floated by me in an email from a Golfer that suggested a way of getting rid of the “I think I’m coming over the top” movement, he said that you could try to improve your swing by: “Slowing you rate of closure so that you wouldn’t be shifting your baseline so much because of your excessive forearm rotation and loss of pressure points – which would help you avoid blocks, hooks, slices and chunks.”
If I were you – I’d choose hitting a couple of golf balls without your shoes.
The Monkey doesn’t think much about their foundation, they’re too concerned with “the important things” in their golf swing
The Player knows that a solid foundation can help with a consistent golf swing
Go ahead, be a Player!
Marc Solomon – Your Instructor For Life