Is Your Right Side Messing You Up?
Often times we hear right handed Golfers say that they have a problem of using too much of their right side in their golf swing. Left-handed Golfers – just reverse everything I’m saying. I’m sure you’re used to doing that when reading about golf.
Well, I don’t want to disappoint anyone that has been hanging on to the “too much right side” excuse for years, however the issue most likely isn’t using too much of your right side. The issue really comes down to not using enough of your left side.
We have conducted studies of Golfers and have found that many have been told that they use too much right side in their golf swing. Unfortunately, using that type of thinking will further damage your golf swing because you’ll be limiting how much the talented side of your body can do.
The real culprit in an inconsistent golf swing is probably the weaker side of your body … your left side. We have found that most right-handers are significantly stronger and more coordinated with their right side vs. their left side. We have also found that because their left side moves slower than their right side – they have the feeling that their right side is doing too much or overtaking their left side.
On the contrary, the real issue is probably that your left side isn’t doing enough. So as your left side is slow to participate in the golf swing – it often gives the Golfer the feeling that their right side is doing too much.
Here’s an example to see how much more talented your right side might be compared to your left side: crumple up a piece of paper into a ball. Now, with your left hand, try to throw that paper as far across the room as you can. Now do it with your right hand. Which hand threw it farther and which hand felt more coordinated with the rest of your body?
Here’s another: with your computer, move your mouse to the left side of your computer and try to use your mouse for the next five minutes with your left hand. Go ahead – try to highlight some text and then copy and past with your left hand. Try it!
What the first example above is showing you is that you probably have more strength with your right side. Not just your right hand, but the whole right side of your body working together to make a throwing motion. When you tried to throw with your left hand, if you’re like most people, you probably didn’t throw as well and had to think about how to move your body before throwing.
In fact, you might’ve even stepped forward with the wrong foot when making the motion.
With the second example of using your mouse with your left hand, I would put money that if that mouse was sitting to the left of you, it would be upsetting you. Meaning, seeing it there will be a distraction. Why? Because you are so used to reaching to the right that you probably even position your body in your chair based on your mouse being to the right. When it’s on the left – you might even feel yourself having to reposition your body. In fact, I believe it probably would throw off your timing when you type an email.
Now, how does this relate to your golf swing?
You probably use your left side in your golf swing with as much coordination as you used it to throw the paper. And with as much fluidity as when your left hand tried to control your mouse. The issue in your golf swing probably isn’t that you use too much right side – it’s that you probably do not use enough left side.
So the feeling of using too much right side in your golf swing is probably based on your left side hardly doing anything in comparison.
I guarantee that the winner of this past week’s PGA Tour event uses more right side in his swing than you do. Yet, you’re trying to take your right side out of the golf swing? So how is it possible that he’s using his right side more than you are … yet you’re being told to use less right side. It just doesn’t make sense!
The important point, and what you probably should’ve been told to work on, is that the Tour Player is probably using his left side and right side more equally than you do. Whereas your golf swing might be broken down to having your right side being 80% of your golf swing and your left side being 20% of your golf swing. He’s probably a lot closer to 50% right side and 50% left side.
So some might still say that they need to use less right side so that both sides are equal. Okay …. but if you do that … what part of your body will swing the golf club. Because if you try to use your right side as equally as you currently use your left side – you’d hardly be swinging the golf club!
Now please don’t read this and think that I’m saying that your left side provides the power – because I’m not. What we’re saying is that you’ll gain power and accuracy in your golf swing when both sides of your body are working together to produce an efficient, connected, consistent golf swing. So what you should be working on – instead of taking your right side out of the golf swing – is getting your left side involved.
However, and this is important – that doesn’t mean that you should just pick up a golf club and swing it with your left hand.
That actually might make things worse. So we have developed a drill that we call the Symmetrical Drill that allows you to feel both sides of your body working together. We use this drill often during our 3 day programs. Because just swinging with your left arm doesn’t guarantee that your whole left side is working with your right side. So drills like the Symmetrical Drill are critical!
To reiterate all that is written above – having one side of your body not doing as much as the other side of your body is one of the leading causes of compensations in your golf swing. And – ‘Compensations equal Inconsistency’. The more you compensate – the more inconsistent you are. The less you need to compensate for a weaker, less coordinated left side – the more consistent you will become!
So as many Golfers are told to turn their shoulders more or turn their hips more or stop sliding their hips or cock their wrists or swing more inside to out or make a full follow-through … one reason that you might not be able to accomplish those tasks consistently might be that both sides of your body aren’t working together. Or in-other-words: One side of your body might not be doing enough.
Yet, unfortunately many Golfers are then told to use less of their right side — when the solution is probably to keep using your right side just as much as you’re doing now, but to learn how to use your left side in coordination with your right side – so that both sides are working equally!
The Monkey is practicing to take away their Strengths
The Player finds their Weaknesses and improves them
Go ahead, be a Player!