Club Positions vs Body Positions - The age-old debate
When assessing a golf swing, should one look at club positions or body positions? This is a battle that has been raging for as long as people have been swinging! ‘Swing the clubhead’, ‘swing on the shaft plane’, ‘don’t let the shaft be laid-off or across’, ‘make sure the clubface is square at the top’ are all club-positions thoughts a golfer might use. ‘Shift weight’, ‘rotate your spine’ ‘rotate your lead forearm’, ‘don’t have a flat shoulder plane’, ‘the spine should not early-extend on the downswing’ are some of the many body-position swing ideas that are commonly used. Many teachers and players mix-and-match the two groups at will, usually based on subjective experience. If one understands that all body movement takes place at the ‘joints’, and only a combination of body movements can position the club in space, one will never ever use club-position descriptions again. A ‘joint’, incidentally, is a place where 2 bones meet, and movement ONLY takes place at the joints. The important joints of the golf swing are the shoulder, elbow, forearm, wrist, hip, knee and ankle. A case in point: a student recently said, “Whichever method I follow, yours or any other, I am always laid-off half-way to the top.”
Hellooo! The MGSS never uses such loose language as ‘laid off’. In anatomy it is called a medial rotation of the left (lead) arm, and is caused ONLY because the golfer had no MGS ‘twist’ at the start of the backswing, so had no room for the left arm to lift up (of its own volition, with no help from the golfer) inside (green lines second pic from left)
the target line! The shaft lifts up ‘outside’ the target line, and so the lead/left arm must do something to bring the club back into what the brain senses is the approximately correct direction for a reasonable attempt at connecting with the ball!