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Keeping width on backswing


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You guys are saying the same thing and arguing about it. Torbill explained the sequence and how width in the backswing doesn’t necessarily equate to width at impact. Chase goes off on tor about deceleration of the torso, which torbill actually says has to happen. Slap fight about tangent discussion ensues....

 

I didn’t go ‘off’ on anyone. Tor stated that the ‘key thing that mattered’ was how fast the torso was moving at impact. My reply was that the torso was decelerating well before impact and torso speed has very little to do with anything (width, contact, clubhead speed, etc).

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Let’s look at golfwrx own Dennis Clarke has to say about width:

 

http://www.golfwrx.com/330932/how-wide-should-your-golf-swing-be/

 

“How much width is good or needed? If you are a regular reader of my instructional articles, you know the answer: enough width to create sufficient speed AND bottom the club out where it should bottom out, slightly in front of the ball on shots hit off the ground and slightly behind the ball on shots hit with the driver.”

 

I like that idea. Sounds pretty simple and not a cookie cutter kind of answer.

 

 

 

 

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Width is predetermined by length of lead arm. How you would you increase this width without over extending the shoulder socket?

 

 

Serious question here...

Unless you mean width as in the distance your hands are from your head. In that case, as your arm goes across the chest, they will get closer to your head. As long as you get that left arm off your chest and propelling through impact properly, does it matter how close it is to your head at the top of the backswing?

 

 

bogeypro, the separation that I am thinking about is the distance from hands to head at top.

 

I have experimented with more and less separation. The reason is that there is a very real problem here, as we age. As our muscles and joints become less supple many of us get disconnected as we try to play with a straight arm and maintain separation. The best way that I have found to stay connected as I get older is to play with a softer lead arm. (Too much of this and you lose structure, you don’t get your muscles wound up properly, you don’t hit the positions that are basic to good golf - it becomes a lazy effort with no power behind it.)

 

I looked for a better swing for my age/back, as hard rotation caught up. I found the Ballard method. Lo and behold he claims exactly what I experienced on my own - a soft lead arm and a loss of some separation at the top doesn’t cause problems, so long as the rest of the swing fundamentals are sound. He teaches it’s OK if the arms fold at the elbows at the top of the swing, so long as you have had a strong coil and you have achieved the correct position at the top. This is consistent with my experience before and after I started to use his method. For me it makes no difference - arms unfold as soon as I start down, and my arc widens and I am back to the same radius as ever (or I would miss the ball).

 

The seniors I golf with have learned to play with a straight arm, and they can’t do it anymore, and they keep trying, and it tends to ruin some of their fundamentals. The concept of a straight arm has become so ingrained in our golf culture that it seems for my friends to have become an end, not a means. In my experience it is a means, and there are other legitimate means. We can see great pros over time playing with soft arms. We can see soft arms, with folding and unfolding at the elbows, in virtually all other throwing/swinging sports, where there are hitters and throwers of great power and accuracy who have little separation at the “top”.

 

My answer to your question is that in my experience it really doesn’t matter much how close, so long as all-else is good. For me it is more productive to let the separation be as it will be and to focus on getting the all-else as good as possible.

 

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