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The biggest reasons ams don’t get better. Butch Harmon...


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I say this 20 times a day if I say it once.  Not close to linear.  All you can ask is for an upward trend over months and years.    The better the golfer, the bigger the time frame they measure

It’s not lack of flexibility, athleticism or skill in the vast majority of cases.     https://www.instagram.com/p/CKRsk8jlMyP/?igshid=lkobtkda2y7e

Discussions on the swing always devolve into someone saying they have seen people play good from position/movement X.  Then another party shows a current tour player and another from the 60’s and say,

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Monte, how would you compare technique vs. athleticism when it comes to raw speed and overall potential? I've yet to meet anyone with serious speed who doesn't have an athletic background. At the same time I've seen many players who have taken years of lessons and have technically sound swings but can barely move the ball. I'm not talking about being in good shape as much as having that natural athleticism, sequencing, and arm speed.

 

Kind of reminds me of the NBA draft. An athletic freak with a broken jump shot will almost always be taken over a limited athlete with great skill simply based on potential. 

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Just like the other thread, these things are not mutually exclusive.  Some people will hit it far, some people medium, some people short.  It’s like any other athletic skill.  Some are born with more ability. 

 

Ive seen many great athletes hit the ball like  old women, I’ve seen people who trip when they walk hit it 300 with proper technique.  Of course more athletically gifted people have more potential for speed, but a lot executed “athletic” move at 135 mph, has the potential for 145-150 if it’s more mechanically sound.  A non athlete better have sound technique or he will be stuck at 90.

 

If you yourself want to improve and/or not deteriorate as you get older (and anyone else for that matter), you need to get out of your thesis driven paradigm.

 

 

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I’m starting to think golf and improvement Are like stock price charts or heart rate monitors. There will be dips and it’s never a linear improvement.  It should be the big picture improvement We focus on but it’s hard to deal with a bad round and resist the urge to change a bunch of things, I’m guilty of that myself!

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What struck me from the instagram post was Monte's point:

 

Quote

1. “This feels weird.” Of course it feels weird, it’s different than what you normally do. If it didn’t feel weird, it would be the same swing you started with.

 

I'm trying to work on opening the hips at impact. I've tried a bunch of things, and nothing is really getting there. Worse, some of the things I'm trying not only feel weird, but feel bad. Which tells me I'm completely doing it wrong.

 

What struck me from watching an AMG drill was that I don't know how to turn my hips properly. By which I don't mean that I don't know how to turn hips, or have physical limitations turning my hips. It's that I've so ingrained my bad swing which uses my height and strength to develop clubhead speed but ends up in a stall/flip to square the clubhead that my brain has never actually learned to do it right.

 

And here I am trying to learn how to square the clubface using hip rotation with full swings. I'm liable to injure myself more than anything.

 

I don't have the "feels" in my brain of how to turn the hips, so any attempt I make at it will naturally feel weird. Especially if I'm trying to do it with a swing built for a half-dozen compensations, in a full swing, at full speed or even 3/4 speed. 

 

My next attempt will be this drill: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDHNc4T4lb0

 

I think that's to try to teach the conditions around impact. Once I actually have the "feels" of what it should feel like, and it's not so weird, then I can start figuring out what else I need to do in the downswing to actually get there. 

 

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2 hours ago, MonteScheinblum said:

It’s not lack of flexibility, athleticism or skill in the vast majority of cases.  

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CKRsk8jlMyP/?igshid=lkobtkda2y7e

 

Agreed!  Although to be elite, one need elite athleticism or hand-eye coordination.  An average athlete can make the most of what they have to still become very good, even if they never play professionally. 

 

I had posted a video 2 days ago and you (as well as others) had noted that I was getting far too static in my hips.   I hit 60 balls yesterday while working on it, and today, really focused on it during my round.  It was just getting movement in the right direction at the right time; I know the feelings but linking it up was necessary and not overly thinking about it, but being relaxed enough to know the feeling and allowing it to happen.  The result was shooting 2 over for 9 holes (with one hazard ball) and better than that, driving a 320 yard par 4 in damp, misty, mid 40's temps along with 3 other 300 yard drives, all in the fairway.  I am not a big guy at 5 foot 9 and 165lbs, plus I am mid 40's; it is honestly better than I thought I woulds be playing when I started back in July.   But, it took 3 months to get here; I had a few lessons (saying more or less what you say in your turn/cast video) and some feedback here to get to get over that hump and bring it together. I had to keep working through frustration, of which I am sure there will be much more in the future. 

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I only work with someone (Monte) 1x per year in the clinic and I spend that whole year working on the new move.  Usually at some point I start deviating for a few weeks but always go back to the clinic lesson and try not to worry about much else until the next clinic.  Ideally I would sprinkle a lesson in at the 6 or 8 month mark but I don't get a ton of time off.  Tons of ebbs and flows along the way though.  For instance...shot my personal best 66 this summer after shooting an awful 76 the week prior.  Just shot a super easy 68 a couple weeks ago and shot an ugly 74 last Saturday holding on for dear life. It's part of golf and I don't practice 7 days a week to get more consistent I have 2 days..the important thing is my bad rounds are much better (though feel worse than they are) and I have shot a couple rounds in the 60s after not breaking 70 ever and that was a once every 2 year occurrence.  

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5 hours ago, MonteScheinblum said:

It’s not lack of flexibility, athleticism or skill in the vast majority of cases.  

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CKRsk8jlMyP/?igshid=lkobtkda2y7e

Yep.  I read it as lack of proper education by many less than educated instructors and or distorted golfers.  We see the indirect effects of what BH said regarding that 18 handicap "mentality" here on Golfwrx as threads talk about latest and greatest new equipment purchase.   Seldom do we read threads about the positive effects the lessons had on a 15 index, that over the last year is a +/- 10. 

 

Maybe both those conditions are contributors to indexes remaining relatively the same over the years too.

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1 hour ago, Sean2 said:

Amen. It's also why I never understood people who take lessons weekly or so. I would think you would need time to incorporate what you learned before going for another lesson. 

I rarely want someone back in less than 4-6 weeks.  Only if they’re lost and struggling.

 

”...but what if I make mistakes along the way?”


That’s actually helpful in the long run.  
 

 

Edited by MonteScheinblum
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For me personally, I segregate between "feels weird" and "feels different". When a good instructor who knows what they are doing (such as Monte), tells me to do something i've never thought anything "feels weird" but it did feel different and that is good, its different than whatever bad things I have  been doing. Whatever Monte tells me to do in my lesson, i do it and trust it.

 

But I have had bad instructors tell me things like "swing to right field" without identifying and fixing and real root cause issues and that just felt weird. It felt weird because I started making weird movements in the backswing to try to swing right in the downswing. And this wasn't just a drill or temporary prescription from the bad instructor... So I think sometimes when something feels weird and its coming from a bad instructor, it can truly be bad. 

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46 minutes ago, MonteScheinblum said:

I rarely want someone back in less than 4-6 weeks.  Only if they’re lost and struggling.

 

”...but what if I make mistakes along the way?”


That’s actually helpful in the long run.  
 

 

 

Former elite athletes have an easier time processing this than people who really haven't competed at that level.  My guess is that when you get a former pro baseball player/tennis player/skier, they understand the work required and the patience required to become competent.  

 

I am obviously not an elite golfer, but I raced my bike as a Pro/Cat1 for a few years.  When I first entered the ranks, I was maybe top 200 racers in the US and was putting in 12-15 hour weeks (roughly 220-300 miles).  I adjusted my workload up to 350-500 mile weeks, along with my speed and interval training, and it took 6 months to notice an appreciable gain and a full 2 years before I could threaten a top 10 in a race with all of the top US guys present.  During that time, my power increased by 6%.  I would say that is a lot of work for a 6% improvement!  You can't buy power on a bike and you can't buy lower scores on a golf course.  

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4 hours ago, betarhoalphadelta said:

What struck me from the instagram post was Monte's point:

 

 

I'm trying to work on opening the hips at impact. I've tried a bunch of things, and nothing is really getting there. Worse, some of the things I'm trying not only feel weird, but feel bad. Which tells me I'm completely doing it wrong.

 

What struck me from watching an AMG drill was that I don't know how to turn my hips properly. By which I don't mean that I don't know how to turn hips, or have physical limitations turning my hips. It's that I've so ingrained my bad swing which uses my height and strength to develop clubhead speed but ends up in a stall/flip to square the clubhead that my brain has never actually learned to do it right.

 

And here I am trying to learn how to square the clubface using hip rotation with full swings. I'm liable to injure myself more than anything.

 

I don't have the "feels" in my brain of how to turn the hips, so any attempt I make at it will naturally feel weird. Especially if I'm trying to do it with a swing built for a half-dozen compensations, in a full swing, at full speed or even 3/4 speed. 

 

My next attempt will be this drill: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDHNc4T4lb0

 

I think that's to try to teach the conditions around impact. Once I actually have the "feels" of what it should feel like, and it's not so weird, then I can start figuring out what else I need to do in the downswing to actually get there. 

 


‘this sounds just like me and what I’m working on, I want more open hips and deeper extension targetwards 

 

recently Saw a you tube vid describing one reason for stall and flip move ... the face is open coming in

 

worked on a “hooded face feeling” last 3 days and wow ... now I square up with rotation


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4 hours ago, Sean2 said:

Amen. It's also why I never understood people who take lessons weekly or so. I would think you would need time to incorporate what you learned before going for another lesson. 

Budget would be a consideration but a lesson can be supervised practice, training session.  This is something I think tennis does well. Some golfers are obsessed with "instruction" and always having to hear something new when the reality is that repetition is required.  

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2 hours ago, MonteScheinblum said:

I rarely want someone back in less than 4-6 weeks.  Only if they’re lost and struggling.

 

”...but what if I make mistakes along the way?”


That’s actually helpful in the long run.  
 

 

 

That seems a reasonable time line.  The problem I have is a never actually feel like I have got a swing I like.  There is always something else to work on so I never set foot on the course feeling comfortable with my swing.

 

For your students, after 3-4 weeks they may have a move or an idea somewhat sorted, then they have a week or two of playing, then another lesson.  How often do you have a lesson with a player and just say 'keep doing what you are doing'? 

 

I guess what I am saying is I am happy to work for long term improvements and take time, but at some point does it become 'this is my swing and I have to learn to play with it?' or do the changes just get smaller?

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56 minutes ago, Toolish said:

 

That seems a reasonable time line.  The problem I have is a never actually feel like I have got a swing I like.  There is always something else to work on so I never set foot on the course feeling comfortable with my swing.

 

For your students, after 3-4 weeks they may have a move or an idea somewhat sorted, then they have a week or two of playing, then another lesson.  How often do you have a lesson with a player and just say 'keep doing what you are doing'? 

 

I guess what I am saying is I am happy to work for long term improvements and take time, but at some point does it become 'this is my swing and I have to learn to play with it?' or do the changes just get smaller?

The changes get smaller.  You pick the low hanging fruit first.  Things that are leading to other issues.  I’m not a swing rebuilder to a model, nor am I am quick fix tip guy.  There is a huge window of success in between those extremes and that’s where I live.  Let’s make your swing the best it can be.

 

A guy shows up and says he hits a lot of fat shots and a lot of snap hooks with driver.  What’s the main reason?  He shifts excessively to the right, brings the center of mass out early and dumps the right shoulder to shallow out, which makes him EE, gets his path too right and face excessively open.

 

Step one, get the pelvis in a better position at the top by understanding better rotation and it being a pressure shift versus a massive mass shift....go.....

 

6 weeks later, shaft isn’t so vertical, staying in left tilt longer, less EE, path less right, face matches path better....but all issues still there....to a lesser degree.

 

What’s the worst issue?......from excessive right shift, shaft still getting too vertical and had left wrist too extended in transition.  
 

Let’s get a little flex in his wrist intent going.

 

6 weeks later....right shift is less excessive and shaft is less vertical, right shoulder not dumping as badly (longer left tilt) and face is less open. 
 

Some residual EE is still there, even though it’s no longer necessary.  What works better, right hip staying in more left hip working away from the target more????????

 

Ideally, this is how the process works, IMO.  Maybe after 6 weeks the previous issue is still the #1 issue....let’s make this better, it’s still needs some work.

 

 

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9 hours ago, SNIPERBBB said:

Microwave society.

 

#1 enemy is the person staring at you in the mirror.

Every day is a fight to kill that #)&)@*%

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I'm shocked that 4-6 weeks is what y'all are saying is the ideal timeline between lessons.  Is this assuming a certain amount of practice inbetween lessons?  I would have guessed two weeks or so between lessons would be ideal.  At that point I feel like I would have either improved some/made a change, or would be getting frustrated because I'd feel like I need further guidance to figure things out.  I practice about two hours at a time, three or four times a week, which I'd imagine is more than most people that take lessons, but maybe not.  I've also been playing just about once a week.

 

I'd imagine the reason most people start lessons is that they've realized they need help to improve or reach certain goals.  If I take a lesson and can't figure out how to incorporate/ingrain what I've been working on in two weeks, the next four would just feel like groping around in the dark, which is exactly what I'm doing when I don't take lessons.  Before anyone calls me impatient, maybe I'm just more lost than most.

 

 

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20 minutes ago, bonvivantva said:

I'm shocked that 4-6 weeks is what y'all are saying is the ideal timeline between lessons.  Is this assuming a certain amount of practice inbetween lessons?  I would have guessed two weeks or so between lessons would be ideal.  At that point I feel like I would have either improved some/made a change, or would be getting frustrated because I'd feel like I need further guidance to figure things out.  I practice about two hours at a time, three or four times a week, which I'd imagine is more than most people that take lessons, but maybe not.  I've also been playing just about once a week.

 

I'd imagine the reason most people start lessons is that they've realized they need help to improve or reach certain goals.  If I take a lesson and can't figure out how to incorporate/ingrain what I've been working on in two weeks, the next four would just feel like groping around in the dark, which is exactly what I'm doing when I don't take lessons.  Before anyone calls me impatient, maybe I'm just more lost than most.

 

 

My observation is most golfers won’t sustain much of a change in 2 weeks unless  it’s an elite player with dozens of hours of practice.  
 

2 weeks later you’re paying me to watch you hit balls and say the same thing.

 

4-6 weeks is enough time to see some change, right or wrong.

 

Now a supervised practice session or a Playing lesson is a different story.

 

 

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8 hours ago, MonteScheinblum said:

I rarely want someone back in less than 4-6 weeks.  Only if they’re lost and struggling.

 

”...but what if I make mistakes along the way?”


That’s actually helpful in the long run.  
 

 

Big difference between someone worth seeing and someone not is having clear direction on what/how to work on until the next lesson.
 

There’s a really annoying trait amongst some instructors where they’re not honest with you as a client. Those of us who want to raise their baseline incrementally over time don’t want their faults fixed by the introduction of compensating faults.
 

Short term ‘fixes’ that create different issues instead of narrowing your window are the next biggest money spinner in amateur golf after driver sales. 

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