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Pros and Cons of a Steep to Shallow Backswing? Should I change my swing?


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BACKGROUND - Skip ahead to my questions if you don't care (and I won't blame you!):

 

Hi all! 26, located in Northern VA, recently caught the golf bug around April 2020 (when quarantine/lockdowns started) and have been hooked - probably going to the range 3-4 times a week consistently and have played 24 18-hole rounds according to Grint. I do have somewhat of a background in golf - my parents are both avid rec golfers, so I have always had a set of clubs and have been to the range since I was probably 7, but I was a tennis player growing up and always found golf "boring" (lol how things change..), so I never really took it seriously but probably would tag along to the range or golf course <10 times a year when my parents wanted me to get out of the house. 

 

Back to current times, the first few months was really just me learning what golf is and the mechanics and structure of a swing, etc. Also, I was horribly out of shape (skinny fat) and lost a ton of flexibility since I really haven't done ANY physical activity since graduating college in 2016 and have worked an office job. Probably the last few months or so, I've sort of established my swing and have gotten more consistent with it and scoring better (probably from 105-115 my first few months to consistently around 95-100) and really starting to feel good about how my game is trending. However, just recently, I became "aware" (crazy how many different aspects there are to the golf swing, where even if I think I know something, I don't REALLY know it) that my backswing is rather shallow? or on plane? and when I compare that to many modern pros' swings, for example, I know this is an extreme example, but JT's backswing is much steeper than mine. I know there are many ways to 'skin the cat' and as long as your impact positions are solid, many swings can work, but I am sort of obsessed with being "optimal" and since I haven't really engrained a swing yet, I figure I need to really be sure on what swing I want to make permanent going forward since it'll be harder to do later. 

 

4 6-Iron Swings, apologies for the flickering lights, not sure why youtube caused that, but it looks fine on my phone:

 

4 Driver Swings, not my best showing, but this was near the end of the session so I was kinda beat. Driver is actually probably my favorite club in the bag at the moment:

 

And just for fun, here's my driver swing about one week into starting my obsession... I was pleasantly surprised and motivated seeing how much my swing has changed: 

 

QUESTIONS:

 

1. What are the Pros and Cons of a steep to shallow backswing? 

  • My thoughts: Perhaps gives you a longer swing and thus more speed? Better compression, hence more distance? My current swing, I have issues with my trail arm getting behind my body, and I think part of it is my swing being so shallow on the takeaway and perhaps a steep to narrow swing will alleviate that? Not sure what the cons are if any.

 

2. Any opinions on if I should change my swing to adopt a more steep backswing? I would love some experts to set me straight on if I am tinkering too much/overthinking this or I what I am saying has some validity. 

 

3. If I should keep my current swing, I would love any tips for improvement. I feel like I am no longer making the obvious beginner gains and my swing is beginning to sort of 'plateau', in that I don't know what to work on next. I have/had a tendency to go over the top and slice hard, but I've fixed it dramatically, where most of my bad shots are still in play. Also hit random fat shots with my irons occasionally, which I think might be due to how far back my backswing is, making it harder for me to get around on time?

 

Thanks for reading and any help or comments are appreciated! 

 

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Steep to shallow gives a mechanical advantage.     Though they don’t call it steep to shallow in this video Sasho and Chris give a good explanation of the advantage     you ha

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Jizzy,

 

    Your BS in the bottom video is absolutely perfect !  You are well balanced and  , as a rule , a person’s BS is usually dictated by their balance mechanisms !  However , you will be told by many that the BS should be over here , over there, straight back - whatever ! Just take it back there where it feels comfortable- and you have done that. Backswings DON’T cause hooks and slices. 

    Your current BS will work fine for you the rest of your life ! Focus on the really important part —- the DS and IMPACT ! Don’t waste time on the BS ! Yours is permanently fixed!

    Kuchar is tall , and  his BS is like yours- so is Fowler’s , Hogans  and thousands of others. 
Here is my reasoning which is the most important to me ——the average human vertebrae can only rotate / turn 25-30 degrees .  Swinging the arms up like  JT , in my opinion , puts great stress on the vertebrae and I have always wondered if he might have back problems in the future! I certainly hope not ! Swinging ( rotating the upper torso ) back around as you do puts much less stress on the spine and will give you a lifetime of back pain free golf ! 
BTW - when a hard hit tennis ball was headed toward you - do did think about ‘“ am is going to take the racquet back properly?”

Good luck ! 

       

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Steep to shallow gives a mechanical advantage.     Though they don’t call it steep to shallow in this video Sasho and Chris give a good explanation of the advantage

 

 

you have a lot of good in your swing.   But you do get your arms to across your body and steepen the club in transition - not extreme - the depth you get of your hands along with the steepening make it difficult to get arms and pivot in synch in transition.   Arms work up not across the body - pivot provides the depth.  Shallow to steep leads to wiping across the ball with irons and  a rightward path with driver (blocks/hooks depending on how much).

 

how to steepen.  Keep clubhead outside hands in takeaway and from shaft parallel stand the club up via completing the wrist set - laying the club flattish at that point leads to bringing arms across chest too much.  You flatten it - think butt of club points between ball and toes at left arm parallel - you currently point it outside the ball.

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0D872FBA-1216-40BC-9302-6BD76FF74B25.jpeg.d693c959af4f5a85536be3215b7f4717.jpeg

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CALwEsZFfpN/

 

 

 

 


 

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Enjoy every sandwich

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Wouldn’t the tilt of the shoulders at address dictate the degree of tilt during the BS ? Jizzy stands taller at address which may be comfortable to him ! It doesn’t matter a row - of - beans how you get i5 back there . The only purpose is to rotate the torso and form a lever system to provide the necessary power to inflict some damage on the ball ! Much to much instruction is given to it !  PULL it back there any way that you want . It is perhaps the least important part of the swing !

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Hi friends!

 

So thank you all for your advice and insights. I agree that I could definitely play with that swing, but I am a constant tinkerer-type and particularly glk's point about how that swing would cause wiping across the ball with my irons (which is definitely true in my case) made me want to tweak it. I went to the range, first time since posting, yesterday and it was quite uneventful and pretty frustrating.. I kept thinking I made my backswing steeper but when I would look at the video, it would be the same as my current swing! Went home and stewed it over and came back today on a mission. After warming up and thinking I was steep, I recorded my first vid and... it was pretty much my same shallow backswing, but with a slight over the top hitch now 😞:

 

 

 

Well, I ended up spending 3.5 hours at the range and hitting 2 large buckets (~200), and honestly the time flew by even though it was 30 degrees today lol. Some days, it feels like 1 bucket is a million balls and I just want to get the hell outta there, but I guess I was having a blast today challenging myself. Here is my 7 iron and driver near the end of the session:

 

 

 

Thoughts? I'll be honest... I'm pretty stoked!! Obviously a lot of work still to do, but holy cow does it feel good to see progress so quickly. I think my backswing is definitely steeper and near the end, I was able to start somewhat getting on plane on the downswing. Still fighting the over the top, but I feel like I am getting into the slot better. Biggest difference I noticed between this swing and the old swing is that even though it felt awkward (since I'm fighting the muscle memory of my old swing), it also felt so right. I felt so unrestricted and free coming thru the ball and especially with my irons. Every single stroke in that 7 iron video, the contact felt as good as maybe the best 1 out of 8 swings with my old swing (in terms of purely contact, not distance or ball flight)! With my driver, I definitely lost some distance and I think I was slightly missing the sweet spot (based on the sound lol, it wasn't as loud and ping-y), but I think since the movement is new, I wasn't swinging at normal speed and most of my shots were relatively straight, so I am pretty satisfied. Any observations or things I could improve on from here? I apologize for tooting my own horn so much right now, just pretty excited! Can't wait to start grooving this swing and hit the course.

Edited by JizzyPoo22
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Jizzy,

 

   Your BS is set for your life. Don’t spend one millisecond trying to change it . It is perfect for you . Only one suggestion for you - I know it is rude to correct people , but this will be good for your future improvement ——-

    ALL memory is in the brain . Their is no such thing as “ muscle memory “ ! Now - your muscles are constantly PULLING its bones around to form levers which allow us to  perform millions of everyday task without ever giving any thought to them . They are mapped out in your subconscious mind.  However, the golf swing is NOT in the human subconscious mind . It is a LEARNED CONSCIOUS TASK THAT IS FOREIGN AND TOTALLY OPPOSITE TO HUMAN GENETICS! Nothing natural about it ! Your key is in your memory bank on the top of your head ! It has to teach its DOMINANT HANDS TO PERFORM IN A MANNER OPPOSITE   Of THEIR NATURAL DESIGN.

      
 

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On 1/24/2021 at 6:51 AM, laneholt said:

Jizzy,

 

   Your BS is set for your life. Don’t spend one millisecond trying to change it . It is perfect for you . Only one suggestion for you - I know it is rude to correct people , but this will be good for your future improvement ——-

    ALL memory is in the brain . Their is no such thing as “ muscle memory “ ! Now - your muscles are constantly PULLING its bones around to form levers which allow us to  perform millions of everyday task without ever giving any thought to them . They are mapped out in your subconscious mind.  However, the golf swing is NOT in the human subconscious mind . It is a LEARNED CONSCIOUS TASK THAT IS FOREIGN AND TOTALLY OPPOSITE TO HUMAN GENETICS! Nothing natural about it ! Your key is in your memory bank on the top of your head ! It has to teach its DOMINANT HANDS TO PERFORM IN A MANNER OPPOSITE   Of THEIR NATURAL DESIGN.

      
 

Disagree 100%, his BS is not set for life. He could 100% change the backswing to gain consistency.  He needs to keep working on steeping the shaft in the backswing and making sure the butt of the club points inside the golf ball. In fact, I can show you pictures in which I changed my backswing in about 3 months. When you're shallow on the backswing, it's extremely hard to maintain shallowness on the downswing.

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Well Jizzy - there you have it ! The position of your back swing is very similar to Ben Hogan, Lee Trevino , Kuchar , Fowler , Moe Norman and many other great players , but I guess they were wrong after all ! You can’t place the LEVER in the position you have it and approach the ball from INSIDE! Who would have thunk it ????

  It is amazing they won all those  TOURNAMENTS. !!! I guess they just got lucky . 
   

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