Before I talk
about how the golf swing works we must first attain a set-up position that allows
us the best chance of striking the ball with power and accuracy. I always start
off my lesson by saying, "where we get the fuel for a great golf swing is
at BPGAS." This is an acronym for the components of the set-up. They are
ball position, posture, grip, alignment, and stance.
first component to learn is the grip. Place the student's left hand on the
golf club so that it is held in the fingers and so that the back pad of the hand
rests on top of the shaft. Place the thumb of the left hand just to the right
of the center of the shaft. Then place the right hand on the club so that the
club rests in the fingers. The thumb of the left hand fits perfectly in the lifeline
of the right hand like a puzzle piece. From here the player may employ either
the ten finger grip, good for players with small hands (children and women), interlocking
grip (Woods, Nicklaus, and Lopez), or overlapping grip (Faldo, Duval, and Norman).
All of which are acceptable grips and all have won a major championship.
second part is alignment. I believe the number one error in all of golf is
poor alignment. Because of condition one many people struggle to align themselves
properly parallel left. The conscious brain tells the vast majority of players
that they must align their body to the target. The brain doesn't understand that
the bodyline and the ball/target line are not convergent. Usually this fact staggers
the student because they felt like they were doing the right thing when in fact
all they did was make it very difficult for themselves to succeed at all. Take
two shafts and lie them down on the ground with one aimed at the target and the
other aimed parallel left of the target.
next step is actually going to take care of stance and ball position at the same
time. After they have taken their grip and have aligned their body parallel left,
have them address the ball by placing the club behind the ball and standing to
the ball with their feet together. Have them move their left foot three inches
forward and flare the foot open thirty degrees. Then have them drop their right
foot back until the heels are shoulder width apart. We have now achieved stance
and ball position at the same time.
we must get the student into an athletic posture that allows them to move with
balance and speed. Have the student stand as tall as possible, bend from the hips
pushing their backside out and up, sit down a little, and fit himself or herself
to the ball from that posture.
are a couple of little things you may need to explain if they don't naturally
have them after BPGAS. The hands should hang below the chin, even with the ball
or slightly on either side of the ball. The right shoulder should sit below the
left because the right hand is below the left hand on the club. The chin should
be up enough to let the shoulder rotate underneath. The weight should be evenly
distributed between the balls of the feet and the heels and equally on the left
and right foot.
procedure works great for teaching a basic pre-shot routine. Now the student is
prepared to swing
- For information on Virgil
Herring's instructional video, click
you have a question concerning an area of the golf swing or the short game, click
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