Golf pro Scott Sackett on why the initial part of your golf swing is important to a successful shot

Plane & Backswing 

Golf pro Scott Sackett on why the initial part of your golf swing is important to a successful shot.

Vertical swing plane is something that has been looked at since the advent of video, V1, and now smartphones. You can instantly film a swing, draw a swing plane line, and immediately have a general idea of where things stand.

You can ask any one of my students how much I focus on the initial part of the golf swing because in my almost 30 years of teaching, if that part of the plane isn’t good, than you’re likely going to see issues later on.

Now, with the advent of TrackMan, we have a measurable vertical swing plane number that corresponds nicely. This photo features one of my better players and I working on the initial takeaway. His tendency is to get the golf club going too far on the outside going back and consequently will have the club coming vertically over the plane coming down. For him, and most other good players, this results with an effort to route the club on the plane late in the downswing. I see the majority of mis-hits coming from a golf club that is too vertical on the down swing.

The image progression is top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right.

This first move is the absolute key to making any one’s golf swing. You can see the club is right on the plane line. This sets up all the data variables we talk about during the lesson: swing direction, attack angle, vertical swing plane, etc. Frame two you have a shaft parallel to the original plane line. If you can get positions one and two, you’re likely to produce a solid rest of the swing.

Frame three is almost a mirror image of frame two except on the downswing. This is primarily a result of a good backswing than good downswing mechanics. Frame 4 (the larger image) is impact. Dead square in the center of the face, this shot moved a yard in the air at most.

Lastly, you have frame five, the follow through. Again, this is a byproduct of the backswing. You cannot get to this position without focusing heavily on the first few moves of your backswing.

The bottom line is, if you want straight shots (and better TrackMan data too), better contact, and better lines on video, focus on the initial takeaway and next move just past halfway up on the backswing. You’ll see a huge improvement in your ball striking focusing on these two points alone.



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