Wrist Hinge, Grip and Grip Pressure

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In this section, Shawn Clement makes an introduction and talks about part of the instructional series which talks about how the grip affects the arm motion. 

If you have a solid grip and you start swinging the arms back and through, you’re gonna see how on the way back your right arm is going to be forced to fold. If it doesn’t fold its gonna push you out of balance. You’ll see how both wrists are going to hinge. Now the way your wrists hinge in the back swing is very much how you would hinge your wrist when you go fishing. So if you have a fishing rod in your hands here, you hinge the wrist, you cast that fishing line out there. If you play football its exactly the same motion of the wrist, hinge the wrist, release the wrist. Or hammering a nail would be the same thing as well. 

So all the way down the right arm is going to extend, forcing the left arm to fold, so if I swing the club back and through, you’ll see how the hands have a tendency to rotate. In the backswing, the right hand rotates up, the left arm rotates down. And on through the swing it’s the opposite. The left arm rotates up and the right hand rotates down. If you look at it from this angle, you’ll see how this happens. You notice the club face is closed. And on the way back, you’ll notice how the club face is now open. There’s many different ways that you can look at it, but that’s basically how it works. So hinge. Release. So that’s the basic way the arms hinge.

In the backswing, fold, you want to make sure that your left arm stays extended. If that left arm collapses, you notice how my hand is much closer to the body, think about it this way. If you were pushing a kid on a swing, all right? The chains stay fully extended, the swing can go from one side, and have all the momentum it needs to go all the way back to the other side. If you push a little too hard, and the chains collapse, then the swing is juts gonna fall straight down and has no through-ward momentum. 

If your arms collapse against your body, you’ll have the tendency to go straight down. It’s really gonna affect the power in your shot. So you want to feel nice extension. Not strain, but a nice, taut extension of that left arm, and a nice hinge in your wrists. On the way through, same thing, you want to feel a nice extension of that right arm toward the target, and that left arm is gonna fold out of the way. You don’t want the arms collapsing against the body, or collapsing in this manner. That left arm is supporting as the right arm extends down to the target. So there’s the general way that your arms are going to move in the golf swing. 

Finally, as far as grip pressure is concerned, this is a tricky situation. There’s a lot of things that are said about the grip pressure. Let’s look at it this way, if you were playing tennis and hitting a power forehand from one back court to the next, imagine how firmly you would be holding that racket at the moment of impact. If you were hammering nails, a nice big nail hammering one shot into a two by four, imagine how firm that grip would be at the moment of impact. Well it’s the same thing with the golf club. The way to summarize it, on a scale of one to ten, ten being the very tightest you could hold it, feel like you’re holding it at about a four or a five on the scale. And you’ll notice as you swing the club, that grip pressure will intensify. Let your central nervous system take care of that for you. 

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