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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Rule the Fairways Like the Queen

It's amazing how little useful footage of Jiyai Shin's swing there is out on YouTube. It's hard to find much recent footage. But I found these clips that should give you a pretty good overall feel for what she does.

First, this short little piece shows Jiyai from an angle behind her. You can see that she keeps her one-piece takeaway until her lead (left) arm is nearly parallel to the ground. That's when her trailing elbow starts to bend:



Here's a short slo-mo analysis by Judy Rankin. From this angle you can clearly see the little "drop" move she has at the top, very much the way Ben Hogan used to reroute the club onto a lower plane as he started down:



And here's a longer video showing Jiyai's swing -- in both regular and slo-mo -- from different angles:



I just want to pick out a couple of things for you to pay particular attention to -- things that don't get much attention during the TV analyses:
  • Note that she doesn't jerk the club away from the ball on her backswing. You don't hit the ball with the backswing; you hit it with the downswing. You go back slowly, change direction slowly, and then unleash on the downswing. The purpose of the backswing is to get you into a strong position to hit the ball; you develop power on the way down, not on the way up.
  • Note also that her trailing (right) knee stays slightly bent all the way from address to impact. That makes it easier to keep your hips from sliding away from the target on the backswing, which causes a sway; and it keeps you from standing up, which stops you from from coming over the top and hitting it thin. If you're lifting your head, I'd bet good money that you're straightening that trailing knee during your swing.
If most of you would just pay attention to those two things -- make a slower backswing and change of direction at the top, and keep that trailing knee flexed all the way through impact -- I bet you'd be more accurate and longer too. (And before you say that Jiyai isn't so long, compare her to Paula Creamer. Jiyai is 5'1" tall, Paula is 5'9" tall, and for the year Jiyai averages 243 yards while Paula averages 245. InBee Park, at 5'6" tall, hits it 254 -- a mere 11 yards farther than Jiyai. Who's hitting it farther for their size?)

Spend a little time studying the videos and see if you can't pick up a little of the Final Round Queen's consistency.

2 comments:

  1. One tip to help keep that trailing knee flex is by rolling the ankle and not lift the heel, I struggled to break 90 until I learn this tip.
    no. 4 advice from Jack Nicklaus

    http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-instruction/2010-03/jack-nicklaus-lifetime-principles

    Happy Golfing

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  2. Peter, you can also learn the move by putting a golf ball under the outside of your trailing foot during practice. That teaches you how to stabilize your knee as well.

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