About the (right) elbow

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JPJ
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About the (right) elbow

Post by JPJ » Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:07 pm

(Right elbow for the right-hander)

In recent rounds I've been taking to heart Mr Hogan's advice of imagining my elbows are bound to my sides.

The positive result of this is better accuracy, reflected in improved/consistent stableford scores. Still a few too many blobs to threaten the top of the leaderboard, but good enough to sit anonymously in the mid-table rather than languishing at the foot...

But this seems to have also resulted in some loss of distance. It certainly feels like a rather tense swing now.

However, t'other week I read something that suggested the right elbow should be allowed to disconnect during the backswing, as long as it reconnects for the downswing.

Your thoughts, please.
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jasonfish11
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Re: About the (right) elbow

Post by jasonfish11 » Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:18 pm

I think you are spot on.

It really depends on what you are working on.

Do you have sufficient distance, but want more control? Keeping that right elbow tight (club head cover under arm pit) is helpful.
Are you lacking distance, and tired of hitting 5i into greens where others are hitting short iron/wedge? If so letting it fly helps add width to your swing. The down side is it becomes very hard to control unless you are good at getting it reconnected in the downswing.

Also everyone's "feels" will be different. For me I like to feel like my trail elbow is connected to my belly button in the down swing. Obviously it isn't but that is what I like to "feel". I don't really focus on it much in the backswing though.
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Re: About the (right) elbow

Post by Duke of Hazards » Fri Feb 03, 2017 6:43 pm

JPJ wrote:(Right elbow for the right-hander)

In recent rounds I've been taking to heart Mr Hogan's advice of imagining my elbows are bound to my sides.

The positive result of this is better accuracy, reflected in improved/consistent stableford scores. Still a few too many blobs to threaten the top of the leaderboard, but good enough to sit anonymously in the mid-table rather than languishing at the foot...

But this seems to have also resulted in some loss of distance. It certainly feels like a rather tense swing now.

However, t'other week I read something that suggested the right elbow should be allowed to disconnect during the backswing, as long as it reconnects for the downswing.

Your thoughts, please.
JPJ - I actually just kind of hit on that during a recent range session. The photo that Hogan has in his book showing the arms taped together is a bit misleading. I was having the same issue as you. The way that I rectified it (which seems to be supported by web sources) is that the arms/elbows are held close together only by virtue of some slight tension in the forearms (BELOW THE ELBOWS). The elbows, upper arms, and shoulders should all be very supple and loose. Do not actively flex your upper arms to hold your triceps against your ribcage. That will kill your flexibility and ability to rotate the shoulders around the spine and rob you of any kind of distance. The snugness under your arms is there only by virtue of the forearms being pressed together with mild/moderate tension. I shake out my shoulders and waggle with the left hand before I start the swing, then go.

I'll add that the arms should hang down freely from the shoulders with the forearms/grip/club feeling like one solid unit.

Last thing is tension in the neck. There shouldn't be any.
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JPJ
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Re: About the (right) elbow

Post by JPJ » Fri Feb 03, 2017 6:57 pm

jasonfish11 wrote:I think you are spot on.
About which bit?
jasonfish11 wrote:Are you lacking distance, and tired of hitting 5i into greens where others are hitting short iron/wedge?
Yep, exactly that.

After the last round I played one of the players complimented me on my putting, and general play, but said something along the lines of "You just need to get more distance off the tee..."

For a good while last year and the year before I was quite regularly getting around 220yds with the driver, but more recently it's been struggling to reach 190yds, and on the new course we're at, and off the whites, that is a problem.
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Re: About the (right) elbow

Post by legitimatebeef » Fri Feb 03, 2017 8:58 pm

I wouldn't sweat it too much JPJ. I am as big a Hogan fan as anyone but that book is not the end all be all of golf instruction insofar as there can be no such thing as an end all be all. I still believe that "5 lessons" is a valuable text but I do now question its accessibility for the common man. I would call it one of the fundamental works in the modern golf instruction orthodoxy. It would be valuable if as nothing other than a fairly deep insight into the mind of a legendary golfer. Kind of like if Ben Hogan had his own "Swing confessions" thread on the internet. But it is a fairly specific way of perceiving the swing, and it leaves out a lot. A LOT!

IMO you are better off letting it fly if it means 30 yards. I'm pretty sure that's what I would do. You can learn to control your action even with a flying elbow, long as you have good consistent tempo, and you aim good. No able bodied normal size male should be coming up short of 200 yards. :fk
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