Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Gravity Golf

Gravity Golf is a training method developed by David C. Lee that aims to teach a person to swing a golf club in a physics-friendly manner that provides maximum ball speed and distance with the minimum of effort. It was first explained in his 1996 book of the same name.


The term "gravity" is used by Lee to encompass several elements of his method, for example:
The "first release": players are encouraged to use their back and shoulders to throw the club back and up at the start of the swing. Once the club passes the golfer's back leg, the arms should relax and float to the top without any effort or tension in the golfer's upper body.
Likewise, gravity is relied upon to start the downswing by causing the arms to drop without any effort from the golfer.
The "counterfall": during the swing, gravity pulls the golfer off-vertical - leaning away from the ball - before hip rotation starts. This counteracts the force of the arms and club swinging at high speed in front of the player, which would otherwise pull him or her off-balance.

Training method

The gravity swing is taught using drills such as swinging with one's feet crossed, or with one hand. The drills are intended to train the body to swing the club in a more fluid manner, allowing the player to rely on muscle memory in order to swing in a natural and relaxed way. This "method" is extremely hard to understand and is not recommended for the average golfer. The cost for a 2 to 3 day training session is well over $1800 which is also out of the average golfers range. I have seen the technique work first hand, but it was by people who had practiced it for years and were in the golf business. The average golfer just does not have the time to work on or even understand the "counter-fall". I noticed more decent golfers coming away more confused and frustrated when all they were looking for was a cure to a few minor issues in their swing. My advice to the average golfer is to have your swing recorded and review it carefully, then work on correcting one flaw at a time. If you are working more on your driver, record your swing, go to the range and make your corrections with the 150 marker as your target. Once the swing feels good and you have your timing and arm action worked out, go ahead and increase the power of your swing by 20%. Concentrate on the feel, timing, and arms release. If you start hooking or slicing again, go back to targeting the 150 marker to regain the confidence before increase swing speed / power. The bottom line is if you can create a swing with your driver that is comfortable, in time, and with good wrist and arm release, the ball will just jump off the club and if you can do it with the big stick, you will be able to do it with an 8 iron. Save the $1800 and the frustration. This technique is for players with lots of time and money.

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