Rory McIlroy US Open Golf Swing Analysis—Part I
This video highlights the swing of famed golfer, Rory McIlroy from the 2013 U.S. Open from off the tee. For the purpose of measurement, the creator of this clip uses the RSSSA method of measurement to identify key aspects of an effective golf swing. In the case of this clip, Rory McIlroy’s swing is placed in comparison to David Huertas.
The RSSSA method measures: Range, Sequence, Separation, Speed, and Alignment. This clip highlights the first four areas of measurement and gives detailed explanations for how each aspect of a drive is connected together. The final stage, Alignment, is covered in Part II.
Range measures the number of degrees a golfer turns the parts of their body away from the ball at the top of their backswing. Sequence is the order of movement, starting at the legs and working up to the hands. Separation is the process of moving one body part immediately after the next and not at the same time. Speed refers to the movement of a player’s hips during the downswing.
The video gives detailed measurements and uses easy to understand metaphors/visual cues that are of value to anyone from a pro to a novice. Each step is fully explained and reviewed prior to moving on to the next portion of the swing.
- Improve Flexibility – the key to adding effortless distance to your drive is greater flexibility
- Ineffective Sequence – if your swing is out of sequence, your accuracy will immediately diminish
- Improve Range – overall accuracy will not decrease at the cost of greater range
back to menu ↑
Rory McIlroy US Open Golf Swing Analysis — Part II
This is the follow up clip to Part I. In this section, the final portion of the RSSSA model, Alignment, is covered. While Rory McIlroy is still the central focus of this video, a variety of well known golfers are used in comparison to highlight just how much variety can be found in the a golf swing.
In the opening discussion of Alignment, the narrator notes that proper alignment will feel unnatural during a golf swing. This is the main reason many players have such trouble with keeping their alignment. In many cases, improper alignment will undoubtedly lead to any number of problems for golfers.
The areas covered in this video go beyond only looking at a golfer’s drive. Irons and putters are also discussed with further explanations and tips regarding how improved alignment can increase the accuracy when using these clubs as well.
One of the most important areas highlighted in this video is how a player’s front spine angle can greatly influence the flight of their ball. In simple terms, the more a player increases their front spine angle, the more likely they are to have a ball miss the intended target. This is due to overcompensation on the downswing.
- Maintain Proper Alignment – improve your accuracy by decreasing your overall spine angle
- Tee in the Middle – tee your ball in the centre of your stance to improve accuracy
- Wide Putter Stance – stand as if driving the ball when putting to decrease hip movement
back to menu ↑
Understanding the golf swing, Part 1, PIVOT, BODY ROTATION
This is the first in a three part series aimed at helping golfers to understand the working components of a golf swing. In this first section, the main focus is on how the body moves and how each individual movement works as a whole to affects a golfer’s swing.
The first thing you must do is to get your body into a good position. Do this by following the tilt, pop, drop process. To start, straighten your legs with your arms holding the club out in front of you. You next tilt your body forward at the hips. Then you pop your knees in slightly. Finally, you drop the club head to rest on the ground.
Once you are in this position, you are ready to begin your swing. A player’s body will naturally pivot throughout their swing, but you need to pay attention to how your body responds as you move. Since your dominant hand will be lower on the club shaft, your body is going to tilt in this direction.
Be mindful of where you place your weight as you progress through your swing since this will have a great impact on your balance. The backswing is going to place the all the weight on the back leg and this weight must naturally shift to the front leg as the body pivots with the swing in order to compensate for the momentum generated by this action.
- Maintain balance – spread the weight of your body out to maximize your power
- Proper alignment – leaning to far one way or the other will impede the pivot
- Watch the target – keep an eye on the ball throughout the swing to ensure proper contact
back to menu ↑
Understanding the golf swing, Part 2, ARMS
The second instalment in this series focuses on the role of arms in the golf swing. While this may sound a bit silly and overly obvious, the fluidity of arm movement plays a critical role in a successful golf swing.
The fulcrum of your swing is your left shoulder. It is used to help your club maintain consistent speed both before and after impact. This does not mean that it is what generates the power or thrust of your swing. The source of that is in your right arm.
As you flex your right arm in preparation for your backswing it should work to help stretch your left arm down. The left arm remains straight throughout the entirety of the swing as its only purpose in this case is to ensure consistency of the club. The right arm is the only one that bends and flexes as the club is drawn back.
As you bring the club down, your bent right arm will straighten out. Once you make contact with the ball, it is of vital importance that you follow through with both arms straightened out at this point. If done correctly, the clubface will make direct contact with the surface of the ball.
- Maintain Radius of Movement – ensure the club continues a fluid motion even after impact
- The Role of Each Arm – one arm generates power and the other ensures consistency
- Maintain the Stretch – keep your left arm straight throughout the swing
back to menu ↑
Understanding the golf swing, Part 3, HANDS
The final instalment of this series highlights what a player must do with their hands when swinging a club. This entire video series is aimed at helping right handed players to develop their game so left handed players must take the advice and switch it around to suit their own needs.
The video starts out by explaining the limited variety of movements each hand will make during a swing. The right hand should only pivot back at the wrist or remain flat. The left hand should only tilt horizontally or cock up and down. It should not cup back at any time.
Once a player is gripping a golf club with both hands, the first movement the hands make is for the right wrist to bend backwards while the left turns to be parallel with the ground. As the swing is drawn back further, the right wrist will remain bent back while the left wrist will begin to cock. Proper follow through will result in a pure strike.
If your right wrist begins to cock back, it will certainly cause your left to begin to cup back as well. This will cause the club face to open and will result in a slice every time.
- Limit Hand Movement – only allow hands to bend in a select number of ways to avoid slices
- Make a Vee – press the thumb and pointer finger of each hand together to form a V shape
- Feel the Motion – continued practice of correct form will form a muscle memory
back to menu ↑
THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF THE GOLF SWING!
This video makes a very important distinction that is rarely focused on directly. In order for your swing to make successful contact with the ball, everything must work in unison so that the direction club face, the most important aspect of the golf swing, is true.
When the club face becomes too open during any point of your swing, you will surely find that your ability to strike the ball true will fade away. Many players attempt to overcorrect this problem by adjust individual components midswing. This only leads to greater problems and far less consistency in their overall performance.
A starting point for correcting a too open club face is to consistently attempt to hit the ball to the left. This drill will force you to make immediate adjustments in order to keep the club face from becoming too far open.
You can do this by keeping the club face pointing at the ball at the onset of your backswing. Once the club raises to the peak of your swing, keep your lead wrist flat. After time, you will notice the ball consistently trailing to the left and your body will then start to make adjustments in order to straighten the ball out. Control of you swing is the key to keeping the club face less open and to striking the ball better.
- Keep Control of the Club Face – how open the face of the club is will impact where the ball goes
- Shorter Back Swing – increases the control of the swing
- Angle of attack – a shallower angle of attack improves striking power