Hit Solid Irons - IronSolid

The pursuit of a well struck iron shot

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The Impact Zone - all tour players are the same

Posted by ironsolid on September 27, 2012 at 9:20 AM

Just finished up reading the book titled "The Impact Zone" by Bobby Clampett.  It talks about mastering the moment of truth - the area right before and right after the golf club contacts the golf ball.  It is a unique instructional guide to the dynamics of the golf swing all focused around making solid consistent contact with the golf ball.  It starts with the putting stroke (dynamic #1 - flat left wrist), takes you through chipping (dynamic #2 - forward swing bottom), then on to pitching (dynamic #3 - loading the club on the backswing), to the full swing (dynamic #4 - lagging the load through the impact zone) and finally swing path direction (dynamic #5 - swinging the club along a straight plane line through the impact zone).

While most of the instruction is centered around hitting a consistent and solid iron shot, there is also some interesting information about what happens when PGA Tour Pro hits the driver - they hit the ball on the down swing.......

The book is loaded with good information, some of the story telling is lacking and I feel wasn't necessary to get across the point Bobby was trying to hammer home.  This book cemented in my thought process what really takes place when a PGA Touring Pro hits an iron shot.  For research they used SwingVision high speed slo-motion video to analyze what happens in the impact zone - seeing that Bobby Clampett worked for CBS as an on course analyst he had plenty of video to watch.  When I was researching the design for the IronSolid training device I watched about 50 hours of video to determine that all of the PGA Touring Pro's hit the ball with a descending blow when hitting an iron shot, regardless of their stature or what their swing style looked like.

One of the biggest take aways for me, was the great explanation of swing "style" versus swing "dynamics".  Style is what most recreational golfers chase when trying to hit a consistent quality iron shot.  Style are individual preferences such as grip, stance, length of backswing, follow through and over all swing methods. Dynamics are what every PGA Tour Pro has in common, or they wouldn't be playing at the highest level.  These could be called "fundamentals" but that would confuse most golfers, since we tend to think of fundamentals as grip, stance, posture, back swing, follow through and so on.

The majority of golf teachers teach these 'fundamentals' to the majority of the recreational students.  When I learned golf that is what I was taught.  Then along came high speed slo-motion video and we discovered what really happens in the moment of truth -  these dynamics.

Dynamic #1 - you must hit the ball with a flat left wrist, Dynamic #2 - you must hit the ball first then the ground, so that means the bottom of your swing arc is forward of the ball, Dynamic #3 - you must load the club on the back swing by hinging your left wrist, Dynamic #4 - you must lag that loaded position until the last split second before contacting the golf ball, Dynamic #5 - you must have the clubface travelling along the swing plane and down the target line for the instant that club head contacts the golf ball.

The beauty of the IronSolid training device is you can not hit a good iron shot using the device unless you adhere to all five swing of these swing dynamics.  If you break any of these five swing dynamics, you will hit the IronSolid device either on the take away or the down swing when attempting to hit the golf ball.

One new thing I am going to do is practice hitting my driver using the IronSolid.  I am going to experiment with ball position and train myself to hit the ball off the tee with a slight downward path, thus moving the bottom of my driver swing arc forward of the ball.  I know this works with my fairway metals and my hybrids, so it should work well with my driver, although I do not want to contact the turf during the driver swing.  Vijay Singh, one of the great ball strikers in golf, would practice hitting his driver off the turf on the practice tee to make certain that he was hitting the ball on the downswing, and he is one of the longest and most accurate golfers on the tour.

That is my review of the book, and it confirms everything that is correct about the IronSolid training device. Hit It Solid!



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