The Fix Becomes The Fault


Have you ever tried to change something in your golf swing and experienced profound rapid success?  And then you tried the exact same move the next day only to have nothing work?

The following story is true. . .

On Thursday of last week, I reviewed five years of down the line swing videos of myself.  Of course, I was looking for a swing key that would carry me the next three days on my golf trip to the eastern shore.  What’s amazing is that over the five years, I worked on many parts of my swing and implemented many changes, but my move looked strikingly similar in each video.  With the slight exception of my most recent video, I tended to lift my head up about three inches on the backswing and then move about three inches backward during the downswing.  My “reverse L” was clearly causing me to lose my spine angle.  How could anyone hit the ball correctly with this much head movement?  So, to remedy, instead of one swing key, I picked two.  I would point my left shoulder at the ball on the backswing (to keep my head from rising) and sit into my left glute on the downswing (to start the swing from the ground up and maintain my posture).

During my pre-round warm up on Friday at Hog Neck, I was hitting big push cuts with this move, so I did what any reasonable fellow would do and discarded my range session swings as aberrations.  On the first tee, I blew a big push cut into the woods and was fortunate to make bogey.  I scraped a 2-over front side together on the sheer luck of great putting, all the while struggling with these two moves.  On the back side, I jettisoned the sit down move and just focused on “left shoulder down” and began pounding my driver and nutting irons dead at flags.  THE MAGIC MOVE HAD ARRIVED!!!  After finishing the inward half at 1-under, I was extremely pumped to play on day two.

Ever fill up a balloon and let it fly around the room making funny noises until empty?  Armed with “left shoulder down” on Saturday at Eagles Landing, I pumped up and nailed my first three drives, but quickly evolved into a fluttering mess of pull cuts, pop-ups, and chunked irons.  What happened?  After 18 holes, I looked and felt like that spent balloon.

At Heritage Shores on Sunday, I started with nothing but weak pull cuts off the tee and fat irons.  After one particular chunk with a gap wedge from 98 yards that threw a divot almost 45 degrees to the left, I heel spanked a driver on the next tee, and decided something was fundamentally wrong with my swing, but I couldn’t identify.  The only thing I felt was unathletic.  So, the change I made was to get in a more athletic position at address and forget left shoulder down.  I simply flexed my knees a bit more and for the last seven holes was rifling my driver and hitting the irons spot on.  What happened here?

In retrospect, when I bent my knees, I re-engaged my spine angle.  Just try this and see if you don’t feel some tension return to your lower back.  Left shoulder down had become left hip in and a reverse pivot.  GAWD this game will drive you nuts!!!

So now I am filled with hope that this latest correction is the one.  I should probably go back to my instructor for some serious correction but it’s getting late in the season.  We’ll see what happens after tomorrow evening’s range session.

Has your fix ever become the fault?

Play well.


4 thoughts on “The Fix Becomes The Fault”

  1. Brian

    Oh my!!!! I am amazed your clubs did not go for a swim…haha. Many times my fixes have later become faults and my experience tells me that a solution was in there somewhere. Much like what you attempted, I think that your fix is in there somewhere. Without seeing your swing, I would suggest that the key to your success is in the movement of your head. I have found that by keeping our head still, great things can happen. I hope you find a solution soon and I look forward to hearing your fix. Oh yeah, great score at Hog Neck, congrats!


    1. Jim, thanks. It was a roller coaster of a golf trip but loads of fun and the weather was great. Hit balls again tonight and the good news is that it’s the second week of November and I’m still getting after it. Will go as long as the weather permits but am under no illusion that we’ll be playing through the winter as we did last year. Still planning on shopping for a putter this weekend. Tweak, tweak, tweak!



  2. Brian,

    You’re definitely not alone here! We’re always searching for “feels”, so once the new thing that works feels normal, we keep changing to search for another new feel or to try and reproduce the feel that worked that we are now desensitized to. At least that is what I think happens to me. Best of luck and hope the rest of your trip went well! (I’m guessing I’ll read more about it as I catch up on my feed)


    1. Josh, we constantly have to be reminded that you cannot bottle and cap a good golf swing. It’s a game of constant adjustments. The more we accumulate experience, the easier the adjustments come. I wonder who has come the closest through time at capturing the perfect repeating swing; Johnny Miller, maybe?



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