Week 2/Day 1 Cardiogolf Game Improvement Program


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KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

WEEK 2-Squaring the Clubface

Monday-Arm Swing

Tuesday-Cardio Training for Golfers

Wednesday-Body Motion

Thursday-Golf-Specific Stretches

Friday-Set Up Review

Arm Swing

This week the Cardiogolf Game Improvement Program is devoted to learning how to swing the club to square the clubface.  From last week, you should have developed an understanding of the basic fundamentals and now can then begin to develop your swing to build consistency. The second week of Cardiogolf Game Improvement Program builds on the foundations established in the first week.

Focus on the lead arm for solid shots

The golf swing in its most simple form is really only a circle. The radius of that circle, back and through the swing is the lead are (left arm for a right-handed swing and right arm in a left-handed swing). Good players create a wide arc on the backswing and maintain the radius that they created at address throughout the swing. High-handicappers, on the other hand, in their attempt to create a wide arc usually over do it by over swinging and bending their lead arm at the top of the swing, which is the opposite of what they should do.

When a wide arc is established at the top of the swing, the player is now able to drop their arms in the correct position on the downswing which allows the left arm to release through impact and fold correctly on the follow-through. The left arm folding on the follow-through keeps the club on the correct plane and the ball on the target line.

A high-handicapper that collapses his lead arm at the top of the swing is now out of position and has to throw the club from the outside on the downswing. From this position he tries to save the shot by extending the lead arm on the follow-through, once again, the opposite of what one should do, resulting in the dreaded chicken wing follow-through where the elbow points up instead of down destroying the radius of the circle.

Good ball strikers keep their lead arm straight
Good ball strikers keep their lead arm straight
If you bend your lead arm, you loose the radius of your swing.
If you bend your lead arm, you loose the radius of your swing.

Good ball strikers create a wide arc on the backswing because they accomplish a couple of things:

1) As they swing back, they naturally hinge their wrists, which puts the club on the proper plane
2) They are flexible enough to make a full turn while maintaining the lead arm extended.

High-handicappers tend to do the opposite:
1) Because of a faulty grip they are unable to hinge their wrists properly and then usually end up hinging their elbows instead
2) Because they may not be as flexible, they are unable to make a full turn so they cannot keep the left arm extended so they bend the arm instead.

You don’t need to swing exactly like a tour player to strike the ball well, but don’t do the exact opposite. Keep the lead arm extended on the backswing and let it fold on the follow-through. If you have been struggling to hit solid iron shots, focus on your lead arm.

On-Course Exercise-

Remember a faulty grip can inhibit how much you can hinge your wrists, so check your grip frequently.  Also be careful not to grip the club too tightly.  Tight grip pressure can cause tension in your hands, wrists and forearms and prevent you from hinging and releasing the club.  On a scale of 1 to 10: 10 being the tightest grip pressure you can have and 1 being the loosest grip you can have, your grip pressure should be a 4 or 5 on the scale.  Simply waggling the club before you hit your shot can help you loosen up your grip pressure.

Off-Course Exercise

Here is a simple drill to help you keep your left arm (right arm for left-handed golfers) straight on the back swing.  Using your Cardio Club because it is light weight, hold it just with your left hand grip. To order your own Cardio Club visit Cardiogolf.  Grab your left wrist with your right hand as shown in the picture.  Holding your left wrist, swing the club to the top of your swing keeping your left arm as straight as possible.  Pull your arm straight with your right hand.  Doing this a few times a week can help stretch out your arms and shoulders and train yourself to keep your lead arm straight.

Hold your left wrist with your right hand.
Hold your left wrist with your right hand.
Pull your left arm straight at the top of your swing.
Pull your left arm straight at the top of your swing.

Preview Cardiogolf

Find out your golf personality

Coming Up this Week…

Tuesday-Golf-Cardio Training for Golfers

Wednesday-Body Motion

Thursday-Golf-Specific Stretches

Friday-Set Up Review

Week 1/Day 5 KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

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KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

WEEK 1-Pre-Swing Set Up

Monday-Grip Essentials

Tuesday-Cardiogolf Warm Up

Wednesday-Posture Essentials

Thursday-Cardiogolf Arm Workout

Today-Friday-Ball Position

Ball position and weight distribution are closely, related. The distribution of your weight at address can affect your swing significantly. In fact, weight distribution should change to match the shot you are playing.

With short irons, there is slightly more weight on the lead leg and the ball position is in the middle of your stance. With the rest of the irons and fairways woods, the weight distribution is about even. When driving, there is slightly more weight on the back leg than the front leg.

Ball position for short irons is just to the right of center for right-handed golfers and just to the left of center for the left-hander golfer. As you progress to longer clubs, move the ball a half of a rotation toward the target. The ball position for the driver will then end up opposite of the front heel. With a driver, the ball should fall underneath your front ear, making your head start behind the ball.

Ball Position for an Iron
Ball Position for an Iron
Ball Position for Driver
Ball Position for Driver

Trouble-Shooting

The “slicer” tends to keep too much weight on the front leg at address for all shots, which restricts the shoulder turn and encourages a steep out-to-in swing.

Someone that tends to “hook” the ball too much will have too much weight on the back leg and play the ball too far back in the stance. Adjust your weight distribution to correct your swing flaw.

Slicer's Position-too much weight on front side
Slicer's Position-too much weight on front side

Alignment Tips

Alignment is the easiest fundamental to work on, and probably one of the most neglected principles of golf. A good shot is useless unless it is going toward your intended target.

First, you align the clubface square to your target line, and then you align your body. One of the biggest mistakes I see as a teacher is when people line up their body to the target first, then set the clubface down. This sequence usually makes people misalign their bodies, causing them to twist and turn inappropriately to get the ball to the target. Do not make the mistake that 90 percent of higher-handicappers do by not taking the time to align the body correctly.

The easiest and most effective way to align correctly is to set-up in an alignment station. Place a club down on the ground, pointing parallel to your target. With a secure grip and stepping forward with your back foot, set the clubface down behind the ball with the leading edge perpendicular to your target line. Then set your front foot into position and adjust your back foot into place so that both are parallel to your target line. Your feet, hips, knees, shoulders and even eye line should be parallel to your target line.

Avoid aiming your body at the target. This closes you off and promotes an inside-out swing or makes you hook the ball excessively. Practice hitting to targets with clubs so you can teach yourself to aim correctly.
Use a club on the ground for alignment
Use a club on the ground for alignment

On-Course Exercise

Practice hitting shots with correct alignment: aim the clubface is the first and most important part of correct alignment. Use a club on the ground as a reference point around which you can position your feet and body correctly. Remember also that while the clubface aims at your intended target, the rest of your body aims parallel to the target line.

Off-Course Exercise

Complete the Pre-Swing Muscle and Joint Warm Up chapter from the Cardiogolf DVD.  To order your own copy of Cardiogolf visit cardiogolf .

Preview Cardiogolf

Write Down Your Goals for the New Year

Have a Good Weekend…I hope you get to get out on the golf course this weekend.

Week 1/Day 4 KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

WEEK 1-Pre-Swing Set Up

Monday-Grip Essentials

Tuesday-Cardiogolf Warm Up

Wednesday-Posture Essentials

Today-Thursday-Cardiogolf Arm Workout

Cardiogolf Arm Workout

“The best psychologist in the world is a square clubface at impact,” – Ben Hogan

To be a consistent ball striker, you should strive to swing with a square clubface at all times, unless, of course, you are trying to intentionally curve the ball. Golf is a hard enough game hitting the ball straight, let alone fighting an open or closed clubface at impact.

Watch a good player swing and you almost always see a smooth, rhythmic start to their backswing. So what starts the club back? If you look at the swing as a series of circles, the clubhead makes the biggest circle, followed by the circle the hands make, followed by the circle the body makes as it turns back and forth. So since the clubhead has to travel the farthest, you want to start the clubhead back first.

With a correct grip, your hand and wrist should rotate the clubhead so it stays square to the body throughout the swing. When the club is parallel to the ground, the toe of the club will point up. This is a square clubface. The palm of your right hand and the back of your left hand (if you are right-handed) should end up in what we instructors call the “shake hands” position. As you follow through, again the hands and wrists rotate so that when the club is parallel to the ground once again the toe of the club will point up.

When I was a kid my golf instructor, Bob Ledbetter, had me close my fists and stick out my thumbs as if to hitchhike. Pretending I was hitting a golf ball, he would have me rotate my arms so that at the halfway back point of the swing my thumbs would point up. Then I would finish my swing and my thumbs would again point up after impact on the follow-through. It is a rather simple move and should not be over complicated. To start your swing, think of pushing the clubhead straight back, and as your weight shifts naturally to the back foot, your hands and arms will rotate, keeping the clubface square.

As you continue to swing back, your wrists should start to hinge so that about three-quarters of the way back your arms and club will form the letter “L.”

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At the top of the backswing, the clubface needs to be square as well. The clubface should be parallel or match the same angle of the left arm (for right-handers). If the clubface dangles and the left wrist is cupped, the clubface will be too open. If the clubface is flat or parallel to the ground, then it’s too closed. Have your golf instructor video tape your golf swing to see what your clubhead looks like at the top of your swing. A simple clubface adjustment may make the difference between a straight ball and a hook or slice.

If your clubface is square at the top of your swing, it should be square coming down and through the ball. At impact, the back of the left hand and palm of the right hand should face the target. After the ball is gone, continue to rotate the forearms in conjunction with the body. Don’t go through with an open face or a closed face.

Here is a drill to learn the correct hand and arm motion. Hit balls with your feet together. This drill teaches hand, wrist and arm coordination. If you do this correctly, the ball should fly straight without any curve left or right. This drill is also good to work on balance. If you swing too hard, you will lose your balance.


On-Course Exercise

Make practice swings without a ball aiming at a tee placed in the ground. Allow your wrists to hinge freely on the backswing and then on the follow-through clipping the tee out of the ground.

Off-Course Exercise

Complete the Arm Workout chapter of the Cardiogolf DVD.  To get your own copy of Cardiogolf visit cardiogolf .

Use the Cardio Club to work on your wrist hinge. Check yourself in the mirror to make sure the clubface is square and that you are hinging your wrists. To get a Cardio Club visit cardiogolf .

Coming up this week…

Friday-Ball Position

Preview Cardiogolf

Write Down Your Goals for the New Year

Week 1/Day 3 KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

Cardiogolflogo3KPJ’s Cardiogolf 12-Week Game Improvement Program

WEEK 1-Pre-Swing Set Up

Monday-Grip Essentials

Tuesday-Cardiogolf Warm Up

Today-Wednesday-Posture Essentials

Posture Essentials

Everything you do before you swing determines how well you strike the ball. With a poor setup, even the best golfers in the world will not hit the ball straight. Take the time to correctly set up each time for a consistent swing.

*A quality set up is completely relaxed and tension free.

*The stance is about shoulder width, providing a stable base from which to swing.

*Bending from the hip sockets as opposed to the waist will allow you to make a powerful body coil.

*Flex the knees only slightly.

*Let your arms hang naturally, not too close or too far from the body.

*Your back hand (the right hand for right-handed golfers, the left hand for left-handers) is lower on the club than the front hand. Hence, your back arm, shoulder, and hip will be slightly lower than than the front side.

*Bend from the hip sockets, not your waist.

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On-Course Exercise

Practice your posture with each club. Although clubs are different lengths, the basic golf posture remains the same. One key point to remember is to try to keep your spine in a neutral position, not too straight or not slumped over.  The purpose of the golf posture is to create a position from which you can make an athletic swing.

Off-Course Exercise

Check your set-up and posture in front of a mirror and compare it to a photo of a professional golfer from a golf magazine, make sure your model is similar to your build and stature .

Complete the Pre-Swing Muscle and Joint Warm Up chapter from the Cardiogolf DVD.  To order your own copy of Cardiogolf visit cardiogolf .

Coming up this week…

Thursday-Cardiogolf Arm Workout

Friday-Ball Position

Preview Cardiogolf

Write Down Your Goals for the New Year

Week 1/Day 2-KPJ’s CARDIOGOLF 12-WEEK GAME IMPROVEMENT FITNESS PROGRAM

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WEEK 1-Pre-Swing Set Up

Monday-Grip Essentials

Today-Tuesday-Cardiogolf Warm Up

Warm Up 101-

Essentials to Better Play and Minimizing Risk of Injury

Studies show that 53% of amateur golfers and 30% of professional golfers have sustained an injury while playing golf and most of those injuries actually occurred while hitting balls on the golf course and practicing on the driving range.

Professional golfers have more overuse injuries due to hours of practice while weekend golfers are more likely to get injured from lack of conditioning and poor swing mechanics.  While you may not think that the golf course is a hazardous to your health, there is potential risk of suffering serious injuries to the wrists, elbows, lower back, hips and knees.

Warming up is the easiest and most effective way to prevent injuries that can happen during practice and play.

If you have ever participated in a sport or some form of exercise most likely you performed some type of regular warm up and cool down before and after competition.  So why wouldn’t you warm up before a round of golf or a practice session? Swinging a golf club up to 300 times a round including practice swings at speeds upwards of 90 miles per hour stress our muscles, tendons and joints to full capacity. Injury rates for recreational golfers are at an astounding rate of more than 50% – and even higher for golfers over age of 50. Recreational golfers have typically skipped warming up before play and practice because of the misconception that golf is not a strenuous activity or because of time constraints.  We are all so busy, so when we have time to play golf, we are all anxious to get out on the golf course and we end up skipping the warm up. But skipping the warm up may mean that it takes us four or five holes before we loosen up and gain our form and by that time, our score may already be ruined.  If you had only spent a few minutes warming up before the first tee, you could not only avoid those big numbers on your scorecard the first few holes, but also prevent injury.

Professional golfers now know that a proper warm up is essential for peak performance.  Most recreational golfers quite haven’t caught on with the trend, they typically go straight from their car to the first tee and wonder why they don’t hit a solid shot until the 5th or 6th hole. No matter what level of player you are, a proper warm up can help you play your best golf and prevent injuries.

On-Course Exercise

Commit to warming up before play or practice. Throughout this program, I will give you several warm up routines to help you prepare for your round and help you prevent injury.

Off-Course Exercise

Complete the Pre-Swing Muscle and Joint Warm Up chapter from the Cardiogolf DVD.  To order your own copy of Cardiogolf visit cardiogolf .

Coming up this week…

Wednesday-Posture Essentials

Thursday-Cardiogolf Arm Workout

Friday-Ball Position

Preview Cardiogolf

Write Down Your Goals for the New Year

I teach Golf and Pilates. I am a LPGA Master Professional and Certified Personal and Pilates Trainer