Far too often golfers overlook the potential benefit of slow-motion swings. Slow-motion swings could be the best form of practice that you can do, and you do not need to be at the golf course, driving range or your winter training practice facility.
Slow-motion swings were first introduced to me when I attended a Vision 54 Coaching Camp in 2014 with Pia Nilsson, Lynne Marriott and their fantastic team of coaches. They called these swings ‘Thai Chi Swings.’ After doing the swings myself, I instantly realized the benefits they could have and started using them regularly in my practice and recommending all my students to practice new motions in slow motion.
Practicing slow-motion swings as part of your training will give you a greater awareness of what it feels like to get your body into the desired position. When you are unsure of body positioning, you will find that you tend to speed through these areas of your swing. When doing the slow-motion swings, be sure to place your main focus on the desired part of your swing you wish to change. You will start to feel the difference between your current body positions and the desired positions. Slow-motion swings should not replace your current practice but supplement your current routine to help expedite the learning process.
The best way to incorporate slow-motion swings into your practice is to take a video of your current swing. This is the baseline that you will use to evaluate your improvements.
Next, select your area of focus. Whether you want to make a swing change or just groove your current swing, set a specific intention to focus on during the process. This will heighten your awareness and help you get the most out of each swing.
Then, time and video yourself again. This can be a very useful practice. The first few times you do the Thai Chi swings, you will find that it may only take you 10 seconds to make the slowest possible swing you can, and it can be quite difficult. Stick with it and set time goals along the way. The longer you take to make the swing, the more time your brain has to send the correct signals to your muscles and the greater the awareness you will have for your swing.
Finally, try it with your eyes closed. This will enhance your ability to feel the difference. It also removes the tendency to want to watch your club and body move through the motion. When you hit golf balls, you cannot watch yourself swing, otherwise you may miss the ball. Notice the subtle differences in the Thai Chi swings with your eyes closed.
Incorporating slow-motion training into your practice sessions can be very beneficial. After all, you have to walk before you can run. Talk to any of our professional staff about how to best use drills like this in your practice to make sure you are improving and practicing with a purpose.