February 12 2013
Snedeker's full swing has continually improved under coach Todd Anderson. (Chris Condon/PGA TOUR)
By Travis Fulton, Director of Instruction, PGA TOUR Academy
It’s fun to watch the game when a player gets into a groove where the game appears to be easy. We all know the game of golf is anything but easy, but when you watch Brandt Snedeker play right now it appears to be exactly that.
Snedeker is a player that if you were forced to draft a putter in fantasy golf, the Vanderbilt grad might be at the top of your list. His decisive approach countered with a compact and square putting stroke have always been a lethal combination. But what’s appealing to me these days is his ball-striking. Snedeker and his coach Todd Anderson have done some great things to get his full swing to match the level of his skills with the flat stick.
One of the things we can learn from Snedeker’s swing is how he takes the club up the plane during the backswing. What I like about it is how he hinges the clubhead up and rotates the lead forearm. These movements are critical because they promote a good shoulder turn and position the shaft on plane with a square clubface. This position really sets the stage for the club to come down on a good plane angle and path into impact.
One of the most common errors amateurs make with their backswing is they don’t hinge the clubhead up but rather drag it to the inside and well under the initial plane. This usually leads to a lack of rotation in the lead forearm, creating a steeper plane with the shaft at the top of the swing. As a result, the shoulders don’t turn as well, setting the stage for the club to come down on a much steeper plane angle and inevitably an out-to-in path through impact.
So as we continue on with the 2013 season and watch Snedeker continue to make things look easy, watch closely how he hinges the wrists and rotates his lead forearm to the top of the swing. Take a picture of this position at the top if you can and begin to work to get your shaft and clubface in these alignments and watch just how easy the downswing can be.
Travis Fulton is the Director of Instruction at the TOUR Academies at TPC Sawgrass and the World Golf Village. For more information on the TOUR Academy, click here.