Playing for Money: Willy Wilcox- Going Back to the Old Swing

By Wayne | Videos: Playing For Money

I did a video of Willy in 2015 when he was on TV and playing great, noticing right away how open his stance was in relation to his target line. I have an affection for open stances as I’ve always been a Trevino fan and I played that way myself for many years. I felt that with the open stance I could clear my hips much faster and easier, and since I have always been prone to flatten the shaft, be slow with my hips, and thus get the club stuck behind me on the approach, dropping my left foot back made a big difference. One of the reasons I went away from it was due to the problems with teaching all day talking about alignment and swing plane, items which are much easier to visualize and explain when all the lines are parallel and perpendicular. Anyway, when Willy got in touch with me and came to my club the first time we worked mainly on short game, but when we did hit some full shots I was surprised to see a dead square stance. I didn’t really have time to go over much in that 2-hour session as far as the full swing was concerned, but when he came up again the next week I made it my mission to get him back to what had worked so well back in 2015. I suggested he go back to the open stance and pull the hands in deeper on the backswing while opening the face a bit. From there it was all familiar to him and he started hitting it nicely right away. He has had some nice results in the past month (22nd, 8th, 3rd) on the Web.Com Tour, and is in position to regain his Tour card.

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Todd August 15, 2018

One reason an open stance works, especially with irons, is that any shot struck with a descending blow means that the club head will be traveling to the right of the swing plane line at impact (for a right handed golfer). This is due to basic trigonometry of an object traveling on a circular inclined plane.

There are multiple factors like attack angle and swing plane angle that determine exactly how far to the right the club will be traveling at impact.

For example, a short iron club head traveling on a plane angle of around 63 degrees and an attack angle of -8 degrees will be moving about 4 degrees to the right of the swing plane line at impact.

This means that for a golfer to hit a straight shot with a short iron and a -8 degree attack angle he will have to swing 4 degrees to the left of his target with a face angle that is 4 degrees open to his plane line (square to the path). For a 130 yard shot, this means he will have to aim about 9 yards left!

Willy exacerbates the inside out club path because, not only does he have an extreme attack angle but he also brings the club down on a shallow plane angle. The shallower the plane angle the more to the right the club head will travel with a descending blow.

Check out Trackman University for more information about these concepts.

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David W August 19, 2018

Love this video. Good work Wayne.

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