Tuesday, September 15, 2009

3Jack's Translation of TGM: Part 5

Part 5 of my translation of TGM will go over the last two bullet points (7,8) of List #1. So we'll look at Sections 2-0, 6-0, 3-0 and 3-A. These Sections are pretty brief for the most part.

2-0 (Introduction to Mechanics)

Homer here talks about the secret of golf is to 'sustain the line of compression.' This is another way of Homer saying that the secret of golf is to sustain the lag. Anytime one end of an object trails behind the other end of an object, that object is 'lagging.' One great example is using a mop. If the mop end of the stick is behind the top end, it is 'lagging.' In fact, Homer uses the mop as an example of how to creat lag in a 'swinger pattern' (which I'll get to in future posts).

So, 'sustaining the lag' means that once lag has been created, just keep on lagging it. Former collegiate All-American and TGM student John Erickson (aka Lagpressure) talks about maintaining the flex of the club thru impact. Here's a sample video of John doing that:

This 'maintaining the flex' is just a more extreme version of sustaining the lag. But the point Homer will get into later in the book is that you can 'lose' lag. The goal is to not lose that lag. The tricky part is that once you lose that lag, you can't get it back.

To better understand the 'golfing machine' (aka the golf swing), Homer makes the word 'golf' into the acronym G.O.L.F. Which stands for:


So, what does that acronym mean? Well, what is 'linear force?' That's force directed in a linear direction. Linear means a straight line. So that's force directed in a straight line. As you will see in the future translations, the swing according to TGM is not only about the Geometric Circle (diagram below), but also about straight lines as well.

'Geometrically Oriented' means it is based on Geometry. Thus G.O.L.F. is force directed in a straight line that is based upon the principles of Geometry.

Homer discusses the '3 Imperatives' of The Golfing Machine:

1. Flat Left Wrist At Impact
2. Straight Plane Lines
3. Clubhead Lag Pressure Point

A Flat Left Wrist (aka FLW) is often confused as some people do not have a FLW and cannot decipher whether they do or not. Here's an example of somebody with a slightly bent wrist at impact (aka 'timing the flip') and then the same exact person with a FLW at impact

The easy way to tell if the person has a FLW at impact is to notice that there is a straight line going down his left arm and the clubshaft. Granted, you can sometimes get a camera that creates an illusion of the shaft kicking forward. It will look like this:

Tiger doesn't flip, but the camera causes the illusion as the shaft of the club is bending forward.

A straight plane line is the line that the club points to throughout the swing, EXCEPT when the club is parallel to the ground. This Martin Hall video showing the use of the Smart Stick explains it better.

The blue line on the FLOOR (disregard the line on the wall) is the plane line. If the laser pointer is weaving in and out of the blue line, that is a bent plane line.

Lag Pressure point is a point along the clubshaft, usually in the grip where there is pressure created by the lagging clubhead. Basically, I can swing the club at a super slow rate of speed and have a straight plane line and a flat left wrist at impact. However, at that super slow rate of speed, there is no lag pressure point. The lag pressure point is important because you need to know how to maximize it at impact, but as far as just being an imperative, it's really just so people cannot say they can have a FLW at impact and straight plane lines, but not hit the ball well since they swing super slow.

Homer also talks about the 3 Essentials. Essential and Imperative have pretty much the same meaning, but from what I've gathered Homer interpreted the Imperative to be something very defined. A FLW is easily defined (for the most part). The same with straight plane line and clubhead lag pressure point. They are geometric alignments and physical forces.

However, a 'stationary head' has some interpretation to it as well as 'balance' and 'rhythm.' The 'stationary head' has quite a bit of debate to it, although the purpose of these translations is not to debate TGM, but rather to interpret the work. The head does move though, but IMO, you're best off trying to keep it reasonably still (again, up to interpretation) instead of moving it around all over the place.

Homer also states that if you are having difficulty executing the 3 Imperatives and 3 Essentials, it's because you are trying to execute them while you are swinging your normal way while hitting a ball. You should try to do these things even without a ball. When you can do that without a ball on a consistent basis, then move onto executing those essentials and imperatives with a ball.

For more information on G.O.L.F., sustaining the lag and the 3 Imperatives and 3 Essentials, check out parts 1 & 2 of Peter Croker's TGM Downloads


Here Homer defines what he has coined the 'power package' of the golf swing (aka the golfing machine). He states that:

The power package consists of the Arms and the Club and includes the 4 Power Accumulators, the 4 Pressure Points, their Loading and the Clubhead Lag.
We will discuss the pressure points, power accumulators, etc. Homer also states that there is no swing that does not include a Power Package. He also states that every swing has a five step sequence in which their power package operates, and it is:

1. Accumulation Of Power
2. Loading of Power
3. Storage of Power
4. Delivery of Power
5. Release of Power

Part 17 of Peter Croker's TGM Downloads goes over the Power Package in more detail.

3-0 & 3-A (Component Translation)

For the critics of TGM who claim that TGM is too mechanical and causes 'paralysis through analysis', a quote from Homer Kelley states that is clearly not the purpose of his book:

An important process for acquiring overall-skill is the process of translating the individual components from a conscious, deliberate, mechanical manipulation, to an intregal part of the whole, by reducing it to a Computerized 'Feel' and without losing its individuality.
He then talks about 'educating your hands' to maintain the FLW at impact. Eventually if you can do that and work on your mechanics, you can then develop your thoughts from thinking about mechanics into thinking about 'feel.' For instance, when I was working on drive loading, I would think about the proper mechanics of drive loading. But eventually I would interpret that into feel like 'pushing the club all the way down into the ground, etc.'

I went into 'Basic Motion' in a previous translation. Homer states that the Basic Motion should just be thought of as the clubhead going 'Up-and-Back-and-Down-and-Out.'

He then discusses Acquired Motion. As Basic Motion takes the clubhead 2 feet back and 2 feet thru, the Acquired Motion (also a '9-3' Motion) has the golfer taking it back until the right forearm is parallel to the ground and then taking it thru until the right forearm is parallel to the ground on the follow thru. The Total Motion is the full swing with all of the variations of the components of the 'Golfing Machine.'

As I tell people, you want to start with Basic Motion and work on the proper mechanics and alignments in that motion. Then when you can execute those mechanics and alignments AND hit the ball well, you can then move to Acquired Motion. Get those mechanics and alignments down and move onto the Total Motion.

It's very similar to many subjects in life. For instance, if I never learned math and wanted to learn advanced calculus and trigonometry I would start off by learning to count, then learning to add and subtract, then learn multiplication and division and learn everything in between. Many people just go straight to the full swing, which is like going straight to advanced calculus. Or almost as futile, they'll go from basic motion to full motion which is like learning addition and subtraction and skipping everything in between and going straight to advance calculus.

Here's some Lynn Blake Videos on Acquired and Total Motion.


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