Monday, March 29, 2010

A Look At The Unorthodox Swings - Part 8

In this edition of the unorthodox swings, I look at Chi Chi Rodriguez.

Chi Chi was an 8-time PGA Tour winner and a 22-time Champions Tour winner. He was considered to be a very good ballstriker and shotmaker, who won in spite of his putting.

One thing I would like to go over is the terminology of 'tipping out' in the golf swing.

To begin with, 'tipping out' occurs at the P6 position of the golf swing. P6 is in the downswing, when the clubshaft is parallel to the ground.

Of course, this is what P6 looks like from the DTL view.

In the photo above, Mac O'Grady is in about as good of a P6 position as a golfer can get. The clubshaft from this view is parallel to the target line. The toe of the club is pointing straight up at the sky, which is a square clubface.

Now look at Chi Chi from the DTL view at P6 (last picture on the right of the middle row). As you can see, his clubshaft is pointing a little bit left of parallel to the target line.

When the clubshaft is left of parallel at P6, that's called 'tipping out.'

Chi Chi is tipping out very slightly here, but his clubface is dead square and it's something he's done for so long that he can repeat good impact conditions over and over again.

The problem most golfers have with 'tipping out' is the clubface is actually closed for them when they do it, and that combined with the tipping out action causes them to suddenly open the clubface wide open and hit a shank. I should know because last year I suffered with bouts of 'tipping out.'

The unorthodox parts for Chi Chi's swing to me start off with the address position. He stands very far away and almost address the ball like Moe Norman from the DTL perspective.

Other than that, his backswing looks pretty normal. He then 'swings left' quite noticeably with a very flat shoulder turn past impact and then has a bit of a funky finish. But other than that, his swing looks very orthodox.

I think Chi had excellent footwork and kept his clubface very square throughout the golf swing. He also mastered the 'CP release' (aka swinging left), so if he was measure on Trackman, he probably had a lot of 0* path and 0* clubface readings.


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