Matt Kuchar, the RBC Heritage champion, looks like he has a hitch in his swing. Right before he takes the club back, he picks his club off the ground and hovers it for a split second above the ball. Then he proceeds with his backswing.
This maneuver is actually his trigger to kick start his swing. Every great player has one. Jack Nicklaus would cock his head. Gary Player would kick his right knew toward the target. Phil Michelson uses a forward press in his putting stroke.
A trigger keeps you in motion and prevents freezing up over the ball. Think about taking a shot from the free throw line in basketball. You would bounce it a few times, look and shoot. You would not stop your motion.
The stroke in golf is the same. Once you stop your motion, your swing can be ruined!
The great nemesis to most amateur swings and putting strokes is a lack of a trigger. What I see most when I work with clients is that they freeze over the ball for a second or two. This promotes a build up of muscle tension, and as a result, decreases fluidity and rhythm to the stroke.
Be Like Kuch. Find a trigger for your swing. You can copy Matt, Jack or Gary. It is does not matter. But you must find one that works for you that keeps you in motion. It might feel funny at first, but after a few days, you will see the difference in your fluidity of motion.
But just don’t get a trigger for your full swing. Get a trigger for your putting, chipping and pitching as well.
Free up your mind with a trigger and your game will improve under pressure!
Dr. Gregg Steinberg is a regular guest every Wednesday on “Talk of the Tour” heard on the Sirius/XM PGA TOUR radio. He is a professor of sports psychology and has been the mental game coach for many PGA TOUR players as well as top collegiate and junior golfers. Dr. Gregg is the author of the best selling golf psychology book, MentalRules for Golf. If you are interested in mental game coaching, please visit him at www.drgreggsteinberg.com.