The On Plane Golf Swing... : On Plane Golf Swing Blog

Black:  Backswing Arc
Green:  'On Plane' Forward Swing Arc
Orange:  'Traditional' Forward Swing Arc
Notice:  Steeper angle of approach with 'Traditional' Arc
Green:  'On Plane' Forward Swing Arc.
Orange:  'Tradtional' Forward Swing Arc.
Notice:  'On Plane' Arc will travel on the 'target line' more than 'Traditional' Arc
Patrick Damore Golf Instruction Blog
Let's Talk Golf Swing

The On Plane Golf Swing...

by J. Patrick Damore on 12/15/11

Any questions?

Comments (43)

1. JPD said on 2/22/12 - 10:46AM
Head on top of ball at impact (iron swing) makes a LOT of sense
2. Scott said on 6/12/12 - 12:50AM
so what do u use as the initiation of the downswing, hips, feet ect. Do u still try and come from the inside at impact. I am a scratch golfer and looking to change my swing and get a lower ball flight.
3. Patrick Damore said on 6/12/12 - 04:33AM
Great question.... The shoulders, torso, and hips start simultaneously. This will GREATLY influence the proper dynamic transfer of weight of the upper body torso to the forward foot during the forward swing arc. Your forward swing arc will be 'inside' the target line approaching impact. IT will be on the target line during impact. I hope this helps.
4. Scott said on 6/13/12 - 02:18AM
Thanks for the reply. I seem to be having trouble with the block shot with irons/3 wood/driver. I know that if i start using my hands i can get it "flipped" which i am really trying not to do. I do not want to start flipping again. Low and left for me is a horrible sight on the golf course. Any thoughts of what i might be doing or not doing? Cheers Scott.
5. Patrick Damore said on 6/13/12 - 04:42AM
Scott... It sounds like you need to 'sync' your hips and shoulders at impact. Visit my youtube channel and look for the 'prevent getting stuck' drill. Thanks
6. Randall jarrett said on 6/20/12 - 02:26PM
Traditional swing my entire life. Spent the last year and a half in major swing work mode. Spent the last two weeks after watching your videos and reading your site working on my new swing. I was always scratch but it was completely a timing swing. My swing is more consistent and solid as ever in two weeks. My misses are in play now. Thanks and continue the YouTube videos please! If I ever venture far enough north I will get a private lesson. Thanks again
7. J. Patrick Damore said on 6/20/12 - 03:29PM
Randall.... I'm glad I can help. If u need any video work/instruction help feel free to contact me. Good luck and tell ur friends about the website.
8. Denis Streater said on 9/30/12 - 05:31PM
I range from 4 to 7 handicap. I have variability in my golf game and this is very frustrating. It may be due to my traditional golf swing which, as you say, requires good timing. I am often an 'over the top' shoulder swinger. I reviewed your video drill for this problem and see you promote considerable hip slide to your golf bag to encourage a downward movement of the rear shoulder (rather than an outward movement) which will encourage a narrow angle of attack on the ball. I appreciate this is a drill but are you asking your students to practice a drill which is contrary to your 'On Plane' approach. Have I missed something?
9. Patrick Damore... said on 10/1/12 - 07:22AM
Denis, good question. I don't promote an 'over the top' transition any more than I promote an 'under spin flip' transition. I promote a 'happy medium' if you will with the on plane swing. Your 'OTT' transition can be helped with the 'bump the bag' drill. Done with enough repition, and yes, you could possibly morph into a 'under spin flipper'. You need to know when to say 'when'. I've been a 'USF' my whole life and dedicated the last 9 years to stop it (which I have), so much now that I have noticed myself morphing into a 'OTT' swinger, which I'm presently addressing. Advice.. once the change has happened do the drill only as needed. Good luck and thanks!
10. Michael said on 11/3/12 - 07:13PM
Patrick, I am a low handicapper and can not get rid of the the head back with left hip bump which causes shoulder tilt, as you describe. The more I try to fix this with your tips, the better I hit the ball. Should I try to focus on all upper body turn with less leg/hip action? What can I do to get that upper body lateral movement needed to get rid of my tilt?? Thanks!
11. Patrick Damore said on 11/4/12 - 08:56AM
To Michael: First, watch and implement my 'how to cover the ball' video. Perform this drill...ALL THE TIME. Secondly, FEEL as if the lower body is 'passive' during the forward swing...almost reactive to the upper body. I stress 'feel' bc what you feel and what is real are usually polar opposites, but in your case...that's exactly the feeling you are striving for. Good Luck
12. daniel said on 12/18/12 - 05:10AM
Patrick, I am a struggling mini tour player and I have been trying Sean Foley's swing model for the past few months and I was curious to know what you think about Sean's philosophy of the golf swing. It seems you believe that weight transfer is critical in a golf swing but Sean believes that weight should pretty much remain on the front foot. Anyway, I have really enjoyed your videos (especially the drill for getting stuck). Keep up the good work!
13. Patrick Damore said on 12/18/12 - 07:43AM
Daniel (part 1 of 2): Welcome to the site… The Stack n Tilt and Foley's hybrid Stack n Tilt systems are much different than mine. I've studied most. My 'beef' with both those methods is what you've already noticed… dynamic transfer of weight which in turn create different shape forward swing arcs. The OPS forward arc is wider than the S&T and Foley's hybrid version. The S&T and Foley's Hybrid S&T both discourage a lateral weight shift. I don't. In fact, I promote it greatly. The S&T and Foley's hybrid S&T system puts much strain (or will eventually) on the lower back (that leads to shorter golf life). With the On Plane Swing, the dynamic transfer of weight during the forward swing arc allows the club head to travel the target line during impact for a greater distance (less curvature/straighter shot pattern) and also there is MUCH less strain on the lower lumber when executed properly. CONTINUED BELOW...
14. Patrick Damore said on 12/18/12 - 07:49AM
CONTINUED: A personal friend of mine, competitor, peer, and someone who I respect very much also happens to be the #3/#4 S&T instructor, Dave Wedzik, of Erie PA. Dave and I discuss this difference of weight shift. His point…. less weight shift = less moving parts = more consistent contact (which may have some validity with recreational golfers and beginning golfers). You've already read my point in the earlier paragraph. I also add to the discussion, particularly in Mr. Wedzik's case (and in your case)...that when dealing with tour caliber players, they are ALL gifted players no matter HOW they swing.
15. Patrick Damore said on 12/18/12 - 07:50AM
CONTINUED: Eventually, they learn to hit good shots with any method because they are THAT good. This hits home with Mr. Wedzik I think bc he once was a at that time ‘Hogan Tour Player’ for several years (finished 2nd at the Hogan stop in early 90's) well before he ever switched to S&T. He was a VERY good player then. Now, he is by far the best ball striker in our WNYPGA section and he is S&T all the way. Point being, Dave has utilized different swings with similar results because he is one of the 'gifted' players in my opinion. You being a tour player as well, will have success with whatever method you choose (I'm sure, given enough time and effort). It boils down to what gives you the most confidence and what makes the physical most sense. For me, the On Plane Swing makes the most physical sense and as such, gives me (and my students) the most confidence.
16. Patrick Damore said on 12/18/12 - 07:51AM
CONTINUED: Food for thought: I would suggest the 'how to cover the ball' drill as well for your game. This is a drill that will help however you choose to swing the club. You can find it here or at my youtube channel. If you have any other questions/comments, please don't hesitate to ask. Good luck with your future!
17. Daniel said on 12/18/12 - 04:12PM
Thanks Patrick. I really like the "on plane" idea and with that being said, I will be trying this method for now. Here lately I feel like the club has been getting way too steep and I believe that this is happening because my weight never transfers to my right side on my back swing. I feel a lot more comfortable with my short irons but I absolutely despise s&t with any club longer than a 6 iron. Thanks for all your help and I'm sure I will have some more questions in the future.
18. Mike said on 2/5/13 - 07:13AM
Patrick, thanks for your great insight. I'm 59, 7 HCP and have just had my second low back fusion. I'm looking for a swing that is easier on the back and one to improve my consistency. I've looked at a ton of instruction while I'm recovering and purchased a set of videos on the square to square method (the videos were terrible so I still don't know what S to S is. How does it doffer from the On Plane Swing? Thanks!
19. Patrick said on 2/5/13 - 07:40AM
Michael.. Welcome to the site. I'm glad you found my vids/site helpful for your needs. I can honestly tell you, I'm not familiar with the sq to sq method other than it promotes a 'square clubface to swing arc' just before to just beyond impact. Quite frankly, all successful swing methods do this (or they wouldn't be successful, in my opinion). Different paint, same to speak. If you need video work done, please visit my 'request online lesson' page. Thanks, and good luck!
20. Michael said on 3/15/13 - 04:21AM
Hi Patrick, Can not tell you how much better my game is with your on plane swing! Thank you. I still have some of the "traditional" hip bump, shoulder tilt, then hands flip through the ball, but with your drills it is improving. My questions are: should I think about constantly rotating during the downswing while getting left to avoid that slow down and flip hands? And also, you encourage the head moving left, which I am trying to get used to (20 years of ingraining head back); how does my view of the ball change with this head movement, is it a constant slow forward move (not a left shift, then turn, but constant slow move left). Thanks Patrick!
21. Patrick... said on 3/15/13 - 08:44AM
Mike... Appreciate the words. I'm glad my site is helping you. The forward swing arc progession is a simultaneous move of the head, shoulders, torso, and arms towards the target (almost feel that your lower body is passive). As this is happening, your torso will be unwinding naturally. Your head position moves towards the target during the forward swing. This will ensure that your center of gravity is on 'top of the ball' at impact and past the ball post's what we call 'cover'. Thx!
22. Chris Gotham said on 10/4/13 - 10:17PM
Patrick, greetings from downunder. I have enjoyed your YouTube videos because they have addressed my problem of getting stuck on the downswing. My question is whether there should be any lateral hip movement at the start of the downswing or whether, given my getting stuck problem, I should just concentrate on covering the ball with my upper body.
23. Patrick said on 10/5/13 - 02:41AM
Chris.... Technically speaking, with a video, you should see a lateral movement of the hips WITH a rotational/lateral movement of the shoulders/torso simultaneously. The problem, better swingers get into is the hips fire and leave the upper body from moving laterally. This encourages the 'reverse c' position at impact and out of sync position that most good swingers suffer from when they hit the ball improperly.
24. Patrick said on 10/5/13 - 02:45AM
Chris comment 2: In your case, if you are a chronic 'getting stuck' person, I would focus/concentrate on the feeling of the lower body being 'passive' and only reacting to the upper body movement. Again... this is a 'feel' and not a 'real'... of what will actually happen.
25. Chris said on 10/9/13 - 10:57PM
Many thanks, Patrick. I'll keep you posted on progress
26. Jim said on 10/13/13 - 05:02PM
I just tried your one plane movement the past two days..with good success. Ball flight lowered etc. My question is do the hands take the handle past the ball for the release. I like the dynamic movement since I used to be a JB guy and left it.
27. David said on 10/17/13 - 10:32AM
Hi Patrick, Thanks for your YouTube videos - I've really enjoyed them. I have been trying the "early wrist set", and it seems to really be helping my contact with the golf ball and reducing the amount of thin shots that I've had in the past. My question is do you reccomend this same early wrist set in long irons and the driver as well compared to short irons. It has worked well with short irons, but I seem to pull long irons quite a bit. What are your thoughts? Thanks!
28. Patrick Damore said on 10/17/13 - 11:14AM
To Jim: Thanks for the interest in the instruction site. Not sure what your are asking. Can you be more descriptive? Thanks
29. Patrick Damore said on 10/17/13 - 11:16AM
To Dave: Early wrist set with ALL clubs and swings. It's imperative that the 'hand set' is completed before you reach the transitional stage of your golf swing (back swing/forward swing). Thanks for the interest, If you need video work done, we can help!
30. David said on 10/17/13 - 11:25AM
Thanks Patrick!
31. Patrick Damore said on 1/25/14 - 02:06PM
Tiger..... it's time to 'suck in your ego', pick up the phone, and BEG Butch to take you back. It's time!
32. Gary Rousseau said on 5/25/14 - 04:00AM
Came across your web site and love it. I like the fact that you can see what your talking about as well as read about it. A question I have is I have been learning the early wrist set. I then rotate shoulders to top of backswing then transition to downswing. I have been hitting the ball great (sometimes I peek early and top one). What I need to know is can I use that swing as described? Seems like I stop after setting wrists and starting shoulder turn. Will this time gap get shorter? Also which video shows a continous swing? Thanks again for being there...
33. Patrick Damore said on 6/10/14 - 04:12PM
Gary... Not sure I understand your question. I will tell you this... the early wrist set and the shoulder turn happen simultaneously. The main goal of the early wrist set is to have the hands 'set' before the transition to forward swing.
34. Chuck Black said on 6/12/14 - 03:35PM
Patrick, discovered your site cruising around the web and LOVE your teaching style and philosophy. Do you ever make it to the West coast of FL (Sarasota, Bradenton, Tampa or the Orlando area) to teach? Would like to learn from you in person if you are ever in the area.
35. Gary Rousseau said on 6/23/14 - 02:04PM
Patrick, you understood it right. I have been setting the wrists then turning shoulders. I have been getting it more simultaneously but there is still a slight pause. I cant complain.. I have gone from mid 90's to upper 80's. I feel as if I can hit where I aim. Thanks for what you do!!!!
36. Smidgy said on 9/18/14 - 02:35AM
Love the site. I know you said all clubs for early wrist set. what about chipping?
37. ed rudolph said on 5/4/15 - 08:02AM
Your instruction is the best I've ever read for hitting quality golf shots. Any changes necessary for hitting greenside sand shots?
38. Gary Rousseau said on 7/23/15 - 03:49AM
Recently I came across the four magic moves of winning golf. One of the moves is pre setting the wrists. It does this by pressing the right palm into the left thumb. You show it as rotating the forearms. Which do you feel is the easiest repeatable and best for you? I have always used your way for my swing since I came across it. Is this other way just another variation? looking for whats best for the long term. Can you please explain.
39. Tom said on 12/17/15 - 06:42AM
Patrick I stumbled onto your site. Love it! I did not see this blog or I would have posted here. I sent you an email. I'm the classic spin flipper. HATE IT!!!
40. Michael said on 3/7/17 - 10:33AM
Hi Patrick, My problem remains the left hip bump, clubhead drops inside and approach from way "in to out" with draws/snap hooks. To get weight left, should I move whole body more over left hip, instead of the post and lean back I have? In other words, are you really posting on the left leg, or instead trying to feel upper body/center of gravity more on top of the left hip. I can't get rid of the hips fire, post and lean back and inside out swing path! Thanks Patrick!! You should write a book, I think this is fantastic stuff.
41. Lee said on 7/29/18 - 08:56PM
Thanks for posting about the on plane swing. I find your swing philosophy so different than 'most'. I learned the one plane swing from a certified plane truth instructor based on Hardy's one plane swing. I had varying degrees of success but struggle with inconsistency. How does your method specifically differ from his swing mechanics? for example, is it OK to have your head almost on top of or little bit past the golf ball AT impact?
42. Jake Aiker said on 11/15/18 - 10:04PM
Hey Patrick. I am 29 years old and have just recently gotten into golf. I played for the first time about one year ago with my cousin and fell in love with the game. Since then, I have been trying to get better so I've been scouring the internet for good blogs to read. Thanks so much for all the insights on your site. I really enjoy your teaching style and have been able to implement some of your tips into my own game. One thing I would like to ask is if you have any information on <a href=">how to shallow out your golf swing</a>. I have been watching videos on this and would like to hear your take on the matter. Thanks again for the great content!
43. Sean said on 11/11/20 - 04:25PM
Hi Patrick. I came across your site and like what I'm seeing. Two questions though. The first is, are you still active on here? There are no posts for the last 2 years and I don't want to make this switch without support. And my second question is, are the movements the same when trying to shape shots? Thanks and looking forward to your response

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