Slow and heavy

When I’m playing well my swing feels slow and heavy. When things aren’t going to plan it’s more like fast and light.

Heavy stuff is easy to “feel” and when the club head feels heavy I have this sensation I can move the thing with power. The slow part gives me the sensation I have more “time” to hit the ball. This feeling is almost like cheating. And if you listen to successful athletes they’ll tell you they, “have more time”.

Fast and light offers no feedback. It’s not possible to “feel” what’s going on and the swing appears to be over before you’ve got feedback. I feel rushed and awkward and generally am looking for the finish line. Light and fast happens when we disrupt the process and try too hard. We need to give up control to gain it. Another wonderful contradiction in this crazy game.

Many don’t feel their swing. They’re asleep to what’s going on. If you can awaken and have awareness from start to finish you’ll discover why slow and heavy is the way to go. It just feels better.

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Andrew - April 20, 2013

I can get the slow and heavy feeling on wedge shots and 3/4 shots but only intermittently on full iron shots. I seem to lose the feel beyond 3/4 I think there is a feeling of beyond 3/4 I need to “hit” the ball and I lose the feel definitely need to be aware of introducing tension and that hit feeling on full shots.

    Cameron - April 21, 2013

    Andrew: You’ll find that there is something about those 3/4 shots. Most likely they are suited to you and you have better awareness with them. Your full swings may be over swings – so you lose focus on them. I actually tested this during scientific analysis and found that the comfortable 3/4 swing were longer than most people thought – probably because they made a nice and relaxed swing. There was little tension or worry so the swing went where it was meant.

Grayden Provis - April 20, 2013

Andrew: just play “3/4” all day and use more club 🙂

holdini - April 21, 2013

This is so true. I sometimes get the feeling of slow and heavy with my chipping also. It feels that I could land the ball anywhere at all without any fuss. It is like cheating, but it only happens when I can get less concerned with results and more automatic.

I would like to ask Cameron if you still count and feel the swing at the same time or is it ok to just feel slow and heavy without counting?

    Cameron - April 21, 2013

    Holdini: Great question. I’ll come back to this as it requires a significant answer…

Grayden Provis - April 22, 2013

Cam: I’ll chuck in another thought here that you might want to comment on. People shouldn’t read your post and go out and TRY to swing slow and heavy. That would be reverting to manual. We need to stay automatic ALL the time. “Slow and heavy” just APPEARS when you’re swinging well WITHOUT FEAR ABOUT OUTCOME. In that sense I would regard it more as a performance indicator than a goal. What do you think?

    Cameron - April 22, 2013

    GP: Yes for sure. You need to let your swing find you. This is the only way to experience the magic of slow and heavy. You can’t go out there and say, “today I’m going to be slow and heavy”, it doesn’t work that way. It more like you say, swing without fear of outcome and the rest takes care of itself.

holdini - April 22, 2013

“Slow and heavy” seems to make an appearance more often when i’m not trying to smash the ball into the next county. When you flow, you can flow powerfully anyway.

    Cameron - April 23, 2013

    Holdini: Yes. And this is because you’re focused and aware of what you’re doing. There’s no ego involved – you’re swinging in a way that really suits you. Our natural learning machine is going to deliver something that suits.

holdini - April 23, 2013

My concern is that when I am in this state of mind I tend to forget to count. I just love the feeling and don’t want to do anything to upset it. Is it OK to just be aware of my swing or should I be counting as I risk becoming manual as Graden says? When I am einsteining I imagine the type of swing I want (slow and heavy). Just like my target, it is my intent. Will this swing appear if I am not ‘aware’ and fully auto (walk to the ball and counting)? Hop this makes sense! Its hard to put this stuff into words sometimes.

    Cameron - April 23, 2013

    Holdini: You make perfect sense and your questions are excellent. I’m working on a blog post as a reply. Keep your eyes peeled for more…

John Stead - April 23, 2013

@GP and Cam
A rather great piece of info from Grayden.
…swinging well without fear of the outcome.
To me that is automatic golf in a nutshell.
Reason being we all like to play and score wel
Yet a lot of golfers are overcome with technique
And in correct mindset.
Swing well without fear of the outcome.
Ta Steady

Troy Vayanos - April 25, 2013

Yes I would tend to agree with that. I know when I’m playing well I also am not thinking about the golf swing at all, it just comes naturally.

I also believe a slow and heavy swing gives a better feel of the clubface and easier to keep on plane.

adam - April 27, 2013

My swing is always slow and heavy. I never swing hard. Does slow and heavy also equal a very high ball flight or does it depend on the person?

Eado - June 18, 2013

Really in trouble right now and this really makes interesting reading, last year was shooting mid-80’s low 90’s but if I can stay in the 80’s with the occassional low 90’s I am a very happy golfer.

This year tried to increase my swing and distance with lessons, being 44 years old 6ft 3″ and 240lb and very athletic (ex military) everyone says I should be hitting my 7 iron around 165yds. I actually this season been hitting my 8 iron around 175-180yds on occassion but my swing speed is over in a flash. Recently I have been posting triple digit rounds with a worst lifetime yesterday of 116 (64/52), and hating golf right now.

The only part of my game I currently enjoy is 100yds in where I get my SW and pitch/chip on Slow and Heavy then putt which is all solid still, though I seem to be chipping on for double or triple bogey. Back to the range today to try 3/4 slow and heavy with long & mid irons enough is enough.

    Cameron - June 19, 2013

    Eado: it’s not good when strong and fit people are shooting over 100. It shows me that there is definitely something wrong with mainstream instruction – it shouldn’t happen. I can almost guarantee you that Auotmatic Golf will set you free and you’ll start scoring back in the 80’s. I say “almost” because not everyone is brave enough to follow the advice. Let me know how you get on…

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