The Chicken Swing
Wrong Wing, Wrong Swing
The incorrectly executed chicken wing finds the shoulders spinning to start the downswing, but the hips and lower body lagging behind. This forces the club out toward the target line, resulting in a weak sideswipe at impact. For most high-handicappers, the chicken wing is the bane of their games, but if used correctly and “on-call,” it can stop the ball from going left—the mistake most good players fear.
The reasons why average players have trouble with the chicken swing is: 1) they don’t do it correctly, and 2) they don’t do it on purpose. The chart below shows the differences.
| Chicken Swing|
|Backswing||Too long||Three-quarters, under control|
|Downswing Initiation||Shoulder spin||Weight transfer to front hip|
|Weight||Hangs on right side||Lateral hip shift moves weight to left side|
|Arms||Outrace the body||Drop downward in sync with body|
|Right Wrist||Loses its angle||Retains its angle through impact|
|Left Wrist||Collapses (flips) toward the target||Remains in-line with forearm (no flipping)|
|Elbows||Both chicken-wing||Left chicken-wings, right stays tucked to hip|
|Face Position||Open or closed, producing erratic results||Slightly open, producing consistent results|
PGA professional Dr. T.J. Tomasi is regarded as one of the top 100 teachers in America. He instructs at Pistol Creek Golf Club located outside Hartford, Conn.
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