BALANCE

"In every athletic activity, success seems to be unquestionably proportional to the player's sense of balance and force whether innate or acquired. Off-balance force is notoriously erratic. The mechanical device has no balance problem but the human machine does..." Homer Kelly, 1969

Historically, professionals teach what they do in the golf swing. This goes to the earliest instructors.
The photos below are of Earnest Jones before (1912) and after (1916) losing his leg in World War I. Jones wrote "Swing the Clubhead" in 1937. He was an Upper Core player and taught what he did in the golf swing.

Tommy Armour, lost his sight in a mustard gas explosion in World War I. Armour had a metal plate implanted in his head and left arm. During his convalescence, he regained the sight of his right eye and began playing golf again.

Armour was a well known teacher in his day. A primary focus of his teaching was a pause at the top of the swing and he advised players to "whack the hell out of the ball with your right hand". Did the disability of these great players and teachers influence their teaching? I believe it did.

I would say that most of us, when we began teaching, and with no other teaching reference other than our personal swing or instruction, taught what we did in our golf swing. I was a Lower Core player. My goal in teaching was to have players clear their hips with great upper and lower body separation in the backswing and turning through with the hips like Dustin Johnson or Jordan Spieth. Our Core Region researchers have determined that, in the US, 10 to 15 percent of men are Lower Core players. Needless to say, the majoriy of my students struggled to clear their hips.

Early Research Findings

Wright Balance® is emergent, science based instruction after 30 years of research. The early research observations of balance with insole sensors showed the following. There were 1000 sensors in each shoe, 40 light sensors on the body and bars flat across the pelvic line and shoulders.

Note the padding on the ankles and the cable running from the back of this player to the computer. The ankle padding was securing the sensors and cable connecting each insole. The insoles that were in the shoes were identical to the one in this illustration.

This illustration shows what 1000 sensors under each foot looks like on a computer screen.

The circle on the left and right feet show the "Center of Force" (COF). The connection of the two points of COF became known as the "Line of Force".

One of the most important discoveries came out of the Putting Protocol in the study. The illustration below shows one of our test subjects, Ramon Brobio. Ramon was number 1 in putting on the Asian Tour in 2003 or 4.

During the putting protocol, there was an observation of the relationship of the connection of the 2 points of COF and the path the putter tracked through the stroke. That observation has held up in rigorous, controlled research for 20 years.

For example, this illustration shows an inside-out path when the COF of the right foot and COF of the left foot is connected with a straight line...

...and this illustration shows an outside-in path when the COF of the left and right feet is connected with a straight line.

This illustration shows a path that was spot on to a target when alignment matched the target line:

The light sensors on the body and the dowel pole on the hip line validated these observations in the putting address balance and in-stroke.

The subject pool for the original study was comprised of golf professionals and elite amateurs. Most of the elite amateurs were also elite athletes. Four former MLB LA Dodgers made up part of our elite amateur group.

Full swing data showed that the backswing and downswing matched the line of force. However, unlike the observations with the putter, the line of force occassionally changed from backswing to downswing resulting in a change of path.

Application of the Line of Force

As a result of the original research and the discovery of the 8 inch Stance Width Range, the Line of Force has become the basis of all Wright Balance instruction. We can produce a straight line of force by simply identifying the 8 inch stance width range and placing a finger sleeve or tape of the matching power spot on any finger of either hand. That sleeve will move the Line of Force from toe to heel depending on (The process of identifying the 8 inch stance width range is covered in detail in both video and narrative form later in this EBook.)

Why do we use the straight line of force as the basis of all instruction? Because once a player is placed in their 8 inch stance width range for their playing core region, their hips are square without a club in the heel to toe balance configuration of the Line Force for their playing Core Region. When they grip their club, the placement of the lead hand on the club will either show left or right rotation of the hips impacting an open or closed line of force or the line of force will remain straight. That is one of the two links in the lead hand and lead arm grip "Chain".

There is an ideal lead hand grip and lead arm position when the club is gripped that is different for each of us. Determining that grip and lead arm position is simple but it requires practice before adding the trail grip and arm position.

The trail and lead arm positions were written about by Ben Hogan is his 1957 book, Five Lessons. His illustration of the arms laced together is an exact image of the player with an Under Delivery like a Lower Core Player.

I made the following video in 2012.

Our research on Core Region showed that the Lower Core arms position only applies to 10 to 15 percent of men in the United States. As you have learned, women tend to be Middle and Lower Core. The majority of women are Middle Core. In Dr. Giombetti's research on Ground Reaction Force by Core Region men were 60 percent Upper Core, 30 percent Middle Core and the remaining are Lower Core.

The Lead and the trail elbow position at address Change by Core Zone. The lead and trail elbow positions create the angle or "pitch" when the lead and trail arm are relaxed.

When you add the right hand, the strength and weakness of the grip will open, close or square the hip line. Interestingly, our recent observation is that the positions of the lead and trail elbows a as the trail hand is placed on the club also impacts rotation of the hip line. We cover the lead and trail elbow position in detail in this training. The lead and trail elbow positions change by Core Region as well.

{Note: There are two exceptions in strength and weakness of the grip and the impact on the hip line. A 10 finger grip in both hands appears to have no impact on the hip line. The other exception is Moe Norman and Bryson Dechambeau's lead hand palm grip}

The Wright Balance instruction foundation is based on setting a pelvic line that is parallel to the target line. That is an important statement. Let me say that again: **The Wright Balance instruction foundation is \ setting a pelvic line that is parallel to the target line. Then, instruction focuses on the 8 inch stance width range, grip, trail arm elbow, posture and sequencing and all of the variables within that behavior chain that impact the hip line.

Some of the better players will purposely have an open or closed hip line to work the ball. Colin Montgomery came to see me a few years ago for putting. I put a bar on his hips and asked him to set up in his full swing as I wanted to match his putting to his full swing setup (by way of Harvey Penick... "the putt is a mini drive"). When Colin setup, I observed out loud that his hips were slightly open. He said I always set up a bit open to "cut" the ball. When he said that I knew he needed to be open with his putter. Then he could drop his trail shoulder until he was able to "see the line." He was trying to be square with his putter and he was struggling.

Pain?

• Pain Assessment: If your student has soft tissue pain, ask them to use the rating scale below. If they are willing to test the Wright Balance® Express exercise followed by the Wright Balance® Optimization exercise covered later in this EBook, they will experience relief in a relatively short period of time.

Have your students mark the following body map and rate their pain at present. Following the Wright Balance® Express and Wright Balance® Optimization, have them do the rating again after a brief rest following those exercises and after finishing the final Zone exercise.

There are 3 Zones to the Core with 3 sub-regions in each Zone. The Zones are front (anterior), middle (interior) and back (posterior). Each of these Zones is made up of an Upper, Middle and Lower Region. The diagnosis of pain can be determined by Zone and then by which subregion within the Zone and then by 1 or 2 Stance widths in the subregion and then by which plane of motion. This will be covered during your training.

This video is a demonstration of how to find the exact Core Zone, Region and Stance Width of soft tissue pain by using planes of motion with finger sleeves.

You will note that this video is not public. However, feel free to use it if you are teaching pain management to your students.

Once you identify which Core Zone is contributing to the pain, do the Wright Balance® Express and the Wright Balance Optimization Exercises within that Zone. Finish by changing the Zone they will be in during the day. Doing the Wright Balance® Express in a different Zone changes the location of the physical "load" in all activities for the next 12 to 24 hours or day. At the end of any 24 hour period you should recheck the Zone where you did the last Wright Balance® Express for Symmetry, correct any imbalances and change the Zone for load variation to accommodate activity or pain.

I have never found the region of pain anywhere other than their dominant Zone or the Zone where they last did the Express. That is the Zone your student is using throughout the day. Therefore, if the pain is determined to be in Upper Core Zone, do the exercises in the Zone of the pain, the Upper Core. Have your student finish with the Wright Balance® Express in the Middle or Lower Core Zone. Why? You want to change the Zone where you found the pain to provide relief.

Again, If you find the Pain is in the Middle or Lower Core Zone, have them do the Wright Balance® Express and Wright Balance Optimization Exercises in the Zone of the Pain (Middle or Lower). When they have done those exercises, have them do the Wright Balance® Express in the Upper Core Zone. In doing so you will take the physical stress off the affected Zone and give it a rest. I would never leave them in the Lower Core Zone unless they are traveling or similarly seated for the day or performing some activity where the Lower Core balance produces the greatest power, force and efficiency. Exercising in the Lower Core Zone leaves a person with a mid foot to heel strike during walking. They will feel more back in their chair as they sit with more lumbar support, especially with a piece of tape or finger sleeve on the lower core power spot of any one finger.

Below, are some of the factors that will contribute to soft tissue pain and an increased potential for injury.

Take a photo of your student from behind or front for shoulder level. You will almost always see one shoulder is lower as shown here in Nick Faldo.

Take a photo of your student from the front with thumbs on anterior iliac crests (front Pelvic/hip bones)

Take a photo of your student from behind at address with a club or grip trainer for trail hip position. The illustrations below show the impact of an imbalanced Core at address. Many golfers have their trail hip higher than their target side hip as shown in these illustrations. LPGA / Legends Tour Player, Laurie Rinker is shown here before the Wright Balanca® Express Exercises. Notice that her trail hip is higher at address.

The illustration below is Laurie Rinker after the Wright Balance® Express Exercises. Notice her trail hip is lower.

Below is an amateur prior to the Wright Balance® Express Exercise...

...and following the Wright Balance® Express Exercise. Notice his trail hip before and after the Wright Balance Express.

Take a photo at address with club / trainer down the line and bar on hips for open or closed hip line

These photos are of LPGA Tour Player, Sandra Palmer. Note the bar on her chest and hip line. We no longer use the bar on the shoulder line as the reliability of the measurement is compromised with the slightest movement of the arms, unlike the hip bar. Sandra is shown here checking her shaft plane.

Test Bite: The core runs from the roof of the mouth to the ground. Bite is another test of core balance or imbalance and changes by Core Zone and Core Region within each of the Core Zones.

{If your student is motivated to exercise, consider the following demonstration. Before doing the Wright Balance® Express, and when your student is in their 8 inch stance width range, have them test their bite. They will report it is even, left to right and forward, back or center depending on their Core Region range. Then have them step inside or outside their range and ask them where their bite is. They will report that their bite moved left or right. That report is due to a rotation of their hip line outside their 8 inch range. If your student has no interest in exercise,

Dominant Core Region Testing

Determine the dominant Core Region using a Hip bar and 9 Stance Widths from the Wright Balance® measurement results.

Your students hips will be square in only 1 of the 9 Stance Widths, their hands will hang exactly the same and, when tested they will have greater strenghtth in that one stance width than any of the other 8 Stance Widths.

Test the “strongest” region in 9 Stance widths where you found the hips are square in only one Stance Width. Note the strength your student has when they are tested in the stance width where their hips are square. Then have your student stand in any one stance width and test again. When you test in any other stance width, note the ease at which your student is moved out of balance.

Test 5 Planes of Motion Prior to using the Finger Sleeves

a. Step Forward (Posterior Sagittal Plane) & observe hip rotation

b. Step Back ( Anterior Sagittal Plane) & observe hip rotation

c. Stand Tall in multiple Stance Widths (Posterior transverse / Axial Plane) and observe for hip rotation

d. Add knee flex in multiple Stance Widths (Anterior Transverse Plane) and observe for hip rotation

e. Press on the Upper Core Power Spot of any finger while standing on Stance Width 7, 8 or 9 and observe the squaring of the hips, if your mesurements are accurate
• Add Finger sleeve to Upper (7, 8 & 9), Lower (1, 2 & 3) and Middle (4, 5 & 6) Stance Widths one at a time using finger sleeve on matching Power Spots
• Observations of balance at ground level when adding knee flex with Finger Sleeves

• Retest Planes of Motion Post Finger sleeves on all 3 Power Spots

Measure the Carrying (Power) Angle in the Dominant Core Region

Upper Core Region: 161 to 164 (uses the Ground Rotationally and Vertically and loads target side at top)
Middle Core Region: 154 to 157.5 (Uses the Ground Rotationally, Vertically and Linearly / Horizontally and is centered over the pelvis at the top)
Lower Core Region: A minimum of 148 or less (Uses the ground Horizontally / Linearly and Rotationally and loads the trail side at the top)

Bioengineering Trail Arm Delivery

One of our latest discoveries is that we can change the playing trail Arm Delivery by using a larger or smaller grip size to produce the angle that fits the playing region.

Please see this EBook for more detailed photo illustrations / positions at the top by Core Region.

https://instructions.wrightbalance.com/stance-width-ranges-by-core-region/

Testing Grip Size by Core Region

In the early 90s, I observed during golf schools that when players switched from a standard grip size to a "Jumbo" grip that their body changed as well. Their hips would rotate and their weight would move heel to toe or toe to heel.

I had read that Harvey Penick advocated using a yardstick to learn to grip the club properly. I purchased Plexiglas strips that were of different thicknesses and began to test the impact of different sizes on myself and the tour players I worked with. This is an image of me setting up with one of those test strips. Note that the design is that of a yardstick.

This image is of Champions Tour player Bob E Smith testing one of several grip sizes. In this test I was looking at shoulder rotation at address, posture and hip rotation with different grip sizes. This is Bob in his playing (preferred) grip size.p

This is an illustration of Bob in a grip size smaller than his preferred grip size. Note the change in his posture. Again, this is the 1990s and grip size was still a puzzle.

Fast Forward to 2022 and now we can determine precise grip size using a pool cue stick and the 9 Stance Widths of the Wright Balance results

This video demonstrates how to determine the Grip size by Core region using a pool cue stick. Note that the Upper Core player uses the smallest grip size and the Lower Core player uses the largest grip size.
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The dynamic test of grip size is quite simple. Have your student swing to the top of their backswing. BE CERTAIN to emaphansize "DON'T Swing Down. Hold that position at the top" Step behind them and demonstrate what you are going to do.

Grip the club on the shaft near the hosel and the other hand on the shaft near the grip. Tell them you are going to push on their downswing plane and that you want them to resist. Then step back and have them swing to the top again. Apply force on the downswing plane as they resist. If the grip size fits, you won't be able to budge them as shown below.

If the grip size doesn't fit, you will be able to easily move them off balance.

This video summarizes this process.

8 Inch Stance Width Range

Determining the Stance Width Range and Sequencing by Core Region for Maximum GRF

This EBook covers the 8 inch Stance Width Range in detail.

https://instructions.wrightbalance.com/stance-width-range/

The following are the salient points of Stance Width Range

• 8 inch range with only dominant finger sleeve

• Place finger sleeve on a Corresponding Power Spot with bar on hips. You can use the power spot on any finger of either hand for this exercise. The hips will square for an 8 inch range and then open or close.

Upper Core Power Spot The Upper Core Power Spot will have the narrowest 8 inch Stance Width range. Note, the Upper Core Power Spot is the first pad above the palm of any finger.

• NOTE The hips will no longer square on the 3 Stance Widths of the 9 tested for Core Dominance if one or more of those Stance Widths is outside the 8 inch range.

• The Upper Core will have the narrowest beginning Stance Width when testing with an Upper Core Stance Power Spot, the Middle Core the next widest and the Lower Core the Widest.

• When you find the narrowest Stance Width where hips square with Core Region Power Spot taped, add 8 inches and test within that 8 inch range. When your student’s hips stay square in that 8 inch range you have found their playing Core Region Stance Width

• To test for other Core Region Stance Ranges, move the tape or finger sleeve to another Core Region Power Spot.

Middle Core Power Spot The Middle Core Power Spot is the knuckle crease just above the first pad on any finger. Be certain that crease is covered with a mild pressure. Use a finger sleeve or tape for testing.

Lower Core Power Spot The Lower Core Power Spot is the second pad of any finger just above the knuckle crease of the Middle Core Power Spot. Be certain that pad is covered with a mild pressure on any one finger. Use a finger sleeve or tape for testing.

Note: If you decide your student needs to move for example from a Middle Core player to a Upper Core player, and you have them do the Wright Balance Express with a Upper Core Grip Size, you are unwittingly changing their Stance Width Ranges for each sub-region. It will only be 1 or 2 inches wider or narrower but it is important for you to re-test their 8 inch Stance Width Range. I will show you this in the training. You only need to be concerned with the Stance Range of their playing "sub-region".

I would encourage you to test Core Region Sequencing in each. You will know exactly how to teach your students to start the club back in each Region once you have experienced it yourself.

Testing each Core Region range with proper SEQUENCING vs improper SEQUENCING and related GRF without a club

• Find the ranges for your different Core Region Stance Widths by placing a Finger Sleeve or piece of tape on the Corresponding Power Spot.

• With arms across your chest or a weight centered on your chest test various sequencing by Core Region

• Hold your motion at the top of the rotation back and notice where the lead knee points at the top of the swing.

• Upper Core, start your motion with your lead knee, hip or trail hip. Everyone will find what is comfortable for them.

• Middle Core, start “everything” back together

• Lower Core, start your sequence with your upper core…feel your shoulders start the sequence

What you should feel by Core Region at the top of your rotation back:

• Upper Core = Center of Mass over target side and lead knee is pointed behind the ball

• Middle Core= Center of Mass centered over Pelvis and lead knee points at the ball.

• Lower Core= Center of Mass over trail side and lead knee points in front of the ball.

This EBook shows Tour Player's from the 3 Core Regions at the top of their swing:

https://instructions.wrightbalance.com/stance-width-range/

The Wright Balance® Express for Core Symmetry in all 3 Core Zones: Why cover the 3 Power Spots when doing the Wright Balance® Express?

Test the proof of Concept of the 3 Core Regions by leaving off one of the Power Spots without tape or a finger sleeve. Then do the Wright Balance® Express in all 9 Stance Widths. Subsequent to the Wright Balance Express, test the Planes of Motion with the Finger Sleeves on. Then remove the 2 finger sleeves, place one finger sleeve on the Power Spot that was not covered during the exercise. Then test again with the Planes of Motion

Bioengineering Trail Arm Delivery

This video shows Anne Marie Palli, a middle core player, change her trail arm delivery by doing the Wright Balance Express exercise substituting a Middle Core Grip Size for hLower Core Grip Size.

The Wright Balance® Optimization Exercise

The Wright Balance® Optimization Exercise is for Mobility and Pain Management.

The Wright Balance Express® is a stability exercise, has the greatest resistance to disruption and should always be done first. The longer you “hold” each tensegrity move (isometric), the longer the impact of the Wright Balance Express exercise will hold.

The Wright Balance® Optimization Exercise is for Mobility and Pain Management.

This video is a demonstration of the Wright Balance Optimization exercise and testing proof of concept.

Following The Wright Balance® Optimization Exercise, it is simple to demonstrate "proof of concept" through planes of motion. To do this test, disrupt your Core by doing the Wright Balance® Express on any one Stance Width before doing the Wright Balance® Optimization. Otherwise, you may not experience the full impact and isolation of the Wright Balance® Express.

The following video was made prior to an understanding of the impact of "covering" the 3 Power Spots during exercise.

  1. Place tape or finger sleeves on all 3 Power Spots on any finger of either hand. Note: Finger Sleeves or tape can be on three different fingers.

  1. Forward bend with knee flex, the back of your hands on the sides of your legs & palms facing out, shoulders rolled toward sternum in isometric hold. Hold isometric tension for count of 5 in each of 9 Stance Widths.

Test Step forward and back (sagittal plane) and note that your hips are square only when you Step Back. All other planes of motion are disrupted. That is the Anterior (front) sagittal plane.

  1. Backward bend with knee flex & palms toward ceiling, shoulder blades pinched together in isometric hold and hold isometric tension for count of 5 in each of 9 Stance Widths

Test Step forward and back (sagittal plane). Note that your hips are square when you Step Back & Forward. Coronal / Frontal and Transverse planes of motion are still disrupted. That is (stepping forward) the Posterior (back) sagittal plane.

  1. Stand Tall and relax. Note that your hips are rotated left or right.

  1. Stand tall, Roll your shoulders toward your sternum with palms out and hold for a count of 5 in each of the 9 Stance widths.

Test : Stand Tall, check your hips for rotation (Transverse Plane). Note there is rotation in all stance widths.

Next add knee flex and note there is no rotation. The exercise impacted the Anterior (Front) Rotational (Transverse / Axial) Plane.

The front of the Core on the rotational plane is measured by adding knee flex.

  1. Stand tall, palms facing forward, pinch your shoulder blades together. Hold the shoulder blade pinch (Tensegrity / isometric move) for a count of 5 in each of the 9 Stance widths.

Test : Stand Tall, check hips for rotation (Transverse / Axial Plane). Note there is no rotation in all stance widths. The exercise impacted the Posterior (Back) Transverse / Axial Plane.

Note: An important test to understand the 3 Zones of the Core is to do the above Wright Balance® Optimization Exercises with tape or finger Sleeves on only 2 of the 3 Power Spots on any finger. Test the planes of motion with the tape or finger sleeves on. Then move a finger sleeve to the Power Spot that was not “covered” during the exercise. Note the disruption of the Core when that finger sleeve is moved to that spot. Return the tape or finger sleeve to one of the original Power Spots you had covered during the exercise and remove the one from the Power Spot that was not covered and note that you are square in all planes of motion. The implications of this observation are far reaching. I won't elaborate here but I will in our discussion during the training.

Core Zones

The latest emergence of Wright Balance® is an understanding of the Wright Balance® Core Zones. The graphics describing the Wright Balance® Core Zones are in preparation. I will describe these "Zones" during our training. Basically, there are 3 Core Zones: Front or Anterior; Middle or Interior; and Back or Posterior. Each of these Zones has 3 sub-regions, Upper, Middle and Lower. These "Zones" are accessed with the Upper, Middle and Lower Core Grip Sizes or Wright Balance® Zone Grip Sizes. Each Zone has 3 different 8 inch Stance Width Ranges, different grips, 3 different Carrying Angles, 3 different heel to toe points of balance and 3 different positions of the trail arm delivery in each of the sub-regions. Thus, there are a total of 9 different points of balance, carrying or power angles, 8 inch Stance Width ranges, etc. I will discuss this in our training. However, bulk of the instruction on the Zones of the Core will be done in our Wright Balance® Fitness Seminars in the future.

The Wright Balance® Express Exercise

The Wright Balance Express® is a stability exercise, has the greatest resistance to disruption and should always be done first. The longer you “hold” each tensegrity move (isometric), the longer the impact of the Wright Balance Express exercise will hold. Remember, the Wright Balance® Optimization Exercise is for Mobility and Pain Management.

The Wright Balance® Express is a closed kinetic chain exercise as long as you are holding a handle and your hands are touching as you do the isometric exercise. The handle size is an important issue.

This video shows how to do the Wright Balance® Express Exercise and proof of concept.

To test the impact of the Wright Balance® Express exercise, disrupt your Core by holding a handle and doing one Wright Balance® Express exercise in any Stance Width.

Next, look in a mirror and note one shoulder is lower and one hip is higher, usually on the same side. That is an observation of your Coronal / Frontal Plane or left to right “tilt”.

If you wish to “Test” the impact of the exercise using the planes of motion. Retest all planes of motion before exercise and note your core disruption in all test measurements.

Next do only the forward Wright Balance® Express exercise while holding the handle in all 9 Stance Widths. There are 2 isometric moves when doing the Wright Balance® Express exercise. Hold a handle like a baseball bat with your hands touching.

Retest your planes of motion and note that you are square in all Front (Anterior) Planes of Motion (Take a step Back and your hips will remain square; Stand tall and note your pelvic rotation then add knee flex and note that hips are square.)

Next do the Wright Balance® Express as you grip the handle with hands touching and pinching your shoulder blades together in all 9 Stance Widths. Retest your planes of motion and note that you are square in all Anterior and Posterior Planes of Motion (Step Back then step forward and hips will remain square; Stand tall and note there is no pelvic rotation then add knee flex and note that hips are square.) Lastly, look in a mirror and note that your hips and shoulders are level.

Correction of Knee Pronation / Supination

Test: Add knee flex and hold that flex, then, without rotating your shoulders, move your head over your right foot and note the orientation of your right knee to your right foot. Do the same thing as you look at your left knee relative to your left foot. Note that you have either pronation (most common) or supination of one knee. The following exercise will correct the knee pronation or supination if it is done in all 9 Stance Widths.

The Exercise: Hold the handle parallel to the ground with both hands touching and repeat the positions of the Wright Balance® ® Express. Note if you pull the handle toward your chest on the second part of the exercise, it will be easier to pinch your shoulders together. This video demonstrates how to do the exercise to correct the knee pronation.

TEST: Add knee flex and note that your knees are centered over both feet

We have observed that there is an absence of knee pronation after doing the Wright Balance Express exercise over successive days.

Why is it important to correct knee pronation? When there is knee pronation, there is a weakness and imbalance in the lower core. Stability on the pronation side will be weak at best. Correcting knee pronation in girls and women is very important as this pronation may be a factor in knee injuries. Knee injuries in women are disproportionately higher in women than men. Knee pronation is easily corrected with this exercise.

Keep in mind that rotation of the pelvis, pronation or supination of the knee, etc reflects a muscle strength / imbalance problem. The Wright Balance® 360 exercise are designed to balance muscle strength through the body. As we move into our Wright Balance® fitness program you will receive more content related to this.****

Did you do the exercise all 9 Stance Widths?'

If you don't do all 9 of the Stance Widths, your body will be more disrutpted (your hips will be rotated standing, adding knee flex and rotated when stepping forward and back) than when you started the exercise. This is a video to show you how to check to see if you have done all of the 9 Stance Widths

Measurement of Intensity of Exercise for Muscle Balancing in all 3 Zones of the Core

The Carrying Angle
• Changes by Core Region and then by each Region in each of the Core Zones
• Must fit the players playing core region to set Trail Arm Delivery for maximum GRF
• Can be “bioengineered” by the size of the handle used during the Wright Balance® Express Exercise
Trail Arm Delivery
• How to Bioengineer Trail Arm Delivery
• Limitations of Bioengineering Carrying Angle due to injury or other limitations in range of motion

Grip

10 Finger Grip: Should we use a 10 finger Grip with beginners? Why? Using a 10 finger grip, the hips are always square when the power spot is taped and the player is in their 8 inch Stance Width Range.

Please remember, the bottom line with setup is getting the hips parallel to the target line as shown in the above illustration. Everything we have and will cover impacts this line in some way.

What we know for certain:

With an interlock or overlapping grip, the hip line changes based upon multiple factors: The heel pad on top of the grip, the power spot matches the 8 inch Stance Width Range, the strength / weakness of the left and right hands, the trail arm elbow placement at address.

Heel Pad on Top

How important is getting the lead hand heel pad on top?
This is an illustration of Laurie Rinker's grip with her lead hand heel pad on top.

The hips will not be square unless the lead hand heel pad is on top of the grip with 2 exceptions:

1. When the club is gripped in the Palm:

Bryson Dechambeau's grip size is large so he can grip the club in the Palm.

This is a video of Bryson in 2016 discussing how and why he went to the oversized grip.

Here is a closeup of Bryson's lead hand on the grip. Notice how much the butt of the club is in his palm.

These images are of Bryson face-on:

Set up with the butt of the club in your lead palm like Bryson. It appears that Bryson has added an overlapping or interlocking grip. Also notice how relaxed his hands appear to be. Add knee flex. stay in your posture, open your hands and drop the club. Let your arms and hands hang relaxed under your shoulders and point your thumbs toward each other as shown here.

If your lead hand is closer to your body than your trail hand, your hips are rotated open. This is the balance configuration you would see in a right-handed player with their lead hand closer to their body.

This configuration would produce an outside - in path. M
Most teachers recognize this path and attempt to correct it by telling their student to "feel the club going more inside" from their address position. That would be the comment from a "position teacher". That bandaid would possibly work on the lesson tee but seldom will it hold up on the golf course.

If your thumbs line up, you can create an open hip line by adding knee flex in your trail knee. Observe that your lead hand moves toward your lead thigh as you add knee flex. If you let your arms swing relaxed from this position, you will note that your arm swing is outside-in.

If your trail hand is closer to your body than your lead hand, your hips are rotated closed. This is the balance configuration you would see in a right-handed player with their trail hand closer to their body.

If you let your arms swing relaxed from this position, you will note that your arm swing is outside-in. Once again, traditional instruction would be to recognize the path of the club and tell the student to feel the club "more outside" from address.

Squaring the hips with the 8 inch stance width range set the stage for each link in the set up chain beginning with lead hand grip, then lead forearm position with shaft lean followed by trail forearm position with the addition of the trail hand to the grip. The next link is to address the ball in posture. When the links in the set up chain are practiced and tested independently and followed sequentially set up to the ball becomes quite simple. No longer is there a need to coach positions in the backswing or downswing.

When your thumbs line up exactly the same, let your arms and hands hang relaxed and let them swing. Note that they swing straight back and straight through.

This is the balance configuration you have at ground level when your path is straight back and through:

The 10 Finger Grip

Set up with a 10 finger grip. Drop the club and point your fingers. Do your thumbs line up precisely? I have never seen a time when the thumbs don't line up exactly the same.

Moe Norman was a golf savant. He won 55 tournaments on the Canadian PGA Tour. Moe was well known in the 80s and 90s for his remarkable ball striking. I attended the Canadian Open in the late 80s and early 90s at Glen Abbey GC. PGA Tour players gathered on the range to watch Moe hit balls. His performance on the range was remarkable as the gallery of tour players gathered to watch. You could throw a blanket over the grouping of balls he hit.

Moe Norman gripped the club in the palm of his lead hand and he added the fingers of his right hand. He didn't have an overlap or interlocking grip. He had a palm lead hand and 5 finger grip trail hand. These photos show Moe Norman with a closeup of his grip.

The lesson here is not to assume a Moe Norman or Bryson Dechambeau grip or even a 10 finger grip. The palm grip used by Moe Norman will produce a loss of power due to the inability to set a cock of the lead wrist at the top of the swing. Bryson has learned to produce power using his body to create a set of the hands in his transition with a sit down motion.

There is a baseball injury caused when hitters place the little finger of their lead hand below the knob of the bat. This creates pressure and eventual breakage of a small bone in the hand, the Hamate bone. The palm grip used by Bryson Dechambeau creates the same pressure and injury. As I write this (April 20, 2022) Bryson had surgery to repair that injury within the past week.

Kevin Stadler was one of my students for 10 plus years. He always gripped his club with the butt on the heel pad as shown here. This is Kevin's grip in his lead hand.

Kevin also broke his Hamate bone in his lead hand, waited to have surgery and struggled to return to the PGA Tour for several years. He plays a limited schedule to this day. I believe Kevin's clubs were too short for him. Consequently, the butt of club was moved into his palm. Note that his heel pad is still on top. However, as you will see, placement of the club in that position of the palm causes a rotation of the hips and requires a compensation in the right hand.

Gripping the club in the palm is not advisable for any player.

The lesson is to understand the importance of a square hip line and how some players naturally create that square hip line.

A major part of this certification is to show you how to set your lead hand on the club so that you have that square hip line. Then we will show you how the trail hand and arm must be set when the trail hand is added to the club. Once the hip line is square as shown here, it doesn't matter how you set your posture as long as you are in your 8 inch Stance Width range and your power spots are set.

A left or right hand grip that is too weak or too strong; a trail elbow that is not set as the right hand is added;
or being out of the 8 inch Stance Width Range will create a loss of power and an errant shot.

How important are the Power Spots?

The Power Spots must be set in the lead and trail hand in order to set power at the top of the swing via the power or carrying angle. That angle shows up in numerous places at address and through the swing.

This video shows the frequency of the power or carrying angle through the swing.

As you have learned, the Power Spots vary by Core Region.

This video was shot prior to the discovery of the 8 inch stance width range. The 9 Core Region Stance Widths were tested in this video by changing the grip Power Spots.

How to Check Your Grip

This video appeared in 2015 on Golf Life TV broadcast. It is still a good way to test the placement of your hands on the club and your Stance Width Range. Test the Stance Width Range by holding the club at your side across your heel pad and matching Power Spot. if the Grip is in your heel pad and a matching Power Spot for that range, the club shaft will be parallel to the ground.

Note: When you have both your left and right hands on the club in neutral, your hip line will be reflected at ground level as shown in the following:

When the grip strength or trail elbow is not in neutral you will see one of the following balance configurations:

For example, this illustration shows an inside-out path when the COF of the right and left feet is connected with a straight line...

The above balance configuration demonstrates a hip line that is closed at address. The player will likely hit thin shots and feel a flip at impact with their hands. They will show difficulty getting to the target side with their body, complain of lower back pain and their miss is a push or a hook.

...and this illustration shows an outside-in path when the COF of the left and right feet is connected with a straight line.

The above balance configuration demonstrates a hip line that is open at address. The player will likely hit fat shots and have difficulty rotating their shoulders in the backswing. They will tend to lift the club in the backswing creating an illusion of a full swing, complain of lower back pain and their miss is steep and a pull or push.

**Please note: ** The balance configurations in the illustrations show the orientation of the hips at address. The shoulders hips will rotate 90 degrees to those lines. Thus, the player whose hips are rotated toward the target will be restricted in rotation in the backswing and tend to lift. The player whose hips are rotated away from the target will tend to over swing and stop their hip rotation in the downswing will stop when they reach their address position (closed) and the arms and hands continue creating the "flip" at impact.

Our goal is to set an address position that creates a hip line that is parallel to the target line and a foundation that sets the player up to use the ground with maximum power.

When I discovered the 8 inch Stance Width range, that created a square hip line as a research foundation and eliminated the hip line variable without a club. That square hip line then created the opportunity to look at sequencing by Core Region, demonstrate the impact of the lead hand grip and lead arm position on the chest wall. Once the hip line remains square when testing the lead hand grip, lead arm and shaft lean, then the trail hand grip and trail arm position can be added and tested.

The Grip: Adding a Club or Trainer Grip

When you are teaching, one of the first things you should check is where the club crosses the middle finger of the left and right hands.

Is the grip in the palm in the lead hand? Is the heel pad on top?...

... or is the lead hand grip only in the fingers?

Why is the crossing of the middle finger so important? Again, that middle finger crossing sets the angle of power (the Carrying or Power Angle) and that angle continues to show up throughout the swing.

Note: If Grip Size Fits, no exercise is necessary within Core Region Stance Width Range UNLESS the trail hip is high. if the trail hip is high at address, a restriction of rotation and angle of attack will be impacted by this setup position and your student is set up for a repetitive use injury. That is why I would advocate taking a photo of your student from behind and show them pre and post hip position with exercise.

This is an image of Tiger Woods from behind at the 2010 PGA Championship. Note that his right hip is higher.

This is also Tiger Woods from behind 2 years later.

If Grip Size does not fit: The Wright Balance® Express Exercise with 3 finger sleeves or tape on the 3 Power Spots of any 3 fingers with the proper grip size is a must for heel to toe balance that allows the use of the ground at least in the 3 Stance Widths of the dominant Core Region.

Following the Wright Balance® Express exercise in the 3 Stance Widths of their playing Core Region, the player must play within their 8 inch Stance width Range.

Your average student has no interest in exercise. Be certain to check and photograph the height of their trail hip and discuss implication of higher trail hip and “impaired” rotation / injury with repetitive use. Sometimes that will motivate a person to do the exercise.

Note: If the Player does the Wright Balance® Express in all 9 Stance Widths, with finger sleeve on each of the Power Spots (3 total) while using the Correct Grip Size for their playing Core Region, their shaft plane can be set neutral in all Stance Widths and the trail hip will be lower at address in the 8 inch Stance Width Range of their playing Core Region.

If the improper Grip Size is used in the Express, the player will not use the ground properly in their Core Region Stance Width Range due to changes in their trail arm delivery and heel to toe balance.

You can use a digital protractor to set exact Strength and weakness of left and right hand grip and demonstrate the ease of rotation when the strength and weakness is exact as shown in this illustration.

Setting the Shaft Plane Neutral: What is needed to create a Neutral Shaft Plane?

What is a neutral shaft plane? When the arms and hands hang under the shoulders, the shaft plane is neutral.
The simple explanation to that question is a square hip line. When the hip line is square, the shaft plane will be neutral.

The first condition is that your student must be in their 8 inch Stance Width Range. In their Stance Width Range and tape or a finger sleeve on their playing core region power spot, standing tall their hips will be square as shown here.

When a player grips the club and their grip is "off", their hips open or close. When the hips open, a low shaft plane is the result.

When the grip is set properly with the lead hand, trail arm elbow and trail hand grip, their hips will be square and the shaft plane is neutral.

Heel Pad
The heel pad must be on top to set the shaft plane neutral for maximum leverage and power

• Stance Width Range and Power Spot.
If the grip size fits, the player must be in the Stance Width Range that matches their grip Power Spot.

• Strength and Weakness of Lead and Trail hand Grip
When the strength and weakness of the grip is “Neutral” for the player, the heel pad is on top, the shaft plane will be neutral and the hips will be parallel to the target line

The Band-Aid: Correction of Grip too strong or too weak: The Standing Wright Balance Optimization Move (BOM)is a band-aid correction for your weekend player who doesn't want to work on their grip at home. Most of your students will practice the grip at home using the "thumbs test" as it is simple and corrects many problems.

The player must be standing tall with their Playing stance width set and their heel pad must be on top. While standing tall, a brief Tensegrity (isometric) move by pinching the shoulders toward the sternum and relaxing will square the hips and the clubface will rotate open or closed as the move is made. A closed kinetic chain was created with this move. Please note, the clubface just closed or opened and needs to be corrected before going to the address position.

If the player does not raise their feet, they will retain the closed kinetic chain and when the club is grounded, the shaft plane will be neutral.

Again, please know that I see the Wright Balance Optimization Move as a "band-aid", especially in light of what we know about squaring the hip line with the latest discovery of the trail elbow and the hip line relationship.

Setting Posture and Connection at Address

Set upper arms to the chest wall and let club hang supported by heel pad. The angle of the shaft and lead arm will be the same as the Carrying Angle

Testing Keeping the Club in Front at Top of Swing

Set and Release of the Club by Core Region

Ground Reaction Force by Core Region

Visualization: Integrating Mental Balance

My entrance to golf in the mid 1980s was mental. My first golf book, Mind Under Par, was published in 1992 and revised and published again in 1996.

Players are told to "visualize" their shot without any further instruction on "how" to visualize. First, it is important to understand the neurophysiology of visualization. It is no just something you can do as there are several disruptors that block our ability to visualize. I will describe those disruptors later in this narrative.

Let's look at brain scans to show how visualization works in the brain. These scans were from Neuroscientist, Dr. Peter Fox in 1992, at the Brain Imaging Center, University of Texas San Antonio using Positron Emission Tomography or PET scan. A PET scan is done using the intravenous injection of radioactive glucose, the food of the brain. The radioactive nature of the glucose "lights up" regions of the brain that are activated with changes in blood flow and related metabolic processes.

The first image shows tongue movement.

Notice the activity on both the left and right side of the brain.

This image shows brain activity with right hand movement.

The S.M.A. region is called Supplementary Motor Area. The SMA activity precedes all behavior. It prepares the brain to "act" or behave. The Sensorimotor area is the performance of the behavior.

This image is what visualization of right hand movement looks like.

Notice the absence of the Sensorimotor activity (behavior) in this area. Notice the similarity of the SMA to that of the actual right hand movement. Research in this 1992 study showed that when we visualize we use up to 80 percent of SMA region as when we perform the behavior we are visualizing. The bottom line is that visualization prepares us to perform and it is imperative in all novel behavior. Every golf shot is novel.

When I first started in the golf industry, I would have tour players hit 10 shots and rate the shot on a 1 to 10 scale. Then I would have them hit another 10 shots with a precise image of their target from behind the ball through the swing. I asked them, after each shot, to rate the quality of the image of the target and a rating of the shot on a 1 to 10 scale.

The above illustration is PGA Tour player Pat Burke's results with visualizatio of target. PGA Tour player Dennis Paulson held an image of ball flight through his swing. He also focused on a feeling of his swing behind the ball.

I learned several things about visualization from these players. I worked with 3 players (Ramon Brobio, Kevin Stadler and Dan Ahmad Bateman) who finished number 1 in putting on their respective tours in the late 90s and early 2000s. Two of 3 of these players told me that on the green, they stand behind the ball and read a putt backwards out of the hole, something I had never considered. Now that is how I teach green reading.

The same process, visualization backwards, is important standing on a tee box and planning how you are going to play the hole. For example, before pulling a club on a par 4, see yourself tap in on the green. Then visualize the approach shot you would need hit from the fairway to tap in. Then visualize from that fairway shot back to the tee box. You just picked your target line, target and tee ball distance and you have seen the ball flight that will create your tee ball and approach shots. Now you are ready to choose a club for your tee shot and you have "managed" the hole visually.

Your average player pulls driver on a par 4 and hopes to hit the fairway. Then they go look for their ball and set up, ideally, to hit the green. Before you get in your car, driving someplace novel, you first picture your destination, your target, then you work backwards to the roads and freeways, etc that will take you to that destination. Our day is filled with backwards visualization. We stand in our shower thinking (visualizing) about the errands we need to run during the day. We organize those target images or destinations in order for our most efficient outing. When we don't, our performance is less efficient and more time consuming. You would never leave home without a visual plan. Start playing golf the way you visualize your errands (backwards) and you will manage your game at a higher level.

Visualization Disruptors

There are 3 basic emotions that will impede your ability to visualize: 1. Anxiety / Fear 2. Anger / Frustration 3. Excitement / celebration. Remember that these emotions reside emotionally in the future and past, not the present. When you hear a player in any sport talk about staying in the moment, they have insight into the fact that their best performances occur when they are totally present focused.

Anytime you place value on a performance, anxiety rises. Something as simple as studying for an exam for which you "over prepare" that is of value can take you down. For example, you study late into the night, you sit down to take the exam and read the first question. You know the answer, you studied it, but your ability to retrieve that information is compromised by the physical arousal the exam created. That inability to retrieve the information occurs for the first 3 or 4 questions. Finally, on the 5th question on the exam you recall the answer and your " "mental block" evaporates. You finish the last question on the exam and return to the first 3 or 4 questions and you have absolutely no problem recalling the answers. Anxiety (arousal) levels were so high that your ability to retrieve the answers, which we do visually, escaped us.

The same inability to recall information is impacted by anger and excitement. Both of these emotional states and anxiety disrupt our ability to focus on any one thing.

The upside to visualization is the impact it has on swing tempo. Experienced golfers will holding a picture of their landing area with a pitch shot. They soon realize that the clearer their picture the better their performance. What they may not realize is that their swing tempo quiets as they get more and more focused on their target.

Alignment

I don't care how good your swing is, if you are aligned 30 yards right of your target, you will change your swing path to get the shot back to the target. I have never had a lesson with a tour player who didn't have alignment issues.

Which hand

Which hand you hold the club in behind the ball determines what you see and the lines you are ideally drawing to your target. This video on the putting green will guide you through how to determine for you and your student can determine which hand to hold the club in for best

IDEAL ROUTINE Practice and Application

Teaching:

  1. Interview... health physical HX... sports ... pain after play... neck shoulder

  2. goals

  3. What do you know about Wright Balance

  4. Strengths and weakness in game

  5. Photos from behind for hip higher and shouder and hip height with students phone
    PURPOSE Core balance and core symmetry... create a square hip line to maximize power, force, balance efficiency shoulder rotation ... with minimum stress on the body and maximum consistency USE OF THE GROUND

  6. Measurement and plotting EBOOK here

  7. Testing Dominant Core Region

  8. 8 inch Stance Width Range

  9. Lead hand Grip

  10. Trail elbow and

CORE LOADING