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Traits of the Greats - Roll Your Ankles
What do Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Moe Norman and even modern greats like Kenny Perry have in common?
Simple, repeatable, consistant footwork. I guess it comes as no surprise to any of you who know what a stickler I am for what the feet are doing in the golf swing. At any rate it is good to be reminded of this as Jack Nicklaus was reminded annually by Jack Grout during their tune up sessions for each season and in particular The Masters. Grout taught Nicklaus to "roll the ankles" from an early age and the importance of this action and feel remained with The Golden Bear always.
The intersting thing about the idea of rolling the ankles is that the feel is very much a lateral one running parallel to the target line rather than something that feels cirular like many other elements of the swing feel. The feeling and look of eversion in the right foot also comes from this action, and this feel is also something that retards the spinout lower body action that you see in many beginners and poorer players.
Rather than go on at length about this idea I thought it best to let the greats tell it themselves so below check out some great videos on this topic..
Listen particularly to Moe Norman talking here beginning around the 19 minute mark....
Here we see Billy Harmon discuss Kenny Perry and the relationship between plane and footwork....
In this video about overswinging Sam Snead tells us about his idea of what good footwork is. watch particularly from about the 3 minute mark....
Finally, check out this Golf Digest article "Jack's Rules" where we learn, among other things, that Jack Grout had the young Nicklaus prictice for hours thinking of nothing but rolling his ankles.... A lesson for a lifetime that clearly stuck and laid the foundation for perhaps the greatest career in golf.... http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-instruction/2007-10/jacksrules
Hit em straight,
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