How Hand Dominance Works in Golf? Why the Body Reacts

Arguably the transition and downswing in golf are what is separating the good from the bad ball strikers around the globe. It’s your window to affect something in your swing before the timeframe for active thought is gone. After the transition, the swing happens so fast and is so reactionary that you can’t mentally affect it (you can affect it via drilling muscle memory but not actively thinking about this part of the swing). I believe this part is where the dominance bias comes into play the most.

Ben Hogan talked about wishing to have three right hands. Tiger Woods feels everything in his hands, everything from the short game to the swing. During his amazing 2-iron on Pebble Beach 17th, Jack Nicklaus described how he felt his release was a little early that day.

It’s pretty clear that for a Hands Dominant player, hands have a very central role in their movement. Below I have three different examples of how the hands make the body react.

The No Turn Cast Drill - Pure Reaction

Monte Scheinblum, a very pragmatic teacher in the US, developed a drill for his students that was called the No Turn Cast drill. The intention is to show that the body reacts rather than initiates. A clear paradigm shift from body first and hands second. 

Watch Monte Scheinblum walk through the No Turn Cast drill

This drill sent shockwaves through the technique nerds forums and led us to believe that there are things at play that are very hard to describe. 

Long story short. Try to throw the club underneath the ball = flip at the ball, basically without a backswing. That’s the intent - the opposite of shaft lean and compression. The result? For 90% of players, the polar opposite - the body starts moving way better than ever intended and the net result is shaft lean and compression.

Since the results from the drill were so great, Monte Scheinblum has developed this into a complete teaching method. I will go deeper with the No Turn Cast drill in the technique framework part under the Old School Slap Hinge Framework.

The Ax / Punch the Ground Drill - Dominant Hand Transition

I believe the drill was constructed by Pete Cowen, one of the absolute top instructors of the last decades. Steven Dean, who has worked very closely with Pete, provides a very useful visual walkthrough of the Ax / Punch the Ground Drill

There are so many things that go into this tip but I'll try to make it pragmatic. To hit great golf shots you need to have your hands in a delivery position (p6) that is aligned with what shot you are trying to pull off. Most poor ball strikers have their hands too high from a lateral perspective which makes it impossible to achieve tour-like impact. 

Possibly even more importantly you need to build pressure in the ground to be able to “have something to hit the ball from”. Otherwise, you won’t have any power in your actual strike. 

The drill creates a power-building mechanism called lag angle that is utilized to store force in the club shaft and keep it from kicking too early = it delays the power transfer until after impact which gives you both speed and control of the club face.

It also involves getting your right hand into a cupped/extended position that will secure the compression in your ball striking and the control of the club.

Lastly, this drill delays the torso rotation so you sync up better for your post-impact rotation and consequently create even more club face stability. 

That was a mouthful, I know, but this just shows how much a transition move with your dominant hand can achieve in the golf swing. 

The Dominant Hand Angle

Speaking of the dominant hand. Tony Luczak, a strong advocate for an arms-driven golf swing, takes it one step further and says everything about the swing is driven by the right arm and right hand (for a right-handed golfer). Check out Tony Luczak’s YouTube channel  

Tony isn’t wearing a glove on his left hand to prove a point that dominant hand is the driver of everything (not the left hand/arm pull).

By the way, Fred Couples whom I classify in the Old School Slap Hinge Framework (a hands-driven golf swing) doesn’t wear a left-hand glove either.

One might think that it’s even not only Hands, it’s a dominant hands-driven dominance...

Personally, as a Hands Dominance / Body Reacts student it has been a real blessing to understand this part of my learning mechanism, letting me stay away from all the tips that involve techniques that I just can’t perform.

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