“The Pause that Refreshes”

You may be aware that Coca-Cola used that famous marketing line over many years. It’s a great line to remind you to pause and shift your weight up your target line to start your transition. Finally we are seeing a winning professional golfer, Hideki Matsuyama, who almost pauses the motion in his upper body during his transition as he shifts his weight to his leading leg.

Don Trahan calls this the Bump and others call it the Key or the Shift. Ben Hogan made this shift look effortless as he incorporated it in his rhythm during the transition from his back swing to his down swing. Check this out if you want to avoid topping the ball or hitting it fat.

Ben Hogan talks about starting the downswing with the lower body.  Think about the shift of your weight to your leading foot in order to allow your lower body to start your down swing.

That famous Coke line was first used in 1929: “The Pause that Refreshes”. I recently thought about it when reading a response to a GOLFSTR Swing Tip from Raymond Chastel. He is 81, lives on the French Riviera and plays golf most days. He confirmed that our comments were exactly what he is doing:

Raymond said:You CAN improve your golf until the end OF YOUR Life. I’m over 81 and playing better than ever, even if my physical condition is not as good as when I was a young man. (I play to a 7 Handicap) True, my distance off the TEE has shortened but my short game has more than compensated for that. Swinging with a fine tempo is much better than swinging fast: pause at the top before going into the downswing and push hard off YOUR right instep.”

The pause at the top must work for Raymond as he gives himself time during the swing transition allowing the weight of his club to do the work for him during the downswing without distorting his body up or down. I have to assume that this is what is happening.

On the other hand Hank Haney warns that you need a 3 to 1 ratio in the time for your back swing to your forward swing. I can almost recognize the swing of all of the successful golf professionals because NONE OF THEM ARE THE SAME, so I believe that every rule can be broken to create the swing that works best for your body and muscular make-up.

A Winning Performance
That pause at the top really works for Hideki Matsuyama who beat Rickie Fowler in a playoff at the 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open. Check out his slight pause at the top as he shifts his weight forward to his left foot. That shift allows you to use the momentum of your back swing to shift the center line of your body forward to hit the ball before you take a div0t.

Golf Channel comments in 2013 about Hideki’s pause at the top.  He still uses the same delay during his transition today.   They commented: “That’s fascinating, I have never seen anyone do that.”

Hideki has mastered this move. I see that some reviewers don’t even comment on his slight pause in his upper body motion at the top of his transition. My point is that you need to avoid rushing the transition to keep a smooth tempo and to let the weight of your club do the work. You should use “The Pause that Refreshes”.

Practice with GOLFSTR+ to help you make your transition for a perfect swing. Buy one today at www.golfstr.com



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  • mstair says:

    “Ben says that in the downswing, he thinks of only two things, turning the hips first and then hitting as hard as he can, first with the upper body. I have found this to be excellent advice. The downswing happens in as little as 300 milliseconds. That is as fast as the human eye can blink! There is no time for any inner monologue or swing thoughts.
    Therefore, everything you delivered to the ball at that instant was prepared (or not prepared) by how you held the club, what stance and posture you chose, and if you maintained those positions by preserving contact with your torso. I think you can plainly see that your focus, when drilling the golf swing on the range, needs to be directed towards those things, not the flight of the ball. The downswing, ball impact, and ball flight are merely the evidence — revealing either your success, or what aspect of your hold, stance, posture, or connection you need to improve on.”

    Excerpt From: Mike Stair. “Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/KfNyD.l

    • Bill says:

      I love your summary of Ben Hogan’s swing thoughts. Thanks for sharing this with our readers. I will plan to expand on this for all of our readers in a future GOLFSTR Swing Tip. Limited swing thoughts and simplicity in the golf swing are so critical for success in golf.

      Ben Hogan said: In the downswing, he thinks of only two things, turning the hips first and then hitting as hard as he can, first with the upper body.