Sacred Burial Ground: Clarification | Swing Surgeon - Don Trahan Peak Performance Golf Swing

Sacred Burial Ground: Clarification

Mon, 11/09/2009 - 12:00 -- Don Trahan

Dave Lyon says:
Don, on your homepage, the PPGS sequence shows the clubhead going behind your head into the Sacred Burial Ground (SBG). Is it only your left hand that musn'€™t go into the SBG? I was under the impression that the clubhead must not venture there. Please clarify.

Good question and Dave received an answer to his question right after he wrote it that said that the SBG was behind the back and not the head. This is somewhat correct but too vague and so to clear up this point, here goes.

For starters, I have seen in the blogs the SBG called the '€œDead Zone'€ and the '€œCemetery'€ and a few others which are appropriate. I will define the SBG by referring to the Foundations Swing Manual Page 86'€¦Secret # 3.

Secret # 3: You turn only to the toe line in the backswing and forward upswing. Key: you must stay out of the '€œSacred Burial Ground,'€ that area in a square or semi-circle behind your toe line.

Next, we will look at Chapter 11titled, '€œHow to Make a Peak Performance Golf Swing.'€ On page 97 under the section titled '€œTake-Away & Turn'€ Face On picture views, point # 5 states: Club at 9 o'€™clock, toe up with the club and left arm OVER toe line

There is a note: You turn your shoulders only as much as it takes to get your left arm and club over your toe line. Then it'€™s all UP. The transition from clubhead into the mitt, the up the tree must be smooth and it must flow with a feeling and sense of an upward, circular motion. Down the line view, point # 3 states: left arm and shaft are over toe line. # 4 states: This is the end of your backswing turn: 70 degrees maximum. From here on, it'€™s all lift. Keep palms perpendicular and the club at 12:00 o'€™clock.

Follow through at 3:00 o'€™clock on page 103 in the face on section #1 states: Shaft of the club is at 3:00 o'€™clock, toe up in the mitt. Right arm and shaft are over toe line. #3 states: Palms perpendicular. Down the line on page 104 #1 states: club toe up in the mitt. #2 states: right arm and shaft are over the toe line. #4 states: Palms Perpendicular.

Final Thoughts on Page 107 #2 states: Keep your palms perpendicular to the ground throughout the swing. Point # 3 states: Maybe more important than anything else: In your backswing, you need to turn only as much as it takes to get our left arm and shaft over your toes '€“ that'€™s a maximum of 70 degrees! Then it'€™s all lift to the ‚¾ thumbs up position. Same for the follow through. '€œKeep it over your toe line!

The Sacred Burial Ground is defined by the toe line. It is the boundary that the impact zone, from in the forward upswing when the club swinging to impact, gets to 9'€™00 o'€™clock and is parallel to the ground, and after impact to 3:00 o'€™clock the club is parallel to the ground. The left arm must swing over and be over the toe line and not behind it in the Sacred Burial Ground. This is what produces an on-on-and-on square impact.

Now to address your question about the club head must not venture into the SBG, I am going to get a little technical here and I hope I don'€™t regret it. The club is swung on an inclined plane because we stand beside the ball and have our spine tilted forward. The left arm, from the shoulder to the elbow, is over the toe line at the top of the backswing. The inclined plane causes the arm, from below the elbow to the hand, and the club, when lifted to the top of the backswing, over the center of the right shoulder, close to the head to cross a little past the toe line.

The Key is the upper arm is still over the toe line and thus the club will be pulled down to impact on-on-and-on the aiming line and will remain on the aiming line in the follow through, with the right arm and club covering the toe line at the 3:00 o'€™clock club parallel to the ground position as you swing up and stand up to the T – Finish.

The point to be emphasized here is that in a full 90 degree or more shoulder turn at the top of the backswing, the entire left (forward) arm and club are behind the toe line and thus deep into the sacred burial ground. There is no direct straight line down to an on-on-and-on impact from there. The body has to turn quickly to the left to pull the arms and club up and around in front of the body to the aiming line, which is now an outside to in swing path. The big shoulder and torso turn is the #1 cause of the outside to in path. The cure is the PPGS limited turn ‚¾ backswing, keeping the left arm over the toe line and staying out of the Sacred Burial Ground. This way, from the top of the backswing, we can swing straight down the aiming line for an on-on-and-on square impact to hit it solid and straight.

The Surge!

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