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The One Plane Swing vs Traditional Golf Instruction...

Even though the One Plane Swing has been around for decades, traditional golf instruction continues to dismiss this golf method. For those who are dedicated to swinging on a single plane, this fact can be frustrating to deal with at times. I have faced this frustration often when discussing the golf swing with those who are entrenched in the traditional two-plane swing. One such moment occurred recently when I asked a question to a video posted by Athletic Motion Golf. Their video briefly discussed the tour professional's setup vs impact positions, as presented through their advanced computer analysis...

Before I discuss the question, I want to review how the One Plane Swing and the two-plane swing differ. It's all in the SETUP! If you look at the pictures below you can see the differences in setup of Bryson Dechambeau's One Plane Swing and Jordan Spieth's two-plane swing...

Dechambeau is setup on his impact plane with his clubshaft on a straight line through his trail elbow...Spieth is setup on a completely different plane than his impact plane. His two planes are:

1. The clubshaft to the grip.

2. The trail arm/wrists through the shoulder.


What's interesting, and those of us advocates of the One Plane Swing often highlight, is...

how similar their swings are at IMPACT...Both Dechambeau and Spieth have: the clubshaft

on a straight line through the trail elbow, the hips are rotating hard, the chest covers the ball, the shoulders are square to the target and the trail heel is completely off the ground!

So the obvious question becomes..."If impact is the key to golf, and both swings are virtually the same at impact...Then why not just simply start the swing at setup, on the impact plane!"

I have a lot of respect for Athletic Motion Golf . They utilize state of the art computer technology, like their Gears Software, to analyze the golf swing. This fabulous software allows them to see the golf swing in a 360-degree, all-around view. They have excellent research on what happens in a professional tour player's golf swing and use the Gears Analysis to compare tour player's swings to amateur's. They will then use this comparison to recommend improvements for all players. In spite of this, they are a traditional teaching and coaching group that views the golf swing from a conventional perspective.

In a recent Athletic Motion Gears video they explain how the tour professional's impact differs from their setup. Here's the synopsis of the video:

  • The beautiful Gears Analysis of the tour professional's swing includes a 360-degree view of the swing from setup through impact.

  • They highlight the difference between the clubshaft and hands at setup to the impact clubshaft and hands position.

  • They do not mention the swing plane or why the vast majority of today's professionals choose to set up on a different plane (two-plane swing), than impact.

  • They simply discuss how amateurs need to understand how they should not try to reach impact in the same position they were in with their 2-plane setup.

Here are some screen shots from the video along with my question…

  • Athletic Motion Golf (AMG) shows the 2-plane setup angle in blue (club and hands).

  • The impact clubshaft and hands are in the faint yellow. I extended the yellow line to indicate the plane, then applied it to the other pictures.

  • You can see the obvious...that the setup plane (Blue Hands) of the tour professional is completely below the professional's plane at impact (Light Yellow Hands).

  • The Gears Software gives an interesting look at the reverse Down-the-line view in the bottom pictures. I call it the Up-the-Line view.

  • The red arrow is my addition. It illustrates the One Plane Swing setup and how much the clubshaft and hands should be raised to be on the same plane at impact.

So, being an advocate for the One Plane Swing, I had to ask the obvious question…

Then why not just simply set up on the impact plane with the hands raised into an uncocked, ulnar-deviated position?

Here's their short reply…and of course they added the sunglasses emoji...

Chris Nix… That's one way to do it, but if that was the best way, everyone would do it!


I have to admit...I expected this kind of answer...Whenever I question today's traditional two-plane teaching, I will invariably get this response. Even though they understand the logic of setting up on the impact plane...they deny its effectiveness through ignorance and a lack of understanding of how the One Plane Swing simplifies golf! It doesn't fit their model of the modern tour player swing, so they choose to ignore the obvious benefits of the OPS!

I respect what Athletic Motion Golf adds to the overall swing conversation. Still, I'm disappointed they couldn't provide me with even a little data to support their immediate dismissal of my pretext. As a company that prides itself in empirical data to analyze the golf swing, it refused to support its conclusion with any of the scientific systems they employ!

All of us One Plane Golfers...Be steadfast in your swing method when faced with traditional thinking, always remember...If we setup with impact in mind, then the One Plane Swing makes all the sense in the world!

Dr. Chris Nix

**For more information on the One Plane Swing the One Plane Golfer eBook is available for sale on the home page of this site. It's a beautifully illustrated description of the One Plane Swing and how to apply it to your game.

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