Swingcrack on Steroids

This one plane versus two plane thing is the ultimate swingcrack and it’s making my head wanna explode.

Let me break it down this way. Hacks often have as many as 6 planes, so what’s the use of confusing them further with a pin hole they have to mold their swing into…and good players have figured out how to swing and making them aware of their swing being one or two planes, just gives them another thing to worry about.

I get emails and see posts on Golfwrx of double digit handicaps trying to conform to a one plane swing.

GOOD GOD!!!!!!!!!

One of tho things happen.

1. They whip the club too far inside trying to find the one plane path.

2. They snatch (pull the handle) the club steep trying to keep the one plane on the downswing.

Just as bad is listening to a good golfer talk about how he is trying to change his two plane hip turn to match his one plane shoulder turn.

Turn away so the arms and hands stay in front of the body.


Turn through so the arms and hands stay in front of the body.

Some will have one plane, some will have two and others may still have six and put a good number on the board. See Jim Furyk.

I now wait for the hate email from all the Jim Hardy disciples.

PS-A one plane swing may be more efficient for someone having 8 hours a day to practice and someone who knows what they are doing standing there with them on every swing, but a two plane swing has a much wider margin for error.

I just tripled the hate email with the PS.

44 Responses to “ “Swingcrack on Steroids”

  1. Mike Divot says:

    That high-pitched humming sound you can hear … Ben Hogan must be spinning in his grave to see how his “sheet of glass” idea has been perverted into the notion of “swing plane” and all the endless, attendant nonsense around “swing plane”. It is the single most damaging concept to have crept into golf instruction, ever.

    We would all be much better off if it had never been heard or thought of.

    • woody says:

      Well said, Mike.

      It’s reverse-engineering a swing from photos/video. And, it’s not even a plane…it’s just apparent shaft angle as viewed by an outside observer in a certain position.

  2. Mike Divot says:

    Plus, sisn’t the guy who invented iths “one plane vs two plane” thing admit that it was all hooey but he was just trying to “simplfy” things for the average golfer?

  3. bobs34 says:

    I don’t think Hardy ever admitted the concept is hooey… His theory is that certain things (fundamentals) don’t mix, If you swing more upright, you need to do certain things and if you swing flatter you need to do certain things. I have great respect for Monte but some of the things he says drive me nuts too. The only time my arms and hands are ever in front of my body is at address, take-away and in the follow through. If my hands “Stayed” in front of my body in the backswing all the way to impact, I’d have to move my arms straight up and down. My hips, chest, shoulders, would all be no more than square at impact. That doesn’t work very well…

    • LOL.

      It’s semantics Bob.

      How about “not behind”…..?

      • bobs34 says:

        Right… As you’ve always said, you try to explain the same things different ways so I always give you a pass when you say something that doesn’t fit quite right or atleast doesn’t jive atleast to me with something you’ve said before. I.e. hips being open atleast 30* at impact. To be there, your hands have to be behind your hips. I honestly believe that Jim Hardy tries to do the same thing. Anyone at anytime can misinterpret anyone elses advice. I’m not sticking up for Hardy. I’ve tried to use his advice off and on for 10 years and haven’t got to the point you’ve got me to ref the email I sent you a month or so ago. Since then I don’t read any post any more for swing advice. I just keep doing what I’ve been doing and read all this for entertainment. But I do believe Hardy really does try to help people and is not in it totally for the sake of making a buck…

  4. HoldTheLag says:

    Thank you Monte. I recently had a chance to read Hardy’s book and as with most things I read about in golf, I was being led down a nasty path with a cliff at the end. Not so much a knock on the book as much as my inability to learn golf reliably from a focused print source (5 lessons is another example).

    • woody says:

      Written material…I’ve never kept any of the golf books I’ve bought or owned.

      Here’s the problem: coordinated people (athletes, top golfers) have no knowledge of how the body or brain work, so they couldn’t explain it, even if they knew what they did. (Their “feel” can be helpful, if gotten first-hand.)

      Uncoordinated people (writers, scientists) either get it second-hand from someone who can do it but not explain it, or they used flawed experiments based on conventional understanding…heh-heh, hold the lag.

      Houston…we have a problem.

  5. larry says:

    It’s amazing how much the Monte’s “Bump, Dump and Turn” looks just likes Hardy’s “getting your hands on the inner circle”. What goes around …..comes around.

    • theMIKE says:

      yes:) Monte does focus more on a roll release, while in the op you can have all kinds of releases, Hardy likes the so called stable release more but repeatedly stated if you have to roll your fore arms to square the club please do it, you are doing fine.

      I like more the getting on inner circle and breaking the wrist on the way down with a little slap hinge(just as the master does himselves as far a i recall). i have read somewhere here that op causes the arms to be too much behind and has less room for error, thats BS. its easy if done right (without excess 2p stuff in it). you need to have some width in it and then its very powerful and easy on the body.to leave the arms too much behind is impossible with a turning body, then you get a shallow impact, which you can steepen in a couple of ways, turning your shoulder through is a good one.

      • Mike says:

        Haven’t read the book but can understand “inner circle”. Presume it means hands vs clubface. What though do you mean by “breaking the wrist on the way down”?

      • theMIKE says:

        thats is in his world more chapter T&T, leads to bending of your left wrist more during the downswing, very important to have a fluent an free rotation of the body without dragging and a very vital piece of all (..good swings)

  6. Wally says:

    I hate to speak ill of the dead, however Hogan Five Lessons first appeared in Sports Illustrated as a series of five articles. Here’s how it went, Hi Ben how would like to do some articles on how you swing the golf club. I don’t know how to write for a paper. Thats ok we will just take care of the writing and you give us some pointers, it will be great and we will sell a lot for issues. OK when do we start. All instuction in all books is just a lot of horse s–t F–k the plane just hit the ball

    • woody says:

      Here’s how it went. Hogan did a layout for Life Magazine. Time-Life then used some of the material for Sports Illustrated without any additional remuneration for Hogan, so he sued.

      As part of the settlement, Hogan agreed to collaborate on a series for Sports Illustrated, which was made into a book that sold 10 million copies.

      Hogan had already collaborated on a book (Power Golf), so was he more interested in this new project, or just getting some money that he was wrongfully denied?

      Probably, he was honest enough to do the best he could to check the material, but he wasn’t the source for all of it.

  7. meateater says:

    Jim Hardy performed a useful service in noticing that certain steepening and shallowing moves were appropriate for either a one or two plane swing but not both. Most people who haven’t studied Hardy have no idea what the terms mean anyway. A one plane swing is certainly not one that only utilizes one “plane.” It merely means the left arm and shoulders tend to be in line at the top. Two planers have their hands higher at the top.

    That however is about the extent of what Hardy and his disciples can teach us. Do you really want to swing like one of his acolytes, eg Olin Browne? Hardy’s understanding of how the body turns through impact seems severely flawed to me. His students tend to come over the top, flip release or suffer a jump stall with their body. If you want to hit your driver short, go for it.

    • theMIKE says:

      Hardy did a master flu job in generating attention of a mess out there in instruction, Monte is a bid confused as he does not know what a two plane swing is and how much reverse the mechanics are. Its not about some plane lines to be traced, one plane means the lead arm swings at the top on roughly the same plane then the shoulders, two plane means they are on a distinct different plane then the shoulders.

      One plane means the body is the boss in the swing, two plane means the arms are the boss, you can’t have it both ways. This distinction is not a matter of optics, its a distinction of dynamics/mechanics and therefore rather physics. You can have all kinds of idividual variations, but in some vital elements you can not mix water and oil (because you will be totally fuXXed up in your brain AND swing).

      I am sure that Monte hates extra arm lift and swinging the arms more then the body turns, if that is happened on a flat plane relative to the shoulders, it is going to be deep, steep, narrow and is a dead horse. plenty of people have arm dominant swings, they will and have to lift their arms on a much steeper plane and Monte instruction is not going to help them, its going to kill them.

      There are plenty of variations which work, but there are some things which never will work, the great thing about his new book is that it allows you to cure a problem and does not invite the reader to follow a model, but does not make the mistake to throw all in a bucket.

      ps. don’t take conclusions on that matter from all the youtube jerks out there, they either haven’t read the book and/or try to write their own stuff into things.

      • Mike Divot says:

        I see they got to you … hold tight, kid … we’ll send our best team in there and get you out to safety … oh, and fer chrissakes, don’t drink the bathwater.

      • theMIKE says:

        I read the LoL as a confirmation of my thoughts:)
        Look at Bubba and Furyk (their hip and footwork alone is enough to see that they hit the ball totally different), both play pretty darn good golf. Furyk’s takeaway is not the one you would teach to anyone and I am sure that they would not be where they are if they would ran into a Monte type instructor early in their career.

        It’s easy to bash something if you don’t understand it and its not Hardys fault that there are so many folks out there commenting on or interpreting his stuff without having even read the books, not mentioning having visited his seminars

        His key objective is to make a repetitive impact, this he was teaching his entire live and he is massively influenced by John Jacobs. He givs a damn XXXX bout all these pane of glass and who knows what plane lines golfs greatest gurus ever invented.

        If you write a book you have to make a point and use some references, but he says everyhere “somewhat”, i am sure that with every video Monte has put out you can have the same critizism about Monte then about Hardy (even worst). In his own words: if you have anywhere in your golf swing a straight line you are in trouble..

        So, please don’t be too smart, you could be very wrong..

    • theMIKE says:

      ps. Happy 4th
      pps. One plane is bump, dump [close club face], turn and throw… not pulling the handle steep, pulling the handle down is 2 plane, U should know that if you would have read the books, if soemone does that, he hasn’t seen a good instructor in a while.
      There is not taking the club inside to find the proper one plane path, its a connected takeaway which creates enough width and avoids the arms flying around.

      Keeping the club in front out you is a feel if anything, but its something what does not happened in Monte’s swing. but in Montes rather 1p world, if really done it would get you disconnected, would get your shoulders to level, just as you would do in an armsy 2p swing.

      Tiger had in his haydays a one plane swing up to his 3 wood, and a 2 plane swing with his driver, this fact has screwed many many folks out there, because they saw it appropriate to do too, but they aren’t tiger.

      Foley cleans that up right now and its not a new swing Tiger is learning, its only removing old bad habits, squatting you do in an armsy swing because you use the straightening of your legs to whip/lash your arms through. that up and down movement is not a pivot driven movement, as said, it’s an armsy 2p movement and noone below the caliber of tiger is able to manage that.

      Diving at the ball sucks in a 2 plane swing, there you have to straighten your legs early, in a one plane swing is a very powerful and repetitive move, but straightening your legs early is a killer, because it chokes down your pivot in no time.

  8. Calvin says:

    “Arms and hands in front of the body”. I don’t know what that means. I’ve heard it from several sources and I am completely puzzled. As soon as you start your take-away the hands pass the body. At the tos the hands are above the body and over the trail shoulder.

    • I hear you. It’s a relative term. When you watch the “plane and release by feel” video, behind would be the arms and hands dropping below the horizontal line where they start.

      I think I will do a video on this. Good comment.

      • Marshall says:

        I understand your plane & release drill and basically agree with it. The problem is like everything else you can’t take it 100% literally. You still have to get the club up unless u want to swing around your waist. Up is a huge problem for golfers. I have read all the books. Hogan just established upper limit…he did not say u had to swing flat or upright.

    • Same here, many golfing terms make absolutly no sense at all.

    • Mike says:

      IMO if you forget about the backswing, Monte’s “dump” is making sure you get your arms/hands in front of you before you rotate to the ball and swing left into the follow thro’. I think of it as trying to get back to where I was in the takeaway.

      • theMIKE says:

        the “dump” gets the arms and hands into a slot where you can freely swing through, if you don’t get the dump right, your arms will move into awkward territory. From there people are dragging and fighting the club all along, which costs you all speed you could get out of it .

    • Mike says:

      Re: getting arms/hands in front of the body

      This video of Tiger with Butch Harmon illustrates it well I think.

      What amazes me is, if Tiger was doing this with Harmon, why did he go thro’ all his other swing changes? It seems to me that, if he made this “getting the club in front” move coming down, all he had to do was swing left and not forget to crunch the ball.

      • theMIKE says:

        Yes, and now he is doing that with all his clubs + tries to get rid of the squat.
        I have this swingengineering and destroying natural tendencies, but his more recent instructor has really screwed tiger, both physically and colported an ill suited green table vision of a golf swing on him (which left out tigers distinct different way of hitting his driver, or it could not tackle it, who knows).

        If Sean Foley streamlines Tigers swing around something what Tiger did naturally with his irons and removes all the Haney stuff, that is great. It surely takes a while as Tiger was hitting probably a few million balls with Haneys “vision”.

  9. One reason I laugh a lot talking to golfers and PGA style trainers, I ask “dude define the golf swing motion for me please” they go huh?
    In 10 seconds show me the basis of the golf swing motion that absolutly must happen..HuH?
    I go well 10 seconds, 9-8-7-6-5 times up………..!

    How can people teach things without having the basic underlying stuff made obvious first? Its though for an individual to learn things without a proper introduction made obvious about the subject first.

    yes I can do it in 10 seconds.

    • woody says:

      I’d ask the question like this: What does the golfer DO? Not, how should he look, but what does he DO to produce the motion?

      (Maybe Monte will let you write it, and I’ll see if I can read it in 10 seconds.)

      • I like to say, if your not able to improve someones swing in 20minutes and make them have solid impact, something isnt right. if a newbie learn golf, 3 seconds isnt enough according to most girls.

        the golf motion as any lacks solid definition that is easy to understand and replicate.

      • On another note, I was thrown out from another blog, typically critical views and perspectives are hard to come around to it seems.

        Golf motion is a physical action where you throw an object creating force which needs conteracting, moving the body to make room for the arms to swing is what happens but how does that feel?
        Its not that hard to have someone already knowing some stuff in the swing, and fix that aka Lickliter 2 (if you know what your doing aka Monte). Or to have an amatur to fix their flaws, as I struggled myself over the years a happy amatur, I started to apply to go pro, find out what I did didnt work for such level of game, so I had to dig out what to do to make it so.

        So I struggle with technique, my illness but I then decided to find out what its about and dug it out in the dirt.
        If you hold the club in your left hand, go back and throw the body then respond by moving the body out of the way (lateral shit) the arms then have room to go there and there is no need to turn yet (OTT) and this can be trained as a motion and felt by letting the left arm throw the club in a back and forth swinging motion, attending sensations of when is the body balancing up itself when the force forward and momentum starts to whip at the impact area. Freewhelling the left wrist at the bottom also adds speed due to the grippressure is then loose and firm.
        This can be taught to an amatur or a beginner in 20 minutes until they can start feeling the action of going back and forth and then have the evidence chain pointed out, left heel arise slightly, left shoulder follows angle of club back, weight goes down and forward with the momentum, leverage created hip turns and other things that is easily checked even for a new in golf since they then learn feel with evidence then they know when they do it right vs wrong. Then golf is easier to learn and play due to the feel is then allowing the game to be played without second guessing oneself if the angle is right, position made etc….
        Which did happen as far I can tell with Frank Lickliter 2.

    • I can do it in 3. Make room for the arms to swing.

  10. rojoass says:

    Out of these 28 comments my hero Wally was smoke free.


  11. MJ says:

    i tried to be a “one planer” for 4 years after posting a video on wrx and someone asked me if that was what i was trying to do…i had never heard of it at the time.

    I was self taught and my left arm naturally landed in line with my shoulders…after that post, i got Hardy’s book but i gave up trying to understand it, and just went out and played my 10 rounds a year for the last few years. And where i am now is “turn, bump, dump – over the top consistent enough to not be terrible but not consistent enough to get better”

    I wish someone would have just said, “read Monte’s blog” instead…i would be a lot better now.

  12. jaybee says:

    One plane, two plane, on plane (what plane?: Hogan pane of glass vs. Explanar Blacklock vs. Monte horizontal plane drill/TGM flashlights and Martin Hall’s Swingstick/D’Amore etc. etc.) – I have lost track of/confidence in those concepts.
    FWIW, I am in the camp now that Hardy’s concept/observation of an aligned left arm and shoulder line at the top is mainly coincidental, dependant upon club/arm length, stature etc., but he did do us all a service to point out that some swing advise does not seem to mix and match well with some other.
    BTW, I have just finished reading a new magazine article in which Dennis Pugh differentiates the suitability of the (Hardy) planes as per left or right arm dominance!
    I have never heard of that one before- there might be something to it or not, but at least it will open up that other can of worms for the magazines, leftsided vs. rightsided, swing vs. hit vs. throw etc….

    • Mike Divot says:

      There is no such thing as “swing plane”.

      In medieval times, “scientists” tried to find a way to turn lead into gold. Never gonna happen. It was someone’s bright idea that sounded cool, used real-world terms like “lead” and “gold”, but didn’t really exist.

      The golf world would be much better off if “swing plane” had never been heard or thought of.

  13. Elohor says:

    Hi,I honestly just want to say that your ideas on golfing are really good, websites like this one make getting information on the web an absolute breeze. Cheers alot.

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