The Single Plane Address Position
I often refer to the “Machine and Tool” analogy to represent the body and a golf club to answer the question to why Moe Norman was the greatest ball striker ever to play the game. Moe Norman, through his intuitiveness, hard work, and passion, discovered the best way to strike a ball at a target. Moe intuitively answered the question:
“What is the best way to hit a ball on the ground with a tool, using the body as a machine – the golf club.”
Moe’s machine-like precision was based on very fundamental principles, especially the platform of the machine. In his wisdom, Moe said, “If you haven’t got a good address position, you haven’t got anything”. The Single Plane Address position is the foundation of the Single Plane Golf Swing. It is the starting point and footing of the swing movement. Without a fundamentally correct beginning, consistency of any measure will be practically impossible.
It is always a good idea to review your address fundamentals before each practice session. The address position consists of your Hand Position (Grip), Arm Position, Stance (Leg and Feet), Spine Tilt (Body Position) and finally – the position of the club on the Single Plane alignment with the body.
The foundation establishes the “Single Plane” – defined by the Graves Golf Academy is simply the starting plane that the club will return to at impact. This “impact plane” is the based on the design of the golf club where the club-shaft connects to the club head.
Matching the clubs plane, the tool, to the anatomy of your body is the secret to how you can build a sound, repeatable, powerful swing of ease and biomechanical efficiency. Matching the club to the body creates a perfect union of the golf club to anatomy, (machine and tool) – forming the true single plane address position. Here are a few keys to making a quick review of your address fundamentals.
Check Your Lines
I recommend checking your address position in a mirror or on video before you practice. You might even find a reflection in a large window. If I can, quickly check the lines of the club with my arms and body. There are two views to study your Single Plane Address Position the face-on view and down-the-line view.
The first line to check is from down-the-line.
This view shows the line of the shaft lining up with the trailing arm, under my armpit and through the middle of my back what we call the mid-spine-intersection. You should see the lead arm above the trailing arm but no space in between the arms. Your legs should be relatively straight so that you can bend the spine from the waist. These establish the ideal Single Plane where the club will impact.
The second Line to check is from face-on.
From this view, you can see a line from the club head to the lead shoulder. This line is a bit tricky since it requires you to have the club-head positioned beneath the nose after you have tilted the spine. This secondary angle of the spine (away from the target), tilts the shoulders allowing the lead shoulder to move higher, the hands move slightly forward and the club shaft to point to the lead shoulder. Make sure your legs are at least shoulder width, and the lead foot was turned slightly outward.
Check your hand rotations
Next, once you check your two lines, you should see the back of your lead hand pointing to the target, square to the clubface. The trail hand “V” will point to the trail shoulder.
The Single Plane Golf Swing
Moe Norman’s club shaft position at address mirrored the club shaft position at impact. We call this the “Single Plane”. If there is a secret to Moe’s golf swing, this is it.
As much of a secret as it may seem, it is entirely logical. Moe established the “Single Plane” based on perfect club design creating a machine-like relationship between his body and club. This club-to-body relationship where the club planes through the back establish the impact plane. The impact plane is the perfect distance, or space, for the golf ball to ensure a consistent body motion to achieve impact.
Moe’s secret, if there is one, is how Moe swung the golf club from a perfect address position. He established the most efficient way possible to return the club to impact with the least amount of movement.