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I fight with the same problem. The only thing that seems to help me is trying to visualize the club head being outside of my hands on my takeaway at hip heighth. Ive incorporated doing this in my preshot routine before each shot.
Check out the golf digest article with Hunter Mahan. It has a great tip for the takeaway, using the upper body to take the club away, doing it slowly and that the first 3 feet of the golf swing are the most important.
The Hunter Mahan article is well written and accurate. If you start correctly, it's easier to stay "on plane". It helps to keep the hands lower as it somewhat pre-sets the wrists going back and helps prevent pulling the club to the inside on the takeaway.Just the same, Mr. Hogan taught me you can do a lot of "weird" movements going back, so long as you start the downswing with the hips. He referred to the way Lee Trevino and some others would swing the club back, to make this point. The "over-the-top" move is caused by starting down with the arms and trying to hit AT the ball the ball with the right hand. Sequester the desire to hit at the ball and leave the arms and hands passive during the downswing. They will act when necessary.
I hope this helps you.
Just practice the move in a mirror until you get a feel for it and when you get out to the range/course try to recreate that feeling.
Heres a drill that my swing coach has me do NON STOP. she calls it Handshake Hit Finish and you set up to a ball with a 7 Iron and you take the club back not turning your lower body and maintaining the "V" with your arms and your "Handshake" with your left hand as if somebody is standing exactly to your right side. Maintaining the "V" you "Handshake" till the Club is Parallel to the ground and then you accelerate and "Hit" the ball and finish strong. Sorry if im hard to understand i try my best to explain things lol. But if you can understand what im trying to type here then i would HIGHLY recommend this drill and when you master a 7 iron, which should go around 100 yards or less, then move to like a 5 iron and even a driver. This drill has vastly improved my takeaway and set my back swing on plane. iv even put this "drill" as part as my Pre Routine on the course.
Mahan's artical Jim McClean's 8 step swing and all the adive your getting have one thing in common you should take note too. the first three feet are slow and controlled. when i read what you wrote i got up from my desk grabed a club and looked in the mirror. and i saw the same thing all these guys are talking about slow and steady gets you going the right direction. my advice to you would be hit the range and start from the ground up with a PW start with some half swings at 60% swing speed. YES you will shank quiet a few right off the bat. but as that swing plane gets more natural too you, you will see the greater results. after half swings go 3/4 and eventually full swings never going over 80% swing speed. im willing to bet after about 3 good sessions on the range you'll have that take away curred up and feeling natural. and anytime you feel your swing breaking down you'll be able to fall back on the PW drills to get you back on track. My swing is built from the ground up starting with a PW so that i could always fall back to it in order to get my bearing again. for me the PW is a 135-140 club. if i wanted i could get 150-155 out of it but then the accuracy numbers start to drop. my yardage numbers arnt the point. the point is i have built a stable swing around that yardage with that club so when everything breaks down i can go back and get back to those numbers.
hope that helped
Cheers greens and fairways to all
Awsome advice. Thank you.
Just came back to this post. Thanks to everyone for the replies. I made my own "smart stick" and that helped a lot. After that just swinging everyday with a mirror slowly and watching the positions has helped. I've had huge improvements over the winter but unfortunately i live in cleve so i have not gotten to hit any balls which is another thing entirely hah! But soon we will see.