I have spent the past three years trying to figure out a way to swing according to the standard MCS swing model, and it all had to do, as you all know, with my shoulders being twisted open at address and impact when I stood square to the target line.
It was even impossible to stand with the normal “angled stance” position that is part of the standard model because of how severe the twist was.
Well, imagine that I asked myself a whole bunch of questions on the stance, and of course, the primary issue is that the shoulders should be square to the target line at impact.
This is illustrated very well by the bird’s eye view of Mike Dunaway at impact, where his shoulders are just a fraction closed a split-second before impact, meaning they’re pretty much square at the crucial moment:
So, the crucial aspect of impact is to have the square shoulders, in general (some people may need to be slightly open or closed due to physical idiosyncrasies, but we will never isolate every variation, so let’s stick with the ‘standard’).
Now, the question arose when I discovered that with my own spinal issue, I had to place the ball more to my left rather than at the standard ball position, which would place the driver ball at the leading heel line.
So I asked myself the question, “If I can swing better with the spine issue moving the ball, is there even a ‘standard’ ball position, or is it dependent on the swinger?”
The answer, of course, would be that the standard ball placement is exactly that because most people would have it there to stand and swing with a mechanically-correct motion.
But then I asked myself, “What if the standard ball position is the reason for the angled stance to begin with?”
The answer I got surprised me, because I have noticed this spring, having implemented the 3 Pillars method of setting up to the ball, that all of a sudden, my compensating angled stance disappeared, or at least became very minimal, even with the driver:
Showing the line at my toes that is parallel to the target line, you see what I would call the “standard” angled foot line with the driver, which means that by adjusting my ball position to account for the bent and twisted spine, I suddenly could set up in the standard MCS model stance.
And I’ve never been able to stand this way without having a very steep down swing plane and open shoulders at impact – but that was with the standard ball position!
Which means, if the angled stance is necessary with the standard ball placement (as explained in the MCS model over the past two years), is there a ball position that would eliminate its need altogether?
Now, you look above and see that Mike Dunaway has a square stance line, but he was also more center-biased than the MCS model, and while that difference is the reason for his shifting head on the back swing (the MCS model puts the head at address where it should be at the top, so there is no or very little head shifting in the MCS swing model), could the 3 Pillars method I devised provide a possible way to stand square to the target line?
I have asked myself that question, and should have an answer soon.
This is very exciting, because it’s only a possible variation, again, of the standard MCS model – but I will never reject a possibility because I have said, “This is the way to do it.”
I’ve said before that if I find something new or better to improve the model, that I would never keep it a secret, and I certainly wouldn’t throw it out because it is something new or different from the standard model.
The standard model before 2014 had a centered stance like Dunaway and Austin and many other swingers, but I made the right-bias standard after looking at where the head should be at impact, and then reverse-engineering the stance so that it would be in roughly the same place at address, the top and impact.
That improved the model more than anything else I’ve devised with the model to date, and imagine if I’d left it out simply because I didn’t want to change the standard center bias.
So, it’s possible that the 3 Pillars strategy I devised to find my proper ball position (because mine not in the “standard” position, if I want to swing my best) is also the answer to figuring out how to stand over the ball, when it might not matter if you have angled stance or not.
It could be nothing, but even if I’m correct, it’s not an earth-shattering change to the MCS model, just another interesting little variation one can add to the standard model.
I’ve been holding off explaining the 3 Pillars because I’m still exploring this concept, but it seems to be everything I thought it might be when I came up with it this past winter while doing my SwingRite work.
For those who might be interested in this, I should have something very soon.