Glossary of wrist movements and P system of classifying a golfer's swing positions

 

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Glossary of wrist movements

 

There are 4 wrist movements and 2 forearm rotatory movements.

 

Wrist movements

 

Wrist in neutral position (left wrist)

 


The wrist is in a neutral position when a line drawn along the top of the forearm is in a straight line with the top surface of the index finger.

The clubshaft must be in a straight-line relationship with the left forearm (the left wrist must be vertical - neither bent forward, or bent back)

 

Wrist cocked up (left wrist)

- medical term = radial deviation of the wrist

- wrist cocked up so that the left thumb becomes closer to the forearm

- the clubshaft moves vertically, towards the left forearm

 

 

Wrist cocked down (left wrist)

- medical term = ulnar deviation of the wrist

- wrist cocked down so that the left thumb becomes further away from the forearm

- the clubshaft moves vertically, away from the left forearm

 

 

Wrist neutral (right wrist)

 

 

Wrist hinged back (right wrist)

- medical term = dorsiflexion of the wrist

- common terms = scooped wrist position, cupped wrist position

- the wrist bends back in a horizontal plane, while the wrist remains level (neither up-cocking or down-cocking)

 

 

Wrist hinged forward (right wrist)

- medical term = palmar flexion of the wrist

- common terms = arched wrist, bowed wrist

- the wrist bends forward in a horizontal plane, while the wrist remains level (neither up-cocking or down-cocking)

 

 

Forearm rotatory movements

- there are two forearm rotatory movements

- the forearm's radial bone rotates over the forearm's ulnar bone, but the wrist remains neutral because no active movements occur in the wrist joint

 

Forearm and wrist neutral (left wrist)

- forearm neutral, left palm vertical and left palm faces away from the target

 

 

Pronation (left wrist)

- forearm rotates clockwise so that the left palm faces downwards

- mnemonic = think of turning the palm down to POUR soup out of the hand

- the wrist and hand rotate to exactly the same degree

 

 

Supination (left wrist)

- forearm rotates counterclockwise so that the left palm faces upwards

- mnemonic = think of turning the palm up to hold SOUP in the hand

- the wrist and hand rotate to exactly the same degree

 

 

 

The anatomy of the wrist joint

 

To understand how wrist movements occur within the wrist joint (from an anatomical perspective) consider the following photo showing the wrist bones.


Wrist bones 


There are 8 wrist (carpal) bones. Two major carpal bones - the scaphoid bone and the lunate bone - articulate with the forearm radius bone at the radio-carpal joint. 

 

Homer Kelley's TGM-description of wrist motions

 

Cocking movements (abduction = radial deviation = upcocking; adduction = ulnar deviation = downcocking) occur primarily at the level of the radio-carpal joint. Homer Kelley in his "The Golfing Machine" book doesn't refer to the terms upcocking and downcocking, and he only uses the term cocking (which is any upcocking movement from a downcocked position to a neutral level position, or from a neutral level position to an upcocked position) and uncocking (from an upcocked position to a neutral level position, or from a neutral level position to a downcocked position). He uses the term "level" to signify the neutral positional alignment when the edge of the top of the forearm and the edge of the top surface of the index finger are in a straight line. 

Hinging movements of the wrist (palmar flexion and dorsiflexion) occur partly at the level of the radio-carpal joint and partly at the level of the intercarpal joint (primarily between the lunate bone and the capitellum bone). Homer Kelley in his "The Golfing Machine" book doesn't use the term "hinging" with respect to wrist movements. He uses the term "bent" to signify a dorsiflexed (cupped, scooped) wrist, "arched" to signify a palmar flexed (bowed) wrist, and "flat" to to signify a neutral wrist position (a wrist that is neither dorsiflexed or palmar flexed).

At impact, the left wrist will be flat and level, while the right wrist will be bent and level. At address, most golfers hold their hands centrally between their thighs with the butt end of the club pointing at the belt buckle, and in this position both the left and right wrists will be slightly dorsiflexed (bent).

Homer Kelley in his TGM book, incorrectly refers to the rotational movements of supination/pronation as wrist motions, and he uses the term "turned" to signify any wrist rotational motion that occurs in a rightwards-direction (supination of the right hand and pronation of the left hand) and the term "rolled" to signify any wrist rotational motion that occurs in a leftwards-direction (supination of the left hand and pronation of the right hand). "Vertical" refers to the neutral position when the wrist is neither turned or rolled. 

 

P system of classifying a golfer's swing positions


P1 position - address position



P2 position - when the clubshaft is parallel to the ground at the end-takeaway



P3 position - when the left arm is parallel to the ground during the backswing action



P4 position - end-backswing position



P5 position - when the left arm is parallel to the ground during the downswing action (end of the early downswing)



P6 position - when the clubshaft is parallel to the ground during the downswing action (end of the mid-downswing)



P7 position - impact



P8 position - when the clubshaft is parallel to the ground during the followthrough phase of the swing


P9 position - when the clubshaft is vertical to the ground during the finish phase of the swing



Jeff Mann.