Randy Smith has been guiding players from junior golf to the PGA Tour for decades from his base at Royal Oaks Country Club in Dallas. Justin Leonard, Harrison Frazar, Martin Flores and 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur champ Scottie Scheffler are just some of the players Smith teaches when he isn't helping 20-handicappers at the back of Royal Oaks' range.
This week, he sat down an reviewed a handful of hashtagged reader videos for our regular #HelpMeGolfDigest project. He saw a little something at both ends of the performance spectrum. The first swing comes from the appropriately named @randyvous3 via Instagram. His swing is too cramped for comfort.
"It sounds counterintuitive, but Randy needs to get closer to the ball so he can have more room to swing," said Smith, who is ranked 27th on Golf Digest's list of the 50 Best Teachers. "If he moves closer and gets his chest more upright, he'll be able to turn his upper body on the backswing and create more room for his arms. Right now, they're getting trapped up against his chest. A deeper chest turn will give those arms a way to swing free, and a lot more speed."
Reader @tom_freeman has a nice motion but is leaving too much potential power on the table.
"Everything Tom is doing is pretty good, but he definitely needs some speed," says Smith, who was the National PGA Teacher of the Year in 2002. "He has some of the same issues as the first player, but gets into them in a different way. Tom's first move away from the ball is taking everything back straight toward his right thigh. He needs to get those hands out and away from his body, and create more space between his hands and his head at the top of his backswing. That will give him more time to generate more speed."
Smith's advice for the last reader, @andrew.crowe, doesn't have anything to do with his technique.
"Go get an agent," Smith says. "There's so much speed in this swing -- he's hitting a driver with as much lower body speed as can be, but is still under control. I don't think I'd change anything about it. Just go out there and play every day. Put that swing to work."
Keep submitting your swing videos hashtagged #HelpMeGolfDigest through the fall and winter. More top teachers will be offering personalized fixes for your late- and off-season swing issues.