What are the full-swing yips in golf? The full-swing yips are another variety of the yips in golf. They are different than the putting yips. I have worked with players who had problems with the full swing. But I think the golf swing yips are much rarer than the chipping or putting yips.
When you have the full swing yips, you simply can’t swing at the ball freely. Charles Barkley, the famous basketball player, who took up golf had one version of the full swing yips. At the top of his swing, he would pause and then violently jerk the club down from the top. So I think this is one common form of the full swing yips. When you take it to the top of the swing, you either can’t pull the club down and paused too long or you jerk the club down from the top.
One case of the full swing yips that I worked with, was a young player who simply could not take the club back. He would stand over the ball in some cases for as long as 30 to 40 seconds before he can pull the club back. Almost as if he was frozen and couldn’t start the club on the backswing. It really didn’t matter what club he had in his hand, you seem to be frozen over the ball never ready to hit the shot. I know some golfers just get the yips with the driver and no other club in the bag.
Many amateur golfers flinch at the ball at impact. They have a very free-flowing practice swing, but when they get up over the ball their swing looks completely different. I called this a hit impulse. The hit impulse is the moment you put a ball in front of you, you hit at the ball instead of take a full swing through the ball. A good friend of mine used to call this chopping wood. I don’t think I would consider a hit impulse full-blown yips with your swing, but is a very close cousin.
Again, my philosophy is that the golf swing yips are not unconscious or a physical defect in your swing. In most cases, the golf swing yips are born out of fear, anxiety, and over control. When you want so badly to make the perfect swing, you might never pull the club back.
Certainly, having good mechanics or technique with your swing can unlock some of the fear and anxiety you have about hitting bad shots. The keys to overcoming the golf swing yips are to have a trigger to initiate the golf swing and have a free and flowing full golf swing. If you’re petrified of hitting a bad shot, you can’t pull the club back smoothly and effortlessly. If you have the hit impulse, try swinging a golf club with your eyes closed and then progressing to hitting shots on the range with your eyes closed. Focus on swinging through impact instead of trying to hit at the golf ball.