thestagesoftheswing-28-2016-2-171G1Stages of the swing
I will describe each stage of the swing, highlighting the most important aspects necessary to achieve perfect timing, precision and desired distance.

PRE-SWING
Used at times. Defined as the movement similar to the pre-strike carried out evenly and without the speed of the final swing. This would be called the “;initial spin.” Another variable known as the “;Pendulum” exists, which also has its benefits.

Benefits of the pre-swing:
Relaxes the body.
We gain more speed with the stick.
We increase power.
We find necessary stick angle.
Aids timing.

Effective driving phase (use of stirrup as support)

BACKSWING
We find our position and support in the stirrup, we grip with our adductor muscles (lower leg) and knees, and we use the tripod (third support with our left hand and reins on the horses neck).
We move the stick in a backwards and upwards motion, reaching the highest point possible.
The left shoulder points towards the ball; the right knee moves forward.
The rising stick should take the shortest course possible (bow and arrow).
Shoulders and hips rotate clockwise.

APEX OF THE SWING
Maintain 90 degrees between the forearm and the stick to achieve correct striking angle with maximum stability on the striking side (stirrup).
The mallet head and the V formed between the thumb and forefinger point towards the ball.
Many players, reaching the apex of the swing, turn their hand so their palm faces backwards and continue this movement in the down swing and in the strike. The head of the mallet does not point towards the ball, but strikes it at an angle.
The left rein hand finds support on the horses neck, making up the third support, or tripod.
Shoulders and hips line up with the angle of the strike. The right extends and the left flexes.
The supporting leg (opposite to the striking side) finds support in the stirrup and adopts an open position from the knee down.
Eyes on the ball.

DOWN SWING
The mallet begins its descent maintaining a 90 degree angle between the stick and the forearm. The wrist reaches full extension.
The palm faces upwards.
Twisting of shoulders and hips in an anti-clockwise motion.
Mallet head reaches maximum speed.

PRE-CONTACT
Head, shoulder and arm align.
The angle of the stick to the head-shoulder-arm alignment depends on the extension of the wrist.
Angle should be at least 45 degrees for the strike to be effective.
Palm faces upwards.

CONTACT
Head, shoulder, arm and stick align.
Palm faces upwards.
Palm moves neither faces up nor down. Maximum grip.
Head of the mallet perpendicular to striking plane.
Hips and shoulders perpendicular to striking plane.
Knee dictates distance between hand and ball; torso rotates on spine but does not bend.
Horse is in perfect position and on the correct leg.
The mallet head should rest on the ground (this will mark the distance between us and the ball).
We make use of the tripod, leaning the left rein hand on the horse’s neck.
Line of back should be parallel to the ball.

BALANCING STAGE

FOLLOW THROUGH
Extended arm and palm facing downwards.
Begin flexing of elbow when hand passes the horse’s eye.
Total rotation of shoulders and hips
Supporting leg moves backwards to balance torso.
Hand moves above line of player’s head.
Towards the end, the elbow is bent and near the center of the chest.
Final spin within the striking plane.
End of stirrup support. Relaxing of muscles.

For more information:
Website
eamaya@pololine.com

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