Chicken Winging is a term used to describe the appearance of the lead arm on players who bend their lead elbow and cup their lead wrist through impact. The lead arm resembles the wing of a chicken, hence the name. Normally, the lead arm is extended through impact to create as much width as possible. Width through impact is a key factor in generating club head speed. Chicken Winging can not only create a loss in power, but it tends to add loft to the club and excessive spin to the golf ball.
The Body-Swing Connection™
Physical Parameters Causing Chicken Winging and How to Diagnose Them:
Chicken Winging is an excessive breakdown of the upper body through impact, but it is the lower body that usually causes this common swing characteristic. Whenever the lower body does not generate efficient speed or does not transfer that speed to the upper body, the arms and hands will try to make up for that loss in power. Many times, power and strength deficits in the lower body will lead to Chicken Winging. Also, when the lower body does not initiate the sequence on the downswing, the swing path can become steep or Over-the-Top. Any steepening of the swing plane on the downswing can also lead to Chicken Winging through impact. Loss of external rotation in the lead shoulder can also cause Chicken Winging. External rotation is required for the lead arm to release and rotate normally through impact.