I watched The Grand Slam last week on TNT. Tiger never ceases to amaze. That prompted me to bury myself in some old video.
In my studio at The Health Club of Naples, I have over 500 tour swings (PGA, LPGA, Champions, Nationwide and Futures players).
I know my counterpart, Dr. Jim Suttie, has watched/studied a ton of video and is probably one of the leading authorities in our industry on video analysis. I'm sure he could educate us all on the technical precision of the golf swing, and various players' slight changes over the years.
Anyway, I had a blast this past week taking apart and putting together various tour swings past and present and their evolution. I found two swings, in particular, that I had on my hard drive of Tiger to be spooky perfect, both in terms of the sequencing and swing plane precision.
The two swings were both a few years old. This is not to say he isn't as good now, or not as good now. I'm only saying that these two particular motions are off-the-charts awesome. His ability to put his club and arm swing "on plane" is well ... I keep using this word: Awesome. This, combined with a neutral grip, at the time, a square face, a crazy-good work ethic and a ton of God-given athletic ability are a tough combination to beat.
I tell all my professional students that if Tiger is the "tool of measurement" then you better be willing to outwork him (tough to do) because I doubt you'll out-think him, and probably out-talent him.
The film is truly a technical pleasure to watch, and I do over and over again. I would love to do a public "Golf Night," and show various films to a panel of, for example, Dr. Suttie, Adam Bazalgette from the David Leadbetter Academy, etc., and field some of your questions, and simply share our thoughts as a golf community.
Maybe we could get a local newspaper to sponsor such a night?
What do you folks think?
These young players out there on tour, the Adam Scotts of the world, are so beautiful to watch, they are so technically sound. They have a beautiful ability to allow (I said allow, not manipulate) the club to pass through the same positions perfectly time in and time out.
My part in such a night would counter my peers' emphasis on the swing, the swing, the swing, and ask, "Well if they are so good, why is the tour basically still around the same Vardon Trophy (low scoring average) number today as in the time of Mr. Hogan and Mr. Nelson? What missing link are we overlooking in developing both our tour player, but more importantly our day to day club player."
That, I feel, is the question that would in fact change golf forever if truly answered. Where must we get better as teachers and coaches? I would love to hear your responses out there in Golf Land.
Off to the LPGA Tour Qualifying Finals in Daytona Beach with Meaghan Francella and Courtney Wood, both wonderful young ladies and hard workers. Please keep them in your thoughts.