By the time I began My Swing Evolution I had become very depressed about my game. I was embarrassed when I stood on the first tee, and all I hoped for was to get a ball in play somewhere, anywhere. The game can be so complicated if your mechanics are incorrect, and I was willing to try anything to get better. I watched golf on TV looking for tips. And, my house was filled with magazines.
I can say that I did learn a lot watching Michael Breed on television. He’s a great instructor in my humble opinion. I like Martin Hall as a personality, but I don’t like all of the wacky gadgets and tools he uses to explain the golf swing. I’ve never liked the majority of training aids because I believe in the ball and the stick. There’s more than enough to learn using a real club and golf ball, and I can’t see myself going out to buy a broom and painting it white on one side and black on the other like some bizarre Star Trek custodian.
What aids do I like? I like a baseball bat, or a heavy club to help me feel not to use my arms too early in the swing. The Orange Whip essentially does the same thing since it makes you wait for the swing, but I don’t have one. Once you learn how to be patient through the transition, I recommend learning speed with just a shaft. My “speed shaft” has taught me so much about my swing along with my radar that’s it’s hard to put a price on it. The bottom line is you just don’t know how to swing fast until you’ve spent some time experimenting with a speed monitor.
This brings me to magazines. I used to have my house filled with golf magazines. I still love the player profiles and the reviews of new equipment. Sometimes there are great human interest stories but as far as golf instruction goes, I say you will likely be better off setting them on fire. Everyone’s swing is unique so hoping to find the one lesson that will correct your swing flaw is like looking for a needle in a haystack. In my case, I just tried everything I saw each month for years and it nearly destroyed my love for the game.
If I had a magazine and I wrote three articles a month on swing tips and technique, I’d probably be out of content in a year. That’s why I believe there is more and more wacky garbage that “Top 100” pros keep making up to put in the magazines. I was in the optometrist’s office this week getting some new glasses and I perused his golf magazines and it’s the same old thing…
“Crush cans on the course for more distance… Stick an arrow through your shirt for accuracy… Stand like a baseball player and start your swing with the club in the air.”
I had a friend who is a well known golfer tell me, “If the magazines really made you better, then you would be less likely to buy new golf clubs. Selling golf equipment is the number 1 purpose of all golf magazines. So, if they made you better they’d be shooting themselves in the foot!”
Wow, that’s a crazy way to think about it, huh? Well, I firmly believe that a solid understanding of the Classic Swing fundamentals is the best way to go when it comes to creating a solid game. Create a solid foundation. Understand how the weight shift works from heel to heel. Relax the transition and move the lower body first. Swing the club and let the ball get in the way.
Although I don’t hit every tee shot on the first tee exactly like I want to, most guys watching me wish they could hit it where I do. I’m happy about my game and the way I hit shots every time I play now, which is the dream come true.