Striking The Ball
"The left hand should act as a fulcrum against which the right hand strikes. Should this fulcrum collapse or give way, the club head will drag behind, and the club face will consequently not be square to the line of play, nor will it be perpendicular to the initial line of trajectory. Just how the left hand functions as a fulcrum is explained more fully in Transmission of power." Seymour Dunn
Timing Of The Stroke (1900) By Horace H. Hutchinson
Strike The Ball
"If you are then thinking too much about the grip, the stance, and the rest of the fifty-two elements that are commonly said to go to making up the perfect golfing swing, you are very apt to lose sight of the ball, to lose sense of the right timing of the stroke, and to miss the great and never to be recovered psychological moment at which you can strike the ball with confidence of success.
This Matter Of 'Timing'
This matter of 'timing' the stroke is one that is not sufficiently considered by the golfing instructors.
They teach the correct way of making the club describe the correct circle or ellipse, but they generally do no dwell quite enough on the necessity of the moment that club and ball meet the culminating point of the whole business - the point at which the greatest effort is to be exerted by the striker, the point at which the club-head is to travel with the greatest speed.
The Hitting With The Right Sense of Time
Cricketers understand the timing theory, and appreciate it, better than golfers.
They know that no hit ill-timed can drive the ball well, no matter what muscular effort is expended, and that a well-timed stroke of half the force will drive the ball more satisfactorily than an ill-timed one delivered with the energy. No doubt the necessity of accurate timing is brought more forcibly home to the cricketer by the fact that he has to deal with a moving ball, but it is scarcely less important for the golfer if he is to drive the ball perfectly.
After a certain point, strength becomes a factor in the length of drive, but is is only after the point has been passed at which practice has taught the hitting of the ball in the right way and with the right sense of time.
It Is An Indefinable Sense
Instructors have every reason for not dwelling too much on this essential point - the correct timing of the blow - for it is an indefinable sense that is required, and a sense that no instruction can impart, to bring it home to a learner's mind.
This much, at least, it is both safe and useful to say, by way of instruction anent it, that the common error is to put the force too soon."
Reference : 'Cricketers, CRICKET AND GOLF' Page 6 By George W. Beldam 1904. "more convincing proof than that which Taylor gave and Vardon afterwards confirmed. They were both emphatic on the point, and, curiously enough, stated the importance of it in the same way-but eighteen months elapsed between my hearing their respective opinions. They said that the reason so many promising golfers remained at a certain point of excellence, and never reached quite the first rank, was that "they did not know how to use their wrists to proper advantage."
Reference : 'The Book Of Golf And Golfers' By Horace G. Hutchinson, Chapter IV. 'How To Practise', "this matter of timing" page 77. With Contributions By Miss Amy Pascoe H. H. Hilton, J. H. Taylor, H. J. Whigham And Messrs Sutton & Sons With 72 Portraits New Impression Longmans, Green, And Co. 39 Paternoster Row, London New York And Bombay 1900 All rights reserved Bibliographical Note First printed in 8vo. April 1899. Reprinted June 1899. Cheaper Edition, small 8vo. February 1900.
Reference : 'Horace G Hutchinson' Heritage Royal Ashdown Forest Golf Club Forest Row East Sussex.
"In teaching the swing the main objective is to get the learner to do certain things at the moment of impact. The correct golf stroke is not a punch at all but a downward pulling, slashing movement with the left arm, plus a right forearm and wrist whipping movement which whips the club head down, and through the ball." Seymour Dunn
"You must whack it, and the only way to whack it is to bring the club-head to it in front of the hand, not a great way in front, but a few inches in front, so as to "swipe" it away. I like "swipe" better than "sweep," because "swipe" has something of "hit" in it." Sandy Herd
Some Peculiar Kind Of "Snap" (1905) By Harry Vardon
They should be held fairly tightly. If the club is held tightly the wrists will be tight, and vice versa. When the wrists are tight there is little play in them, and more is demanded of the arms.
I don't believe in the long ball coming from the wrists. In defiance of principles which are accepted in many quarters, I will go so far as to say that, except in putting, there is no pure wrist shot in golf.
Some players attempt to play their short approaches with their wrists as they have been told to do. These men are likely to remain at long handicaps for a long time.
Similarly there is a kind of superstition that the elect among drivers get in some peculiar kind of "snap" - a momentary forward pushing movement - with their wrists at the time of impact, and that it is this wrist work at the critical period which gives the grand length to their drives, those extra twenty or thirty yards which make the stroke so splendid, so uncommon, and which make the next shot so much easier.
Generally speaking, the wrists when held firmly will take very good care of themselves ; but there is a tendency, particularly when the two-V grip is used, to allow the right hand to take charge of affairs at the time the ball is struck, and the result is that the right wrist, as the swing is completed, gradually gets on to the top of the shaft instead of remaining in its proper place. The consequence is a pulled ball, - in fact, this is just the way in which I play for a pull.
Once again I have to say that if the club is taken up properly there is the greater certainty of its coming down properly, and if you keep both hands evenly to their work there is a great probability of a good follow-through being properly effected.
Reference : 'The Complete Golfer' By Harry Vardon Open Champion 1896, 1898, 1899, 1903, American Champion, 1900 With Sixty-Six Illustrations Sixth Edition Methuen & Co 36 Essex Street W.C. London Chapter VI Driving - The Swing Of The Club Page 70.
Reference : 'FORM IN GOLF' By Harry Vardon 1 April 1900, including "I HAVE never before written, or had published, any matter regarding my ideas of playing golf; I ought to add that I put my right thumb on the left-hand side of the centre of the shaft when driving, and straight down the centre of the shaft for all kinds of iron shots."
"As the club comes down on the ball, do not allow the left elbow to swing out and away from the body. It must be kept back so as to allow of the "snap of the wrists" at the critical moment when the ball is struck. If the left elbow swings away an instant too soon the hands go through in advance of the club and the result is either a slice or a loss of power." Alex Smith
The "Snap Of The Wrists" (1907) By Alex Smith
"I told you that near the top of the swing the wrists must be bent sharply towards the right shoulder. (Note that this bending is different from the turning of the wrists.)
Set The Trigger For "The Throw Of The Club"
In this way you set the trigger for the "throw of the club" - you feel the weight of the club head poised for the down-forward sweep.
With the right elbow well to the back and close to the side you must now reverse this inward bend of the wrists.
Throw them back and out as sharply as possible, and when the club head is some two feet away from the ball let the right wrist take command.
This Is "The Throw Of The Club"
This is "the throw of the club" and upon its proper execution depends in great measure the power and accuracy of the stroke.
It Must Be Kept Back To Allow Of The "Snap Of The Wrists"
It must be kept back so as to allow of the "snap of the wrists" at the critical moment when the ball is struck.
If the left elbow swings away an instant too soon the hands go through in advance of the club head and the result is either a slice or a loss of power.
"Timing The Club"
A favorite phrase nowadays is "timing the club," by which is meant the securing of the full power of the wrists, arms and body at the moment when the actual hit is made.
The phrase is a good one, but unless the coach can explain how to bring about this desirable result the mere words will not help the beginner much. My theory is that this "timing" is dependent upon keeping back the left elbow, thereby enabling the full force of the stroke to be brought into the ball.
Reference : 'Lessons in Golf' by Alex Smith. Lesson II Stance, Grip, and Swing. With Illustrations. Open Champion, United States and Western Open Champion New York, Arthur Pottow, 48 West 27th Street 1907. Copyright by Arthur Pottow. Grannis Press New York.
"My theory is that the power of the downswing comes from what I call the "throw of the club". I told you that near the top of the swing the wrists must be bent sharply towards the right shoulder. In this way you set the trigger for the "throw of the club". If you allow them to become slack and flabby from overturning, you will have no leverage for "the throw of the club", the turn over of the right wrist at the moment of striking the ball." Alex Smith
"The club should gather speed, and consequently force, as it descends, the greatest amount of force being put into the stroke just before impact with the ball - say within a foot or two of it. As the club comes downward the player will feel his wrists straightening, and this is the most crucial part of the swing. If he wishes to drive well he must get his wrists into the stroke, and give the ball a sharp click as it is struck." Willie Park Junr
Sudden Snap (1909) By James Braid
"Again, it is impossible to exaggerate the importance of seeing that the wrists work properly in going back.
Unless they do so they cannot get in their proper action when they are on the downward swing, and I fear that in many cases the bearing of the preliminary wrist action in the upward swing on the reverse action in coming back is not all appreciated.
It is laid down as a rule, and it is an excellent one, that in going back the left wrist should gradually turn so that at the top of the swing it is right underneath the shaft, the toe of the club having thus been brought to point to the turf. The whole object of this is that the wrists also shall be brought to a state of tension at the top, and that they shall be in the best possible position for a quick spring back.
When the wrists are in their proper place at the extreme point of the up-swing this tension is plainly felt, and there is a very perceptible feeling of power in the wrists alone, such as is impossible when they are in any other position.
Unless they are in the correct one there is absolutely no opportunity for any work on their part in coming down, and by the time they reach the ball they are almost lifeless.
The best way to in which to regard this wrist action is that the wrists are doing a little swing of their own - a swing on their account inside the big swing of the arms and the club - and this supplemental swing will add enormously to the effect of the drive. They have a little up-swing of their own, a down-swing, and in due course they follow through. That is the wrist action about which I shall have another word to say a little farther on.
It is sufficient for the present to lay final and extreme emphasis on the importance of getting the left wrist underneath the shaft, and so ready for work."
Reference : 'Advanced Golf Or, Hints And Instruction For Progressive Players' By James Braid Chapter IV Long Driving, Wrist Action, page 55, and 61. OPEN CHAMPION, 1901, 1905, AND 1906. With Eighty-Eight Photographs And Diagrams Fifth Edition Methuen & Co. 36 Essex Street W. C. London. Fifth Edition August 1909.
"A favorite phrase nowadays is "timing the club," by which is meant the securing of the full power of wrists, arms and body at the moment when the actual hit is made. The phrase is a good one, but unless the coach can explain how to bring about this desirable result the mere words will not help the beginner much. My theory is that this "timing" is dependent upon keeping back the left elbow, thereby enabling the full force of the stroke to be brought into the ball." Alex Smith
In The Wrist And Forearm (1911) By J. H. Taylor
"Many ladies are discontented with the length of their drives, thinking they should be capable of "carrying" as far as a man.
During the progress of the Ladies Championship at Westward Ho in 1900, for instance, Miss Mollie Whigham drove a ball from the tee to a distance of 235 yards. That was a really remarkable performance - so remarkable indeed that it was carefully measured, so no possible doubt can be expressed over the accuracy or otherwise in the figures I have quoted.
Then at the eighteenth hole the same lady overdrove the hole in two strokes by some 30 yards. Speaking from memory, I should say this hole represents quite 400 yards.
Knack And Power Combined
But admitting this, the performances just alluded to prove that a woman may be capable of driving a ball quite as far as a man, provided she has sufficient muscular power located in the wrist and forearm, and, equally as important a factor in her success, the knack of applying this power to the best advantage.
This knack and power combined come absolutely from the muscles I have mentioned, and it provides the very strongest argument against the, in some cases, supposed utility of a long swing.
It is unquestionably more difficult to apply the best wrist power when you use a long swing in place of a shorter one. In the latter case you hold yourself more under control than if the club-head is somewhere round the back of the neck and the whole club very likely to twist and curl as it comes round.
Provided they could be induced to patronise a shorter swing, the whole play of the ladies would be much more accurate and effective than is sometimes the case now ; and it must not be forgotten that it is this accuracy that pays in the long run."
Reference : 'Taylor on Golf Impressions, Comments and Hints' by J. H. Taylor Open Champion 1894, 1895, 1900 and 1909 Chapter XVIII. What Is Required In Ladies' Golf With Forty-Eight Illustrations Almost Entirely From Photographs Specially Taken For The Work Fifth Edition With New Club Directory, Latest Revised Rules And List Of Championships London Hutchinson & Co. Paternoster Row 1911. Miss Molly Whigham Courtesy LA84 Foundation.
"Bring that left hand back very slowly to the address and you will find that without a flick of the wrist at the last second of time your first knuckle will not assume its original prominence. The left hand moving back towards the ball would slice across it weakly and fumblingly, without any decisive snap, unless the wrist at the very last moment flicked that first knuckle into its rightful salience." J. H. Taylor
Success At Golf (1914) By Harry Vardon
Reference : 'Success At Golf' By Harry Vardon, Alexander Herd George Duncan, Wilfrid Reid Lawrence Ayton And Francis Ouimet U.S. Open Champion 1913 With an Introduction by John G. Anderson Runner-up National Championship, 1913 Illustrated Boston Little, Brown, And Company 1914 Copyright, 1914, By Little, Brown, And Company. All rights reserved Published, February, 1914 Reprinted, April, 1914 Printers S. J. Parkhill & Co., Boston U.S.A.
"Harry Vardon, 9 May 1870 - 20 March 1937, was a Jersey professional golfer. In 1896, Vardon won the first of his record six Open Championships (a record that still stands today). In 1900, he became golf's first international celebrity when he toured the United States, playing in more than 80 matches and capping it off with a victory in the U.S. Open. He was the joint runner-up of the 1913 U.S. Open, an event portrayed in the film 'The Greatest Game Ever Played.' At the age of 50, Vardon was the runner-up at the 1920 U.S. Open.
"Great resistance must be set up in the left side of the body against whirling it around to the left, or there will be nothing to support the left hand, and therefore no transmission of power. For all strokes of considerable distance the left wrist should be the hinge of the wrist action. That is why the grip with the left hand must be firmer than with the right. It is not the rotary shoulder movement nor the downward arm sweeping movement that speeds up the club head. It is the right hand and forearm." Seymour Dunn
"At the crucial moment, the moment that counts, that of impact between the club-head and the ball, the left arm stopping at the wrist for an infinitesimal fraction of a second as the ball is struck, accelerating the speed of the club-head. This momentary stoppage is not discernible to the eye, but it exists just the same. It is commonly known as getting the wrists into the stroke. It is a combination of swing and hit, the swing coming almost wholly from the left arm and the hit from the right." Walter J. Travis
Element Of Hit In The Sweep (1923) By Sandy Herd
"When the horizontal is reached, a barely imperceptible pause may be made, by way of making sure that the left wrist has come almost under the club shaft. What I mean is, that you must not begin the downward swing as if you were anxious to get it over. Haste spells disaster and disaster is disheartening. I am always on the look-out against a pupil becoming downhearted.
That is why I am constantly saying: "Wait for the wrists! Wait for the wrists to come into position!" We all go wrong at times through neglecting this fundamental guiding principle. Haste throws the hands in front. All the vim then goes out of the shot.
Be careful not to pull the hands in towards the body coming down.
There must be an element of sweep in the hit, or an element of hit in the sweep. With wooden clubs throw the club-head after the ball smoothly with a quick snap of the wrists. Eighty per cent of golf is timing and eighty per cent of golfers underrate its importance. Only timing makes the other twenty per cent what they are.
It is timing that gives the click to their shots, and that is why a lightweight may drive as far as a heavyweight ; or almost as far, and certainly far enough ; for great length has its dangers as well as its thrills.
Mitchell is the straightest long driver in the world. The Americans says so, too. His timing is perfect, and none of his great wrist power is wasted."
Reference : 'My Golfing Life' By Sandy Herd With A Foreword By Field-Marshal Earl Haig With numerous Illustrations London Chapman & Hall, Ltd. 1923. Chapter XII. How To Golf And How Not To Golf Page 1946, Chapter XIII. The Long Tee-Shot Page 208.
Download : 'My Golfing Life' By Sandy Herd Chapter III. At The Championship Door "His slicing disappeared", Chapter XII. How To Golf And How Not To Golf "I like "swipe" better than "sweep", Chapter XIII. The Long Tee-Shot "It is timing that gives the click."
Download : 'A Message To American Golfers' By J. H. Taylor, 1922 "Sandy will bring with him the real breath of these old times and you will find him the embodiment and personification of old Scottish, and particularly St. Andrews golf. My old friend is a positive wonder." Courtesy LA84 Foundation.
"It is timing that gives the click to their shots, and that is why a lightweight may drive as far as a heavyweight; or almost as far, and certainly far enough; for great length has its dangers as well as its thrills." Sandy Herd
Timing The Swiple (1924) By George W. Beldam
For some few years he had been in the running in many big events, and had been looked upon as a possible champion. His style had been influenced by that great stylist, Harry Vardon, whom Havers always kept as a model.
It has borne fruit, but style is the man, and no one can quite be Harry Vardon.
The peculiarity of this player's series lies in the fact that the evident mind idea is to place the centre of gravity as near the left leg as possible and to keep it there throughout the swing.
We shall see how he accomplishes this, and if his movements conform to those of "FLAIL".
This series was taken at Sandwich in 1922, and the writer saw the shot, which left on him the impression of beautiful and "very delayed" wrist-work, and the ball flew away with a very low trajectory, gradually rising with a very long carry.
The photos show all these points and how the movement was worked out.
The Downward Movement is commenced in No. 19, and one can hardly believe it is the same player or the same shot, so great is the difference in position.
But it is really a fine example of the reflex action of the "bracing up," lift upwards, resulting in the pull downwards from the pedestal, which lowers the position at the top by bending at the knees, the right knee bending and the left heel returning to its original position with the knee bent ; a window is not pulled down by the arms, the hands gripping with the arms extended, and these are pulled on by the pedestal. This pull downwards naturally undoes rotation.
The base of the staff (B) (the hips) has returned leaving the shoulders, upper arms, thongs and swiple behind.
"THE Flail is an instrument which was generally used for beating out the ears of corn before more up-to-date methods came into use.
It consisted of two sticks, one longer than the other, which were joined together by leather thongs - here is an illustration :
B was called the hand-staff, and will be referred to as the staff.
C is the thongs, and D the swiple, which was loaded at the end, similar to a golf club, which has lead in the back of the head.
The function of B was to move D by means of C in such a manner that D was flailed on to the ears of corn.
A Diagram showing how "FLAIL" in principle is adapted to the Human Machine :
Reference : 'The World's Champion Golfers Their Art Disclosed By The Ultra-Rapid Camera ARTHUR HAVERS Open Champion, 1923 THE DRIVE. 36 Positions (No. 3 First Series) By George W. Beldam Author of "Great Golfers - Their Methods At A Glance," &c. Price Two Shillings Exclusive Copyright Publication By The Photochrom Co. Ltd London And Tunbridge Wells' New Light On Golf 36 Pictures Revealing The Golf Secrets Of Arthur Havers, 1924.
"The hands and the head of the club should arrive at the ball at the same moment, that is what is known as the art of timing." Joshua Taylor
High Speed Back Spin (1930) By Seymour Dunn
"Stand rather close to the ball, which should be two inches behind a point midway between the feet, so that contact with the ball will be made while the club is yet on the down swing.
A good way to remember this is to form the habit of keeping your nose always two inches ahead of the ball.
The ball should be struck at as if you intended to drive it on a slight angle into the ground.
While with a wooden club the ball is struck a loose wristed, somewhat upward stinging slap. With irons it is struck a firm, crisp, downward chop.
The club head should meet the ball and continue on downward during the impact in such a way as to scalp off the surface grass ahead of where the ball lay but without digging into the turf.
This downward glancing blow is to give a high speed back spin to the ball so that when it reaches the green it will drop down dead.
Unlike Wooden Clubs
In the upswing, unlike wooden clubs, which are started away from the ball, handle foremost by loose wrists, the irons should be started away from the ball, head foremost by firm wrist action.
Reference : 'Golf Fundamentals' By Seymour Dunn The Saratogian Printing Service Saratoga Springs, N. Y. Copyright 1930 by Seymour Dunn All rights reserved The Iron Stroke Page 181 Book IV Orthodoxy Of Style Illustrating and Describing How to Play Every Simple and Scientific Stroke in the Game, The Full-Swing Mid-Iron Stroke Action Pictures in Motion Picture Series Page 183.
"In the upswing, unlike wooden clubs, which are started away from the ball, handle foremost by loose wrists, the irons should be started away from the ball, head foremost by firm wrist action. This can be accomplished best by a firm downward resistance from the left arm against the upward pull of the right arm." Seymour Dunn
The Secret Of Good Golf (1934) By Seymour Dunn
"Provided the fundamentals of a player's swing are reasonably correct, then, the secret of good golf may be put in a few words, and it will take but a few seconds to read them.
It may, however, take you many days to grasp the full significance of them.
It may then take you months of studious practice to properly translate their meaning into feeling, and finally it may take years to form this feeling in a fixed habit.
To my knowledge one thousand and thirty-four books have been written on golf in which the authors have tried to tell you just that, so think it over and keep thinking it over till you fully understand it.
It seems simple, and it is simple, in fact its very simplicity is what makes it so difficult for a learner to fully understand. The very physical easiness of it is hard for a learner to acquire.
If you whirl your body in an effort to give speed to the swing, you will at once throw your swing out of line.
This makes you cut across the ball and ruins your arm and hand work which means that the right forearm and hand slap will in all probability be spoiled, and the result will be a pulled slice i.e., a slice which starts somewhat to the left of the intended line of play and then swerves around to the right.
Let me repeat:
Reference : 'Standardized Golf Instruction Seymour Dunn' Published by Seymour Dunn 307 W. 49th St. New York City, U.S.A. Seymour Dunn Author of "GOLF FUNDAMENTALS" Head of Madison Square Garden Golf School New York City Standardized Golf Instruction In Five Books The Secret Of Good Golf Book II Dynamics Page 57 Copyright 1934 All Rights Reserved.
Download : '5 Open Champions And The Musselburgh Golf Story' By George M. Colville Chapter 16 Some Well-Known Professionals The Dunns "He was a fine teacher"
"You have arrived at the hitting area when your left wrist is about to come in line with your own head and the ball and while the club head is yet trailing far behind the hands. So I would repeat that the shoulder and arm movements do not whip the club head through, but merely swing the handle end of the club. It is the hands that whip the club head through. So do not use too much shoulder and arm power or that will make it impossible for the hands to do their work, which is to speed up the club head and get it through on time." Seymour Dunn
Power Of The Wrist (1938) By R. A. Whitcombe
"Now we come to the actual hitting and, as you hit, the club, for the first time, passes in front of the hands. The right hand, propelled with all the additional power of the wrist straightening out in its last terrific flick, moving with all its power applied, passes the left and goes on its path towards, on, and up to the target: illustrations D3 and G.
That split second as the club comes to the ball is the vital one in golf. Until he plays it to perfection the golfer will never attain length, or play his shots with that crispness which is always a marked feature of the professional's game.
Left Hand Working Back
It is not a bad idea to imagine the left hand working back from the target; to visualize the hands, wrists, and arms as scissors. When you come to hit the ball, that left may play various pranks. If it is not strong enough it will give way before the powerful right.
That left arm has got to be built up to be strong enough to give the right hand sufficient support actually to hit against and so increase its momentum.
Whatever your difficulties you have got to face the fact that at the moment of contact the left arm must be fully extended and firm enough to offer a sturdy resistance to the right. That's where length and crispness come from. Keep on practising that snap movement.
In it lies the difference between poor golf and good. And as you practise it do not forget that your shoulders are always trying to get in and usurp the power of the hands. It's the hands that must be made to do the work.
The hands must always beat the body."
Reference : 'R. A. Whitcombe Says Golf's No Mystery! Thirty Photographs 2/6 Net London: J.M. Dent And Sons Ltd. Golf's No Mystery! A book for golfers and beginners By R. A. Whitcombe Open Champion With a Foreword by Peter Lawless Illustrated with thirty photographs All rights reserved Made in Great Britain at The Temple Press Letchworth for J. M. Dent & Sons Ltd Aldine House Bedford St London First published 1938 Reprinted 1938 (twice) CHAP. X More Left Arm including "Keep that picture always ready at the back of your mind - the left arm extended and the right hand passing with a snap over the left, for that is how you have got to apply the fullest power possible to the ball." Page 63.
"That left arm has got to be built up to be strong enough to give the right hand sufficient support actually to hit against and so increase its momentum. That's where length and crispness come from." R. A. Whitcombe
Chin Behind The Ball Henry Cotton 1952
"A good key thought to timing is hit past your chin. To make sure of this, point your chin at a place one foot back of the ball when addressing it and keep it pointing there until after you have hit the ball, body weight is now completely shifted to left hip, the left leg should be very firm supporting the body weight in perfect balance with most of the weight upon the heel, body muscles now apply the brakes to the swing..." Seymour Dunn
"Notice that the maximum impact is achieved at the very split second that the right hand crosses the other. That is timing linked with opposed power. The hands are the point of control." George Duncan
"I explained that, when I advised a pupil to strengthen his left side, it was not only with the idea of making the arm and side control the swing better, but to enable it to resist better the blow given by the right arm. If you have been losing length lately and have not been playing as well as you are able, examine as well as you can the parts the right and left hands are playing in the shot." Henry Cotton
Timing For Opposed Power (1951) By George Duncan
Opposed power is related in all manner of ways to the correct playing of games.
Note the simple act of walking. The arm on the same side as the advancing foot swings back as the foot goes forward.
Basic Principle For Striking A Golf Ball
A Simple Test
Now for golf, with a simple test.
Take a club - any club - and a ball. Throw the ball down at any reasonable spot and take your stance. Hold the handle of the club with the right hand below the left. Leave a few inches of space between your hands, but keep the shaft straight towards the body.
Suddenly, snap the bottom hand in the direction you want the ball to travel and leave the top hand with a straight left arm as static as possible.
You are using opposed power. See how far you can send the ball by that method.
Available on Amazon : Golf at the gallop
Download : 'GOLF At The Gallop' by George Duncan Open Champion 1920, Match-play winner 1913, British Ryder Cup Captain 1929. Learn Opposed Power including "That is timing linked to opposed power" and "Weight movements in the swing" and "Phase three, and a very blunt point to remember here, is that the ground is not only for standing on, but to use."
"At impact it is of the utmost importance for length and direction of drive to strike with the right hand through on to a tight left wrist, so as to obtain leverage on the club shaft and club head. The player will find that this requires considerable study and practice, but it is very effective. If the left wrist is flabby neither satisfactory length or direction can be obtained." George Duncan
In His Swing A Sort Of Left Hand Against The Right By Henry Cotton
"I think what he meant was that he was hitting the ball as though he was driving it under a suspended carpet hanging on a line. The bottom side of the carpet was the height of his hands; he would hit the ball and the carpet would check his hands, and the club head would spring through below it. In other words, there was in his swing a sort of left hand against the right. I think people overlooked that, and still do." Henry Cotton
Left Wrist Firm Through Impact (1953) By Bobby Locke
"What is it that enables some people to play scratch golf while others never get into single-figure handicaps?
Well, most long-handicap players play mostly for pleasure and not too often. The long-handicap players who play frequently are another matter.
Their failure is that they do not concentrate on absorbing the essentials, the grip, the stance and the swing. Too many of them are eager to play as many holes as they can. They would be better employed playing fewer holes and spending more time on the practice ground. The practice ground is the place to gain confidence with all golf shots. Then, you say, there are a lot of scratch players who do not play much golf. At some time they must have played plenty.
To gain the standard required to hit a golf ball correctly - complete co-ordination of eye to ball, correct grip, feel of the club, imagination of the club-head meeting the ball, complete swing - practice is the only way.
There is no easy way to become a scratch golfer or champion. It is hard work, using the main basic principles and set methods of playing what I call 'novelty' shots, such as the draw, the fade, a high or low shot, sand-trap or chip shot.
On the way to a low handicap, playing and practising as often as possible is the only way.
- How I Play Golf 13 Fading The Ball "shows how so many players slice when they are trying to hit the ball straight",
- How I Play Golf 14 How To Play A Draw Shot "this is an asset since it adds distance"; "notice that there has been a slight roll of the wrists...that roll, if overdone, can be disastrous."
- How I Play Golf 8. The Long Irons "and the left wrist is held firm...";
- How I Play Golf 10. The Wedgemaster "my left wrist is firm and it is at this position, right-knee-high, that the right hand starts coming in...";
- How I Play Golf 11. The Sandtrap Shot "It is vital to keep the left wrist firm...";
- How I Play Golf 15. Low Shots Into The Wind "To do that one must keep a firm left wrist."
Reference : 'Bobby Locke On Golf' By Bobby Locke. First published in 1953. Country Life Limited 2-10 Tavistock Street London W.C.2. Part Two: How I Play Golf 1. Five Fundamentals, 13. Fading The Ball, page 109-111, 14. How To Play A Draw Shot, page 112-113. Teaching and Learning, page 125.
Reference : 'THE WALL STREET JOURNAL' On Sports Remembering the 'Wee Ice Mon' By Frederick C. Klein Updated July 13, 1999 Copyright 2014 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Available on Amazon : Bobby Locke On Golf
"I am now down almost to the 'right-knee-high' position with my hands, and this is the hitting position. It is here that the right hand takes possession to square the club face with the ball at impact. I have just hit the ball. Most of the weight has moved on to the left foot, and the left wrist is held firm." Locke A. D.
17:50-18:27 That Is The Secret of Power Tommy Armour
Striking A Golf Ball (1961) By Bobby Jones
British Amateur Champion 1930
This is done as the swing changes direction at the top.
Once this move is made, there is no need to hold anything back. The point at which the swing changes direction from up to down is one of those spots where the motion slows down enough so that a bit of conscious control may be applied.
A very useful trick at this point is to make certain of returning the elbow of the right arm directly to the ribs as the downswing commences, at the same time relaxing the right wrist and thereby increasing its inward set.
This has the effect of dropping the club a bit towards the player's rear and thus enhancing the opportunity of hitting straight through the ball on the line of play.
I have nearly always written of the golf swing as subjected to left-hand and left-side control.
I have done so because it is obvious that the width and arc of the swing are limited by the extension of the left arm. Since the left hand is above the right on the club, the left arm may be extended throughout all the movement taking place on the back swing, or before impact.
Download : 'GOLF Is My Game' By Bobby Jones CHAPTER 2 Striking The Ball "You may gain knowledge from the mere reading of this chapter that will help you in the playing of every golf shot you make for the rest of your life. This knowledge can make you a better golfer overnight. If you are a beginner, this chapter will start you off on the road to a correct understanding of the nature of golf."
Download : 'GOLF Is My Game' By Bobby Jones Gripping The Club "My prescription is, therefore, only that the club should be held mainly by the three smaller fingers of the left hand, and that the shaft should be laid across the middle joint of the index finger of this hand. The remainder of the gripping should be done as lightly as possible."
"As nearly as I can describe the sensation of striking a golf ball, it is a combination of a pull through with the left side, combined with a slapping action of the right and forearm, the left being responsible for keeping the swing on track, or in a groove, and the right being the agent responsible for bringing the movement to a well-timed climax as the ball is struck." Bobby Jones
Introducing Henry Cotton Three Times British Open Golf Champion
"When I studied Bobby Jones's swing I found that his hand action was particularly slack and loose. Yet, when people asked him about it, he said there was a buffer action in the swing. He was aware there was a shock at impact. In other words, there was in his swing a sort of left hand against the right, a resistance to the right somewhere, and I think people overlooked that, and still do." Henry Cotton
You Must Learn To Do This (1964) By Henry Cotton
"THE ACTION THAT PUZZLES beginners.
How the left hand brings the club-face to square at impact.
As the back of my left hand is parallel to the club-face (a two-knuckle grip at address), it does simplify the task for me.
But in Nos 1, 2 and 3 the left hand is gradually turning down and, of course, the club-face follows.
Beginners can get in the position in No 1 reasonably well, but find it difficult to square up the club-face without bringing the club-head off its track with the right arm and shoulder.
To Withstand Best The Shock Of Impact
This action is common in all good golf swings as it is part of the action to bring the blade up to square when the right elbow is glued to the side and to withstand best the shock of impact and to flight the ball.
(Note, too, how the weight is behind the ball)."
Download : 'Study The Golf Game With Henry Cotton', Facts About The Golf Swing You Must Learn How To Do This including 'Hands Move From A to B Club-Head Moves From X to Y ; Shoulder Level Makes a 90 Degrees Angle With The Left Arm' to note "No 2 Wrist cock increased to 40 degrees" page 21. By Henry Cotton, Three times Open Champion.
Available on Amazon : Study the Golf Game with Henry Cotton
Download : 'Henry Cotton Says...' Hands and grip page 8. First published in 1962 by Country Life Limited. Illustrated by Roy Ullyett © Henry Cotton 1962.
"The secret of the good player is here - how to square up the club-face from open at this point in the fraction of a second it takes to reach the ball." Henry Cotton
Back To A Good Putting Stroke (1964) By Tony Lema
"At the beginning of 1961 I was struggling hard to pick up enough checks to get into the top forty on the official lists and I was doing pretty well until, suddenly, I ran into a severe case of the putting jitters. They got so bad that I began to think the only solution would be to get out of tournament golf altogether. I was not going to let a thing like putting ruin my entire life. I would quit golf first.
I had started taking between 38 and 40 putts per round, some six or eight more than the 32 putts most of us consider about right for a consistent game of golf. I was never able to hole a four-footer for a par and I'll usually come up with about five or six three-putts a round.
At Grand Rapids I combined bad playing with my usual bad putting, missed the 36-hole cutoff and headed back for Detroit. It occurred to me that Detroit was the home of Horton Smith, the pro at the Detroit Country Club, and one of the game's great putters.
I had met him a couple of years before, decided now that I would call him up with the hope that he would remember me and be willing to do something about the sad state of my putting stroke. I looked up the number of the club in the directory, dialed the number and soon he was on the line.
"Hello, Mr. Smith," I said. "This is Tony Lema. Do you remember that we met a couple of years ago?" "Sure, I remember, Tony," he said. "How are you?" "Well, I'm not too good," I said. "My putting is shot to pieces, and unless it gets together again I'm just going to have to quit the tour. I was hoping that you might be able to help me." "Absolutely," he said. "You come right on over. I'm sure all you've lost is your confidence, but you come over and we'll get that confidence back again for you and get you back to a good putting stroke."
I felt better almost as soon as I had set the telephone back in its cradle. I drove over to Horton's club and for an hour we practiced on the putting green. He talked to me about what a putting stroke should be and what I could do about smoothing out mine. I could feel the confidence ebbing back into me as he talked.
Horton explained that putting was almost entirely a right-handed stroke and that the left hand was there only to help keep the blade on line. He demonstrated an extremely helpful exercise. This involved holding the putter with nothing but my right hand and hitting the ball at the hole from two feet, then four feet, then six and finally 10 feet. My stroke came back.
It was a miracle. Horton couldn't have been more considerate and I can never thank him enough for what he did."
Reference : 'TONY LEMA's (British Open Champion) Inside Story of The Professional Golf Tour' By Tony Lema with Gwilym S. Brown London W. Foulsham & Co. Ltd. London Toronto Cape Town Sydney Copyright © 1964 By Anthony David Lema And Gwilym Slater Brown 10. Comeback with a putter 116.
Download : 'TONY LEMA's (British Open Champion) Inside Story of The Professional Golf Tour' By Tony Lema with Gwilym S. Brown 10. Comeback with a putter 116 London W. Foulsham & Co. Ltd. London Toronto Cape Town Sydney Copyright © 1964 By Anthony David Lema And Gwilym Slater Brown.
Download : 'The Refinements of Putting' By Walter J. Travis including "I BELIEVE that putting should be done always with one hand - with one hand actively at work, that is. The left one should be used only for the purpose of swinging the clubhead backwards preparatory to making the stroke. When it has done that its work is over, and the right hand should then be the sole master of the situation, the left being merely kept in attachment to it for steadying purposes. When only one hand is thus employed, the gain in accuracy is very great." The American Golfer VOL. XV No. 4 February 1916 Page 249.
"My putting is shot to pieces, and unless it gets together again I'm just going to have to quit the tour. I was hoping that you might be able to help me. Horton explained that putting was almost entirely a right-handed stroke and that the left hand was there only to help keep the blade on line. My stroke came back. It was a miracle. Horton couldn't have been more considerate, and I can never thank him enough for what he did." Tony Lema
A Buffer Action In The Swing (1980) By Henry Cotton
"When I use the word 'guide' I do not mean 'steer'. I am not talking about how the ball flies, I am talking about how you fly it, how you deliver the face of the club to the ball.
The object of the game is to strike the ball with the club head square to the line you intend to fly it, and you have to have a certain amount of touch, or feel, for this to be possible. I think the accent should be put on 'striking' from the moment you start the game, and that to project a ball there is an impact and you must realize that there is a shock coming.
In other words, the ball is bounced off the club face. It is not not pushed along.
When I first began to take a serious interest in golf, the great international hero was amateur Bobby Jones. Jones was then the pure amateur. The press stories about the Amateur Championship were equivalent to what we get today for the Open Championship.
When I studied Bobby Jones's swing I found that his hand action was particularly slack and loose. He did not deliver the club as squarely, or as solidly, as other players of slightly after his era whom I admired, like Byron Nelson, Sam Snead, and Ben Hogan.
Jones's attack on the ball was a rather loose-handed one, with a certain amount of club slip in his fingers, and he had very smooth grips on the shafts too, which would encourage the club to slip. Yet, when people asked him about it, he said that there was a buffer action in the swing.
This buffer action is what we today call the impact. He was aware that there was a shock at impact.
He realized that the ball was 'shocked' off the club and that he had to absorb it. He wrote about this, but I do not think that many understood what he meant. I think that what he meant was that he was hitting the ball as though he was driving it under a suspended carpet hanging on a line. The bottom side of the carpet was the height of his hands; he would hit the ball and the carpet would check his hands, and the club head would spring through below it.
In other words, there was in his swing a sort of left hand against the right, a resistance to the right hand somewhere, and I think people overlooked that, and still do.
Now, when a lot of players today write on the game, they ignore it too. They have been hitting balls for so many years that they do not realize that there is a point in the swing when you have to absorb the shock, and take it in your hands.
Some modern thinking has it that the left hand continues unimpeded through impact though there is a feeling of taking the impact shock on the hands.
That is why learning with the tyre, where the impact is some 200 times more fierce than that of a golf ball, you can learn to anticipate the big impact, so toning up your muscles to absorb a golf shot almost without realizing it has happened.
You can have the finest swing in the world and yet not hit good shots. There is no guarantee that a super swing will produce a good shot because a super swing does not guarantee the face coming square to the ball. But you can have a bad swing and the strength to hit squarely with judgment and skill - and be a very successful golfer.
Experience has taught me that the primordial thing is to teach a pupil to find the ball, without any specific swing action. Once he can make a contact he can work on a method, hoping that the method will make the contact more mechanical."
Reference : 'Thanks For The Game' The Best of Golf with Henry Cotton Sidgwick Jackson London First published in 1980 in Great Britain by Sidgwick and Jackson Limited Copyright © 1980 by Henry Cotton Designed by Paul Watkins ISBN 0 283 98640 9
Download : The British NEWSPAPER Archive co.uk 'Facts And Ideas' by Henry Cotton Sports & Country. 24.1.51 09.7.17 including "It is not correct to sweep "the whole lot through", a "buffer action" as expressing best the sort of minute recoil in the swing."
Download : 'What Golf Is All About' by Henry Cotton, Penina, 1980, including "a sort of left hand against the right, a resistance to the right hand somewhere." Page 169.
"As far as applying power goes, I wish that I had three right hands! On a full shot you want to hit the ball as hard as you can with your right hand. But this is only half the story. If you hit hard with only the right and let the left go to sleep, you will not only lose much valuable power, you will also run into all the errors that result when the right hand overpowers the left. The average golfer's problem is not so much a lack of ability as it is a lack of knowing what he should do. The left is a power hand too." William Benjamin Hogan
Hands. Always The Hands (1993) By Peter Dobereiner
The Received Wisdom Of Golf Theory
"To over-simplify a highly complex subject, the received wisdom of golf theory was, and largely remains, that the club-head is accelerated by a rotation of the body multiplied by a downward pull of the arms to a point where centrifugal force takes over and carries the club-head through the impact zone, with the wrists acting purely as free-swinging hinges.
The ball is almost incidental; it simply happens to be located on the path of the swinging club-head at the point where the speed is at its maximum. In other words, the golf swing was a flail action in which the only function of the hands was to hold on to the grip.
Never Wavered The Hands Held The Key To Golf
From his earliest days as a teenager Cotton became convinced that the hands had a much more vital contribution to make.
And while he assiduously watched and questioned great players and experimented with their methods, he never wavered in his belief that the hands held the key to golf.
The delicacy of touch on the club was emphasised as he turned away as his hands moved back the club-head remained at rest momentarily.
He made a full shoulder turn, with the hips opening about 45 degrees and, like all good players, by the time the club reached its position at the top, a markedly short backswing with the club-face in an open position, the lower body had already started to recoil.
How On Earth He Could Generate
The downswing was so leisured that the onlooker wondered how on earth he could generate enough clubhead speed to hit the ball any distance at all. The human eye could not follow the speed of the action as those mighty forearms whipped the club through the impact zone and so it seemed that it had not happened.
The only image on the retina was of Cotton standing perfectly still, both feet solidly flat on the ground, his head immovable, looking at the spot from which his divot had been displaced. His extended right arm, with the back of the hand pointing at the sky, having rolled over the left, was waist high on the follow through before there was the slightest movement of the head to follow the progress of the ball.
Here Was The Mystery
The other characteristic Cotton action which was clearly discernible was the snapping straight of the left leg to brace his body against the shock of impact.
But here was the mystery.
How could such a languid movement generate the sound of a whip-crack as the club met the ball? And what strange force was propelling the ball such an inordinate distance on a bee-line towards the target?
The Answer, Of Course
Only a player of prodigious strength and immaculate timing could play golf like Henry Cotton.
Download : 'MAESTRO: The Life of HENRY COTTON' Peter Dobereiner With Introduction By Laddie Lucas The Life of Sir Henry Cotton Hodder & Stoughton London Sydney Auckland Copyright © Peter Dobereiner 1992 First published in Great Britain in 1992 by Hodder and Stoughton Ltd This edition 1993 Part Two Cotton the Golfer 105 Chapter 15 Page 138 The Hands. Always The Hands Page 145. "Most social golfers will despair at the message because they simply do not have...
Download : 'Your Hands May Be The Weak Link' Sport & Country, 31.3.44 09.7.17 The British NEWSPAPER Archive co.uk Image © Illustrated London News Group, By Henry Cotton including "In the series of photographs of myself on this page, I selected those which I feel give quite an alive view of the hands "doing their stuff." "I know that in photographs of golf-swings the writer can often read into the chosen pictures what he is trying to put over, but out of the large number of pictures I have, I do not think any illustrate better the point Seymour Dunn makes about the necessity for the hands being strong", No. 2, Hitting against the left hand."
"The most common slice is the one caused by bad timing of the wrist whip which results in the club handle going through ahead of the club head. Slicers should learn to get the club head through on time with the handle. In this way the slice will be cured and distance gained instead of lost." Seymour Dunn
Like A Pendulum! (1996) By Jeffrey J. Peshut
"If you examine the golf swings of all the great players throughout the history of the game, you will notice that they all have one thing in common. They all swing their hands like a pendulum during their golf swings.
This is true regardless of the length of the club or the length of the swing. Whether a 300-yard drive or a 3-foot putt, their hands swing like a pendulum.
But don't take my word for it; check it for yourself. The next time you are watching a golf tournament on television, focus closely on how the pros move their hands. Ignore everything else. Focus only on their hands.
Notice the smooth, rhythmic swinging motion. Notice that the tempo is the same for every swing. Notice how their hands travel along the same arc on every swing. Notice how their hands travel the same distance on the back swing as on the follow-through.
These are all characteristics of a pendulum.
It won't take you very long to notice that they all swing their hands like a pendulum with every club, and with every swing. Once you see what I'm talking about, congratulate yourself.
You just discovered golf's timeless fundamental! The rest of this book is devoted to teaching you how to incorporate this fundamental into your golf swing."
Reference : 'GOLF'S TIMELESS FUNDAMENTAL' Written by Jeffrey J. Peshut Illustrated by Jay Moore The Basic Elements of Sports Series ICS Books Inc. Merrillville, IN Copyright © 1997 by Jeffrey J. Peshut Chapter One Discover Golf's Timeless Fundamental Page 1.
Reference : Evans Scholars Foundation at www.wgaesf.org which awards college scholarships to caddies from modest means. Illinois, U.S.A.
Download : 'Chick Evans' Golf Book' The Story of the Sporting Battles of the Greatest of all Amateur Golfers By CHARLES (CHICK) EVANS, JR. Sixty-five Illustrations Published THOS. E. WILSON & CO. New York San Francisco Chicago by THE REILLY & LEE CO. Chicago Copyright, 1921 by Thos. E. Wilson & Co. All Rights Reserved Made in U. S. A. CHAPTER XXVI Clubs And How To Use Them PAGE 324, quote (Page 327): "If you swing inside, or outside of this you will be in for trouble. Consider your club a pencil with which you have drawn the upward line, and retrace the line coming down," and 'CHICK EVANS' Golf Book THE PUTTER'
"For those of you not familiar with it, the Evans Scholars program was founded in the early 1930's by Charles E. "Chick" Evans, Jr., who between 1910 and 1920 was one of the world's greatest golfers. In 1916 he won both the U.S. Amateur and U.S. Open, a feat equaled only by the legendary Bobby Jones in his grand slam year of 1930. Today, the Evans Scholars program is the largest privately funded college scholarship program in the world. Looking back, I realize that I have Chick to thank not only for providing me with a college education, but also for providing me with much of the inspiration I've needed to write this book." Jeffrey J. Peshut
Secret Of HOGAN'S SWING (2006) By Tom Bertrand
"Fellow players began to suspect that Hogan had discovered a vein of gold and selfishly wanted to keep it all for himself.
But Hogan Wasn't Talking
Soon "a secret" became "the secret," while Hogan's continued silence and success only fueled the public's growing demand to know.
From Hogan's point of view, he was just a player laboring away on his golf game while everyone else was looking for secret formulas encoded somewhere inside the fruits of those labors.
And That's No Secret
Reference : 'The Secret of HOGAN's SWING' Tom Bertrand with Printer Bowler WILEY John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Copyright 2006 by Tom Bertrand and Printer Bowler. All rights reserved. Design and composition by Navta Associates, Inc. 4 Tracking the secret.
Reference : Life Magazine Ben Hogan's Secret : A Debate 5 Apr 1954 'Ben Hogan's Secret The champ says he has one (try and find it) as experts debate what it is' Having created an atmosphere of mystery, Hogan nourishes it by dropping clues. The secret, he says, "is as old as the hickory shaft and just as obsolete in golf today."
Reference : 'Sports Illustrated' March 11, 1957 a Time Inc. weekly publication BEN HOGAN SAYS: YOU CAN PLAY IN THE 70s! The first of five lessons by the greatest golfer of our time THE MODERN FUNDAMENTALS OF GOLF BY BEN HOGAN WITH HERBERT WARREN AND ANTHONY RAVIELI "The average golfer is entirely capable of building a correct, powerful swing that will repeat. I see no reason why he shouldn't play in the 70s"
"The left forearm has absorbed the unwinding of the shoulders by a pronation twist. Thus the wrists are set two ways. They are (1) turned due to the twist of the forearms, and they are (2) bent, or cocked. It is the combined uncocking and untwisting action that produces the so-called snap of the wrists. And this last instant snap, or whipping movement, is responsible for 85% of the velocity of the club head." Seymour Dunn
"B--- B--- A-----T the R----" (2017) By Ronald Ross
"I always remained faithful to my hand action whereby the ball was whipped, not pushed. Using my hands and wrists in the way I do, and have done for a long time, does not put any abnormal strain on the spine, for the body plays a normal role: it does not have to do a kind of corkscrew movement in order to get the club square to the ball." Henry Cotton
"A momentary resistance must be set up in the left side of the body against further turning to the left. This is termed "hitting against the left side." This left side resistance makes the wrist whip possible, and the timing of this resistence controls the timing of the wrist whip, and thereby the timing of the club head. The ball should be despatched with a smart, snappy, whip-like crack." Seymour Dunn
Reference : 'GOLF FUNDAMENTALS Seymour Dunn The Saratogian Printing Service Saratoga Springs, N. Y. Golf Fundamentals Orthodoxy Of Style Seymour Dunn Copyright 1922 by Seymour Dunn All rights reserved Published in Great Britain & The Colonies By The "Golf Monthly," St James Place, Edinburgh Book I Mechanical Laws of The Golf Swing, Book 2 Dynamic Laws Of The Golf Stroke, Book 3 Golf Psychology, Book 4 How To Play Every Simple And Scientific Stroke in The Game.
Reference: 'STANDARDIZED GOLF INSTRUCTION' Third Edition, Published by Seymour Dunn Queens Plaza Outdoor Golf School 21st Street and 41st Avenue Long Island City, New York, U. S. A. In Five Books Book I Method of Learning And Teaching Book II Golf Instruction Code Book III Orthodox Golf Form Book IV Remedies For Swing Errors Book V Golf Swing Illustrated Copyright 1934 - Seymour Dunn All Rights Reserved. Seymour Dunn Author of "GOLF FUNDAMENTALS" Golf Professional Teterboro Golf School Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, U. S. A.
Download : The Golfer Dunn Seabreeze Pro, Has Background Of Golf' Beach Florida Journal, Friday, Jan 13, 1939 including "One of five golfing sons of a Scotch golfing father. Seymour Dunn, the new local pro started his golf schooling under his father's tutelage at the age of five Bob was born in the United States but he is as Scotch as the heather and the haggis, and his golf game would delight the heart of the most dour member of St. Andrews. Dunn possesses what is recognised as one of the most powerful drives in golf." Source : site:google.com/newspapers "seymour dunn"
Download : 'Spalding's Official Guide Golf History At A Glance, National Open Champions Yr. 1894 Winner Willie Dunn and Runner-up W. Campbell St. Andrews Golf Club., Mt. Hope, N. Y. Runner-up 1895 Newport G. C. Winner Horace Rawlins The Internet Archive. The Dunns of Musselborough, Seymour Dunn, including "Willie Dunn, Jr., with moustache, is seated left; to his right are Horace Rawlins, on the ground, and Willie Anderson, arm around Alex Smith" page 30, source: The Dunns descendants, New York, 2016.
Available on Amazon : Golf Fundamentals: Orthodoxy of Style
"Immediately prior to and during the moment of the club head's contact with the ball, the right hand speeds up the club head. It cannot do this if the left hand fails to offer a backward resistance against the upper end of the club handle. Of course, while this forward pressure of the right hand and backward resistance of the left is going on, the sweep of the arms and the turning of the body are carrying both hands through the swing. Nevertheless, the hands do work decidedly against each other. If they don't, the club handle will go through ahead of the club head." Seymour Dunn
"Among those present at Bad Ems was Henry Cotton, who, in addition to winning the German Open, gave a fantastic exhibition of strength and accuracy by knocking a shooting-stick out of the ground with a 1-iron shot at a range of about 20 yards. Though he had won the British Open in 1934 (and had been presented with the trophy wearing my overcoat - which I still possess), this year, 1937, really represented his prime.
There had been no Americans when he won at Sandwich in 1934. In 1937 at Carnoustie there had been the whole American Ryder Cup team and with a stupendous final 71 in driving rain, almost the best individual round I ever saw, he beat them all.
We all tend to inflate the heroes of our early days but I have seen them all since that time and cannot believe that any of them, Hogan included, hit the ball better than Cotton.
Nor do I know anybody who did not himself automatically hit the ball better when playing with him, though this is no place in which to be tempted into the technicalities of golf. It was a great advantage in my own line of life, however, to be his contemporary and to be good enough to play occasionally in his company, albeit not on level terms.
He won his third Open after the war, fourteen years after his first, and, when King George VI came to Muirfield to watch, he put on a 66 for his benefit."
Reference : 'My Life And Soft Times' Henry Longhurst Cassel London Cassel & Company Ltd © Sliema Publications Ltd 1971 First published 1971 Printed in Great Britain by Redwood Press Limited. Some Modest Successes Page 113.
"I could not stop my story without bringing into it the names of the three greatest caddies I can call to mind. They were Pawky Corstorphine, my own caddie; Big Crawford, Ben Sayers's caddie; and John Fiery, or Fiery John, as we called him, Willie Park's caddie. We took them about with us to all our big matches, never feeling safe without them.
Pawky Corstorphine had a grand understanding of the game, and I always knew that the club he put into my hands was the club to use. Nobody could beat him at teeing a ball according to the weather and the shot required. He also kept the clubs in first-class order. He walked around quietly and never gave advice unless he was asked for it, when he always had it ready. "Don't risk anything; we'll play wi' oor heids and win," was a favourite saying of Pawky's.
Big Crawford was a giant, and he had a voice like a roar of thunder. Standing 6 ft. 3 in., he presented a great contrast to Ben Sayers, and no caddie was ever more devoted. He thought there was nobody like Ben, and he was quite right in that; for Sayers always was, and still is, the little wonder of the golfing world. When Big Crawford bawled at the crowd to stand back, they needed no second bidding. His great voice seemed to blow them aside.
The great peculiarity of John Fiery was he hated golf-bags, and always preferred to carry the clubs loosely under his arm. "They come readier to hand that way, and ye dinna tear the grips tugging them oot o' the bag," was the reason he gave."
Reference : 'Fifty Years of Golf : My Memories' By Andra Kirkaldy of St. Andrews Told To Clyde Foster With 21 Illustrations T. Fisher Unwin Ltd London: Aldelphi Terrace First published in 1921 (All rights reserved) CHAPTER XII The "Nineteenth Hole" 210 https://archive.org/
"You don't have to snoop for long around Bob Toski' Boca Raton, Fla., home to realize that the 87-year-old teaching icon has really lived.
"You've influenced countless golfers. Who influenced you?"
Seymour Dunn [the noted designer and author] would be up there. I didn't realize what a great teacher he was until I read Golf Fundamentals.
"What's the biggest fix needed in golf instruction today?"
You can't teach golf the way they're teaching it these days.
The swing starts in the hands.
Reference : 'Bob Toski on trading a Tour career for teaching, what today's instructors do wrong, and his cheating scandal.' Alan Bastable 2013 Tour And News http://www.golf.com
"By one of those strokes of luck that can only be called uncanny, I found myself a few weeks later on a trip to Western America and decided to stop off at Phoenix to visit the Ping factory.
There I talked to Allan Solheim about first principles.
ALLAN Well, if you want to improve your play, I do feel it is very important that you're 'fitted' properly. Some people are tall, some short and it's very important that, for instance, the lie of the club is right for each individual.
What do you mean by the 'lie' of the club?
ALLAN Whether the toe is up or down. In other words, the sole should generally be parallel with the ground for the ball to go straight. If the toe is up in the air, then the ball will hook or will be pulled left. If the toe is down, a player will push it right and fade the ball.
MIKE So the ordinary golfer would begin by checking that when he's in the address position, the sole of the club is absolutely level... What do you look for next?"
Reference : 'Golf with Tony Jacklin' Michael Barratt Step by step, a great professional shows an enthusiastic amateur how to play every stroke of the game Arthur Barker Limited London A subsidiary of Wendenfield (Publishers) Limited Copyright © Michael Barratt, 1978 Photographs by Mike Busselle and Behram Kapadia Published in Great Britain by Arthur Barke Limited 94 Clapham High Street London SW4 Printed in Great Britain by Butler & Tanner Ltd, Frome and London Illustrations: Front jacket photographs courtesy of Sport and General Jacket design by Behram Kapadia and Peter Theodosiou The Clubs Page 123
This move resulted in a type of torque similar to that of casting a fishing pole...
To create snap in your swing, start your downswing with your body and arms an instant before your club reaches the top of your backswing.
This, in turn, will increase your wrist hinge on your downswing and snap the clubhead powerfully into the golf ball."
Reference : 'Time The Snap' By Jay Golden, PGA, Illustrations by Phil Frank Jay Golden is a member of the PGA of America's teaching committee and a two-time quarter finalist in the National Long Drive Championship wwww.golftipsmag.com/instruction/quick-tips/time-the-snap
"The second point to which we wish to refer is of value. Clarke thinks that at the impact the hands and arms should have the feel of being held back so as to let the club-head go through first. In particular he affirms that the left hand must be held back to enable the right hand to come in effectively.
This is the old and still not fully cleared-up question of the snap of the wrists.
Vardon, with great authority, denies any special function to the wrists. Braid, equally great, is equally positive that they have something to do in the way of flick or snap - a smaller swing within the larger sweep of the arms.
Aleck Smith was, we think, the first to recommend holding the left arm back in his Lessons on Golf but he has not given us the reason why. I. H. Taylor is silent but photography would seem to show that he agrees with Aleck Smith in practice.
If the hands try to keep pace and speed with the club-head only, there is no snap; the swing is lifeless. This is the point which Clarke strives to elucidate and we really think that his little book will help to make clearer the mystery of the flick or snap about which so much has been said and written." R. Stanley Weir
Reference : LA84 www.la84.org Foundation Sports Library Digital Library Collection Periodicals Golf Illustrated & Magazines Golf Illustrated & Outdoor America (1914-1922) 'Two Recent Books' The Ball And The Book Common Sense Golf By Charles Clarke, McBride, Nast & Company, N.Y., 1914
Reference : HATHI TRUST Digital Library 'Common Sense Golf' By Charles Clarke Professional to the Rotherham Golf Club, Yorks AND Mottram Gilbert New York, McBride, Nast and Company, 1914 at https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/008898449 'Full View' (original from Princeton University) Digitized by Google Page 36 :"The left hand must be held back at the moment of impact in order to enable the right hand to do its fair share of work. I lay great stress on this keeping back of the left hand; the right hand must hit if we are to get any length at all; and if the left hand is not held back the right hand has no resistance to work against."
"But throw that ball against a tilted surface and it bounces up into the air."
Reference : 'GOLF' By Bob MacDonald and Les Bolstad Athletic Institute Series Copyright © 1961 by The Athletic Institute Published by Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. 419 Fourth Avenue, New York 16, New York Manufactured in the United States of America Library of Congress Catalog Card No.: 61-15870 1 Origin Of Golf Page 34.
"Golf in America had its first real beginning in 1887, when Mr. John Reid and Mr. Robert Lockhart, two expatriated Scotchmen, started to play the game on some pasture land near the city of Yonkers, N.Y. And now, in the autumn of 1897, the club has just taken possession of what they hope will be a permanent home. The new course of 18 holes is at Mount Hope, on the Putnam railway, twenty miles from New York City, and the club embraces a tract of 160 acres of the picturesque Westchester County. The course is over 5,000 yards in playing distance, and possesses grand possibilities for good golf.
The Chicago Golf Club has at Wheaton (a suburb of Chicago) what is undoubtedly the finest golf course in all America. Next upon the list of eighteen-hole courses comes Ardsley, the Millionaires' Club, as it is sometimes called. The club grounds are at Dobbs Ferry-on-the-Hudson, and the club owns a magnificent piece of property stretching for half a mile along the banks of the beautiful river and then running back into the country.
Willie Dunn was employed to lay out the course (at first of nine holes) and he was given carte blanche in the matter of expense.
There are 89 clubs in the U.S. Golf Association, 17 associate, and 72 allied members. The Association was organised December 22, 1894, five clubs - St Andrews, Brookline, Shinnecock Hills, Newport, and Chicago - being the original and charter members.
The open championship is conducted under medal rules, and consists of thirty-six holes. The winner receives a gold medal, $150 in money (or in plate if won by an amateur), and the custody of the championship cup. The second, third, fourth, and fifth men receive $100, $50, $25 and $10 respectively. The open champions : 1894, Willie Dunn ; 1895, Horace Rawlins; 1896, James Foulis ; 1897, Joseph Lloyd. The colleges have also taken up the game, and the Inter-collegiate Association, composed of Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Columbia, and the University of Pennsylvania held its first championship meeting on the Ardsley course last July, L. P. Bayard, of Princeton, winning the individual championship, and Yale the team honours."
Reference : 'The World of Golf' The Isthmian Library Edited by B. Fletcher Robinson No. 3. The World of Golf By Garden Smith with Chapters contributed by W. J. MacGeagh, W. G. Van Tassel Sutphen, and Miss Amy Pascoe Illustrated London A. D. Innes Company Limited 1898 Chapter XVII. Golf In America page 276.
""The correct groove of the swing" is a much talked-of thing, but mighty few seem to know what it really is. Geometrically, it is an arc based on an oblique plane which lines up with the ball and is in line with the intended direction of play.
If two canvases like the one shown in the illustration were placed face to face but four inches apart, a player could step into the hole, insert the club head between the two canvases, and swing the club in what might be termed a "groove" formed by the two canvases.
Such is the correct groove of the swing.
There would be no wandering of the club head from the right path because the canvases would not permit it.
Incidentally, the identical piece of canvas shown in these illustrations has been in use in my golf school since the year 1903 for the very purpose of assisting my pupils to visualize and feel out the groove of the correct swing, and many a champion who had lost the groove of his swing has regained it with the help of this very canvas."
Reference : 'Standardized Golf Instruction' Third Edition, Published by Seymour Dunn Queens Plaza Outdoor Golf School 21st Street and 41st Avenue Long Island City, New York, U. S. A. Seymour Dunn Author of Golf Fundamentals Golf Professional Teterboro Golf School Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, U. S. A. Copyright 1934 - Seymour Dunn All Rights Reserved Book V Golf Swing Illustrated Illustration 3 Top of the Swing "The correct groove of the swing" Page 140.
"The left hand's importance comes in guiding the club and in keeping the clubface in the proper arc and square so that the right hand can swing into the solid left side and continue hitting through the ball.
The left hand is no different than the hinges of a door.
The hinges are so placed as to permit the door to open and close smoothly every time and in the same arc.
The left hand must stand firm in order to guide the right along the downward arc. When your left hand is right, you will hit consistent shots.
They are bound to slice the ball because they have to open the clubface when their hands assume their natural position on the backswing. The club stays open at impact, and the ball unfortunately has no place to go but to the right.
Positioned incorrectly, the left hand will collapse at the critical moment of impact, leaving the right hand without guidance. Check the position of your left hand at address. Make sure you can see at least three knuckles. The right hand is placed on the club so that the grip is mainly in the fingers and the V points to the right shoulder. Now it is positioned for a grooved, powerful swing."
Reference : 'Better Golf After Fifty', Copyright © 1967 by Gene Sarazen with Roger Ganem. Harper & Row, Publishers, New York.
"Before making the last mention of Jersey, I might take the opportunity of referring to a point of parentage and blood upon which there is sometimes some speculation among golfers when they reflect upon the success that has attended our family on the links, and particularly my brother Harry.
They wonder, so to say, whether, in the first place, there is any French blood in us, and whether that has in any way given us a peculiar touch, or temperament, or anything that has contributed to our success.
As to the touch and temperament I can say nothing, since a man has no experience of any save his own, and can make no comparisons; but I can say that we have French blood in us, for our mother was French, though our father was English. When we were all at home together father and mother used to talk French, and I myself could speak it better than most of the others."
Reference : 'Great Golfers In The Making By Thirty-Four Famous Players' Edited By Henry Leach Being Autobiographical Accounts Of The Early Progress Of The Most Celebrated Players, With Reflections On The Morals Of Their Experience, By John L. Low, Harold H. Hilton, Horace G. Hutchinson, J. E. Laidlay, Walter J. Travis, James Robb, Edward Blackwell, Harry Vardon, James Braid, J. H. Taylor, Alexander Herd, Willie Park, Tom Morris, Jack White, Etc. Etc. With Twenty-Four Illustrations Second Edition Methuen & Co. 36 Essex Street W.C. London First Published January 1907 Second Edition 1907. XXIX Tom Vardon (English International; Second in Open Championship, 1903 The Jersey Strain Page 251 including Page 114 H. Chandler Egan American Amateur Champion, 1904, 1905 "I have been given to slicing and pulling off the course at the most embarrassing and unexpected moments. I have tried every remedy I could think of, but as yet have met with little success. As a result I have had a great deal of experience in playing out of trouble." and Page 256 Tom Vardon "He must go through the lot like a flash and finish his drive like the crack of a whip. I am sure that that is the way to drive, and that it counts for more than for any flexibility of body or anything of that kind. However, this is a long story, and I am dropping into a very big subject."
Reference : 'Trenham Golf History' George Low, Jr. A Chronicle of the Philadelphia Section PGA and Golf in the Philadelphia Area by Peter C. Trenham & The Leaders The Legends - 1930 to 1939.
"The second lesson from Ben Hogan is given in his explanation of how he figured out the nuances of his golf swing.
Hogan stated that he "dug the answers out of the dirt."
You too can do so as the dirt, or the divot hole that you leave in the ground, hides a lot of information that pertains to your swing. In summary, the direction of the divot illustrates the direction of your swing path at the base of the arc."
Reference : www.pgatour.com 'The Tour Report' On the Mark - Dig it out of the dirt April 21 2012.
"I decided then that mental and physical relaxation during competition was the most valuable asset any golfer could possess.
Concentrate on playing the best you can on each shot...if it's a good one, that's fine. If it's bad, forget it. I expected to make so many bad ones anyway. I had to recognise that fact and aim to get the good ones where they counted most.
It taught me to look at each round as a unit and to take individual bad shots in my stride. I went back to my job as a pro at the Country Club of Rochester. Back to keeping the golf shop, giving lessons and making golf clubs. But what a difference in my outlook.
Here I was, twenty-one years old and Open Champion of the United States.
I had concentrated on getting the ball where I wanted it. Imitating Vardon's stance and swing at Brookline had made me aware of the value of perfect posture and body rhythm such as he had developed."
Reference : 'The Walter Hagen Story' By Walter Hagen With Margaret Seaton Heck Heinemann Melbourne London Toronto First published 1957 Printed in Great Britain at The Windmill Press Kingswood, Surrey 5 Champion, 1914 Page 34.
"I had acquired the knack of flicking the ball with my clubs when I was a small boy in Wales and when I was never allowed to hit full shots in case I broke windows.
I had to be content with flicking balls twenty or thirty yards on a patch of ground near the clubhouse, and I am convinced that it was this early training that enabled me to develop a hand action that is at the heart of my swing today. Many good golfers have a flick action built into their swings.
It's a movement that occurs in the hitting zone.
When you flick at the ball, you learn to make correct use of your hands at the bottom of the swing at impact, and there is no reason at all why adult golfers should not learn this action."
Reference : 'Thirty Years of Championship Golf Dai Rees (With John Ballantine) An Autobiography' Stanley Paul London First published 1968 © Dai Rees 1968 Page 24.
"The missing stroke.
That is the secret to turning the tables on America in the Ryder Cup. I believe it can be found, not in the driving or on second strokes - in both of which departments the British, by general consent, are equal or superior to the Americans - but in the simple pitch to the green.
It is in this one department that Americans have the advantage of the British in Ryder Cup play. Our young players have got to learn to play the pitch wedge the way the Americans do, and the way I myself have done for years - by hitting the ball with arms, hands and knees, all working as one piece, and to really attack the top of the flag.
Too many Britons flick loose shots to the greens."
Reference : 'Thirty Years of Championship Golf Dai Rees (With John Ballantine) An Autobiography' Stanley Paul London First published 1968 © Dai Rees 1968, Page 179.
"Vardon summarised the perfect golf drive in seven golden rules:
- Keep the head steady and do not let the left heel turn outwards - then the body can only wind up when the arms go back.
- Grip firmest with thumbs and forefingers - they are not so well adapted as the other fingers to the purposes of taking a strong hold, and they are the most important of all for the purpose of the golf grip.
- Let the clubhead lead, the left wrist turning inwards, the arms following the clubhead and the right hip screwing next.
- Don't throw the arms forward as you start down, as though you are mowing grass. Rather throw them back and let them come round in their own way from that point.
Much of Vardon's technical expertise is as relevant today as it was back in 1905, albeit some of his detailed instruction differs from the advice given by modern-day professionals to their current pupils, in view of the highly sophisticated clubs and equipment now available and the way in which the golf ball itself has evolved over the years.
As far as the grip is concerned it would be extremely difficult to distinguish Vardon's technique from that of the majority of the top professionals playing on the tournament circuit today.
He called the grip the 'wedding' of the two hands.
As to firmness of grip he went on: In the ordinary way of things, the tight grip creates a tautening of the muscles in the body and when the player is in this condition the chances of executing a perfect stroke are remote. The golfer's muscles should be at once healthy and supple - like a boxer's.
When they are encouraged to develop hardness and size - like a weightlifter's - they retard the ease and quickness of hitting, which count so much at the instant of impact. I grip equally firmly with both hands at the start, but the pressure of the right hand decreases during the backswing. I don't believe in a master hand or arm. All should work as a unit.
Today, professional instructors normally advocate a straight left arm when addressing the ball. However, Vardon had a pronounced and deliberate kink in his left elbow and although he did not insist on such a pronounced bend for others, he said 'I am constantly having to cure patients ruined by the stiff left arm.'"
Reference : 'HARRY VARDON The Revealing Story of a Champion Golfer' Audrey Howell & Vardon's son Peter Vardon Howell National Golf Croquet Champion, Tempus Foreword by Tommy Horton First published 1991 Revised edition 2001 Published in the United Kingdom By: Tempus Publishing Ltd The Mill, Brimscombe Port Stroud, Gloucestershire GL5 2QG © Audrey Howell 2001, 14 The Complete Golfer, Page 108. www.jerseybookshop.co.uk
"It has often struck me as a wonderful thing that out of Andrew Scott's plasterer's yard, where I served my apprenticeship, should have come three Open Champions, Willie Fernie, Jack Burns, and myself. Fernie and Burns were a little before me. When I was in St. Andrews during the last championship week I met Jack Burns and asked about his golf.
"Never better, he said. I have not been off the line for years."
The joke was that Burns had been working on the railway line as a platelayer. He won his championship long before I won mine. But Jack did not follow up his advantage. In fact, he played little competitive golf after that.
"I've done what I set out to do," he used to say, and I am satisfied. Now all I want is a steady job, and I've got that with the railway."
The winning of a championship thirty-five years ago was not the great stroke of business it is to-day, when a champion is a "made-man," with the wheel of fortune supposed to be throwing off Treasury notes and American dollars to him at every turn. Burns probably got about £10 for his money prize. When I won the Open Championship in 1902 the first prize was £50. It is increased since."
Reference : 'My Golfing Life' Told To Clyde Foster By Sandy Herd With A Foreword By Field-Marshal Earl Haig With Numerous Illustrations London Chapman & Hall, Ltd 1923. Chapter II. Mother's Lapful Of Gold Three Plasterer Champions. Page 21. Made and printed in Great Britain at The Mayflower Press, Plymouth. William Brendon & Son, Ltd.
- Check your grip (page 31).
- Align feet parallel to target line.
- Clubface square
- Do not swing to the left because you are worrying about a slice but deliberately swing more to the right, i.e. swing more inside-out.
- Ball possibly slightly back in stance.
Reference : 'Golf Yves C. Ton-That Trouble Shots And Quick Fix Guide With All Relief Procedures For Free Drops From the Author of "Golf Rules Quick Reference" Over 500,000 Copies Sold International Best Seller golfrulesmadeeasy.com Artigo Publishing International 1st edition 2010, 2010 © Yves C. Ton-That The explanations of rules in this book are based on the official USGA and R&A rules valid until 12/31/2011 This quick reference guide is available in more than 20 languages and can be supplied with your own logo as a special edition.
"Major S. leaned across the table and said to Taylor : "I wonder if you would mind telling us, I'm sure we should all be glad if you would, what is the first thing you consciously do in a swing?" Taylor thrust his left arm across the table, pulled back his sleeve, and exposing a clenched fist as large as a leg of lamb, gave it a twist to the right. "That, major!"
"Now, that's very interesting. One thing more. Are you conscious of any particular thought just before you hit the ball?" "I am." "Will you tell us what it is?"
Once again the huge clenched left hand was presented to our view, but this time the turn was a sharp one to the left. "That, major : and nothing more."
"Ah, I thought so." "Turning the key in the lock." "Exactly." "The hands, the hands ; see to the hands. But you need no lesson in that matter, major ; you have a pair of beautiful wrists, and what's more, you know how to use them."
It is possible to be correct in footwork, to pivot properly, and to bring the right shoulder into the blow at the true moment, and yet to spoil the shot by not making both hands work as one, and by not getting the left hand into the position of the address at the moment of striking the ball."
Reference : 'J. H. Taylor Or The Inside Of A Week' By Harold Begbie Regia, crede mibi, res est succurrere lapsis. (Believe me it is a kingly act to help the afflicted.) X. Nervous Disorders Page 94. Mills & Boon Limited 49 Rupert Street London W.1 Published 1925 Printed and Made in Great Britain by The London And Norwich Press, Limited, St. Giles Works, Norwich.
"Our mission is to serve youth through sport and to increase knowledge of sport and it's impact on people's lives. The LA84 Foundation is endowed with surplus funds from the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games. The LA84 Foundation supports a wide array of youth sports programming.
The LA84 Foundation operates the largest sports research library in North America, the Paul Ziffren Sports Resource Center. It is a state-of-the-art research facility and learning center dedicated to the advancement of sports knowledge and scholarship.
The Foundation also maintains a sizable collection of historic sport art and artifacts much of which was inherited from the former Helms Athletic Foundation Sports Halls of Fame. The LA84 Foundation is a private nonprofit institution. To date, more than two million boys and girls, and more than 1,000 youth sports organizations throughout Southern California have benefited from the endowment. They will be joined by many more in the years ahead.
Robert V. Graziano, Chairman, and Anita L. DeFrantz, President."
Source : LA84 Foundation
"I am a scientist. Scientists work by making objective measurements of phenomena they are studying and then developing a theory or model.
For the past seventeen years, my colleagues and I have used scientific methods to study the best golfers in the world. Many have been to our laboratory: Jack Nicklaus, Greg Norman, Davis Love III, Tom Kite, Brad Faxon, and Ben Crenshaw, amongst others. This book tells you what we have found and gives you a way to use this information to improve your performance and deepen your understanding of the golf swing.
The purpose of this book is to make you a better golfer. The bookshelves are full of these types of books, but you will find this one radically different. The difference is that we deal in fact, not opinion. We face reality, not fantasy.
The truth is that there are many inherent problems in the game of golf, as well as in the way it is taught. These difficulties can be summarized as follows:
- Golf is a stagnant sport, the quality of play has not improved the way it has in many other sports during the past thirty years.
- While other sports have embraced well-defined paths for long-term improvement, a similar system has yet to be discovered in golf.
- Golf instruction tends to be based on individual opinion rather than fact-based research.
- Golf instructors tend to be excellent teachers, but the information they provide to students is often seriously flawed.
- There is widespread yet mistaken belief that a good golf swing can be done in numerous ways.
- Golfers have erroneously been convinced that there is one key to a better golf game.
- Golfers have been indoctrinated with the erroneous belief that if one player does something unconventional, it's OK for everyone.
- Instructors and sports psychologists frequently promote the belief that your swing can get better without changing your swing.
- Equipment manufacturers have oversold the notion that golfers can buy a better game.
If these statements pique your interest, read on.
If you are ready to embark on a path that will let you understand both the golf swing and your golf swing, then forge ahead.
If you are tired of quick fixes and would rather opt for long-term improvement, this book is for you.
Golf is too great a game for you to waste your time on things that have limited the sport for too long."
Reference : 'Swing like a Pro The Breakthrough Method Of Perfecting Your Golf Swing, Dr. Ralph Mann and Fred Griffin, with Guy Yocom' Broadway Books, New York Based on the Computer-Generated Pro, 1. Grip, Hands On for a Perfect Swing. Copyright © 1998 by CompuSport International.
"When Nicklaus played in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, he paid close attention to a few swing principles, rather than get so wrapped up in technique that he experienced "paralysis by analysis."
The majority of these swing basics were taught to Nicklaus by Grout, while the others Nicklaus figured out himself through trial and error. From Grout, he learned that:
- The head must stay still during the backswing and downswing.
- The key to maintaining good balance is footwork - the correct rolling of the ankles to promote a solid back-and-through weight-shift action.
- The key to creating maximum power at impact is to create the widest possible swing arc through extension.
On his own, Nicklaus learned that the best ways to consistently keep the swing under control and return the clubface squarely and powerfully into the ball at impact involved:
- Using a forward press action to trigger the swing
- Taking the club away very slowly and gradually, in one piece, to build up speed until impact, when power is released fully
- Swinging the club on an upright plane rather than a flat plane
- Purposely letting the right elbow move outward from the body to promote the desired upright plane
- Letting the swinging weight of the clubhead cause the wrists to hinge as the club is swung to the top
- Replanting the left foot and driving the legs toward the target to trigger the downswing
- Striving for a full finish to promote acceleration through the ball.
Now that I have given you a quick breakdown of Nicklaus's master keys, you should be ready for a more detailed explanation of these vital elements."
Reference : 'The Nicklaus Way, An Analysis of the Unique Techniques and Strategies of Golf's Leading Major Championship Winner', 'Chapter 1, Good Habits Never Die, An e-book excerpt from perfectbound. Copyright © 2003 by John Andrisani. HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.
"To achieve controlled velocity of the clubhead two types of swing have been evolved in the course of time : the 'flat' swing and the 'upright' swing.
The two swings, in their essentials, are not dissimilar, or not necessarily dissimilar.
But in the ' flat' swing the arc made by the club-head is more near the horizontal than in the 'upright', in which the arc is nearer the vertical.
Also, in the 'flat' swing the left hand is more likely to take charge during the up swing, pushing the club-head to the top with a simultaneous roll and break of the wrist, while the right hand is more likely to take charge on the downswing.
Whereas in the 'upright', the right hand will help to sling the club-head up, and it will be the left hand that controls the levering of the shaft and club-head on to and through the ball. (This matter will be further gone into in the note on 'Left-handed and right-handed golf'.)
When we take over the swing at the beginning of this century, J. H. Taylor may be said to be the last of the great 'flat' swingers and Harry Vardon the first of the great 'upright' swingers, for modern practice undoubtedly favours the 'upright'."
Reference : 'The Par Golf Swing' By Alfred Padgham Illustrated Preface By Evan M. MacColl. London George Routledge & Sons Ltd Broadway House, Carter Lane, E. C. 1936. Printed in Great Britain by Butler & Tanner Ltd., Frome and London. Introductory III. 'Flat' and 'Upright' swinging, page 33. British Open Champion 1936.
Download : 'The Par Golf Swing Left- And Right-Handed Golf' By Alfred Padgham, 1936.
"I have always stuck to my theories about the right physique for golf, because golf is more difficult for extremes; very tall or very short people have entirely different problems to handle.
Gene Sarazen, one of the best little (in size) golfers of the past three decades, had to use a considerable body sway going up to get his back-swing arc wide enough, because with his shorter radius, left shoulder-joint to clubhead, he naturally had too narrow or steep arc for wooden shots, if he swayed still on the back-swing. Fred Daly uses his most personal shoulder roll-away from the ball to get width in his back-swing because he is a short man.
The very tall players (Archie Compston, David Thomas, 'Long Jim' Barnes, Bernard Hunt, Peter Alliss, come to mind) have the opposite problem; their radius, left shoulder to clubhead, is large, and has to be narrowed for most fairway shots, and Compston uses a very delayed hit and as narrow an arc as possible, with a body sway into the ball on the way down.
Tall (Open Champions) Jim Barnes and Cary Middlecoff sway noticeably into the ball. They have to, because a small golf ball when lying on the ground can only be attacked within a limited range of arcs. An arc can be too wide and hit the ground behind the ball, or too steep and squeeze the ball too much.
The players of ideal average physique (Snead, Hogan, Locke, Nelson and myself - I immodestly include myself for being of similar height) have fewer problems of the arc to solve - our natural wide arc is just right to hit the ball in the back off the tee and through the green.
The smaller players usually become expert short-game players, for their natural steepish arcs are very convenient for the shorter-shafted pitching clubs, with which the ball has always to be hit a descending blow. These few examples at random should give golfers reason to think about their own physique relative to what they are trying to do.
There are particular actions which suit each player best. Have you found yours?"
Reference : 'HENRY COTTON My Golfing Album, What Shape Are You? page 31-35. Country Life Limited London. Published in 1959 by Country Life Limited. Second impression 1960. Printed in Great-Britain by Balding & Mansell Ltd. © Henry Cotton 1959.
You really can't devote too much time to hand action.
After all, the clubhead does not naturally swing by the ball without being helped."
Reference : 'Paul Runyan's Book For Senior Golfers' by Paul Runyan 1961-1962 Senior P.G.A. Champion And World's Senior Champion Illustrated Dodd, Mead & Company New York Copyright © 1962 by Paul Runyan. Chapter 10 The Medium Irons Page 77.
"For Georgians the name Robert Tyre "Bobby" Jones is synonymous with golf; many uninitiated Americans learn as much each spring through CBS's telecast of the sport's first major event, the Masters.
Even casual observers quickly discover that Jones, along with Clifford Roberts and Dr. Alistair Mackenzie, was a founder of Augusta National. Viewers are usually reminded about Jones's winning the Grand Slam (the U.S. Amateur, U.S. Open, British Amateur, and British Open in 1930), as well as his other notable golf achievements in the 1920s, the so-called Golden Age of American sports.
What is always stressed, however, is his amateurism, the notion that he competed purely out of a love for competition and not for material gain. Moreover, it is almost impossible to watch ABC's coverage of the British Open without hearing commentator Jim McKay say that Jones never played the game more than six months out of any calendar year, putting his clubs away in November and not touching them again until April. Indeed, there is a lot of myth surrounding Jones's amateurism; commentators most often emphasize how unimportant golf really was to the Atlantan.
He was a lawyer first and foremost, we are usually told, and golf was far down his list of priorities. Above all, Jones is portrayed as a sportsman and a gentleman, an image rooted in his amateurism and the way in which he handled the final years of his life. In 1948 Jones was stricken with a rare spinal disorder called syringomyelia. He played his last round of golf that year and was soon reduced from walking with braces to using a wheelchair and eventually to being completely immobile.
Through it all Jones publicly displayed remarkable steadfastness, even good cheer. He remained as active as possible until his death and became a symbol of individual strength and character. Such behavior, coupled with his amateur career and the rise of the Masters tournament, made him golf's and, arguably, the entire sports world's greatest paragon.
Jones lived an admirable, extraordinary life, even for a famous athlete. Not surprisingly, golf fans have tended to "marbleize" him. As always, such efforts distort the record and, more importantly, unintentionally dehumanize the hero, in this case making Bobby Jones into something that he did not care to be, a "golf machine."
The purpose of this piece is to highlight the historical record in two ways, by sketching Jones's background, life, and golf achievements, and then discussing some of the realities of his competitive career.
Ultimately, I hope to put Jones into proper cultural and historical context. In some ways, this will serve to chip away a little of the marble. That, though, is a good thing, for Jones is much more valuable and admirable as a man than as a myth."
Reference : Lowe, Stephen "Demarbleizing Bobby Jones" Georgia Historical Quarterly 83.4 (1999): 660-682, Olivet Nazarene University. This Article is brought to you for free and open access by the History at Digital Commons @ Olivet. It has been accepted for inclusion in Faculty Scholarship.
"Mental imagery is the process by which, an athlete visualizes himself or herself performing an upcoming task. There are many names for mental imagery including visualization, mental rehearsal, mental practice, and cognitive enactment (Short, S., Ross-Stewart, L., & Monsma, E., 2006). Each name for mental imagery has its unique style in the way it is used. However, they are all used for the same purpose: to improve the performance of the individual. The use of mental rehearsal and mental imagery by an athlete prior to a competition results in improved performance in the competition.
Many experiments in track and field, volleyball, and golf have been done to test this hypothesis.
When an individual first tries to use mental imagery, they must realize that it is a psychological skill that cannot be developed overnight. This skill can produce small immediate performance improvements, but for significant improvement, you must practice it often. When the desired results are not achieved right away from using mental imagery, many athletes will come to the conclusion that it simply does not work.
Other athletes may not believe in the power of imagery from the very beginning and therefore will never fully commit to it, resulting in failure to increase performance. Just as a physical skill will not be attained without practice, a mental skill cannot be developed without practice (Van Raalte, J., Brewer, B., 2003)...
Jack Nicklaus and Hank Aaron are two of the more famous athletes who have publically claimed using mental imagery to gain success in the sports world.
Golf great Jack Nicklaus once said, "A good shot is 50 percent due to a golfer's mental picture of what the shot should be like" (Jarvis, 1999 p.81)."
Reference : 'The Effects of Mental Imagery On Athletic Performance' Trey Beckerman Online at Eastern Illinois University
Download : 'The Effects of Mental Imagery On Athletic Performance' Trey Beckerman Eastern Illinois University
Although we'll never know the true answer, this is the closest 'Ben Hogan's Secret' in my search."
"Do YOU realize that 95 per cent of the people who play golf are slicers?
There are several reasons why a slice is so devastating. Since the drive on 14 of the 18 holes, usually, are with a wooden club, it means the slicer is getting off to a bad start on most of the holes every time he plays. He may even lie three, four, or five by the time he finally gets his ball on the fairway. All chance of a decent score on that hole is gone, even though he plays his irons well to the green.
What exasperates the slicer even more is that the harder he tries to hit the ball straight, the more he slices. On the rare occasions when he unconsciously hits a good shot, he doesn't know how he did it. A wild hope surges, but this is dashed a few shots later, and the unhappy soul spends the rest of the round trying to figure out how he happened to hit that one good one.
What causes that exasperating curve to the right? It is caused by the face of the club being "open" at the moment of impact with the ball. By "open" we mean that the face points, or faces, to the right of the direction the club head is following.
The direction of the club head determines which way the ball will start. The position of the club face determines whether the ball will curve, which way, and how much. So the open face. is what we are going to attack and eliminate How will we do it? We will do it by teaching you what we call The Square Face System of hitting the ball."
Reference : 'Stop That Slice' by Joe Dante and Len Elliott. Illustrated by Bill Crawford. London : Herbert Jenkins Limited Copyright © 1954
Download : 'Stop That Slice' The Square Face System By James J. Dante, President of the New Jersey P.G.A., and inventor of the Square Face System.
Download : 'This Game of Golf' By Henry Cotton including An American Method and The Best Player Ever? with a detail by Bobby Locke.
"It wasn't that they were superior, as they had long since been, from 130 yards or so in to the flag.
There was a new authority about all their striking which was apparent from tee to green.
Not only did they hit the ball more firmly off the tee, they struck it harder and drove it lower; their long iron shots were hit with a solid decisiveness which was noticeable for its lack of flick.
Wristiness was now eschewed. Someone had been round with a screwdriver and given each screw a turn, maybe two.
Why, I wondered, should all this be? Why should a new and common denominator have infiltrated the American game?
Think about it as I might in those exciting days, I could find no explanation for it.
The Americans didn't talk about it; they never seemed to think about it. Age-old arguments about the competition being tougher and the courses tighter, the grass lusher, the fairways softer, the weather warmer and the winds lighter, carried small conviction.
Something much more subtle and radical seemed to be at stake.
I discussed it with others. They thought I was talking my familiar strain of imaginative, assertive prejudice. I asked Claude Harmon, the Master's champion and resident professional at Winged Foot, and Fred Robson, the Addington professional who had come over with us to help the team, what they thought.
Yes, they said, there was no doubt that swings and actions had been firmed up and the tendency was certainly to reduce flick and wristiness; but this was part of the natural progression of the game and the relentless search for accuracy. It sounded plausible enough, yet somehow it didn't satisfy my inquisitiveness.
Back in Britain, I went, as I often used to do so in those days, to consult the Oracle. I had been convinced for years that no one - British or American - had quite such a finely developed knowledge of the intricacies of hitting and flighting a golf ball, or of the reasons for this or that new trend in thinking, as Henry Cotton.
We were old friends and I had long respected his perception and faculty for observation. Moreover, he had been back to the United States a couple of winters before to prepare for his third ad last victory in the British Open at Muirfield. He was therefore up to date with the post-war American scene.
I came at one to the point. 'What is it,' I asked, 'that has made these fellows firm up their swings and look so much more solid - or am I on the wrong track and mistaken?'
Henry's reaction was, I suppose, predictable.
'You surprise me, boy,' he ribbed, 'as an old pupil of mine, and with your knowledge of the game, not being able to pick out the reason. You're right, but you really should have seen through it.'
'All right,' I said, rising to it, 'I know all that, but go on, what is it, what really is the reason for this change - or don't you know, either?'
'It's the ball, boy,' he replied, without hesitating, 'it's the ball.
They've been using the large ball for all this time (in fact, it was seventeen years then) and gradually, perhaps even unconsciously, they've tailored their games to suit it.
Their problem is keeping it down.
They've got to move into it and drive it forward with firm, strong hands to hold it down and stop it climbing. It's the ball which has dictated this action - nothing else. They've learned to work it and control it. It's a fine exercise in ball control and their games have benefited from it.'
I felt instantly that this was the essential missing piece in the puzzle. The rest now began to fall into place."
Reference : 'The Sport of Prince's' By Laddie Lucas Reflections of a Golfer Stanley Paul. Chapter 6 The Rise and Rise of American Golf, page 66. First published 1980 © P. B. (Laddie) Lucas 1980.
Download : 'That shot was hit with authority' by Laddie Lucas, page 68. 'The Sport of Prince's The Rise and Rise of American Golf, 1980. .
"At the University of Calgary, Joan Vickers Director of the Neuro Motor Psychology Laboratory did an excellent study on putting.
The article, in Golf Magazine (Oct. 1991) "Look and Launch - Make your eyes talk effectively to sink more putts."
They say, "Feel does not come from mechanics. It comes from the eyes sending information about distance and the line of your hands, arms and shoulders. The more effectively your eyes talk to the rest of your body, the better you will putt."
The study found that higher handicap golfers stare at the ball and club with too many quick glances to the hole. As a result visual information is not processed very well.
Good putters do the opposite. They stare at the hole and glance at the ball.
The following procedure for putting is what they found to be most effective:
- Get into position and check the club with a quick look and then the ball with a longer look. This is your impact position so it is a good place to start.
- Turn your head and focus on the hole for the feel of distance. Do not look or focus on the green between the ball and hole. Focus on the hole for at least two seconds so that distance information is registered in the memory.
- Run your eyes back down the target line to the club for a real quick check, then fixing on the ball for only a half second or less, stroke the ball while the distance information is still fresh in the mind.
- Keep your eyes fixed on the ball throughout the stroke. Do not look at the club and ball at the same time, as this may give information overload. See the grass under the ball after the stroke."
Reference : 'The Golf Superbook' by Dr. Gerald A. Walford, Gerald E. Walford.
Source : 'The Quiet Eye' It's The Difference Between A Good Putter and A Poor One. Here's Proof by Dr. Joan N. Vickers, Professor of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary, in Alberta, Canada. Illustrations by + ISM. Photograph by Corbis. GolfDigest.com January 2004. For more detailed information on The Quiet Eye, visit www.ucalgary.ca/
Download : 'Neuroscience of the Quiet Eye in Golf Putting' Joan N. Vickers University of Calgary International Journal of Golf Science, 2012, 1, 2-9 ©2012 Human Kinetics, Inc.
Download : frontiers in PSYCHOLOGY Original Research Article 'Quiet Eye training facilitates competitive putting performance in elite golfers' Samuel J. Vine, Lee J. Moore and Mark R. Wilson, Sport and Health Sciences, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK. Published: 28 January 2011. Reviewed by: Bettina Edna Blaesing, Bielefeld University, Germany Joan Vickers, University of Calgary, Canada
"If the grip be left out of the picture on the ground that it is in truth a preliminary, and we can assume that this is correct, then I should say that the most important movement of the swing would be to start the downswing by beginning the unwinding of the hips.
It is possible to play good golf without a straight left arm; it is possible to do so using a square, closed, or open stance; and one may get along with a short and fast backswing if there are compensating virtues.
But there can be no power, and very little accuracy or reliability, in a swing in which the left hip does not lead the downstroke.
One sees any number of players who take the club back almost in a vertical arc, thereby violating the principles of the true swing.
In other words, instead of swinging it back, they lift it up over their shoulders; but a lot of them, because they initiate the downswing by beginning the turn of the hips before they move anything else, manage to play good golf.
No matter how perfect the backswing may have been, if the hands, or the arms or the shoulders start the downward movement, the club immediately loses the guidance of the body movement, and the benefit of the power the muscles of the waist and back could have contributed.
When this happens, the turn of the body during the backswing becomes entirely useless, and the club finds itself in midair, actuated by a pair of hands and arms having no effective connection with anything solid.
I think we may well call this the most important movement of the swing."
Reference : 'Bobby Jones On Golf', Robert Tyre (Bobby) Jones. Chapter Four. 2 The Most Important Movement. Page 56. Foreword by Charles Price. Illustrations by Anthony Ravielli. 1966 Doubleday & Company, Inc. New York.
Back to top