How to improve your game without changing your swing.
Certified Personal Coach Erika Wicoff, GolfTEC Carmel, LPGA Member
Golfers today are in a never ending and elusive pursuit for the “perfect” swing, or in GolfTEC terms, a Green Swing. Swing planes and paths, weight shifts and angles of approach are terms and techniques that differ from one player to the next.
The typical golf swing is three seconds long and it is considered almost a dare to see how many parts one can adjust and how many things one can think about in that short time. But what if someone has taken that so-called “challenge” and has naturally, or due to physical limitations, taken it upon him/herself to move against the status quo of the perfect swing?
Case in point, Jim Furyk. His swing has been likened to a man killing a snake in a phone booth, yet he plays on the PGA Tour. A former US Open Champion, Furyk is currently ranked15th in the world. In 2010, he won the FedEx Cup, and this year, he came very close to taking home the Wanamaker trophy at the 2013 PGA Championship in August. GolfTEC measured his golf swing and while he has red numbers, according to our ranges, his fundamentals are solid in many key areas. See my swing analysis of Furyk below.
After competing for six years on the LPGA tour, I can say there was a plethora of different swing mechanics. Women like Nancy Lopez, Juli Inkster, Natalie Gulbis and even Annika Sorenstam employ swings that most teachers would not recommend. Yet all these women are good players and have all won events, 152 to be exact. With the exception of Natalie, all those players have enjoyed long, Hall of Fame inducting careers, and if Natalie’s back holds out, she may be able to continue seeing success.
These tour professionals all have different and unconventional swings, yet all of them share five key characteristics needed for solid ball-striking. Despite their takeaways, club or hand positions throughout the swing and the swing planes used on the down swing, these players all do the following:
1.Every single player has his/her arms straight at impact
2.Every player has shifted his/her weight onto the target leg, therefore creating better extension through the ball
3.Every player has the ability to make contact with a squared clubface
4.They can replicate their swings (however “unusual”) with great and natural ease
5.They swing with confidence/trust, knowing the ball will travel to its desired target
This is where the GolfTEC student comes into the picture. Every GolfTEC Coach can work with students to help ENHANCE each student’s swing, no matter how unorthodox he/she “whacks” the ball. Through the use of GolfTEC’s patented video technology and motion measurement, which provides immediate feedback to the student, GolfTEC coaches can aid the student in understanding their own golf swing and we as Coaches may help every “unique” swing to incorporate the above characteristics to ensure golf success.
Case in point, GolfTEC student Ted Moloney (featured in this month’s Client Success Story) is a great example of a golfer who has maintained the uniqueness of his golf swing, while at the same time he’s made subtle corrections that have allowed him to have great success with the adjustments from his GolfTEC coach and lessons. To view Ted’s story, click here.