Hogan had no secret. Hogan had a technical solution which applied to him and thus numbed his confounding hook…. ‘sometimes’ *1955.
Jacks rigid head and flying right arm was no secret. His teacher Jack Grout was an exponent of teaching quiet heads and with Jacks rotund torso, his short arms simply had to fly.
Faldo’s swing change was no secret. He had to soften the tilts in his previous swing to better his angle of attack into the ball and solidify his release pattern.
Tiger Woods’s resurgence contains no secret. Tiger Woods balanced out his posture, turned shallower on the way back and equally, turned shallower on the way through.
Forgive me; but there’s no such thing as an all-encompassing omniscient secret in golf.
You simply can’t take one players pattern, no matter how prolific, relinquish common sense and blindly emulate.
Or indeed worse, be hypnotized by a coach, a huckster no less, with a one strand thesis. A thesis often aggressively amplified because of an entrenched ego identifying with that very thesis.
The answer, propagated by any technical evangelist claims: that ‘this; is THE secret’.
Viktor Hovland, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, John Rahm, Lee Trevino and Graeme McDowell all have bowed left wrists on the completion of their backswings. Not just one player……a troop of them.
And like clockwork, golf teachers and commentaries now endorse these characteristics as the new way to swing. Hoist the arms high, shut the face via the wrists and for God’s sake make sure you wipe across the ball.
Hogan’s teaching of the left hip clearing and weak right-hand grip created a nation of blockers.
Jacks wide backswing created a nation of out of sync over the top slicers.
Faldo’s swing change was grossly misunderstood. Golfers became neurotically obsessed with technique and unlike the man himself, never played by feel and artistry.
And Wood’s re invention, the most confusing and cryptic resurrection to the amateur golfer was thankfully successful after buying into the poor man’s Stack & Tilt in 2010.
So, what does this tell us?
It tells us that we have merely stumbled upon a period in time when a handful of players have arrived into town swinging with virtually the same patterns and DNA. That’s all.
This time, why don’t we have the good sense to celebrate their individualism and marvel at their amazingly repetitive patterns akin to them and them alone. The same patterning that on the opposite side of the fence, affords low or open face players such as Ben Hogan, Geoff Ogilvy, Johnny Miller and Phil Mickelson the same success.
The death of swing cults in golf occurs when someone arrives winning with a technique entirely contrary to what is within magazines, commentated upon on TV or propagated at teaching seminars.
Let’s not make the technique of these players a cult. It’s just simply how it works for them.
In doing this, their style will endure and individualism in golf swings will be embraced as an educational opportunity rather than a method to which all golfers must embrace whether applicable to them or not.
My Best – Nick.