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Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Practising What I Preach

Occasionally, I find myself on the golf course actually practising what I preach.  Today was one of those days.  My blogsite is called Top Hand Golf.  It's called that because I have discovered in my studies of the teaching of many of golf's greatest players, and in my own game, that the top hand and arm rule the golf swing.  Or they should.

Today, playing with a very sore back and neck, I hit every shot focussing simply on taking the club back with my left hand and arm--I'm right-handed--and making sure that the back of my left hand went straight down the target line for two feet past the ball.  Despite medicre putting, I struck it well enough that I had a five footer to shoot another even par round today.  Of course I missed the putt.  But that's show business. I finished the round comfortably, having not hurt my back or neck on a single swing all day.

I also had the feeling all day that I was making only a three-quarter swing, and yet I was actually hitting the ball farther than usual.  Now I didn't invent the notion of a golf swing dominated by the top hand and arm.  It was a fundamental belief of Bobby Jones, Sam Snead, Byron Nelson, Moe Norman....

Byron Nelson ended his career using only one swing thought.  Using it he set the one record, other than Bobby Jones' Grand Slam, that will never be broken; namely 11 wins in a row and 18 in a season.  It was the greatest prolonged stretch of golf ever played. What was Byron's swing thought?  The back of his left hand going down the line to his target.  

Bobby Jones taught that, for a right-handed player, the golf swing was a back-handed strike with the left hand.  Moe Norman's swing was left hand and arm driven.  The fact is, the majority of golf's best ballstrikers have controlled the swing and the strike with their left hand and arm.  It's simple and it works.

The crazy thing is that it is a very simple move to swing the club and strike the ball with your top hand.  Once you try it, you find the rest of your body moving quite freely to support the action.  The only question I have is why do I ever think about doing anything else?  Oh well; no one ever accused me of being smart.