When you think about Tiger Woods completed 17th out of 18 golfers finally weekend’s Hero World Problem within the Bahamas, heaping reward on his swing might sound doubtful. However after watching him play, after which fastidiously learning photographs of his swing body by body, Corridor of Fame trainer David Leadbetter says there’s little to not like.
“In my line of labor, you’ll be able to at all times decide any swing to demise,” he says. “However I wager most instructors would agree that you just’d have a tough time discovering fault in what Tiger’s doing now. Simply primarily based on what I noticed of his swing, when you had heard he received as a substitute of ending 17th, you wouldn’t have doubted it for a second.”
Earlier than he goes into element of what he sees in Woods’ swing—and what he would counsel to additional enhance Tiger’s ball-striking, notably consistency with the motive force—Leadbetter says Woods has performed a “outstanding job” calming down the issues in his swing that contributed to wild tee photographs and, maybe, points that led to surgical procedures on his again.
That is the place to begin of the place Leadbetter suggests Woods make an adjustment. “This look you see right here in these two frames goes again to the large, large backswings of Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman,” David Leadbetter says. “The outdated principle for energy was to increase the membership again as far and as large as doable with little wrist set. The extra trendy swing has much less width, an earlier set of the wrists and a giant coil with the torso. My feeling is that this large takeaway you see right here with Tiger is contributing to timing points and not directly inserting extra stress on his decrease again.”
You’ll discover in these two frames that Woods doesn’t hinge the membership upward till this late level within the backswing. “It’s a really late wrist set, and for my part, it’s the place his timing points begin as a result of his physique stops turning noticeably earlier than his arms and membership attain the highest,” Leadbetter says.
Check out these two frames (above), they’re essentially the most telling of what he would change, Leadbetter says. “Within the first photograph, Tiger’s higher physique is totally full with its coil. However look within the subsequent body how a lot farther his arms and membership have run on. They’re now not transferring in sync together with his physique flip. They’re persevering with the swing. What which means is that they should in some way catch as much as his physique on the downswing. Being an amazing athlete, Tiger can clearly do that. However that is the place the inconsistency can actually happen for anyone. If the decrease physique will get slightly too fast and too far forward, then the arms and membership will probably be late, and there’s an excessive amount of reliance on the arms and timing to sq. the face at impression. That lack of sync was the rationale why Tiger used to complain so much about being ‘caught.’ ”
“I’ll say, nevertheless, that in contrast to some years in the past, his sync is approach higher now. I simply assume Tiger could have far more management—of his driver specifically—if his arms and physique end the backswing at roughly the identical time. That is true for any participant. What I’d prefer to see is much less width beginning again and an earlier wrist set. He doesn’t want all that extension for energy. In reality, enhancing his synchronization would nonetheless assist him preserve energy whereas boosting accuracy.”
These two photographs of Tiger within the downswing look actually good, Leadbetter says. “But when he was off a level or so, it will make a giant distinction in impression,” he says. “This syncing of the arms and physique is without doubt one of the most vital and misunderstood points of the golf swing. When the arms run on on the prime independently, the physique has to attend for them to atone for the downswing. That is the place the timing facet is available in. Swinging the membership on the velocity Tiger does (120 miles per hour), it doesn’t take a lot for the membership to return into impression slightly open. That ends in his trademark miss to the suitable, or with overcompensation, a miss to the left—particularly beneath stress in match play.”
The way in which you’ll be able to inform his syncing has improved is by wanting on the stage of his shoulders by way of impression, Leadbetter says. “Prior to now, his proper shoulder would seem a lot decrease right here and tilted as he hung again to attempt to save the shot,” he says. “And that swing put extra stress on his decrease again. However you’ll be able to see right here how his shoulders are rotating on a way more stage aircraft. He does not have that ‘stuck-and-under’ look of the previous.”
One other factor to notice is that there’s far much less of a dip in Woods’ physique from tackle to impression, Leadbetter says. “He’s nonetheless getting a whole lot of energy from his decrease physique. In reality, his legs look unbelievable as he alters path. The knees separate, however there’s not as a lot squat. It’s obtained the look of Sam Snead’s swing.”
All of this contributes to a textbook impression place, Leadbetter says. “He may need been a contact late syncing his swing on the way in which down, however that is the impression place of an individual in nice management of the membership. I actually just like the straight line shaped by the shaft and his left arm. It seems like he can form the shot any approach he desires from right here.”
Leadbetter’s parting shot on Woods’ swing has to do with-fittingly-the approach he finishes the swing. For a variety of years, Woods’ end had a “manufactured” look, like a gymnast that lands on the mat off stability however then straightens up for the judges. Now his end seems extra pure. “It is obtained the look of the traditional, effectively balanced follow-through,” Leadbetter says. “This exhibits you he isn’t far off from a technical standpoint.”
“Tiger is near swinging at his absolute best. And my feeling is that if he synced up his swing higher going again, which might require much less timing coming down, you’d see a giant enchancment in his driving consistency. However general this can be a very spectacular golf swing. It is an amazing signal for Tiger’s future.”
Under: The Miracle of Tiger Woods’ Golf Swing