Swing Analysis: Bob Charles

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

I thought it would be appropriate given that the British Open is just underway to look at the swing of former champion Bob Charles. The lefty from New Zealand won the Open in 1963 among some 75 assorted professional wins, including 6 PGA Tour and 23 Champions Tour events. What struck me most watching his swing with the driver is the perfect impact position with the shaft lined up with his right arm (leading arm) well past impact, much like you now see in players such as Jordan Speith, Dustin Johnson, and Brooks Koepka. As is the case with most players from his era he stays well behind the ball at impact, and in fact has moved backward almost a full head with his upper body. Chances are he had to do this to get the ball up in the air given the equipment of the day and the fact that his hands were so nicely forward and sustained past impact. I also like the way he barely lifts his front heel, putting it right back down just a hair forward of where it started. His upright backswing and extra high finish seem to correspond with the extreme length of his legs compared to his upper trunk. All in all, a swing of great rhythm and power that helped him to a Hall of Fame career.

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(2) comments

Paul July 20, 2017


Thanks WD

Rusty July 20, 2017

Wayne, have you ever seen the swing of a compatriot of Charles named Frank Phillips? I’d never heard of the guy, but saw a YouTube of his swing awhile back. Really interesting move! He does a lot of things that you like and, apparently, was known as a great ball striker.

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