Swing Analysis: Tiger Woods Through the Years Part 1 of 2 (1994-2002)

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

This week is a “Tiger Week” of sorts and all the videos will focus on Tiger Woods. For the last video this week on Friday I’ll answer a question I’ve been asked a number of times; “What I Would Do with Tiger’s Swing”. We’re starting the week off with part one of a two part series were I analyze Tiger’s swing from 1994 – 2014. The first video of the two covers Tiger’s swing from his college days through the end of 2002, pretty much what could be referred to as his “Harmon Years”.

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(2) comments

Tony November 5, 2014


It is rare that I question your ideas, but I am confused about your comments on Tiger’s wider vs later driver release (if i can put it that way). You have made this observation before, I notice.

My main problem is that release is a very instinctive thing, and changing it takes a lot of time and hard work. My teacher here in Melbourne, Rohan Dummett, has made the comment that early on Tiger had a wider release in all his swings, but has changed it, in all his swings ie longer and shorter clubs, in later years. Surely it is impossible to radically change release from one club to another or one swing and another. Are you suggesting he keeps his new release for say shorter irons and change it to a wider version when he hits driver?

There is no doubt that some of the straightest drivers seem to have wide releases, Greg Norman and Nick Faldo being two that come to mind, so I will accept it if you say that wider is better (although i will be bitterly disappointed at having wasted the last decade of my life trying to change mine) but if you are saying change this release from club to club then i’m confused because i cant see how its possible. I’ve been looking closely at swings, frame by frame, all levels of players, for a couple of decades now and I’ve never seen any player vary their release (other than over a period of time, like Tiger).

Another view of the same issue is your nice analysis of Schwarzel recently with the very late release with driver, ball back in stance, huge forward lean shaft at impact, and bombing it. I presume its all about the other swing factors and club set up to get the ball in air with the optimum trackman stuff happening, but you weren’t suggesting Charl go to a wider release.

anyway, would be interested in your thoughts.

Tony Light

Tony November 11, 2014

Thanks for that Wayne. (Carlos Franco seems to be another golfer who springs to mind with large forward lean with driver who has his head going backward like you wouldn’t believe coming into impact).

Fascinating to hear of the difference in release patterns, and thankfully we live in the age of high speed cameras and trackman so we can get objective data.

And yes, I’m sure your members (including me) would love you to do a piece on pros with differing release patterns with different clubs.

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