Tag Archives for " Tiger Woods "

The First Tee Sunday at the Ryder Cup: How the Best Use Routine to Combat Nerves

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

The Ryder Cup is one of the only events where we see some of the best players in the world get introduced and go through their full routine on the first tee. Here I look at how the following players take their turns teeing off in what is probably one of the most pressure packed shots in all of golf: Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka, Paul Casey, Webb Simpson, Justin Rose, Tiger Woods, Jon Rahm, Tony Finau, Tommy Fleetwood, Phil Mickelson, and Francesco Molinari. I focus on their every movement after they tee up the ball, including practice swings, target focus, number of steps and amount of time to get to the ball and set up, and then time over the ball before they pull the trigger. I think every golfer gets the first tee jitters and watching what these great players do to prepare for their opening tee shots is quite instructive.

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Tiger Woods in the Fairway Bunker: No, Peter, He Doesn’t “Maintain his Height”

By Wayne | Videos: As Seen On TV and Extras

When CBS slowed down Tiger’s beautiful pitching wedge shot from the fairway bunker on the first hole of the final round of the PGA Championship, I had an immediate feeling that I knew what the commentary would be. Of course, as everyone knows, you can’t hit a fairway bunker shot if you “dip”, another synonym for lowering during the swing, because you will always hit behind it. I’ve seen this movie before, watching Butch Harmon explain how Jay Haas was “staying tall” and “keeping his levels” while hitting an iron out of a fairway bunker, when right in front of him the guy he was talking about was lowering going back and in transition like he does on every shot. I knew Tiger has never hit a full shot he didn’t lower on, so it was no surprise when a) Peter Kostis states that the reason Tiger made such ball first contact was that he “was not losing his heighth (sic) (the word is “height”) with his head”, and that he was “keeping his level really, really well”. This is a perfect example of a logical conclusion that is not backed up by the evidence presented by the video of the shot. So, I blow up the swing, put a line on top of Tiger’s head (the camera angle isn’t perfect, but the camera is fixed which makes the exercise valid), and watch Tiger lower in the backswing and then lower more on the downswing, exactly how he hits every shot. I cringe when I think of the players who will go out and try to stay extra tall on their fairway bunker shots, not realizing that when they hit the ball fat out of the sand it’s because of poor sequence or clubhead throwaway, the same reasons they never get good contact from the fairway either. After all these years I thought these guys (Nick and Pete) might have learned their lesson on this point, but it doesn’t seem that that’s the case.

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Tiger Woods Hand Path in Transition: 2000 to 2018

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

I’ve been accumulating Tiger swings since I’ve had a laptop and I can run through just about every year between 1994 to present. In Tiger’s recent years I noticed a significant change: about 2009 his hands and arms began to drop straight down from the top in transition, totally different than the “hands out” movement he had utilized for a decade. His right arm, instead of moving back out in front of his chest like it used to, began to move back more behind his right rib cage, not only jamming his arm but discouraging rotation in the upper body at the same time. With his arm more behind him and his entire body opening slower he began to make more and more swings that were “stuck”, with the club at P6 well behind his hands, leading to blocks and hooks. In these swings from the 2018 Memorial Tiger appears to have returned to his previous technique in which his hands move out toward the ball in transition, his upper body opens sooner, and his hips are encouraged by the overall motion to rotate more freely. Watch where his left arm is at P5: way more in front of him and less across his chest. This is very reminiscent of his older swings, although the backswing is not as “away” from him as it was in 2000. It looks more natural and fluid to me, more like an athletic hitting or sidearm throwing motion. I think he’s all the way back with this swing.

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Tiger 2018: Best it’s Been in 12 Years

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

Tiger is back with a swing that I think rivals any he has ever made. I like everything about it, but the biggest difference I see and the one thing I was hoping he would change was his hand path in transition. Looking at swings up to 2006 Tiger’s hands always worked out toward the ball as his left arm responded more passively to his trunk rotation. For the next 12 years his hands would start the downswing by dropping straight down, sometimes even pulling back behind him, jamming his right arm and making it difficult for him to rotate and “get around” on the ball, leading to too many off line drives. It would appear now that he has gone back to a more natural transition, one that reminds me of the starting motion for baseball hitting or throwing. He now has way more freedom for his right arm, with the added bonus of the fact that aiming the hands out toward or above the ball in transition encourages aggressive lower body rotation and makes it easier to accomplish. By moving the hands and arms downward in transition the rotation of the body is slowed by a fraction while the right arm attaches to the side too soon, enough to cause major problems at high speed. It doesn’t look like that anymore. I think he can get back to #1 with this action.
 

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Set Up Routine: Rose, DeChambeau and Woods

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

I didn’t pick these players for any particular reason other than the TV coverage caught their entire set up routine, and I like to look at and time what they do before each shot. Routine is an especially important concept for young players to learn, but it can help anyone who is serious about the game by standardizing their movements prior to starting the swing. Having a routine helps in several ways, the most important of which is having a way to quickly go through a checklist (grip, alignment, distance from the ball, balance front to back and side to side, ball position, foot placement, etc.), making sure that you are not dooming yourself before the hard part starts.

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Viewer Question: Tiger Woods 2018: Has His Hand Release Changed and Can it be Effective?

By Wayne | Videos: Swing Analysis

Jeff Mann sent me the link to video of Tiger’s 2018 swing and asked the question: “As a big fan of Tiger Woods, what do you think of his recent swing action where he uses a roller hand release action? Do you think that he can be competitive against the many PGA Tour golfers (like Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Jon Rahm, and Tommy Fleetwood) who use a DH (Drive/Hold) hand release action-even if he doesn’t have a relapse of his back problems?” I think the video holds my answer…

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