Analysis of Modern Golf Swings

Thought we could start to look at some of the modern guys and compare what they are doing to what we are trying to do. Lots of discussion of Delaet. While there is a lot to admire of his action and other swings of his look much better than this, I think this swing highlights the big differences between what he is doing and what we are doing:

youtube.com/watch?v=uynf10Q4fEk

He takes the club around on a shallow plane and slots it well, but he aggressively unwinds his pivot from the top. By impact he is almost spent. So while his pivot is relatively level and causes him to exit left, he stays low and eventually rolls. If he had more pivot to use at and through the ball, he would not be able to finish so low. The force of the pivot thrust would send his arms away from him from p4-5.

That is my analysis. He doesn’t fight like hell to maintain lagpressure the whole way.

I like his swing alot, he is very good through the impact zone, and has a good combination of length and accuracy. Ive seen him up close in person and he hits the ball very well, and it obviously holds up well under pressure in tournaments which is the most important thing.

Let’s look at him in real time. I like how he gets to the top. From there, it looks like he’s trying to hit positions, no pass-through attempt at all. Looks pretty at impact and then that strange exit because he’s staying in side bend too long. He’s a strong guy but he’s not being true to his physicality. I’ll bet he thinks the swing is over once the ball has left the clubface. Needs a good dose of M3 and a film session with John Gruden, viewing young Arnold Palmer.

youtube.com/watch?v=btpW9pNPbTo

What does it take to be good enough? Saying a guy like Delaet, that is accurate AND long, isn’t doing it well enough seems like the bar is set pretty high. I’m Canadian and obviously biased (he’s all we got :blush: ).

The guy doesn’t have a swing coach and as far I’ve read learned from his dad as a kid and on his own ever since. It works, so why does he need more M3?

He swings from the inside. He keeps his right arm connected to his body. He doesn’t roll over his hands and shut the club face. He never stops rotating and the butt of the club points at the chi line at hip high. ← my rookie take.

I’d like to hear from the experienced about what he and other modern pros are doing well more than about how they can improve.

Sorry to start a firestorm…I am only looking at them from an ABS perspective. You don’t have to have an ABS like swing to be great, obviously. As I said I like the general shape of his swing. I also like how he uses his right lower side…he is up on his toe but you can see him pressuring the ground with it. But there are significant differences here with ABS.

His torso rotation is very level and very aggressive which I like. Earlier this week he played a few groups in front me, and I watched him hit balls before we teed off and was very impressed. He really cuts it left and rotates very well, and the ballflight is very consistent, reminds me a bit of Allenby and Jonathan Kaye through the ball.

He’s a good player and I just see a guy that could be even that much better. I see the same with Kuchar, big guys that seem they’re hiding their swings under a blanket. No offense meant, I’m half Canadian and Canada has produced some great champions and will continue to do so. We’re just armchairing and seeing things through the lens of ABS. It’s working for Graham and he should continue. He doesn’t have the “luxury” of sitting around discussing and experimenting with swing advice.

I made some comments over on SITD about him as well. One thing I notice that could help with his over-rotation (from strictly an ABS perspective) is to get some cup into the left wrist at the top of his backswing. I also notice that from the video posted on SITD of him, he doesn’t over-rotate as much with the irons as he does with his “woods”. This could be club weight coming into play.

Sorry for being so defensive. I do really respect your opinions seeing as you’ve dedicated so much time to improving and sharing your progress.

I definitely want to know what is different about his swing and others compared to ABS because I really think that helps to learn what ABS is exactly. I’ve already bought in as I have stated before (working with Twomasters).

If Delaet saved some of his torso rotation on his driver, what would that do for him from an ABS perspective? Or better put, why should I save torso rotation in my swing?

Thanks guys and sorry for starting anything.

At the pro level, it is very competitive, and it’s tough to be out there making swing changes and then hope to win or let alone make cuts. For any pro, their swing needs to repeat and they need some kind of shot pattern they can rely upon. When you are playing 6 days a week and have access to all the balls you can hit on pristine driving range conditions, you can make a lot of things work.

The course set ups today on tour rarely require the precision shotmaking as in the past, and long iron play into par 4’s has been eliminated with the ball and frying pans. The long iron play is the true acid test of a great golf swing, and since we don’t see that anymore, we can only base opinions about ball striking on speculation. Stats are not an accurate comparison either because greens are much bigger than the past and the putting surfaces are much truer, consistent from week to week and the players only need to learn how to putt on grain free surfaces with a very minimal variance in pace.

That being said, the modern pros are doing the best they can with the gear required to play very long wide open golf courses.
When they are faced with a test like Merion last year, it was a big reality check when not one player could break par on a 6850 yard golf course.

From a historical perspective, the game of golf as we see it today is about 15 years old. Before that, the game changed very little in 50 years. The decision to change the game so radically has not gone unnoticed or without debate.

The modern game simply rewards higher swing speed velocities… but this comes with a price because the longer and lighter the gear, the less feel the player has, the easier it is to over accelerate and lose shaft flex and the golf ball doesn’t spin the way it used to so players don’t have the ability to shape shots into fairways and greens the way they used to.
It’s simply not an option. One can bring up Bubba W, but he would be curving it around a lot more with a balata ball.

There is a reason we are not seeing the next great ball striker… on the level of a Hogan etc. A crowd of fans today on a tour range are more interested in a guy driving it 340 than watching a guy hit 5 balls in a row into a trash can from 180.

I get that. Do you have any thoughts on Delaet? Or who in your opinion is the best ball striker in the world in 2014?

Yes this is the key. There are lots of players with weird looking swings that you could rip apart on video, but if you have a repeating ballflight that you can count on under pressure then it doesn’t matter what it looks like.

Here is Stenson, which I like a lot better from an ABS perspective.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tZOJRhL_-J8[/youtube]

Watch the way his left foot works post impact…watch John’s SS video from the deck face on. That show me he had the proper pressures…around p4 watch how he rotates more level. He isn’t a perfect ABS model, but he is a hitter and he uses the pressures we talk about and seek.
Stenson Impact.jpg

He brings the lumber, love that swing. Would like to see him take a driver practice swing keeping the right foot grounded until P4.5. That’s what I love about m3. Root the oak tree, gets you into a nice vertical position at P5 with nice vertical thoracic and back extension.

Doing well…lots of three with 1-iron, getting ready for spring, if we ever have a spring. Weather channel calling for 6-8 Saturday. Seriously, it’s March, enough already. Worse winter ever. I’m making ceviche this weekend to help channel some summertime.

I would love to see that. Especially if he could do that with every club in his bag!

Here’s one I like. Go to .18 and look at the nice flex in Jordan Speith’s left wrist, clubface squared to the targetline, left wrist going into extension at or a bit beyond impact; forearm rotation. Nice right foot. Why is his left arm working that way in the follow-through? Swing instructor is Cameron McCormick, Dallas.

youtube.com/watch?v=kT24m8TXauM

I’ve heard that Stenson rarely hits a driver – usually uses a 3-wood. I can’t recall seeing him use a driver come to think of it. When I say the video posted above, it was weird seeing him with a big-headed club.

His left arm works like that because he has the weakest grip on tour, maybe ever from a good player, but he still wants to lean the shaft which he does by bowing his left wrist. He uses virtually no wrist action because of this bow that he maintains throughout the swing (which has gone completely unnoticed on tv) and then king of chicken wings his left arm through impact to keep the handle ahead. Still an excellent swing in my opinion.

I’d also like to hear about holding onto pivot.

When I’ve added pivot to my swing, I’ve found that I miss to the right more often, it seems to make it harder for me to close my clubface. Does adding more pivot allow you to release more aggressively while stopping the clubface from rolling over?

Why Rory will always fight a hook under pressure with his current swing:
Mcilroy-Why he hooks.jpg