Tiger at Presidents Cup and Beyond

I’m curious what the ABS experts think about Tiger’s swing at the President’s Cup.

His practice move is a big over the top then cut left type of move. Johnny Miller commented on how much he’s swinging left. I haven’t seen a swing in slo-mo, but it does look like he’s going more left after impact. To me, it looks much different from what he was doing even at the Fry’s event.

Any thoughts?

Yes I noticed his practice swing is deliberate OTT move.Maybe to stop his arms getting stuck behind him? keep them in sync with the body a bit more? His ball striking with his irons was fantastic. I dont think he missed a shot on the last day.

His driver let him down so he was lucky enough the course allowed him to tee of with iron on some holes. But when you hit iron shots like that i suppose you can get away with it.

I think Tiger was still missing his distance control…this was quite noticeable at Royal Melb where you had to play more bump and run irons shots landing them short and using the bounce and the slopes to get the ball into a good putting position
His swing certainly looked more under control but hit a bunch of shots short and a bunch of shots long…and I mean carried then way off the mark short and long…the course was perfect for him as he didn’t need many woods from the tee…I think he is still a large work in progress but showed some better signs for sure.

Would you consider poor distance control a ‘feel’ issue or an inconsistent-ball-striking issue?

I would say a squeezing issue…my call is being that much on top of the ball is going to bring the club down steeper than he needs to be and he is getting a few a hair fat or missing the spot on the face (short) or he is squeezing the plastic ball and it is jumping with delofted face(long)
Pretty technical but hey distance control of the irons is MUCH more important than accuracy with the irons.
A good player shouldn’t hit one more than 20-25 feet left or right of the hole…but combine that with 30 feet short or 30 feet long and you are staring down 40 and 50 foot putts all day…
I just noticed him complaining about putting but realistically he didn’t have all that many makeable putts as he was long or short on most holes. So he couldn’t blame his putting as much as should have blamed his approaches.
somewhere near pin high gives you the same distance putt that you are off target…20 foot right or left you will basically have a 20 footer no matter what if you have the distance correct

I think that Tiger’s swing is exactly correct now.

He is swinging on plane through the ball.

Since the swing is a circle on a tilted plane, the club must go left after impact to be correct.(See Ben Hogan and Sam Snead)

In it’s ideal form, the swing should deliver the club face to the ball just before the bottom of the circle, and then turn left prior to climbing back up the tilted plane. It is easier to perform with a steeper backswing.

Your divots should point left of your target line.

The exaggerated practice swing, in slow motion, is about feel and proper sequencing. This swing requires a bump forward with the left hip to initiate the downswing, which is a different feel than turning the hips as fast as you can. You must get over to the left side more, on the downswing, to deliver the club up the plane after impact, without flipping the club face over.The slow motion practice swing just reminds him of the proper sequence + the “feel” of “over the top”—which it actually is not----it’s just less from the inside out than before.

The advantages of this swing are full compression with a margin for error. The margin for error is that if performed properly (club face square or held slightly open), the ball will go straight, or, if started slightly left, will fade back to the target.

Tiger has commented repeatedly about his increased distance. This is because of the pure contact and compression of the ball against the turf. His distance control early last week was a struggle between new standard distances with each iron + the firmness of the greens + the high winds. On day 4 he had it figured out.

Johnny Miller doesn’t seem to have kept up with current swing theory. His concept of “right arm following the ball down the line” is the old “good player’s” swing----and also the reason Tiger got stuck all the time.

The current swing has corrected the old swing flaw.


I don’t think swinging left is modern swing theory. This is how many of the greats of the past did it. Nothing new here.
The OTT practice swing may be a feel of going left post impact but would still require gear to sit more upright which leaves the hot pulled shot flying long and left of the green still on the table. If this is what contemporary swing coaches are preaching, they are still missing the point, and we won’t see the next great ball striker develop from this kind of action.

Tiger’s test will be how it holds up under pressure in the hunt for his next major. That’s his main interest. Until then, the verdict is still out.

You try to hold the blade square thru impact and up the plane. This is possible because your left hip is ahead. In effect, you are putting a slight cut spin on the ball by swinging left, and the ball fades just a tad.

This is exactly what Hogan did, although with a different swing. He said that the harder he attacked the ball, the straighter the ball flew–meaning he couldn’t totally hold it off when he really released.

If you don’t hold it quite square, the ball just goes straight, but only slightly left.

Tiger has hit a couple of long, left pulls because he didn’t sequence correctly. If you don’t get ahead of it with your left hip, you can’t hold it and flip it left.

If you sequence the left hip correctly, you won’t hit a hook—just a straight pull.

The left hip move gets you more over the ball, allowing you to really compress it down + being more left negates the probability of jerking it left.

First (and importantly) lets puts this into perspective before we start to praise Foley and this new in vogue swing concepts of exaggerated swinging left. I am far from from being to be even close to Foley in swing knowledge but I do feel highly I can offer an objective opinion on Tiger.

Since his Butch days, and even more so under Hank (imho), Tiger has ALWAYS been an all-world iron player. I would even make the argument he was best mid-long iron EVER from 2005-2009. He seemingly had complete control of the ball past 150y down to his 2i (about 250y). Was either 1st, or near it, in all approach stats for that distance. He made in-human recoveries from that range as well and combined with his short game/putting during that time he was almost unstoppable. This also during a period where his driving accuracy fluttered just over 60% and many use his bad drives against him as a premier ball-striker (compared to 70%+ during Butch days BUT many forget Tiger used Steel shafts in driver up until 2003 I think it was when I first noticed the change).

Now, Being that good for so long with his irons I don’t see how anyone can make the observation that he is better now under Foley. The media and many forums are driving me nuts with this. Everyone is so quick to jump to latest herd mentality. Six months ago all I read is Tiger needs to leave this botched Stack-Tilt Foley stuff and go back to Butch. Now in past few weeks everyone is up in arms saying it is the “correct way to swing”, Tiger is making “better compression”, more people at driving range trying to swing left more and all curious about how to learn more about this new born from Trackman swing theory that has Tiger back on track.

Yes, Tiger has made great strides in finally getting his body to co-operate with the widely exaggerated drills and body movements Foley is planting into him. But he still isn’t anywhere NEAR his old self in striking as Two already alluded too, Tiger still has distance control issues that pop up suddenly. Also lets not ignore the fact that Tigers short game around the green was CLEARLY the difference at both events down in Australia. He was literally duffing chips just a few short months ago and lipping out 4 foot putts.

Brandon Chamblee for once articulated perfectly something the other day. GOLF is in Tiger’s DNA. Even when slumping he still is easily one of best in the world and when ON there is NO ONE close. It ISN’T about the SWING with Tiger. He has won majors with THREE different swings now (his am swing won 1997 Masters, then under Butch then Hank). He has pure ball contact ingrained by now. Tiger could take lessons from Jim Furyk for pete’s sake and be in contention again in a year and half!

Bottom line: Considering what we have seen from Tiger for all of 2010 and 2011 (till two weeks ago), he has dramatically improved. BUT he still has major driver issues. He used long irons and 3w for most of both events. His misses with driver are probably the worst in PGA in distance offline. Australia allowed him to use his top skill range, mid-long irons. I also predict he will do very well at Chevron next week as he has confidence there. But 2012 will be interesting on tougher/longer courses and he needs to use driver as well as back full fields.

Sorry, Texsport…that isn’t what we do here at ABS. Not even close.

Captain Chaos

Any chance you can show us what you mean by over the ball, compared to not over the ball? Not really familiar with that term. I assume this means the head is more inline with the ball from a caddy view with the spine more erect rather than tilted to the right over the right foot.

Would be good to clarify here… before discussing.


From commentary this sounds correct. They called it “covering the ball more” (avoiding the word stacked). He is more inline. They also mentioned more steep into contact because of it as he is ‘compressing’ ball better with bigger divots.

I predict that eventually one will not be able to get lessons without Trackman. It will be as common to golf teaching as slo-mo video has become. I’ve noticed large increase of talking about it on forums just in a year. And the influences of its findings are gaining momentum fast. “swing left more” “zero the club face” “less back spin in fittings with xxx brand driver” “optimal launch angle”…

Maybe it will revolutionize golf by proving things that once were fundamentals were wrong (like swinging out to 1st base)? And get all of golfers swinging exactly the same. Leveling playing field to where individual swing methods and concepts don’t matter anymore. We will all just be robots swinging on ideal plane that zeros our club face and achieves optimal launch… Who putts the best will just be the winner each week… Oh wait, PGA tour is already almost like that. Trackman effect.


So science has now proven Hogan and Snead were wrong. If that is the case, who is right? Luke Donald?

Just a couple of points:

(1) Tiger cannot swing as he did previously because of the strain that swing put on his left knee. So what would you do?

(2) I don’t believe that anyone thinks that S Foley invented the swing he and Tiger are working on. It is just one of many ways to hit a golf ball, and the method has been used by players previously…at least in similar fashion.

(3) The swing is very close to what Jim Hardy calls a one plane swing. It is primarily a right sided swing, as contrasted to the more common left side dominated swing methods.

(4) It is particularly useful to Mr Woods, because the club is delivered to the ball with a flexed left knee, it eliminates one directional miss (to the right in Tigers case), and improves his compression of the ball, and therefore his distance. This swing creates a slight fade-to-straight shot, instead of push- blocks or hooks, which both existed with the old swing.

(5) As his sequencing and confidence improve, as well as ingraining natural feels for working the ball, Tiger will regain his ability to compete and win.

What I meant exactly was that you avoid the flash, slap release which is very inconsistent.

Just as hooks occur because the body stalls behind the ball, creating so much torque that the hands cannot be stopped from releasing too quickly, the one plane swing tends to prevent hooks because you are farther ahead of the ball with your body.

If sequencing is incorrect with Tiger’s new swing, as in not getting your weight to the ball of your left foot before delivering the club…you will also hit a hook.

Woods has hit a few of those, and you always see him quickly practice his sequencing in slow motion. He knows now why the ball went left. Once sequencing is perfected, the hook is basically eliminated.

I’m new to ABS, but I thought it was a forum on ball striking. There are lots of effective ways to do that. The particular method that is effective for each player is greatly affected by his physique and athleticism.

Single formula swing methods are unrealistic IMHO.

I agree, Tiger will win again… even if he had to re take up the game left handed.

Lots of ways to swing the golf club no doubt and we discuss a lot of those ways.

There are however, ways to stack things in your favor a bit, and the laws of physics don’t change with the latest swing fad
or gimmic club.

I caught the clip on Tiger’s management team discussing how to repair his image, and how they have been doing polls and calculating his image and potential worth to sponsors. Apparently he has picked up new sponsors recently and the Tiger business model is gearing up for another frenzy, this time preparing and designing it as a comeback story. It’s incredible how much time they spend calculating and strategically planning out all this stuff out. :confused:

God forbid that Tiger have the integrity to say, “Can I just be Tiger?” Honestly, how much money do you need? Why on Earth would you work so hard to live a lie just to make a buck?

If it were me, I’d just wear black all the time, not get married and be sure I had my schwantz insured through Lloyd’s of London. :wink:

Captain Chaos