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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Julius Boros Talks about Swing Keys

Over the next month (yeah, I’m gonna be lazy over the holidays) I thought I’d do some posts featuring things that great players have said about their swings. Hopefully these posts will show just how varied the approaches of successful players have been, and maybe they’ll inspire some improvement in your game for the coming year.

Julius Boros was a 3-time Major winner (1952 & 1963 US Open, 1968 PGA Championship). That last major, won at age 48, made him the oldest player ever to win a major – a record that still stands, since Tom Watson fell just short at this year’s Open Championship. Boros was a very “handsy” player, and he wrote something in his book How to Swing with an Effortless Swing that fits in very well with our recent discussions about feel (as you read this, remember that Boros is righthanded):
Some people feel that the “key” in golf is the left shoulder. Others talk about the left hip. I prefer to emphasize the hands. Proper hand action is my big key. If my hands work correctly everything else falls into place. While I cannot see my hands at all times in the swing, I can feel what they are doing much more easily than I can feel, say, my left shoulder or hip. (p.55)
I don’t quote this to try and prove that hand action is important. Rather, I want you to key in on that last sentence. Why does Boros say that he keys in on hand action?

Because what his hands are doing is the easiest thing for him to feel during his swing. Since he can always know what his hands are doing, his hand action is his primary swing key.

What aspect of your swing you can feel most clearly? Is there something that feels good when you swing well… and feels bad when you swing poorly? Maybe this is a clue to finding a useful swing key for you. Finding this key helped Boros win three majors; it might help you as well.

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