I'll come back to this post at a later time, because I discovered this video quite unexpectedly and wasn't ready to write extensively about Henry Cotton. But Cotton, who is considered one of England's three greatest golfers -- the other two being Henry Vardon and Nick Faldo -- was the man who most emphasized the use of the hands in the golf swing.
This video, which is apparently from 1986, shows one of Cotton's favorite drills for strengthening your hands and teaching you the correct way to use them at impact. I read once that Cotton could hit a driver over 175 yards with either hand. Yes, you read that correctly -- using only one hand at a time!
There is also a link below this video on its YouTube page, which I'm including here. This link takes you to a page that documents a wide variety of instruction on using the hands, dating from 1900. It includes the above video, and the number of great players quoted here is amazing.
While some of it overemphasizes forearm rotation -- remember, many of the early quotes come from the days of hickory shafts, when the club shaft itself twisted during the swing (we call that torque) -- there's still a lot of useful stuff there for modern golfers.
The one thing I'd like to add to this video is this: If you decide to try this version of the tire drill, take it easy at the beginning because it would be very easy to hurt yourself if you get too... ambitious too soon. It's meant to help strengthen your hands and forearms, so you need to start slowly.
But I have to admit, it sure looks like a lot of fun!