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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Good and Bad of Phil's Driver Swing

This is interesting... both Golf Magazine and Golf Digest chose to do articles about Phil Mickelson's swing, focusing on his driver. What makes it really interesting is that each magazine focused on a different section of Phil's swing!

For example, did a swing sequence slide show but the top part of Phil's swing -- the change of direction and beginning of the downswing -- is conspicuously missing.

The bottom of Phil's swing
They talk about his relaxed setup, wide takeaway, and extension through the ball at impact -- all aspects commonly associated with a classic swing. Phil creates his club head speed with the length of his swing and his relaxed, balanced action.

But over at Johnny Miller focuses on the problems Phil often faces at the top of his swing. Johnny speaks about two different problems:
  1. His swing sometimes gets too long, with the club shaft pointed down toward the ground.
  2. His hands and the shaft get too close to his shoulder as he changes directions, which creates a lot of wrist cock but makes it harder to square the club face.
Johnny also has a video in the post that talks about Phil's game, as well as how he would fix these problems.

Putting the two together, you end up with a long relaxed driver swing that stops a bit short of parallel at the top and keeps the hands away from the trailing shoulder during the change of direction and start of the downswing. And yes, it's much easier to keep your hands "as far away from your shoulders at the top as practical" if you make a long relaxed swing. It seems that Butch is always trying to get Phil to shorten his swing just a bit... and when he does, he always drives it much better.

These two articles give you a pretty thorough look at both the good and the bad of Phil's driving. If you take a little time to read them and study the photos (and in Johnny's case, watch the video), you just might find something you can use to help improve your own driving.

1 comment:

  1. Michelle Wie did just that