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Friday, December 31, 2021

Yet Another Unusual Approach to Shoulder -- and Hip -- Turn (Videos)

Yesterday I posted a video from Alex Fortey that -- let's be blunt here -- sounded somewhat unorthodox but certainly looked a lot like what Jon Rahm does. Today I'm going to do something similar.

Here's a video from Tom Saguto and I have no doubt that you'll think his approach is even crazier than Fortey's sounded. And to be honest, I have never liked the phrase "effortless power" because it's just not true -- to create power, it takes effort. (Just watch Bryson DeChambeau if you still question that.) What you need is relaxed speed, which is how most pro athletes trying to create speed would describe their efforts.

But the wording doesn't invalidate what Saguto is teaching here.

If you compare the Fortey and Saguto videos you'll hear a number of differences in their teaching... but you'll also see a number of similarities in what they're actually doing. Take a look at Saguto's video and then I'll show you something you may not expect.

Saguto and Fortey both seem to be teaching some sort of Stack and Tilt move, as the hips appear to move toward the target on the backswing and stay there during the downswing. But if Fortey's move resembled Rahm, check out how closely Saguto's move resembles that of Arnold Palmer. The following video show Palmer in slow motion, and at around the :20 mark he makes it in front of a grid.

So do the Fortey and Saguto videos overturn all the traditional teaching you've heard? In a word, NO. But there are a number of ways to make a dependable golf swing and, while neither Rahm or Palmer fit the traditional mold, both have been extremely successful at the game.

As we prepare to begin 2022 and many of you are planning your attack on the "perfect golf swing," I'd like you to remember that your "perfect" golf swing is the one that you can make consistently and without pain. Don't pursue perfection -- pursue improvement. Accept your limitations and learn how to make the most of what you've got. This is YOUR golf swing. As long as it works for you, you don't owe any apologies to anybody. And if your partners laugh at your unorthodox swing, just remember...

Kicking ass is the best revenge.

Thursday, December 30, 2021

A Different Way to Think About Shoulder Turn (Video)

You're going to hear what Alex Fortey says at the beginning of this video and think it's heresy, but don't tune out too soon. Alex isn't telling you not to turn your shoulders, but rather he wants you to think about creating a shoulder coil with more relaxation and far less lateral movement. He demonstrates two different approaches that give similar results but one may appeal to you more than another.

As crazy as this sounds, he's creating a shorter golf swing that looks very similar to that of Jon Rahm and some other players on Tour. It's worth a listen -- and maybe a little bit of experimentation on the range -- before you write it off.

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Another Chipping Drill (Video)

I keep running across this drill so I thought I'd post it. It's a sample that's been put out for free by GC's GolfPass channel showing a chipping drill that uses a small pillow to help eliminate "chicken winging" during your chips. It might help some of you -- and you can use it indoors -- so give it a try.

Let me mention that there's more than one way to chip and, if you're working with some of the alternate chipping methods like Bobby Jones used to use, you might find this drill doesn't help. (Some of those alternate techniques do bend your trailing elbow and only keep the lead elbow straight.) But don't be afraid to experiment to see if this drill feels more natural to you.

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Can Shot Tracking Help You? (Video)

If you've ever wondered what it's like to use a shot tracking system, this is the video for you. Neil Tappin at Golf Monthly has been using the ARCCOS system for a year and here he tells not only what sort of things you might learn from it but the last third of the video tells you what the whole process is like. If using this sort of system is part of your new year's plans, this video may be just what you're looking for.

Monday, December 27, 2021

Collin Morikawa's Iron Play (Video)

Obviously there's no Limerick Summary today so let's look at a master at work. Collin Morikawa is considered one of the best iron players in the game today. In this video he talks a lot about how he approaches full iron shots, his drills, his practice routine and his strategy on the course. There's A LOT here, folks, so be prepared to take some time with this video.

From what I can find, he approaches his wedges a bit differently from his other irons but I haven't been happy with the videos I've found yet. (And yes, I'm still looking.) But I think you'll find it much easier to understand his wedge play once you understand what's in this video.

Sunday, December 26, 2021

One of My Favorite Chipping Tips (Video)

I like to do posts about this particular tip every so often because I feel this is an important yet overlooked chipping technique. If you watch video as old as Bobby Jones's teaching videos, you'll see him teaching this very same technique, and it has been repeated by various short game masters in the decades since. This very short video from Rick Shiels doesn't waste time explaining why you should use it; it just gives you the basics of how to do it in less than a minute. Don't skip this video!

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Merry Christmas, Everybody!

Merry Christmas!

Why Aren't You Getting Better? (Video)

Sometimes equipment problems are the reason we stop improving, but more often it's because we just don't know what we should do. This Golf Monthly video covers ten things that can cause our improvement to stop dead in its tracks. Perhaps you'll see one or two things you can build your New Year's golf program around and start lowering your scores again.

Friday, December 24, 2021

Tommy Fleetwood's 5 Pro Tips (Video)

Rick must have locked Tommy away for several days to make all the videos he has! In this one Tommy gives you five tips that successful pros follow. Your first reaction will likely be "I've heard these before" but what makes this video useful is that Tommy not only gives you tips but also various drills and strategies to put these tips into practice. A very useful video indeed.

Thursday, December 23, 2021

A Simple Footwork Drill (Video)

My last two posts have focused on the swings of Jack Nicklaus and Sam Snead. Today I decided to round out this trilogy of videos with a drill that gives you a new way to feel the basics of their footwork. It's a short video but you might find it helpful.

The basic idea here is that power hitters have always tended to lift their lead heel in their backswing but, if you were taught to keep that lead foot glued flat to the ground, it can feel a bit awkward. This drill has you lift your lead heel very slightly at address and keep it off the ground until you change direction at the top of your backswing.

I know this sounds a bit strange but the lift is so slight that it may be enough to teach you the feel of rocking your swing from foot to foot without swaying. And when you've got good footwork it's much easier to create a relaxed swing with a big arc that generates a lot of clubhead speed. It's simple enough to try and see if it works for you.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Learning from Sam Snead's Swing (Video)

After watching Sam Snead's swing in yesterday's post, I thought you might like a closer look at the "Slammin' Sam" swing. (Yes, they actually called him that.) There are two things I think you can really learn from when you watch Sam:

  • the freedom of this swing back and through, and
  • what is sometimes called the "Snead Squat," which is simply how Sam stays down and level until he actually hits the ball, which allows him to hit it solidly every time. (Yes, he does push up as he he hits the ball, as you can see it in this video. He just doesn't straighten up before he gets to the ball.)

There seems to be a trend among some of the younger pros to create this kind of swing -- Justin Thomas comes to mind. And this video does a good job of showing how it all works together.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

So Let's Watch Some Classic Golf Swings! (Video)

Since we'll be without new golf for a couple of weeks, let's watch some classic golf with some legendary swings. Today I've got a 1963 episode of Shell’s Wonderful World of Golf featuring Jack Nicklaus and Sam Snead. Sam was 50, Jack 23 -- an elder statesman taking on a young upstart. Both players have similarities in their swings and some differences as well. And since the show focuses on only these two players, it's a good opportunity to study two legends of the game. Enjoy!

Monday, December 20, 2021

The Limerick Summary: 2021 PNC Championship

Winner: John Daly and John Daly II

Around the wider world of golf: None of the major tours had regular field events going on this week.

The winning team of John Daly and his son

Again, I made no no Twofer Tuesday picks this week. But that doesn't mean there was no excitement at the PNC Championship.

First, Charlie Woods gets at least some bragging rights over Justin Thomas. He and his dad beat JT and his dad by by one shot for the week, giving the Woods team solo second while the Thomases had to settle for T3 this year.

Second, Charlie and Tiger made a record 11 birdies in a row to shoot 57 in the last round. Given that Tiger didn't even know if he'd even be able to play this week -- at what he termed a "hit and giggle" event -- until the last minute, it was pretty impressive all around.

But it wasn't nearly as impressive as the Dalys also posting a 57 to win by two shots, setting a new event scoring record in the process. After all, their record sealed the win.

Just because John Daly is sporting a beard that makes him look older than he is -- and which, btw, allowed him to play a very cool-looking Santa at the get-togethers this week -- doesn't mean he can't still play golf. And his son JDII (which he says is how he wants to be known now) is clearly getting even better at the game than he has been in the past. (I'm sure his college coach -- JDII's a freshman at Arkansas -- is smiling from ear to ear.) They made their win look easy.

Do I really need to say more than this? This father-son team has been knocking at the door for a while. Sunday they finally kicked it open... and then slammed it shut, right in their challengers' faces. That's a nice Christmas present to give yourselves.

And a nice way to pick up a Limerick Summary as well!

It’s Santa & Son for the win!
The Dalys went deep at the end.
With John Jr’s guts
And JD’s clutch putts,
It’s more like a “crush it and grin.”

The photo came from this page at

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Rick Shiels VS Tommy Fleetwood? (Video)

Since there's not much golf going on leading up to Christmas, I thought this would be something fun to watch. It's simple enough -- Rick Shiels is playing 18 holes of stroke play against Tommy Fleetwood EXCEPT Tommy is going to spot Rick 10 shots! Sounds like an interesting challenge...

But really, will that be enough?

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Chris Ryan on Getting More Driver Distance (Video)

In this video Chris describes the relationship between swing path, attack angle, ball speed and distance. He also includes a drill to help you. You may think you've heard this before but I'd be willing to bet you'll be surprised. Chris actually gets extra carry distance with less ball speed! The technique is relatively simple but remember: This is how to get more distance off a tee.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Don't Forget: Tiger Plays TODAY!

I'm sure you know that Tiger is playing in the PNC Pro-Am today and GC's coverage officially starts at 12:30pm ET. But you may not have heard that, since he's teeing off at 9am ET, GC will be doing extra coverage during Golf Today starting at 9:30am ET. So if you want to see more of Tiger's first public appearance since the accident, don't forget to tune in.

Tiger and Charlie

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Mike Malaska on Creating Driver Speed (Video)

In this short video Mike Malaska teaches you the basic "feel" for creating a speedy driver swing. Much of this you've heard before while some may be new to you.

But part of the key to using this "feel" is to avoid the temptation of just hitting positions. Watch the video and try to imagine how the swing feels. Focus on making this free-swinging motion with as little tension as possible to get the most good from it.

Part of the key is avoiding another temptation -- that is, over-emphasizing the motion while you swing. Most of us don't realize how much we exaggerate moves when we try to copy them. Your goal is to make the swing as economically as possible, avoiding big bends in your knees or moving too far from side-to-side when transitioning from backswing to downswing.

What you're after is a motion that feels as easy as turning from side-to-side while holding a tray of food at a party -- it gets the job done without slinging food and drinks everywhere. When you get that feel, you'll find it much easier to make consistent contact.

And consistent contact -- or, if you prefer, smash factor -- is the biggest factor in hitting it long. 

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

I Don't Think Caddies Should Worry Yet... (Video)

Rick's tested some crazy things before but I think this robot caddie takes the cake. Enjoy this... glimpse of the future?

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

The PNC Championship is Back

It's not listed on the PGA Tour schedule but you know all the guys are ready for it. It used to be called the PNC Father-Son but since the event (rightfully in my opinion) agreed that daughters should be allowed to play as well -- I don't think we've seen a Mother-Daughter pairing yet -- the name has been streamlined to the PNC Championship.

Defending champions Justin and Mike Thomas

The event will once again be played (as it has since 2002) at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club in Orlando FL. While it's listed as a par-72 course measuring 7100 yards, the fact is that there are different tees in play because the younger players -- and this year, perhaps Tiger -- simply can't play from the same set of tees as the adults. But however the officials figure out who plays which tee, they've done it well in the past so I see no reason that should change.

Tiger does add an element of interest to the event though. Will they put him on an adjusted tee to compensate for the severity of his leg injury, or will they just let Charlie take care of the tee shots? It does seem a bit unfair to Charlie if they decide on the latter!

There are 20 pairings, all standard father-son pairings except for Nelly Korda who's playing with her dad and Bubba Watson who's playing with his father-in-law. Justin and Mike Thomas are back to defend their 2020 win.

  • Justin Thomas & Mike Thomas (Defending champs)
  • Bubba Watson & Wayne Ball
  • David Duval & Brady Duval
  • Gary Player & Jordan Player
  • Henrik Stenson & Karl Stenson
  • Jim Furyk & Tanner Furyk
  • John Daly & Little John Daly
  • Lee Trevino & Daniel Trevino
  • Mark O’Meara & Shaun O’Meara
  • Matt Kuchar & Cameron Kuchar
  • Nelly Korda & Petr Korda
  • Nick Faldo & Matthew Faldo
  • Nick Price & Greg Price
  • Padraig Harrington & Paddy Harrington
  • Rich Beem & Michael Beem
  • Stewart Cink & Reagan Cink
  • Tom Lehman & Sean Lehman
  • Tom Watson & Michael Watson
  • Tiger Woods & Charlie Woods
  • Vijay Singh & Qass Singh

There are only two rounds, on Saturday and Sunday. Each day starts on GC then moves over to NBC, although there's a three-hour gap between the coverage on Saturday. GC's Saturday coverage runs 11am-noon ET then moves over to NBC at 3pm ET.

I know most of the excitement for this event concerns Tiger's first public return as a player since his accident, but this is always fun to watch because the kids get such a good chance to show off, just as Charlie did last year. We should expect more surprises this year.

Monday, December 13, 2021

The Limerick Summary: 2021 QBE Shootout

Winner: Kevin Na/Jason Kokrak

Around the wider world of golf: Alan Wagner won the Scotia Wealth Management presented by Volvo on the PGA TOUR Latinoamérica.

Jason Kokrak and Kevin Na with the QBE trophy

Once again, there were no Twofer Tuesday picks this week. Those won't be back until January.

But that doesn't mean there was no golf. The QBE Shootout (formerly the Shark Shootout) with twelve teams of two players -- some of whom seem almost random in their pairings -- did their annual 54-hole December competition. And this one actually had some drama at the end.

I won't belabor Jason Day and Marc Leishman's failure to close out when they had a three-stroke lead to start the day. With the alternative formats in use each day -- and the final round being basically best ball by some of the best players around -- you can't take anything for granted.

Kevin Na and Jason Kokrak started the day three back, fell to five back after the fifth hole and then rattled off TWELVE birdies in thirteen holes to take the title. Na himself posted seven birdies in a row. You simply can't predict that kind of play, especially when you have a long player and a short player teamed together.

Especially when both get hot with the putter. It's unlikely that any course will effectively prevent them from attacking every hole.

While the QBE isn't an official event, it's certainly the kind of event where players can find something to launch them into the new year. (Even Day learned that the swing changes he's made to help his back are starting to work.) And it certainly gives both Na and Kokrak encouragement that their good play over the last year or two is still with them.

And of course they walk off with another Limerick Summary, which is never a bad thing.

One long and one short off the tee,
They started the day back by three.
But Kokrak and Na
Had the final hurrah,
Shooting 60 to grab victory.

The photo came from this page at

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Tommy Fleetwood on Working with Just One Manufacturer (Video)

This is another clip from the Rick Shiels/Tommy Fleetwood interview that covered something I had never considered. Why do the pros sign with a single manufacturer so often when they can afford to play any brand they want? The answer might surprise you. It certainly suprised me.

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Introducing a Young Child to Golf (Video)

Here's something many of you may wonder about: How do you introduce a young child to the game you love? In this video Paige is spending some time with her two-year-old niece Delilah on the golf course. After watching the two of them, maybe you'll get a few ideas of your own.

Friday, December 10, 2021

Just a Quick Reminder...

GC's coverage of the QBE Shootout starts today at noon ET.

Defending champs Matt Kuchar and Harris English

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Alistair Davies's 5 Putting Tips (Video)

UK Golf Coach Alistair Davies has five tips that might improve your putting. I think you should pay particular attention to the first one regarding eye line and aim. Too many of you haven't heard it before and I think it's something that isn't stressed often enough.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Tommy Fleetwood on Playing with Tiger (Video)

I stumbled across this excerpt from a podcast Rick Shiels did with Tommy Fleetwood. Tommy got to play with Tiger quite a bit during his amazing run at the end of 2018 where he won the ZOZO and the Tour Championship, and in this excerpt he talks about what it was like.

The entire podcast is nearly two hours long. If you're interested, you can watch the whole thing at this link.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

The Holiday Team Event

This isn't a Twofer Tuesday event so let's just take a quick look at the QBE Shootout.

Defending champions Matt Kuchar and Harris English

The QBE is an unofficial event -- and unlike the Hero, no points up for grabs this week -- with 12 two-player teams. The 54-hole event uses a different format each round -- scramble, modified alternate shot and better-ball rounds. And the defending champs are Matt Kuchar and Harris English, who posted -37 last year.

Yes, this is a LOW scoring team event.

The QBE is played at Tiburon, which also hosts the LPGA's Tour Championship. That's convenient as the most interesting team this year is the pairing of Bubba Watson and Lexi Thompson. Both have had success on this course and this first-time pairing should be fun to watch.

For those of you playing fantasy golf, here's a link to's Power Rankings. It will give you the skinny on all 12 pairings, some of which look pretty random and could result in unexpected contenders on Sunday.

GC's coverage starts Friday at noon ET. This is certainly not a high-pressure event but it's hard not to enjoy an event where the pros play the kind of games that amateurs play and still manage to shoot -37. It's a nice relaxing way to pass some time as we recover from Christmas shopping.

Monday, December 6, 2021

The Limerick Summary: 2021 Hero World Challenge

Winner: Viktor Hovland

Around the wider world of golf: Daniel van Tonder won the Sunshine Tour's South African Open which, if you didn't know, is the second oldest tournament in the world; Jorge Fernández-Valdés won the 115 VISA Argentine Open on the PGA TOUR Latinoamérica; and Hideto Tanihara won the Golf Nippon Series JT Cup on the Japan Golf Tour.

Viktor Hovland with Tiger and the Hero trophy

My decision to make some picks this week paid off after all. My Twofer Tuesday picks were Collin Morikawa (T5) and Justin Thomas (T5). Collin looked to give me a win before stumbling, but at least he got me a Top5, and JT rallied for a nice finish as well.

  • Top10s: 4 for 20 (2 Top5, 2 Top10s)
  • Winners: 0 for 10

Albany Golf Club in the Bahamas turned out to be much harder this week than the players expected. And Sunday's wild scoring swings just added to the excitement. Players were missing fairways by a lot and greens by a little -- and either way, they paid a stiff price.

The final pairing of Brooks Koepka and Collin Morikawa was a classic example. Collin had a five-shot lead over Brooks when the day began, but the two ended the round +6. Several players made runs, only to have their brief leads snatched away as soon as they came.

Except for Viktor Hovland, that is. Coming off his win at Mayakoba just a month ago, he overcame the chipping problems most players faced by simply hitting awesome full shots and putting like it was going out of style.

But even he wasn't immune. His final five holes were eagle-eagle-birdie-bogey-bogey to win by a single shot.

Nevertheless, a win's a win and under tough conditions at that.

As a result, Viktor gets his third worldwide win of the season. Therefore, he gets his second Limerick Summary for the same time period. Perhaps his fellow players should start looking over their shoulders for him!

He roared through the field from six back
When Collin’s game started to crack.
And once Vik got going
His lead started growing;
The field fell before his attack.

The photo came from this page at

Sunday, December 5, 2021

How Rick Shiels Fixes a Hook (Video)

Most players struggle with a slice but lots of players fight a hook. In this short video Rick explains how he would fix it. Even if you don't want to try this, Rick does a good job of explaining what causes a hook in the first place. Once you understand why you do it, it's much easier to fix it!

Saturday, December 4, 2021

Golf Gift Ideas (Video)

Nothing spectacular today but I hope it's useful. With Christmas coming, here are some ideas for golf gifts at a variety of price levels. Even if the suggestions themselves don't appeal to you, perhaps they'll stimulate your imagination a bit.

Friday, December 3, 2021

Another Approach to Chipping from Tight Lies (Video)

This video is different from many of the 'chipping from tight lies' videos I've posted before. Usually the demonstrations use different clubs to get different results, but Paige really is teaching you three different techniques because she's using the same club for each shot -- in her case, that's a 54° wedge. If you pay attention, you'll learn how small variations in technique can affect the way the ball reacts when it lands on the green.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

10 Tips for Better Winter Performance (Video)

If you don't want winter to keep you away from the golf course, Kit Alexander has two handfuls of tips to help keep your game sharp when the weather gets cold. Some you may have heard before, but some may make your winter golf a bit more enjoyable. Give this video a watch if you sneer at the cold!

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

It's Nice to Have Him Back

No news here. Tiger showed up to host the Hero World Challenge, this time in a non-playing role. Totally expected.

Tiger at the Hero

I'm not going to belabor the presser. You've been hearing about it all day Tuesday and will likely continue to hear about it from now on.

The two big things he said?

  1. He probably won't be a regular Tour player going forward but sees no reason he couldn't get it together for a few events a year once he gets back in playing shape. That includes finding some distance again, as he joked about possibly being competitive if the Masters par-3 event was the standard length of a Tour venue.
  2. He also threw his support behind the PGA Tour as opposed to the rumors of a Greg Norman-headed world tour. No big surprise there either but, with both Rory and Tiger taking this stand, any new tour will likely now find itself in an uphill battle to draw off any major players.

Many of the commentators were complaining that Tiger was giving no real information and none of the media at the presser were willing to push for more. Again, nothing new there.

As for my take on all this, the post title says it all. It's nice to have Tiger back in the spotlight, even if all he can do is let us see that he's getting better and is in good spirits. I'll take that as a major win.