Laws of the Golf Swing: Body-Type Your Swing and Master Your Game

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Overview

"Swing doctor" Mike Adams and two the top golf instructors present a revolutionary teaching model that shows players how they can match their swings to their body type to dramatically improve their game.

Are you a Leverage, Arc , or Width Player? The authors of The Laws of the Golf Swing provide five straightforward tests' accompanied by step-by-step photos' that golfers can use to identify their own body type. Everyone falls into one of the three basic types: Leverage players, such as Jim Colbert, Nick Price, ...

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Overview

"Swing doctor" Mike Adams and two the top golf instructors present a revolutionary teaching model that shows players how they can match their swings to their body type to dramatically improve their game.

Are you a Leverage, Arc , or Width Player? The authors of The Laws of the Golf Swing provide five straightforward tests' accompanied by step-by-step photos' that golfers can use to identify their own body type. Everyone falls into one of the three basic types: Leverage players, such as Jim Colbert, Nick Price, and Annika Sorenstam, have average build and flexibility; Arc players, such as Tiger Woods, David Love III, and Michelle McGann, are long-limbed and have extra flexibility; and Width players, such as Arnold Palmer, Craig Stadler, and Meg Mallon are less flexible but have more upper body strength.

A person's golf swing is highly dependent of physique, personal strengths, and natural tendencies. By taking these five simple tests, readers can identify their own body type, discover their true swing, and then perfect it.

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Editorial Reviews

GOLF Magazine
The Best New Instruction Book of the Year.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062708151
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/1998
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.43 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Bursting the Bubble
That All Swings
Are the Same

Studies performed at the research labs of True Temper distinguish three swing profiles, each of which shows the golfer loading the club shaft differently. Loading is the bending of the club shaft in the toeup direction relative to the address position. It begins in the transition zone from backswing to downswing and causes your club head to lag behind the shaft. Unloading occurs when the shaft loses its load, reverses its bend, and releases the club head into the toe-down position, thereby emptying its energy into the ball.

The three load profiles are measured in time from the top of the swing. The double-peak profile shows the first loading peak occurring early in the downswing, with the second load coming a few tenths of a second later. It has two bursts — two places in the downswing where the bend in the shaft noticeably changes. In the singlepeak profile, load maximizes early, and then declines steadily until impact; it has one burst. The last profile, known as the "ramp-up" swing, shows steadily building pressure on the shaft until the load is released just before impact. It has no bursts.

While the studies were not done with our LAWs model in mind, they correlate nicely with the LAWs model, which classifies the double-peak profile, with its two bursts of loading, as the medium-tempo leverage swing, like that of David Frost and Nick Faldo. The single-peak profile, with its early, single burst of load, correlates with the fast-paced muscular-advantage swing exemplified by Nick Price and Craig Stadler. Theunhurried pace of the no-burst, rampup swing, in which pressure builds slowly toward the climax of impact, is typical of arc players such as Phil Michelson and Fred Couples.

On Learning the LAWS Model: Two Pieces of
Advice Before You Start

The Ball As Master

A major block to learning is allowing the ball to be your master and therefore making changes in your swing based on the previous shot. If ball flight is your only evaluation system, you'll spend most of your time tinkering with your swing.

Say you're working on something new, like a takeaway change. If you hit sixty balls and thirty fly well, you don't make any changes. But had you made a change after each shot that wasn't good, you would have made thirty changes in just one practice session, and no golf swing can survive that many changes. Why? Because when the ball is your master, you'll go through a cycle of constant adjustments, not only changing something wrong into something right, but also changing something right into something wrong, and so on ad infinitum, preventing you from developing a dependable golf swing.

When ball flight controls the learning process, you can't stay focused. Let's say you're working on the grip and you hit a few shots that don't go where you want them to. Now if you abandon what you were working on to get the ball to go straight, you'll never learn the grip. The way you incorporate a new grip Into your blueprint is by matching the model grip perfectly and then repeating it until you learn it, regardless of where the ball goes.

Here's a good rule to follow: when you're learning a "swing piece," your evaluation system should be how well you match the model, not the flight of the ball. Once you have your blueprint in place, you can troubleshoot your swing on the basis of the ball's flight. In this case, however, ball flight is your servant, not your master. It allows you to repair your swing based on your owner's maintenance manual (the LAWs model), thereby preserving rather than destroying the blueprint.

Window Of Vulnerability

Research from Johns Hopkins University shows that to learn a new skill, it's not enough simply to practice it; after practicing a skill, you have to allow enough time for the brain to encode the information. For about six hours after you learn a motor skill — such as the setup, takeaway, or the wrist cock — there is a window of vulnerability during which the new skill can be erased from your memory if you try to learn another skill on top of it. This is why students often get confused and discouraged when trying to learn golf. The problem is not the amount of information you're receiving about any one skill or task but the number of tasks presented all at once. You can absorb a lot of information about the task you're learning, but if there isn't a sufficient incubation period between tasks, your brain will forget what you learned.

This is why we've broken down the LAWs model into distinct segments, each made up of a family of related minitasks that combine to form a task unit. Once the unit is learned, there should be a spacing of at least six hours before you learn the next task unit. So to learn the setup from your first task unit, the preparation stage, match the model for your swing type, take your grip, check your ball position, flare your feet, and so on. Check your stance in a mirror (or on videotape), and keep a Polaroid picture and/or a copy of the LAWs book right there on the driving range as a reference. Take some practice swings, and then hit balls, making sure before every swing that you're matching your model. Now you can see why you should ignore the ball flight-all you should care about at this point is how well you're doing this task. Once you're done, stop and let it sink in. Or as Chuck Hogan puts it, achieve and then leave. Come back the next time, and begin with the next task, which in this case would be learning the takeaway.

So when you're learning your LAWs swing, don't let the ball be your master, and observe the window of vulnerability.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2001

    PGA National Academy Tops: Book Confirms It

    I had the pleasure of attending several clinics at the PGA National Academy of Golf where I learned that there are three basic swings depending upon body type. Twenty minutes into my first lesson using the techniques peculiar to my Width swing brought stunning, immediate results, and I became physically comfortable and confident with the golf swing for the first time since I took the game up three years ago. I've been through three instructors before this, and despite diligent, earnest practice, a consistently good swing has eluded me until now. I followed my Academy visit up by reading this book, and it helped refine and solidify what my clinic pro taught me. After all my efforts, I deserved this.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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