This is why I can create a whole mess of lag and still square the club, why some others can…and why it’s a joke to attempt create more for more distance…because it is meaningless anyway.
This information was from 15 years ago, but I believe it makes the case that a lot of lag can only be squared while continuing to accelerate the club through impact…if you have a tremendous amount of hand strength to control it.
Whereas those without the requisite hand strength, who create it artificially, actually have to slow the club down in someway in order to square it.
There are obviously more factors than hand and forearm strength and me as a case study is an extremely small sample, but I am injecting common sense and saying this makes perfect sense and from my observations of the last 25 years of long hitters and those with lag that could control it…and those who created it artificially and couldn’t control it.
The first anecdotal evidence of my hand strength was at a bar in Miami. I had just beaten many the top long drivers in a contest and drummed the two who most fancied themselves as players in a match.
We were at a bar and they had one of those strength meters where you grip a handle and squeeze as hard as you can. The two largest in both physical size/strength and ego, decided this one the only thing they could beat me at. I agreed they probably could and humored them by playing along. I was 6-2 and about 195 pounds at the time and these two fellows were 6-4 and 6-6 and both in the 250-260 pounds of ripped muscle. Not all natural either, I suspect.
The gauge on the machine read something like…
It didn’t say anything over 100.
The first egoman put in his quarter and while nearly popping a blood vessel in his head, pulled a 97. The other weight pumper nearly passed out pulling so hard and got 99.
“Almost Hercules baby!” and he flexed and yelled out in triumph.
One said, “Let’s see if Monte can get over 50,” and everyone laughed, including me…there were about 10-12 of us.
I walked up, put in my quarter and pulled, hoping to get at least 70 or 80. To everone’s astonishment, including my own, the gauge read 109…NOT a typo. So being the smartass I was, I put in another quarter, used my left hand, pulled 108 and said, “Anything else you guys want me to kick your ass at? How about ending sentences in prepositions?”
A few years later a team of bio-mechanical engineers came out to a Nationwide event and they were studying golfers and why they hit the ball far. Of course, they were interested in measuring me.
The 3 interesting measurements were as follows.
They had what can be described as a blood pressure bulb connected to a pressure gauge. The units of measure went up to 30. The second highest score besides mine was 23. My score was estimated at 37 as I went off the scale.
The other two measurements were taken on a shoebox sized device where your lower arm was immobilized and you pulled on a handle with palm up and palm down. Obviously you would have more leverage to pull with palm up. The handle was attached to a wire and the wire was attached to a gauge.
With palm up, I pulled 30% higher than the next best score, which did not surprise any of them after what I did on the first test. What was surprising was I pulled a higher score palm down than 50% of the guys pulled palm up.
Seeing as I was not a muscular guy, that made them all look at each other. Their preliminary theory was many people could generate lots of club speed, but only a select few could control the rotation of the face at those speeds…and being the world champion and not being as massive as many of the other long hitters, I was at the top of the food chain in this category.
Now it’s possible everything I have just said is speculative BS of extremely small sample sizes, but I find it an interesting theory and entertaining anecdotal evidence of an idea that makes some sense to me.
Your body is smarter than you and will only create the amount of lag you can control…and it will create that lag and forward shaft lean automatically with a good swing.
I still say lag is meaningless. You need some, but it has at best, an indirect affect on distance and probably a direct affect on lack of consistency.
I have been trying to get rid of someone of mine for over a year now. I don’t lose any distance, actually I gain some when I do it right as my contact is better more often with less spin…and I hit the ball straighter.
I don’t hit that one sick 360 yard bomb out of nowhere, but I also don’t hit as many of those low on the face heels that have too much spin and end up short and in the right rough.
What does that tell you about the all mighty lag? In my opinion, the more lag you have, the worse your misses are going to be…and isn’t that the opposite of the name of the game…making your misses better.
Now I wait for the same group of goobers who will say that I am promoting a cast. These lag crazies were the ones who railed on me when I first started my campaign for the gradual release from the top. Now science is proving me right. Brian Manzella and his group proved scientifically that lag is bad and are now teaching people to throw it away.
As soon as a golfer learns that the opposite of a cast is proper body rotation and not lag, they are well on their way to becoming a better golfer without even working on their swing.