Golf swings don’t make great players. My comments about all of these swings have nothing to do with any of these players’ ability to be among the best in the world. They are my views on how I think these players could become even better than they are already.
Jamie Sadlowski on Monday.
Before I get to Ben Curtis, I found I was right, without even knowing it, about some subtle change in Stewart Cink’s swing that would benefit him. Someone pointed out to me a video from this year’s British Open, where Stewart won his first major. The changes are subtle, but he made the exact two changes that I suggested in my analysis yesterday. Good for him and that is exactly what I mean. Small subtle changes can make us better, no matter what our skill level is. I obviously had nothing to do with Cink’s changes, as he made them well before I even made any comments, but it shows me that my ideas on how to improve hold some water. Here is the video if you care to compare it to yesterday’s.
Ben Curtis is the poster child for almost every point of my theory on the golf swing.
He rotates his shoulders 90* to the ground, instead of 90* to his spine. That gets him way too far to the inside. He has tried to combat this by listening to some moron tell him to have an early hand set and to the outside (we have all seen him do this even more pronounced than in this video). All that does is get his hands way too involved early and because his shoulders are rotating level to the ground instead of his spine, his hands still get too far inside and the club behind him. Just like Stewart Sink, when the club is too far inside and behind you, the hands will often lift at the end of the swing and take the club across the line.
As I explained in one of my posts, restricting hip turn is never good and hips will only over rotate because the shoulder turn is level to the ground, instead of to the spine. Well, Ben’s hips also over rotate for this reason and that makes the problem of being too far inside and across the line even worse.
When you are across the line, many good players have a slight reroute over the top and Ben is no different.
From over rotating to the inside, going across the line and way too much early activity with the hands, he is forced to pull his shoulders up into his ears, straighten his spine angle and come up on his toes through impact to create room for himself to square the club.
All of this is textbook cause and effect and Ben has the move of about a 15 handicap, but for one major awesome part of his swing. Like I said in my cargo short and T-shirt videos, a good release can cure a lot of evils. Ben’s release is fantastic and it gets him right into perfect hitting position just before impact. Add in the fact that he is one of the best putters on Tour, you have the answer as to why a guy with a weekend hacker’s swing can win a major and stay on The PGA Tour.
I absolutely guarantee that if Ben Curtis learned to turn his shoulders 90* to his spine, continued to release the club like he does and continued his good putting, he would consistently be among the top 20 or 30 players on the money list…if not better.
Turning his shoulders properly would have a positive domino affect as each of the flaws I described above would go away one by one. He might play bad at first as this would be a major change in the dynamic of his move, but once he got used to it, he would play better than he has ever played.
If he continues to swing like this, his game and body will deteriorate as he gets older.