Tiger and swinging like O’Meara and Wi

Here is your proof that Tiger is no where near back.

By sheer will and talent he is able to contend. When Tiger is at the top or near the top of his game, he doesn’t shoot the highest score among the top 20 players in the field when he is only one shot back.

In 2009 I ranted and raved that his swing was terrible and he was spending so much time on it, he was neglecting his short game. I got criticism for that and then he said it publicly that it was the case. He did something awful and “un-Tigerlike” in all 4 majors. Bogeying the last 2 at Augusta, tanking at the US Open, Missing the cut at The British and losing his only final round lead ever at the PGA.

For Tiger, that is terrible and so is shooting 75 when he is one shot out of the lead with one round to play. I will continue to rant about this until he abandons the dogmatic swing approach of copying the swing of his new guru’s best student.

Haney made Tiger swing exactly like O’Meara and now Foley is making him swing just like Charlie Wi.

You saw the article that someone linked that showed that even in a frame by frame, the swings under Haney (Tiger and O’Meara) were almost identical. Think I am wrong about him starting to swing like Wi? Do a youtube search of Charlie Wi’s swing and compare it to Tiger’s.

Why do gurus keep trying to make Tiger swing like their best other student? Awful, unimaginative and short sighted.

I have made a big deal of Tiger’s head dive and many have said that isn’t the problem as other greats have done this.

Let me attack this from a different angle. If you think a head dive isn’t bad…and is even a good thing in order to gain power and hit down and through the ball, let me ask you this.

Is there a point were the head will drop too much and it is not possible to recover? Of course the answer is yes. I called it a tipping point. Tiger rarely if ever reaches this tipping point with an iron. He seldom does it with a 3 wood. He does it often with driver and nearly every time he tries to hit the driver hard. He is so good, he overcomes this flaw and hits good shots sometimes.

The other greats like Nelson who did this, never dove and pulled their head and spine off the ball just before impact to recover the room that was lost after the head dropped. Tiger does this and there is no debate.

Now to the point. Tiger could build a swing where he came dead inside, came way over the top and hit a big pull slice. He would still win golf tournaments because he works hard, plays every shot as hard as he can and is uncanny around and on the greens when he needs to be. He was not successful because of Haney, he was successful in spite of him.

I don’t understand why he went to Sean Foley. IMO, he teaches a swing that is prone to being a little stuck and getting stuck is Tiger’s main issue.

Whatever success he has with Foley, will again be in spite of swinging like Charlie Wi. I am not ragging Charlie Wi, he is a great player and ball striker. I am saying that is Charlie’s swing and Tiger needs to find his own swing. His 17 year old swing, his 1997 swing or his 2000 swing…it doesn’t matter which.

He is in a danger zone right now and has been there for a while. He is where I was (relatively speaking) from 1997-2003. Experimenting with his move. Trying to perfect it and using other peoples’ methods. Confidence in my ability kept it going, but it just didn’t look good. All of the sudden, it all disappeared and sometimes breaking 80 was a problem. I am obviously not saying Tiger won’t be able to break 80, but relatively speaking, struggling to make cuts consistently and not contending at all is the analogous issue if he doesn’t get it straightened out.

Tiger needs someone to help him work on not allowing his head level to drop too much and work on his release and get back to his natural athletic move…that’s it.

As dumb as it sounds, someone who reads this blog and subscribes to my ideas about release could do it. The fix is that simple and Tiger is that good.

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16 Comments

  1. Mike from Canada

    Monte,

    I’m note going to argue with you re: Tiger’s swing and whether it is right for him or not; I don’t know enough about it.

    But, I would argue that Hunter Mahan is Foley’s best student. Does Mahan swing the same way or does he have other variations?

    Mike

    Reply
  2. rojoass

    Great post Monte. How the heck are you gonna get the news to Tiger?

    btw……..ordered my Krank driver this morning. Got the shaft too instead of head only. Thanks for the 20%

    http://rojoass.com/

    Reply
  3. s.

    As usual, Monte, you make several good points.

    Natural, athletic…how good would Tiger have been if people wouldn’t have tried to re-engineer him? It’s scary. However, I think that Butch did help his wedge game.

    The driver is his hardest club, for sure. The swing is the result of his overall concept. He must be trying to “get” power rather than “release” power. That’s the only way that head-diving makes any sense.

    If it’s pick-on-Tiger day, Gary Player once had a shot at him too:

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT88wW2cJ0&fs=1&hl=en_US]

    Tiger has set impossibly high standards for himself. He was a stroke back going into the final round, finished -4, tied such fine players as Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Brett Rumford, Marc Warren, Robert Rock, Rafaël Jaquelin, Ricardo Gonzalez, and Sergio…and he won 19,641 Euros.

    What do people want out of him?

    Reply
    • Mike from Canada

      Sorry S but you are wrong. Tiger has not set impossibly high standards for himself. Tiger has proven over his career that the standards are very possible.

      What do we want? We want the Butch Harmon Tiger back. The Tiger that knew his swing and was able to focus on his short game.

      You want to know what the real cause of all of this was….. Tiger got board. In the early 2000’s Tiger was kicking major but and he was winning tournaments when he didn’t have his “A” game. So, Tiger decided that he would try to become the perfect golfer. He said there was only one man that ever owned his swing and that was Ben Hogan. Tiger strived for that and failed (so far). If Tiger had more competition back then and didn’t get bored, I don’t think he would have messed with his swing so much. I think Tiger took winning for granted.

      Reply
      • Monte Scheinblum

        We have a winner. I agree on all points, 100%.

        Especially…

        “The Tiger that knew his swing and was able to focus on his short game.”

        That is the Monte I am searching for. I am hopefully getting close.

        Reply
  4. Wally

    Monte
    Run five miles, swim one mile, work out at the gym until are totally exhausted. This place of exhaustion is where the real Monte lives. Now go to the range and find the swing that you are most COMFORTABLE with, work with it because that is the swing that will show up under pressure. I am 66 years old run mostly every day in spite of bone spurs each foot. The Champion lies within, dig him out

    Reply
    • Calvin D

      Wait. Run five miles, swim one mile, work out in gym till exhaustion and then enter a hot-dog eating contest and then go to the range. 🙂

      Reply
    • Michael

      There’s no champion in someone who does that workout, just a dead body for someone to fish out of the water while trying to do it.

      Not to mention, you’d develop a lot of bad moves if you tried to then swing a golf club after that nonsense workout. There’s no use in trying to swing a golf club when you’re physically exhausted. Hell there’s no use in doing anything but going to sleep or eating after that workout.

      Reply
  5. Wally

    The most hot dogs I have ever eaten at once was 27 I weighed 135 at the time didn’t win the contest I was in the service at the time, some fat civilial won he ate 65 without batting an eye

    Reply
    • Calvin D

      Wally, I am 70 and have over 40 years of running behind me. Recently my knees have eliminated the running and I miss it very much. I agree with your thought that physical exhaustion can help you find your most efficient athletic techniques. There was a pro (was it Wally Armstrong?) who recommended what he called “deep practice” wherein you work continuously through 10 or so large buckets of range balls without pause. I never tried it but the idea appeals to me.
      I love hot-dogs too much to enter an eating contest.:)

      Reply
  6. s.

    “you work continuously through 10 or so large buckets of range balls without pause.”…Calvin, was that Haney? It almost made me ill to see Haney do that with Barkley, etc.

    Personally, I get more out of a smaller bucket than a larger one, because I attach more value to each ball, and tend to reflect on where it went, and why. And I don’t wear myself out just beating ball after ball.

    The only possible good effect might be like what happened to one Internet golf guru. He discovered his swing by getting pneumonia, but he didn’t want to waste his entry fee. He competed, but was so weak that he couldn’t try to get a lot of power from his arms, and it worked better for him that way.

    Reply
      • s.

        Here’s the thing about “deep practice”…

        Nobody knows what to practice! They say that golf has been the most studied sport in history. That’s false. It has only been superficially studied.

        Gurus don’t make people better. The famous ones often make people worse.

        Standard golf instruction is awful. Handicaps have stayed the same, even though equipment has gotten much better. That suggests that instruction is making people worse!

        How can a small nation like South Korea (where they have few driving ranges and golf courses) dominate the LPGA tour? Maybe because there’s no American instruction there?

        The reason that most pros have cookie-cutter swings isn’t because they were taught those swings. At the competitive level, it’s survival of the fittest. Those who “get it” advance. Those who don’t, fall by the wayside.

        There’s a variety of backswings. Most downswings are virtually identical. The swing has to be accurate and powerful and repeatable and not too stressful on the body. I’m thinking that there aren’t too many ways to do all that.

        Nobody really understands it, and those who do have a tough time putting it into words. Most instruction is results, not causes–but you don’t get those results unless you’re coordinated in the first place!

        Learning is here a little, there a little. Every once in a while you encounter somebody who gets some of it, and can communicate it in a fashion that you can use.

        Only perfect practice makes perfect. “Slow” in golf won’t work because it leaves too much time for the conscious part of the brain to take over. What the brain learns is how to micromanage. However, slow-er might work, rather than all-out, all the time.

        Reply
  7. banner12

    Tiger’s problems go beyond the swing change. He’s 35. That’s when golfers start to lose their timing. Golfers that flourished past that age were ones with a long, flowing, reliable swing: Sam Snead, Julies Boras, V. Singh, etc. Nice point made here:

    http://rojoass.com/

    The other reason Tiger’s done ironically is the Tiger Effect. Even if Tiger were to somehow regain his talent he’s now facing fields that are more difficult than 10 years ago because of the golf boom he himself created. So now it’s harder to win Majors than 10 years ago when Tiger was facing a bunch of whimpering nobodies. Now you’ve got guys who are not only unafraid of Tiger, but look forward to beating him.

    Bad combination for Tiger.

    So my prediction is Tiger one day, when he has his A game, and on a course that suits him perfectly, and get all the breaks will win 1 more Major. Then under the same conditions above it happens once more and he has a 50-50 chance to win another one.

    That’s it.

    Jack, your safe…

    Reply
  8. Spencer Steel

    Just thumbing through the site. Monte was awfully prescient regarding Tiger. Funnily enough he didn’t want to be so ridiculous as to intimate that Tiger would ever struggle to break 80 . . . .

    Reply

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