Countdown On Rickie Fowler

Originally published on the DJ Watts Golf Blog May 21, 2012

I don’t like to say things about peoples’ physical futures, because it can sound like I’m rooting for bad things to happen.

I blogged about Rory McIlroy, for example, back in ’10 when he began to get more television time, and I predicted back problems based on his swing.

Sure enough, less than a year later, he was on the disabled list with back problems.

I happen to like Rory, and I did then, so it had nothing to do with “hating” on a player, as some people think one is doing if one has anything remotely critical to say about “their guy.”

Rickie Fowler’s swing is another one of those “that’s not going to end well” kinds of motions.  And to be honest, the more I see of Rickie, the more I like him.  Nice young guy, plays fast and aggressively, and finally has a win to back up the constant golf media hype.

The swing, however, is not one I’d want to see anyone trying to emulate, and it makes me wince, the more I see it analyzed on television.

It is a swing based entirely on raw flexibility and fast-twitch muscles, and I can’t even guess where he’ll first experience problems – in the lower body from knee to ankle, or the hip, or the lower and even middle back region.

It’s an Xtreme Torque swing, and as he gets older, the more at risk his physical well-being will be.

Rickie Fowler’s Swing

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Watch the twisting of the upper torso against the nearly square hips on the back swing, or watch the wrenching force on the spine as he starts his hips to the left while his shoulders are still turning back.

Or watch the torque on the lower back at he extends through impact and chases down the line, or watch the hyper-extending left knee- what I’m saying is that no 30 year old swings like this and stays healthy.

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I wish Rickie the best, and hope that he makes some swing changes soon, changes that don’t change the hard-charging way he likes to play, ’cause he certainly is turning out to be a good player and someone who makes you wonder what he’s going to do next.

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