It’s pure and simple, that the actual “secret” to a proper golf swing has always been in the address position, or the “Fundamentals Trifecta,” as I have called the Stance, Ball Position and Grip for years.
It’s the true formula, and while there have been many golfers in history who might have played brilliant golf with iffy stances, you’ve seen what I have laid out in recent years ago the historically best players and swingers have had strikingly similar stances.
Sam Snead, Ben Hogan & Jack Nicklaus
Three of the most prolific winners of the Classic Golf Swing age, you see above in the down the line stance, and there are far more similarities than differences.
Then you look at the stance from the face-on view, comparing a young and powerful Jack Nicklaus to the MCS stance:
Even the greatest Modern Golf Swing player ever (because the MGS theory is dying and will eventually go away, so the best ever modern player now will likely remain the greatest ever modern golf swing for all time), one Tiger Woods, had a very similar stance, looking face-on, to what I call the optimal stance:
Tiger’s problems began when his planted-heel back swing and leading knee-snap through impact (related, because when you restrict the hips on the way back, you break the “leverage chain” that a free hip provides, and there you have to manufacture leverage and power, as TW said he was doing with the knee-snap) eventually caused enough damage to that knee, that he could no longer swing from that setup.
If anyone has tried it (and hopefully not for too long) will know that swinging back to TW’s top position above places a lot of stress on the leading knee and hip when you keep that leading foot nailed down, and what happens is you lose stability and strength in that leading knee over time, as is very likely the case with TW (my opinion, but everything in his career points to that explanation).
What followed for TW was an ever left-biasing in his stance and back swing, until, he was far enough left that his back went, but that’s what happens when you try to swing for power and twist the lower back while standing over the ball like this:
So, you discover eventually when studying motion that the position from which you make the motion is as important as, if not more than, the actual motion you make from the position.
With a great address fundamentals, you really can’t do much wrong with the simple “floating pivot” action of Ben Hogan, with the hips and legs:
The funny thing is, we all know now what the optimal impact position is, whether you’re playing tournament golf or competing in long drive:
And what most people don’t realize is that anything other than the simplest swing action contains compensations/manipulations, either a few or a whole lot, simply because you can’t get the optimal impact from an un-optimal starting position without doing so.
So, for several years, my swing research consisted on looking for the optimal mechanics, but it was only when I turned a laser focus to the address stance that I figured out the simplest swing action there is.
Many people have tried the “work back from impact” way of figuring out the stance and mechanics, but for the most part, it’s been a dismal failure because this method gained popularity in the modern swing era, and nothing you do with your impact or stance theory is going to work properly when you’re swinging with restricted hips and a twisting lower back.
You may get away with it for a while, and even play world-class golf and win majors, if you possess the requisite talent and work ethic, but the majority of golfers, even pros, won’t reach that level.
So, what would happen if you tried the “work back from impact” method, keeping in mind that the optimal swing action is with a free hip turn in the back swing pivot?
You’d end up where I’ve arrived after 12 years of swing research.
And in the upcoming “E = MCS” video, I will lay out for everyone who wishes to know, how to set up your “Fundamentals Trifecta” in order to make the simple pivot and then swing down into and through that optimal impact position.