There are actually two things he’s doing here, one of which isn’t really necessary – on the back swing, he’s lifting his entire leading foot off the ground, when all he really has to do is lift the heel, but that’s how discombobulated the modern swingers are at this point.
It’s understandable – after an entire career of modern golf swing principles, modern swingers know they need to get more hip turn into the back swing, but it seems the art of the lifting heel back swing has been lost to many.
I couldn’t find any Youtube video showing this, so if you want to see the actual clip, you can watch the Euro Tour’s Facebook posting.
The second thing he’s doing is straight out of Mike Dunaway’s playbook – watch the trailing foot “step around” that Padraig performs on the follow-through:
Padraig Harrington’s “Mike Dunaway” Move
When you compare it to a clip of Mike Dunaway swinging, back in the day, you’ll see why I call it the “Dunaway Move…”
Harrington states in his post-round interview, regarding the move, that he’s trying to keep up with the young guns, but there’s only one thing, besides turning the lift-and-step leading foot to a simple heel-lift on the back swing.
That is, Harrington is delaying the follow-through step-around a little, because you’ll see that his leading foot actually twists, to accommodate the hip turn, before the actual step.
Another interesting thing is that he’s actually performing a teeny-tiny attempt at a “short-stop slide” at impact:
This just indicates, once again, a failure to transfer the weight to the leading foot through impact – he does it at the end, but by then, he’s already had to twist the leading foot to get through the follow.
If you watch closely, at the point where you see that right toe just about to slide but instead grabs the turf – there’s where the twist occurs with the leading foot.
It’s a mystery to me why so many players have this over-riding imperative to not let the right foot move during the down swing, preferring all sorts of compensating left foot action in order to accomplish it, when the natural lifting or sliding of the trailing foot is what anyone does naturally when walking or throwing.
So, the step-around, while looking like Dunaway’s move, the effort is negated by the failure to transfer to the leading foot on early enough – the answer of course would be the true “short-stop slide,” or “step-around,” with the weight transferring properly, akin to what you see me doing here:
You see how quiet my lower body is, even though it’s what is driving the pivot and supplying the leverage power to the down swing.
I still commend Padraig for his efforts, and if he’s just begun to do this, perhaps he’ll work his way eventually to the proper action.
Refreshing to see a 3-time major winner actually trying mechanically-sound things with which to tinker on his swing, which I would prefer to doing the same damaging things, over and over again, as if repetition of a bad move somehow makes it better.
How long did Tiger Woods spend with Sean Foley trying to make that unworkable and back-breaking swing model work?
All I can say is, “Close, Padraig – very close! Keep it going!”