Down the line, which was 90% of the swing coverage, doesn’t show much of what I wanted to see… but of course, I also saw the one thing that raises caution flags when evaluating any Modern Golf Swing.
Going forward, I’ll probably be doing more of what I did this morning, because it’s always nice to see motion when discussing something, so I created a swing clip with my thoughts below.
Apologies for the unpolished aspect of it – my first voice-over swing analysis and I promise to improve as I do more, but here’s what I thought about Tiger’s swing from the angle I watched:
Looking At Tiger Woods’ Swing – Round 4 Hero World Challenge
As I said in the video, the two positive things are:
- The full-body back swing pivot, at least for 2/3’s of the swing,
- The “short-stop slide” release of the trailing foot through impact
And the big red flag of course, the still-planted leading heel going back to the top and that he’s completing the back swing pivot by over-twisting the middle part of his back (thoracic portion).
You can see that he had his four surgeries, including the fusion process, in the Lumbar area, which is curved and not very mobile, but that the Thoracic portion of the spine is still curved with limited mobility:
So, this is not good to see:
I wrote on Saturday that Tiger Woods has always swung hard, and that he will continue to do so. That said, if the fusion process was a success, then he’s pain-free (for now) and is able to go after it as hard as he pleases.
But he’s continuing to swing in the modern style and with 4 previous back surgeries in his recent past, I really don’t like to see his hyper-rotation of the upper body at the end of the back swing combined with that violent change of direction to transition with a “rubber-band” snap into the down swing.
It will help you create lots of speed and power, as you’ve seen him do all his career, but he broke his back swinging this way, and Jason Day hasn’t been able to play golf the way he wants to, because he’s also got back issues from swinging the same way.
Jason Day – In The Same Boat
There is a safe way to do it, of course, by using the Classic Golf Swing principles of swinging with the entire body from beginning to end, and if you want to create leverage and power without the risk of back injury…
… they were making a big deal out of Tiger being in the high 170’s and hitting 180 mph ball speed a couple of times on the weekend, but look what a guy who doesn’t even play professional golf can do at 47 with a properly leveraged move:
So, I can’t predict what will happen with Tiger Woods’ back – all I can do is point out what I see, and what I see is a golf swing that is still not mechanically-sound, and which carries with it a significant risk of injury, considering how strong and fast Woods is.
If he’s pain-free and continues to be able to swing this way, then his career may have a new lease on life.
I guess we’ll have to hold our collective breaths and wait & see…
Back Pain or Back Injury Swinging a Golf Club?
Lacking Power, Speed, Distance and or Consistency?
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