I’m Only Interested In One Model – Optimal

dunaway impactThis is all personal opinion, so feel free to disregard this posting as idle musing if you wish.

I have very little interest in a model just because of a name attached to it.  

All I care about it is, mechanical-correctness & how effective it is in producing leverage, speed & thus power.

I’ve always espoused that the model that produces the most leverage & power will also give you repeatability because if it’s optimal, it’s the way the body is built to move and athletic hand-eye coordination will provide the rest.

So, with all of my talk about this model or that model, I got a little distracted with trying to crack “the Dunaway model” based on watching & listening to the videos Mike Dunaway produced by himself or with Mike Austin.

If it’s about a theoretical model, then knock yourself out, I say. 

But that’s not what I’m after, as the MCS Classic Golf Swing model wasn’t built on theory alone, rather it was built using the greatest swingers in the game’s history as models from which to observe & pick up fundamentals of the stance & motion.

The only way it’s “theoretical” is in the fact that no one legend swung exactly in this manner, as they all their own idiosyncrasies built into the basic stance & motion I modelled.

So, when I say that I’m not interested in a theoretical model, I mean one that hasn’t been proven.

It’s like people obsessing about & trying to emulate the golf swing of Moe Norman circa 1980-2000 – we all know that arms-stretched out, super-wide stance and half-pivot swing… but that’s not the Moe Norman swing to emulate, as I’ve pointed out before.

Moe Norman was eccentric and loved attention that he drew swinging a club, but the Moe Norman swing that made him a legend bore little resemblance to the one people know.

The swing that made Moe known in golf circles when he won 2 Canadian Ams, played twice as an amateur in the Masters & garnered the attention of Ben Hogan (who, I’m convinced, only ever watched one person hitting balls, which was Moe), looked like this:


You can say the same about Ben Hogan, who was a winner & fabulous ball-striker before the fabled wreck with the bus that nearly killed him & accelerated the legend when he came back and won the U.S. Open less than two years later.

You may hear stories of Hogan lying in a hospital bed deciding to learn how to hit a fade, or having consulted with other instructors, that’s bald poppy-cock. 

Go look at his record the years before the wreck:

hogan record


… where he won 30 events in the 3 seasons before his wreck (and he’d won 2 already that season before the accident) and you’ll know he already had his secret, and needed no instruction or advice from anyone.

It’s laughable.

The Hogan who won dozens of Tour events as well as multiple majors before that wreck swung like this:

hogan young


Of course, Hogan won events and more majors with the swing that we all know now because he got so much more attention post-wreck than before, so it’s a proven swing, just not as athletic and flowing as the above:

ben hogan golf swing


Still a proven, fabulous swing, right?

So, the question I’m asking myself is, “why aren’t we looking at the actual swing model that made Mike Dunaway famous as the Father of Modern Long Driving and the man who was the club-tester for Callaway Golf when they were developing the Big Bertha?”

Why are why all focused on the videos made by a man well past his days of fame, talking generically about the swing or talking about it in a way that squared with the teachings of his mentor?

Because, this is the swing I’m looking at having driven the ball well in excess of 350 yards with persimmon and balata.

Before you mention the Peace River video showing him driving the ball 375 yards which is most admirable & impressive, he was doing so with equipment (stainless steel Big Bertha driver with the Memphis shaft) far superior to what he had when he became a legend.

Now, I’ve seen enough of Mike Dunaway swinging to say that there’s not a whole big difference between one swing model he used versus another (Sybervision vs Peace River vs Austinology), but they did have slight variances.

So, given the slight differences, why not go to the “proven” swing that garnered the world’s attention, which would be this one:

dunaway slide release


This is the swing that I’m breaking down, instead of continuing to watch swing video after swing video attempting to parse terminology & imitate positions/motions shown therein.

It’s all in front of you, if you watch it.

Everything is in there.

In fact, the sequence is nothing more than this:

mike dunaway sequence


This is the swing of the man who offered $10,000 to anyone who could outdrive him, who established the “350 Club” and who club-tested for Callaway Golf.

This is the golf swing I’m looking at and breaking down, and it’s not just for the above reasons.

I decided a couple of days ago to rebuild a golf swing model knowing all I’ve learned in these 15 years of swing research and with what I know about leverage & optimal launch monitor launch models.

After a couple of days of thinking about it & swinging, I went back and took another look at the swing Dunaway used in the Sybervision video.

And of course, wouldn’t you know it, the moment I pressed “play,” everything I’ve been looking at the past few days in my mind was right there in Dunaway’s swing motion.

I could practically feel it.

So, that’s the model for producing maximum leverage & power, I’m betting.

Whether it’s optimal for playing golf with, I wouldn’t have a clue as to why not, since it’s a very basic & athletic leveraging motion and swing.

Not to mention, it isn’t a Compound Pivot swing motion, which means that the “Shift-and-Post” or “Compound Pivot” swing has nothing in it but legend and fanciful claims which we won’t get into here, since I’m fond of thinking in facts and not stories.

This is simple fact – who has proven that the Compound Pivot swing does what it’s purported to do?

Because the swing Dunaway used in Sybervision is a Classic Golf Swing, not Compound Pivot.

But…

Can it be modelled and duplicated?

Stay tuned.