So here we are, stuck in CMCO again till December (and likely extended) with minimal golf all round. While the golf courses seems to be full, the preference is to avoid (for now) as there seems to be absolute idiots all round who are supposed to be self-quarantined but instead gallivanting around the golf courses playing. Utter stupidity is the actual disease here, not COVID-19.
I thought this might be a good time to explore something I had wanted to do for a while: a swing overhaul.
My swing, as I always say, has an expiry date. I’ve been having this quackery of swing for 16 years now. It has gone through a few changes, a few updates but overall, I think its broken. It’s not a swing I can count on, as evidenced when I just had to bogey the last hole to break 80 in Mines, and I screwed up from 70 meters for my third stroke on a par 5 and ended up double bogeying. I don’t even know why I screwed up. I generally have an excessive wide take away, move my weight almost fully on my right side and try to shift back my weight to the left for maximum power.
Recently, I’ve adopted the ‘Hogan Elbow’ after a random browsing of a YouTube video (which I don’t even know which one now) – basically to ensure the right elbow (or trailing elbow) is tucked closer to the body, with the inside of the elbow pointing upwards.
It was pure desperation to get something going. This was around late 2019 and I started to hit my driver a little bit better, brought my scoring down to somewhere mid 80s. I was still shifting my weight all around, but it became clearer that I was a little more consistent and more trusting with this Hogan Elbow thingy.
From there, I began to explore the concept of the Hogan Swing, which brought me to this concept of Stack and Tilt , which goes against everything I have learnt to play this darn game for 16 years. Instead of moving the weight to the right and then move to the left for power, Stack and Tilt tells us to keep our weight on the left all the way, keep our elbows tucked in and shift our hips lateral for speed through the ball.
This is very, very confusing to me.
In all my years of playing shitty golf, I have always thought the source of power is from having a very wide swing and arch, hence my takeaway especially on the driver is to separate my arms from my body as much as possible, something that we see a lot of pros doing.
I can actually get some distance on my driver with this, as I completely shift to the right and try to finish off on the left, like a guy throwing a punch. The problem here is that often when my timing is out, the shot becomes either a really bad push or an absolutely horrendous duck hook or whatever in between that resembles a monkey wrestling with a snake.
Exploring the concept of Stack and Tilt, I am drawn by the fact that the body itself stays relatively still, and it acts as a central ‘cog’ in which the body, arms and ultimately the golf club circles around. That word circle is intriguing, as I often struggle with an over the top cast swing where I just drop the club and completely chunk the crap out of my irons and even 3 wood. I can never hit my 3 wood or long irons with any degree of consistency.
The Stack and Tilt ensures you turn your shoulder, while keeping your head relatively still, and the distance of your head to the ball consistent. It relies on your shoulder to turn down as oppose to across. Its very conceptual, and I would recommend to read the book “The Stack and Tilt Swing” by Michael Bennett and Andy Plummer. It beats the hell out of reading about IT security during this CMCO period.
To throw out 16 years worth of ‘knowledge’ to overhaul my swing is based on two motivations:
a) To have a more consistent golf
b) To ensure I can still play this game when I am 60 years old, when my current swing has expired.
And since I am not going onto the course for the forseeable future (or more accurately, not going to be betting on golf), it might be a good time to hit the range and try out these concepts.
Some of the good YouTube proponents of Stack and Tilt are
a) Nick Taylor Golf (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoskRiKxy06HM5kXxhNiQ1w)
b) Saguto Golf
c) Rob Cheney
Of the 3 above, I enjoy watching Saguto the best – this is a Paul Rudd lookalike who is so damn funny and also hits bad shots like us.
Stack and Tilt or whatever you call it is about keeping the weight on the left instead of shifting around like you are stirring a cup of coffee each time you swing. It appeals to me because I am turning old and still playing shitty golf and I am just tired of hacking my life away and getting pissed off all the time.
Only time will tell if anything turns out well from this!