By Doug Hammer, Golf Contributor - Archive - Email
Find a Hero
I suggest each and every one of you find your own golf swing hero.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Do you have a golf swing hero? I have one. Now I don't mean a favorite golfer whom you cheer for week in and week out, although it could be the same person. I am talking about a golf swing that you could watch over and over again and try to emulate when you are working on your own game.

My golf swing hero has been Davis Love, III for years and years. Although, I have to admit, I have strayed a bit in recent years. I always admired Davis's long, rhythmical swing, and worked hard to match that swing in my younger years. I cut out pictures of Davis in different swing sequences and would stand in front of a mirror for hours on end working on the same positions. And do you know what happened? It paid off!!! No, my swing is not a carbon copy of Davis Love's, however, I did manage to groove some pretty good swing fundamentals by visualizing what Davis did.

I suggest each and every one of you find your own golf swing hero. Now there are some guidelines I would suggest following when picking who you want to emulate on the golf course:

1. If you are 65 years old (just an example age, nothing against any 65 year olds!) and you haven't done a consistent stretching or workout routine (outside of any prescribed PT!), you probably shouldn't pick Rory McIlroy or any of the other young guns on tour to be your swing hero. Sure, cheer for them every weekend, but your hips are not going to fire like Rory's do in the downswing!

2. Pick someone who has a body similar to yours. It is okay to try to follow what Craig Stadler, or Tim Herron do to be successful. They have beautiful swings and have had great careers, if you look like these guys, try to swing like them too.

3. Find swings that are consistent. Steve Stricker and Luke Donald come to mind. If these guys tee it up in a tournament, they are playing on the weekend. Find guys who have swings that hold up week in and week out, stay away from the streaky players. Consistency is the name of the game!

4. Pay attention to the rhythm of the golf swing. For example, I chose Davis Love because of his long smooth motion. I am a big, tall guy and really do everything slowly. So I matched my natural tempo. If I would have chosen Nick Price, I may have derailed my career. If you are a slow moving person in general, pick a longer and smoother swing. If you are a quick paced person, look for someone who has a little bit quicker tempo.

Once you have picked your swing hero, now it is time to research. When I began playing the game, video was in its infancy and there was no internet. I cut out pictures from magazines and stood in front of a mirror as much as possible. Now, we have access to golf swings with just the click of a button.

Magazines can still be a good source, but the internet is even better. You can find almost any player swinging the club online, just do a search. But when you are trying to apply the new swing fundamentals, nothing beats a good old fashioned mirror. Just don't follow my lead and remember to bring your wife's expensive stand mirror back in from the yard before it rains or the sprinklers hit it!

So find your swing hero sooner rather than later and try to look like him or her this year. I bet your scores will start to be closer to your hero in no time! Good luck with the game!

Doug Hammer * Director of Instruction * Troon North Golf Club
p 480-585-5300 ext. 251 * f 480-585-5161
10320 E Dynamite Blvd. * Scottsdale, AZ 85262 Managed by Troon Golf
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