This week at the Tour Championship in Atlanta, Tiger Woods completed a comeback that was doubtful in the minds of many knowledgeable golf experts, as well as my own.
During his entire career, I’ve classified Tiger not as a pure “Gravity” player, but as one with a combination of power sources. He would start the downswing like a “Gravity” player, then add muscle from the upper body prior to impact, especially with a driver. For the past few weeks, that addition of muscle in the delivery has been noticeably absent. I thought that perhaps today he would get into a driving contest with Rory McIlroy. The violence would return, and Tiger Woods would fall back into the same trap. However, since Rory couldn’t find the fairway himself, it never happened.
A More Efficient Move
Eliminating the power coming from the upper body, and subsequently the internalization of his own energy, has made Tiger considerably more accurate with his tee shots. Only a very few times during the Tour Championship did I see him try to get a little greedy with his strength and lose control of the ball. Three or four months ago his golf swing looked entirely different than it does currently, and the move he is making now is perhaps better, in my opinion, than I’ve seen in years – maybe ever.
What Does This Mean For Tiger Woods?
The little bit of extra distance that is gained by adding muscle can be easily negated when it causes an uncompensated swing-plane change that hits the ball off-line. Often during his career, I have thought that Tiger Woods would never learn this, but it appears that he is finally realizing that it is more important to hit the ball flush and into the fairway. Rather than falling into the same habit as so many others, to go for every last yard you can squeeze out of the swing and find yourself in the rough.
If Tiger maintains this mentality and continues to swing with a pure “Gravity” swing, he may not only save his body from future injury, there may be some more “majors” yet to come.