Re: "Secrets of the Short Game" by Phil Mickelson
I could tell he definitely respects Utley, and even refers to him once indirectly. i.e. the "one other" [good short game specialist besides Pelz]. The parallels between Phil's dialog and Utley's approach are definitely interesting. Utley calls it "fold, turn and hold" and Phil calls it "hinge and hold". (in case you hadn't noticed this post tends to focus on Utley) I suspect that in Utley's books he may have avoided (maybe due to editorial suggestions) emphasizing the use of the wrists in chipping, perhaps out of fear that people would label him as "wristy" but he does definitely advocate the use of hands and wrists when you chip, pitch and putt. Phil on the other hand has no qualms telling you to use your wrists when you chip. As someone already aluded, I also noted that Phil uses a definite lower body pivot when chipping but doesn't mention it at all. Utley is a lot more detailed there. They both advocate playing the ball 'up' in the stance. It's a similar approach, at least when it comes to the basic chip. Of course it changes when you want to hit it higher. For that, Utley wants you to you keep a square clubface but alter the shaft angle at address and release it sooner --whereas Phil wants you to keep the shaft and release constant but open the face to the right, the stance to the left, and then regrip. Obviously they are both valid approaches... both approaches have been used by big f-in pros to win big f-in majors. Whichever method you choose you'd better practice it or it wont matter much anyway. Finally, I feel that that there are many subtleties in the Utley methodology that I appreciate... his discussion of minimizing the arm swing, keeping the energy in the clubhead, using lag to deloft, keeping the arms soft and keeping the shaft plane flat via the folding of the elbows. And swinging around the body and following through to the left. I think that Utley's basic chip is quite a bit a more beautiful thing to behold and technically more sound, but I also think that Phil could probably use the very worst technique there is and still win a tournament with it, whereas Utley couldn't keep his tour card. So there you have it. There is more to golf than good technique. The other thing is I think that video is so superior a medium to a book with still pictures that if I didn't have all the Utley videos on the web I would have never gotten it at all. I wish Stan would do a full DVD. So that is that. Buy Phil's DVD. I also found it interesting that the famous "clock" that Peltz teaches for pitches Phil didn't mention, and he went into a big shindig about "curve" vs "straight back and through" and finally concluded that Utley is right and Pelz is pretty much a wash up in that department.. at least that's how I took it. That being said I do think that the putting allignment discussion and the break reading section is pretty much classic pelz and true to the pelz "bibles", so it's interesting to see which of pelz theories "took" in the technique of this great champion. I especially liked the putting drill sections.. possibly the best part of the DVD for me. That is all.