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Could Bubba Watson Benefit From Instruction? - Page 2

post #19 of 55

I think Bubba knows enough about ball trajectory and curvature. At least enough to hit a 40 yard draw with a gap wedge to win the Masters. Following him around a few times, I have realized that he just sees things differently. He sees it in his head and then he hits it. Thinking about how to do what he does may be too technical for him. If anyone can ever see him, follow him around. He really is a brilliant golfer. 

post #20 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by TourSpoon View Post

I think Bubba knows enough about ball trajectory and curvature. At least enough to hit a 40 yard draw with a gap wedge to win the Masters. Following him around a few times, I have realized that he just sees things differently. He sees it in his head and then he hits it. Thinking about how to do what he does may be too technical for him. If anyone can ever see him, follow him around. He really is a brilliant golfer. 


I remember hearing people say that he doesn't see any shot as straight, he always looks to curve the ball one way or another to the target.

post #21 of 55

I think Bubba would benefit from instruction from a competent teacher, but I worry about someone relearning the golf swing on the fly this late in their athletic career. 

 

And for some of those guys, you don't want them to think about it. Look at Ralph Guldhal: after winning back-to-back US Opens, he accepted a contract to write a book about why his swing was so successful, and it completely destroyed his swing by his over-analyzation. 

 

Some you don't mess with unless you have a really good reason. 

post #22 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post

First of all, Bubba isnt exactly self-taught.  He had a golf coach in college.  Its not as if he is some guy who picked up the game in his mid 20s and somehow managed to win a major with no lessons.

 

I agree (and have brought this up in other threads), but that sort of goes down a different discussion path.

post #23 of 55

Look at his stats to see where he needs coaching.  It's not his driving.  He's at or close to the number 1 spot on driving distance and even if his accuracy is off, last year he was #2 in GIR and this year he's #1.  Unfortunately if you look up almost every putting category imaginable, he's close to the bottom of all those lists. 

post #24 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

First off I don't think he has as many flaws as you guys might perceive.  Might look funky sometimes, kind of like how Arnold Palmer's swing looked weird but when you break it done, lots of good stuff.  Yeah Bubba is self-taught and he prides himself on that so don't expect him to be seeking instruction anytime soon.  Any change to his swing could completely ruin his game.  Instruction that might help him would be AimPoint (get his caddie to learn it) and ball flight information.  Why did that shot over draw?  Why did I try to cut it and pull it?  If I have to hit the fairway/green, what shot should I hit?  Stuff like that, he doesn't need to worry about contact or hitting it further.  How to position the ball, handle location and alignment of his body to change shot curve/trajectory.  I'm sure he does a lot of this already but making sure he's not operating on incorrect assumptions, like rolling the hands over creates a draw.  Obviously even that could be too "technical" to him lol 

 

When Bubba starts playing bad he probably just takes a break or chalks it up to "that's just golf".  I don't see him grinding it out on the range trying to figure it out.


Bubba has said before that he is a player, not a practicer; so yeah, pretty sure he doesnt grind it out on the range.

post #25 of 55
His swing is ridiculously awesome from the tea. One of his shots off the tea was analysed on Friday and at one point both feet were nearly off the ground at the follow through, but the shot was still a sweet shot. The beauty of golf is that everyone's swing is different, it's up to the player to find what's right for them, it works for Bubba (most of the time) so don't think he needs instruction, because it could cause more damage than good.
post #26 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post

First of all, Bubba isnt exactly self-taught.  He had a golf coach in college.  Its not as if he is some guy who picked up the game in his mid 20s and somehow managed to win a major with no lessons.

 

I agree (and have brought this up in other threads), but that sort of goes down a different discussion path.

 

I'm not sure anyone has ever helped Bubba form his mechanics. D1 golf coaches don't necessarily give their players lessons. They more or less act in the same role as a Ryder Cup captain or a Presidents Cup captain. Those guys are just deciding who gets to play on the team, who they are paired with, and where in the lineup they will play, giving a few motivational speeches along the way.

 

If a D1 player does have an instructor, it would likely be someone else other than the team's golf coach.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

First off I don't think he has as many flaws as you guys might perceive.  Might look funky sometimes, kind of like how Arnold Palmer's swing looked weird but when you break it done, lots of good stuff.  Yeah Bubba is self-taught and he prides himself on that so don't expect him to be seeking instruction anytime soon.  Any change to his swing could completely ruin his game.  Instruction that might help him would be AimPoint (get his caddie to learn it) and ball flight information.  Why did that shot over draw?  Why did I try to cut it and pull it?  If I have to hit the fairway/green, what shot should I hit?  Stuff like that, he doesn't need to worry about contact or hitting it further.  How to position the ball, handle location and alignment of his body to change shot curve/trajectory.  I'm sure he does a lot of this already but making sure he's not operating on incorrect assumptions, like rolling the hands over creates a draw.  Obviously even that could be too "technical" to him lol 

 

When Bubba starts playing bad he probably just takes a break or chalks it up to "that's just golf".  I don't see him grinding it out on the range trying to figure it out.


Bubba has said before that he is a player, not a practicer; so yeah, pretty sure he doesnt grind it out on the range.

 

He still hits the range, but yea, I would think he does most of his self-correction during a practice round. I'd actually be interested to know exactly how often he is on the range.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by clarkeycats View Post

His swing is ridiculously awesome from the tea. One of his shots off the tea was analysed on Friday and at one point both feet were nearly off the ground at the follow through, but the shot was still a sweet shot. The beauty of golf is that everyone's swing is different, it's up to the player to find what's right for them, it works for Bubba (most of the time) so don't think he needs instruction, because it could cause more damage than good.

 

That's actually a universal move you are talking about. It's called the jumping piece or jumping for power. Bubba's swing is not as unconventional as some think.

 

Matt Every

 

A female long drive pro exaggerating the jumping piece for teaching/demonstration purposes:

post #27 of 55

In my world, the quality of a swing is based on the results...not what it looks like.  People talking about all these "flaws" in bubbas swing..flaws produce unwanted results.  I come from the camp that there is no "perfect swing" because every player is different bio-mechanically.

 

Anyone who can hit the ball as far as he does and control the movement like he does in order to hit some of the tightest fairways anyone will ever see..they aren't doing "a lot of things wrong"...I'd say its just the opposite.

post #28 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by JetFan1983 View Post

 

I'm not sure anyone has ever helped Bubba form his mechanics. D1 golf coaches don't necessarily give their players lessons. They more or less act in the same role as a Ryder Cup captain or a Presidents Cup captain. Those guys are just deciding who gets to play on the team, who they are paired with, and where in the lineup they will play, giving a few motivational speeches along the way.

 

If a D1 player does have an instructor, it would likely be someone else other than the team's golf coach.  

 

 

Correct, most college golf coaches are more manager than instructor.  Organizing travel, fund raising, scouting, stuff like that.

post #29 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

Yeah Bubba is self-taught and he prides himself on that so don't expect him to be seeking instruction anytime soon.

...

Any change to his swing could completely ruin his game.  Instruction that might help him would be AimPoint (get his caddie to learn it) and ball flight information.  Why did that shot over draw?  Why did I try to cut it and pull it?  If I have to hit the fairway/green, what shot should I hit?

...

I'm sure he does a lot of this already but making sure he's not operating on incorrect assumptions, like rolling the hands over creates a draw.  Obviously even that could be too "technical" to him lol 

...

When Bubba starts playing bad he probably just takes a break or chalks it up to "that's just golf".  I don't see him grinding it out on the range trying to figure it out.

Thanks Mike, this is kind of what I was getting at.  At some point, every golfer goes through a slump long enough that saying "that's just golf" stops being the answer.  It's at this point that I wonder what will happen to him.  Is he stubborn and does he try to figure it all out on his own, possibly to his own detriment?  Is he just desperate enough to seek out a coach who might screw him up worse than had he gone it alone?  Or am I overthinking it, and perhaps he's not quite the "artist" we perceive, and he'll get help (perhaps successfully) like every other pro out there during hard times?

post #30 of 55

Given the type of player that Bubba is...a total feel player, I don't think he'll ever get to the kind of slump where he just doesn't know whats going on.  He's hardly mechanical so I just don't see him getting to a point where he's wondering about this position or that position or whatever.  He just sees the shot, feels the shot..and then hits it. 

post #31 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

 

Correct, most college golf coaches are more manager than instructor.  Organizing travel, fund raising, scouting, stuff like that.

Agreed.

Wonder if mvmac thinks that he has the 5 simple keys down?

post #32 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paradox View Post

Given the type of player that Bubba is...a total feel player, I don't think he'll ever get to the kind of slump where he just doesn't know whats going on.  He's hardly mechanical so I just don't see him getting to a point where he's wondering about this position or that position or whatever.  He just sees the shot, feels the shot..and then hits it. 

I can guarantee you that at some point his game will start to deteriorate.  It happens to everybody - "feel" or "mechanical" or however you want to label a player - and it WILL happen to Bubba.  Perhaps it doesn't happen until he's old and he doesn't care because he wants to retire anyway.  But what does he do if it happens before he's ready to hang em up?  I might be remembering this wrong but I think I saw a post from mvmac on another thread regarding Brad Faxon redo-ing his swing recently (stack and tilt, maybe?  I don't know) and I think he won a tournament with it last year on the senior tour.

 

I'm just asking if people think that Bubba would ever be able to do something like that.

post #33 of 55

it would surprise me if every golf instructor on the highest level wasn't level headed enough to figure out reteaching bubba how to play golf would be the poorest possible coaching approach in the history of coaching.  with a guy like him you'd have to use what he has developed and work with it to make it better.  not every solution must be orthodox.

 

that being said, one of the biggest intrigues about bubba is his unwillingness to get lessons, or for that matter even see a sports psychologist.  it certainly helps increase his fan base and i'm sure does the same for his marketability as well.

post #34 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuffluck View Post

it would surprise me if every golf instructor on the highest level wasn't level headed enough to figure out reteaching bubba how to play golf would be the poorest possible coaching approach in the history of coaching.  with a guy like him you'd have to use what he has developed and work with it to make it better.  not every solution must be orthodox.

 

Who has said anything about "re-teaching Bubba how to play golf"?

 

Why do so many people think that taking lessons or getting instruction means the instructor is going to start from scratch? Is this one of the main reasons why so few people get instruction?

 

Yes, Bubba could benefit from good instruction. His poor weeks wouldn't be so poor and his good weeks might be a little better. His first few lessons might be on the putting green. He's not a great or even a good putter.

post #35 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

Why do so many people think that taking lessons or getting instruction means the instructor is going to start from scratch? Is this one of the main reasons why so few people get instruction?

 

 

My opinion is Tiger has clouded everyones mind on this idea. Tiger has switched coaches and also switched swings each time. Yeah Hank probably didn't change much but Tiger worded it like Hank was changing alot. The whole Tiger line of "old swing patterns getting mixed up with new swing patterns" that he gives the media when he plays bad. Everyone thinks that changing teachers means changing swings.

 

The second and less likely reason is that so many instructors now have a "method" or teach against a method. This makes people think everyone has to change things when they go see a pro. This is not a true situation, but a perception I think.

post #36 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

Why do so many people think that taking lessons or getting instruction means the instructor is going to start from scratch? Is this one of the main reasons why so few people get instruction?

Speaking only for myself ... yes.  At least that was always part of it.  The other part was simply a fear that he wouldn't know what he was talking about or at least wouldn't know what was best for me.  And since I was self taught, I didn't really know any better, therefore I wouldn't really know not to trust him.  I would take everything he told me as gospel, basically.

 

Actually, I still do that.  (I'm a pretty trusting person)  Except the difference is that since I stumbled onto this website, I got to learn a lot about the teaching style, philosophy, etc, of my teachers prior to signing up for any lessons.  So I know that they actually know their stuff.

 

The "old way," as far as I know, was to just go to the your club, or the closest range or course, and just hope the guy or gal working there has a clue.

 

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