It’s been 20 years since Tiger Woods won the first of three consecutive U.S. Amateurs. Back in 1994, he could top 130 mph of swing speed without trying. If today’s balls and clubs had been available when Tiger was in college, the 18-year-old Woods would have been 30 yards longer than Bubba is now. Tiger had a mega-wide, mega-long swing built more for a long-drive contest than a U.S. Open, but he tweaked it under Butch Harmon to create arguably the most effective motion in golf history.
The coaching switch in 2004 from Harmon to Hank Haney remains a mystery to me. Hank’s out-to-under swing looked good on Tiger (he won six majors with it) but not as good as Butch’s did. The Haney move led to more misses than Tiger was willing to accept.
So what was Woods doing differently with current coach Sean Foley before his season-interrupting back injury? Check his practice swing the next time he’s on TV. You’ll see Tiger swing back to the inside, then come over, or above, the plane on the way down -- sort of like Jim Furyk in reverse. Swinging inside-over this way forces you to aggressively clear your left side, which Tiger had a hard time doing with Haney. You’ll hit pushes and pulls when you fail to clear your left side, and Tiger missed it both ways under Hank’s tutelage.
Same old rhetoric. At least he is courteous enough to warn people who swing too far left not to use this move, though.