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"Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf" by Ben Hogan


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the v area is between the thumb and index finger is pointing

Not quite, the V is on the "top" not the palm. When the club is gripped, the Vs are formed by the thumb and forefinger of each hand as seen from the player's prospective. In a strong grip, the hands are rotated to right on the club, so the Vs will point towards the right shoulder. Regardless of where the Vs point, it is also fundamental that the palms face each, otherwise, the grip will not act as one unit and accentuate the tendency of the right or left arm to overpower the swing.

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The only golf book you'll ever need. I've played golf for one year and, with this book, I've achieved more than the average golfer will in a lifetime. Everything in it is spot on and perfect. Most

Great question. I have given up on most golf instruction and experiment to find dynamics that automate the swing. Dynamics determine positions not the other way around. Most golf instructors do not

can someone help me understand this "v" thing he is talking about in the grip lesson?

The "V" is the line formed between your thumb and fore finger when you take your grip...hope this helps.

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Super hard read for a lefty (me), I picked up most of the lessons, but some of the information I know passed me by.

The info on the grip, stance and posture is totally worth it.

I particularly liked the breakdown of the swing:

Hands, Arms, Shoulders, Hips.......Hips, Shoulders, Arms, Hands
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Just got done reading it myself. Fantastic descriptions. I wish it had more drills though. I know you are supposed to practice each "lesson" but there is a ton of stuff in each.

Honestly, if you just study one lesson for a week at a time, really dedicate to it, you will see the benefit.

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I think that your level of success may depend on where you are starting from in the first place . I think it is possible if you truly apply yourself , but few of us have that much time to dedicate to the sport . -- K.
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one thing i would like to know though, is how realistic is mr. hogan's claim that you can break 80 within 6 months if you apply yourself properly?

I think that your level of success may depend on where you are starting from in the first place . I think it is possible if you truly apply yourself , but few of us have that much time to dedicate to the sport . -- K.

Like golfire6 mentions, there is a certain amount of time that needs to be dedicated to the process, but, I think it can be done. I'd say, and have in this thread, that if you spend one week to familiarize yourself with one chapter at a time, at the end of five weeks, you should be have one hell of a swing. Wether you can make your way around a course or not, that's a different story.

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As far as Hogan's book, I agree, if a beginning golfer spends some practice time with the fundamentals in the book the process of learning will be greatly expedited. Hogan has already done all the trial and error that comes with learning. I think I might get a copy for my friend who is just starting out. Great idea!
For me personally I picked up the book again this offseason when it is convenient to analyze my swing. The part that I am working on has to do with the pane of glass. Specifically with relation to the position of the club on the backswing. I see that in the imagery the pane of glass extends up and beyond the head. For me it is a change to swing more inside to get the club behind my head at the angle of the glass. It would help me to get a better turn, as well as shorten up my swing to get behind the glass. The part that has me a little unsure is, that to get the club in that position it seems I would be doing what the pro who gave me a lesson said to be careful of. He showed me an extreme swing with the club being pulled to the inside. What would be an indication of a backswing too far inside? When you swing back is the club set somewhere behind(ish) your head? Thanks.
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I think the thing to remember about Hogan's "pane of glass" analogy is that it was meant to show what represents the swing plane . Everyone has their own unique swing plane angle -- some of us are flatter like Hogan's ( who was a relatively short man ) and some of us like myself have a more upright swing plane . Being that I am 6'5" , my hands end up at a different position relative to my head than another person .

I use a device like this : http://www.spotongolfusa.com/swing.html

It helps me to determine whether I am on the proper plane for my body and my impact position . I hope the link will make the Hogan concept more clear for you and your swing ... -- K.
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Hogan's "5 Lessons" actually were originally written in 1957 ... they came out first as a series of Sports Illustrated articles . I'm lucky enough to own a complete set of the original SI magazines that contained the entire series . I've thought about selling them from time to time , but I haven't been able to convinve myself to give them up ... I think I want to find someone who would truly realize the uniqueness of the original series as it appeared first ... -- K.
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I believe this is a very good book and well presented (I love the illustrations), however it must be read from Hogan's perspective. Remember, he was not your modern day phenom - he struggled with hooks his whole career. He despised any shot that worked left. He was actually about to quit until he won the Oakland Open and $250! The book is written from a distinct 'anti-hook' bias. Look at his grip (one of the few weak ones all the great players) and he speaks about the hip action as being strictly rotary (it most definitely is not). The biggest reason why the majority of golfers fade or slice is because they do not drive or slide their hip to the target enough - they stay in place and rotate, causing the arms and clubs to go out and over the top. Hogan drove his hips so aggressievly to the target that he had to try to 'feel' or perceive the hip action as pure rotate in order to reduce his hook.
Just like the rest of us, Hogan felt one thing and did another.
Andrew Rice
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Andrew,

Words are so inadequate to describe what we do and feel. Each of us is battling different demons. I cringe when I see the recommendation to slide your hips toward the target. For me, that produces the duck hook. I think different swing styles must have different fundamental ideas to make them work. The last thing I need is to slide my hips or drive them toward the target. I get to the left side by covering the ball with my chest, so I need to open the hips as quickly as possible -- that is my main swing thought. The slicers who spin their hips tend to hang back and swing over the top, often taking the club inside on the backswing and getting trapped. The more modern rotating swing loads so heavily on the inside of the right foot that getting to the left side is almost automatic -- we don't need to think slide or bump the hip, we will over slide (at least I will) if we do that.
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Andrew -- I don't want to get into a debate about what causes a slice ( since there are many reasons ) ... however I can't say that body rotation causes a slice in most high handicappers . My personal belief is that tension in the hands and arms causes most people to "hang on " in such a way that the clubhead never gets to release and get to square at impact . As far as Hogan and "5 Lessons" , I think Hogan gets it right in setting up a correctly compensating series of movements that lead to solid ballstriking . Looking at his grip , it is slightly weak , but not more so than a lot of top-notch ballstrikers -- many of whom make many changes to fight a hook ( the hook tends to be the miss of the better player ) .

If you take the whole book in , piece by piece , "5 Lessons" will set the beginning player on a correct path to a solid swing . -- K.
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Andrew -- I don't want to get into a debate about what causes a slice ( since there are many reasons ) ... however I can't say that body rotation causes a slice in most high handicappers . My personal belief is that tension in the hands and arms causes most people to "hang on " in such a way that the clubhead never gets to release and get to square at impact .

Yep, I agree. My slice usually comes from left-hand squeezing caused by faulty grip, or tension. I also tend to hit at the ball instead to swing smoothly through sometimes.

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