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Thursday, February 19, 2009

More Golf Tips from the Northern Trust Open (with Vijay Singh)

As promised, here are some more tips from Riviera Country Club's driving range.

Today we're devoting this space to the World's Number Four golfer, Vijay Singh.

Before we begin let's talk about what people know about Vijay:
  1. He practices all the time.
  2. He loves to give tips to his fellow pros.
  3. He seriously guards against hitting the ball to the left.
Contrary to popular opinion, however, his driver is NOT six degrees open. More like one or two, which isn't uncommon on Tour. Where this six degree open thing came from, we don't know.

His bag looked like a Cleveland Demo Day. The HiBore XL was in there, the Monster, the Launcher. Singh won with the XL last year, but it looked as though he wasn't sure which driver would make it in his bag this week.

Vijay's swing is old school. It's long and fluid, which suits his 6' 2" frame. This helps him swing like water and extend:

Check out the following two photos:

The key lesson here is how Singh's follow-through mirrors his downswing (you'll also see his follow-through match his backswing when it's halfway back). His wrists are hinged in the first photo and a millisecond from doing that in the second photo.

Note how in the second photo his right arm is starting to rotate over his left? His right hand is, as Harvey Penick would say, "shaking hands with the target." If you have trouble squaring the clubface, you need to shake hands with the target.

Above we see Singh not only taking perfect divots on Riviera's driving range, but also in a perfect position halfway back. How do we know it's perfect? His clubshaft is bisecting his bicept. Now, run to a mirror and do this so you can set your club on plane.

Singh tees off today at 12:12pm PST.

More tips from the range tomorrow.

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