Single-Axis Swing: An Easier Way

Fueled by the legend and memory of Moe Norman, the single-axis swing continues to intrigue with its simplicity

Moe Norman was considered by many to be the best ballstriker of all

time. Even Ben Hogan was once quoted as saying that “Moe was the only

guy that I would walk across the street to watch hit balls.” But anyone

who’s familiar with Moe Norman knows that his golf swing was a bit

unconventional. Compared to today’s popular techniques, Norman’s golf

swing adhered to a single axis, not the two planes normally associated

with the modern dynamic. Taking away and returning the club on a single

plane fueled Norman’s consistency and correctness at impact by

“de-complexing” the swing. Is a single-axis motion the best way to

swing a golf club? The debate has raged for decades. At the very least,

it effectively simplifies and helps improve the most important part of

the swing—impact. A comparison of the single-axis technique and the

modern swing shows how.

Beat The Fried Egg

Fried Egg Lie

When you desire a softer type of explosion shot out of the bunker from this normally hot lie, you need to employ an open clubface and relaxed hands. Make your angle of attack steeper by leaning your weight toward your front foot. This weight shift also accentuates the digging action of the clubhead, making soft hands and an open clubface that much more critical. Otherwise, the golf ball will come out with more velocity than desired.

Short-Shot Checklist

To get it close from inside 100 yards, make sure your swing features these 10 elements

Whether it’s your third shot on a long par-5 or your approach on a short par-4, the full-swing wedge–be it with your gap, sand or pitching iron–is a critical play. All good players accept the short-range shot as a relatively easy opportunity to get up and down for birdies and pars, and do so with the regularity average golfers get up and down from just off the green. The reason: practice.

The Key Ingredient

For greater consistency and power, control that right knee

The golf swing’s a funny thing. Sometimes it’s racked with errors, yet somehow, at impact, everything is where it needs to be and the ball shoots off powerfully in the direction you intended. Other times, every shift, angle and hinge is perfect, yet a small misstep on the way to the ball results in shots that can only be described as horrific. In the first instance, Lady Luck is certainly on your side, but as we all know, she rarely hangs around for too long. And the fact that a single hiccup can bring your whole technique crashing down is, to put it bluntly, just the way golf is.

Stop Your Slice

Find the Problem Before You Find the Cure

The majority of recreational golfers, and even some better players, suffer from chronic slicing. Anyone who has experienced this problem knows how frustrating it can be and how difficult it can be to overcome.

Golf Can Be Simple

On September 4, 2004, the golf world lost a true, if not mysterious, legend. His name was Moe Norman, a shy, introverted man mostly known for his unorthodox swing. Standing wide at address with his arms stretched away from his body, his club some 12 inches behind the ball, Norman’s swing was unconventional. It defied all modern teaching. Yet this reticent man held more than 40 course records, recorded 17 holes-in-one and won 24 tournaments.

Drive With Balance

Like all members of the PGA Tour, I play a lot of rounds with recreational golfers in various pro-ams and charity tournaments. If there’s one thing I notice during these rounds, it’s how inconsistent most weekend players are off the tee. Obviously, the driver is the most difficult club in the bag to hit consistently, due to its long length (most off-the-rack drivers measure about 45 inches) and low degree of loft.

Chip From The Sand

Part of being a skillful player is reading the situation, choosing the right shot and then being able to execute that particular play. Taking into account all your options is important, but most golfers never consider the versatility the game allows. For example, when faced with a bunker shot, most golfers think blast. But in some situations, thinking chip may produce the better result.

No Backswing, No Problem

Bad lies are one thing, but there’s nothing worse than a situation where your backswing is completely restricted. The feeling of helplessness can be pretty disheartening. For most golfers, the only play is to chip back into the fairway–a momentum-breaker that’s not going to help you if your goal is to shoot low numbers. But take a closer look–you may be able to knock it near or even on the green if you know this savvy technique.

One Hand Control

In everyday life, we rarely use both hands to accomplish a motor task. This is one of the reasons why putting with just one hand on the handle can yield positive results.