Rory McIlroy: My Game-Changing Tips More-Golf Like a Pro
Jan26

Rory McIlroy: My Game-Changing Tips More-Golf Like a Pro

Angus Murray Rory McIlroy and coach Michael Bannon. I didn’t have a great 2013. This year? I’m back to playing like a World No. 1 should, with a shiny new Claret Jug and a Wanamaker Trophy to prove it. Credit goes to my longtime coach, Michael Bannon, who reacquainted me with five key moves I had strayed from in recent years. Use my fixes to transform your move into a championship swing. Michael Bannon is the only coach I’ve ever had. It’s scary — he knows my swing better than I do. So when things started sliding south 18 months ago, he knew exactly what to do: Get back to the basics that rocketed me to No. 1 in the first place, using check points and feels that Michael taught me when I was a little kid. Now my driver, iron and wedge swings are again on autopilot. My performance stats are about the same as last year, but I can sense a difference. Every shot feels flush. Copy my fixes and you, too, can rediscover your best swing.     Angus Murray Game Changer No. 1 “Activate” Your Address Position To crush it, you need a comfortable stance. Simply tilt from your hips while flexing your knees. You’d think I’d be able to get into a solid address position without thinking, considering the tens of thousands of swings I’ve made in my lifetime. The truth is that it’s as easy to fall into bad habits here as it is in any other part of your swing. So I work on my address every time I practice. The Key: Settle in so that your arms hang freely and are far enough in front of you to whip the club through the impact zone without your body getting in the way.     Angus Murray Game Changer No. 2 Steal My One-Piece Takeaway Stop slices and hooks by simply ‘pushing” the club straight back The first two feet of my swing are critical. If I start the club back on plane, I won’t have to reroute it on the way down, so I can just rip it without fearing a mis-hit. Granted, my takeaway isn’t perfect. I occasionally yank the club too far inside [then come over the top in the downswing], or “lift” it up and out [which gets me “trapped” coming down]. But I can fix those flaws. The Key: “Push” the club straight back. Picture a wall running parallel to your toe line and straight up through your hands [above]. As you start your swing, keep your hands and the clubhead on the wall.     Angus...

Read More
Callaway launches Chrome Soft golf ball
Jan21

Callaway launches Chrome Soft golf ball

        The definition of a “Tour level golf ball” has changed considerably over the last decade. Prior to the introduction of solid core, multi-layer, urethane covered balls, the ball of choice on TOUR was a Balata-covered model that offered a softer feel and additional spin. Of course, the soft cover came with some drawbacks — namely a loss of distance and durability that led to a changing of the guard on TOUR. With the improvements in technology, today’s Tour level ball not only produces more distance, less backspin and a higher launch angel, it also offers greenside control thanks to a soft urethane cover. While solid core, multi-layer golf ball remains the option of choice on TOUR, some companies have spent time trying to develop a technology that could blend the feel of a Balata cover with the distance, low-spin and all-around performance of a solid core model. “The firmer feeling golf balls have become the benchmark for distance and all-around tour level performance,” said Dave Bartels, Callaway’s senior director of golf ball R&D. “But most golfers would agree that soft balls feel better. In the past it’s always come at a penalty to performance.” After years of testing and development, Callaway believes its new Chrome Soft ($38 per dozen) ball could challenge the existing benchmark. The big story behind the three-piece ball is that the SoftFast core works together with an intermediate mantle layer to retain more energy than previous low-compression models. “Golf ball designers have realized that you can create low compression balls to reduce spin with the longer clubs,” Bartels says. “With SuperSoft, the soft core compresses yet still retains its energy and restores its energy as it regains its shape to generate fast ball speeds. It doesn’t lose its energy.” Bartles noted that the standard tour ball typically has a compression around 90; however, Chrome Soft, due to its SuperFast core, has a compression around 65. To improve feel and spin on shots around the green, Callaway also added a durable urethane DuraSpin cover that gives the ball a Balata-like feel. While the cover delivers a soft feel, Callaway was quick to point out that the cover is the most durable the company has ever produced. The ball won’t see play on TOUR until January, but expect Callaway staffers to give Chrome Soft a hard look this...

Read More
Top 10 in 2014: Tiger Woods moments in 2014
Jan02

Top 10 in 2014: Tiger Woods moments in 2014

10. Looks healthy (but rusty) at Hero World Challenge Tiger Woods tied for last place at his Hero World Challenge in December, but his first start since missing the cut at the PGA was a positive one. For the first time all year he played four rounds without any back pain (he did deal with a flu bug), but a rusty short game proved he has plenty of work to do in the offseason with new swing coach Chris Como. (Getty Images) 9. Announces Chris Como as new coach Just before returning at his Hero World Challenge in December, Woods announced he would be working with Chris Como, a little-known pro from Houston. The two met through Woods’s best friend Notah Begay, and Woods said he is already happy with the progress they’ve made in a short time. “I don’t feel like I’m hitting it very hard, but it’s coming off the face faster,” Woods said. “That part was exciting.” (Getty Images) 8. Goes 66-78 at Doral While warming up for the final round of the Honda Classic, Woods injured his back, and after 13 holes he’d had enough. He tried to defend his title the following week at Doral, but in the final round he was clearly in pain. It would be the beginning of another year marked by injury. (AP) 7. WDs from Honda Classic Unfortunately for Woods, his WD from the Honda Classic was the first of many in 2014. He injured his back warming up before the final round, and he only made it through 13 holes before withdrawing. Woods would also WD in August from Firestone, and he would miss starts at Bay Hill, the Masters, the Memorial, the U.S. Open, Quail Hollow and the Players. (AP) 6. Makes first return at Quicken Loans In his first start since back surgery, Woods missed the cut and looked like a man who rushed back too soon. But after missing the first two majors of the season, Woods wanted to knock off the rust and play in an event which benefits his foundation. (AP) 5. Parking space surrounded at PGA Woods is used to plenty of media attention, and he got it at the PGA when he decided at the last minute to play the final major of the season. Woods injured his back again the week before at Firestone, and when he showed up at Valhalla, it created such a firestorm reigning Open champion Rory McIlroy was able to walk past the media (claret jug in hand) without being stopped. (AP) 4. WDs from Bridgestone Having already missed the heart of the season recovering from...

Read More