Who has the best swing?
By Ian Clark, World of Golf London Master Professional
This question is among the most commonly asked in golf. No matter who you ask, the answers tend to be familiar and might include: Justin Rose, Tiger Woods, Adam Scott, Ernie Els and Jack Nicklaus, to name but a few. My own answer is a little different and may surprise you………..a lesser known chap called Iron Byron!
For those of you that do not know, Iron Byron is a robot that is based on the perfect golf swing. He (or could just as easily be she) was originated by the USGAs research and test centre hitting thousands and thousands of golf balls with the same, efficient repeating swing. The USGA originally used Iron Byron to test golf club materials and balls to make sure that they were conforming. Nowadays many of the leading club manufacturers use a version of Iron Byron to test the many new golf clubs that are being produced today.
So what makes Iron Byron so perfect? Well firstly he was built around the principles of physics and science. This led to something that was easy to repeat and didn’t have to rely on timing to hit good shots. To become a consistent golfer we have to reduce the need for timing because there just isn’t enough time and space to allow for much compensation during the swing. The more moving parts you have in your swing, the less time you have to correct them. The ideal swing is one which gives you the most amount of time to make the smallest number of compensations, so your swing is able to repeat over and over again.
Iron Byron as you can now imagine had very few moving parts and no human variables: no ball and socket joint allowing its arm to move around, no sense of pressure and no recollection of any shots going out of bounds! With human golfers there are so many variables that can disturb the simple repetition required for good timing.
One of the interesting points about Iron Byron is the fact that he was always bolted to the ground on a wide stable base which simply could not move. Think about that next time you are playing. How are your feet interacting with the ground, does your base feel stable, or do you find yourself losing balance sometimes? To get a feeling of being stable, make some practice swings in bare feet, this will give you a great feeling of interacting with the ground, and the sense of pressure remaining in the arches of your feet, not out to the extremes of your toes nor back onto your heels. Try this and maybe you to0 could become as consistent as Iron Byron.
Ian Clark is a master professional at World of Golf London. He is very much in demand for lessons, but can accommodate new customers with sufficient notice. More info about Ian at ianclarkgolf.co.uk.