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Hogan's Five Lessons Was Wrong?

left elbow 5 Lessons target address swing technique Ben Hogan photos PGA photograph video

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#1 ElMacho

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 11:40 AM

Page 48 of Ben Hogan's Five Lessons states, in all caps: "AT ADDRESS, THE LEFT ELBOW SHOULD POINT DIRECTLY AT THE LEFT HIPBONE..." Ben Hogan did not follow this advice in competition. In fact, good golfers never seem to do this.

I cannot find any pictures of modern PGA tour players who point their left elbow at their left hip as illustrated in Ben Hogan's Five Lessons. In fact, I cannot find a photograph or video of Hogan doing it in competition. Furthermore, it seems that the longer that a professional golfer can drive the ball, the less they follow this advice and the more that their left elbow is pointed toward the target.

I will concede that the recommended position feels very stable (to me) at address. On the other hand, if I point my elbow somewhat closer to the the target so that I can see my left tricep, I find that the rest of my swing, especially the cocking of my left wrist, is much smoother. I wonder why this is not more widely discussed.

If this position was actually good advice, I would have expected Hogan to have used it himself.

Please share any contradictory viewpoints. I will be happy to update my beliefs based on new evidence.

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#2 mocokid

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 11:53 AM

you are correct, many have noticed this.  Leadbetter, in his book with the original photos of Hogan, taken for the 5 Lessons shows that the elbows don't point the way that they were drawn up for the book.  Question is who decided to leave the drawings that way?  Hogan, Ravielli (the illustrator) or WInd the author?  or Was it an oversight?

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#3 powerfade66

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 07:44 PM

I agree his setup wasn't as extreme as in the book but he also had a very early and sudden opening of the face using his left arm so pictures can be just after that but who knows. He said to a few people that questioned his setup advice "you wouldn't want to set up like a cripple would you?" He taught some of his proteges to set up closer to impact implying he modified his own after the accident out of necessity.

Generally speaking a lot of long hitters have the elbow to target because it matches their strong left hand grips.

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#4 oscar@wrx

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 08:44 PM

To me, it just shows Hogan immediately pushes the club with his left hand. The left elbow will rotate clockwise immediately once you do that
"Best teacher is yourself, with other teachers just giving you ideas to try. I like teachers who say--ok, try this FEEL and this and that..."

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#5 tgreenwood11

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 04:28 PM

I think the point is that Hogan wanted the elbows pointing at the ground back and through or close to it.


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#6 JD3

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 10:00 PM

it's probably the most intelligently written and accurate instruction book ever. Hogan himself decades after publish said he wouldnt change a thing if he wrote it again. however by necessity it's general. if Hogan were to give someone a lesson he'd give more tailored instructions to try to convey the exact feels and movements to the students from different perspectives they could grasp. we know this from people he did instruct directly.

Edited by JD3, 26 July 2017 - 10:01 PM.

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#7 Petter Player

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 04:58 AM

It is possible to twist the upper arm to internal rotation, without changing the wrist set or move the shaft in any ways.

I don’t know where I got that move, but I do twist the elbow pointing towards the target before take-away. And the club doesn’t move till my elbow is pointing to the taget.

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#8 oscar@wrx

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Posted 17 May 2018 - 12:02 AM

Believe Hogan on this, what Iím wondering about is the reason for it. More upper arm connection?
"Best teacher is yourself, with other teachers just giving you ideas to try. I like teachers who say--ok, try this FEEL and this and that..."

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#9 AlexCzervic

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Posted Yesterday, 05:38 PM

Better have an exit plan.

AC

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#10 Redjeep83

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Posted Yesterday, 07:38 PM

 oscar@wrx, on 17 May 2018 - 12:02 AM, said:

Believe Hogan on this, what Iím wondering about is the reason for it. More upper arm connection?

The right arm being in that position can be good, will allow a soft fold of right elbow and club wonít lift outside


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