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Jimmy Ballard - The Connected Golf Swing

Jimmy Ballard Connection

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#31 DonRSD

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 01:25 PM

View Post97speedster, on 20 April 2018 - 04:08 AM, said:


Interesting read. I've spent hundreds of hours working with Jimmy since 1995 and have become great friends with both he and his wife Lori.... Jimmy teaches me, but we are also good friends so my lessons with him are both a lesson and a lot of conversation about golf. Now that he is pretty much retired, he has more time so my lessons involve a lot of different conversations about golf and different golfers :).

I am a ball beater and play a lot of tournament golf, I played professionally for 11 years around the globe, and I'll tell you this..... NOTHING holds up better under pressure than what Ballard teaches! I have years worth of battlefield data to back that statement up. I've been in the hunt to win when I partially worked on Ballard's philosophy and I've been in the hunt when I was 100% Ballard's method and it took me a while to realize, but when I have been 100% committed to Ballard, my swing holds up under even the most pressure and that is why the older I get, the more I know he is right in what he teaches.

Everybody gets nervous at times, but when you are competing, it's more how you handle it and hold up under the gun. I have been so nervous I could hardly swallow before and still have been able to perform and had my swing hold up even with my hands shaking. I realized this for the first time 2 years after working hard with Ballard back in 1997, I had a 5 shot lead on the old Golden Bear Tour with 5 holes to play when there was a 4 hour rain delay, after the rain delay the wind picked up and was blowing 20+ mph. Even though the wind was howling and I could hardly take a breath, I still hit those last 5 greens and won by 5 and that is when I realized how good his method really was because inside I felt like I was going to choke my guts out, but outside my swing wasn't letting that happen.

Super jealous. Youre not far from me, as you live in Jupiter and I am in Boca Raton.
I am new around here, but didnt know you played professionally. Any tips you can share from your experiences from Jimmy that would help out a newb like myself :)

Played last weekend and had a thought of "turn off my arms on the downswing".....had the thought around hole 6 and couldn't have hit the ball better and purer. Few bad shots here and there (the usual), but it just felt better to hit the ball effortlessly......mind you the ball also traveled about 15-20 yards farther!

Edited by DonRSD, 01 May 2018 - 01:26 PM.

Driver: Ping G400 Max
3 Wood: Ping G400
Irons: TM P790 (2-AW)
Wedges: Vokey 54 & 60
Putter: Scotty Cameron Newport 2 (2018)

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#32 97speedster

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Posted 02 May 2018 - 03:40 AM

Effortless power is a good thing and what you felt was the dog wagging the tail, not the tail wagging the dog.

Keep work on feeling like you're swinging with your big muscles and keep your small twitch muscles quite.... you should buy his book if you are that new to golf so you understand the main principles:

Attached Thumbnails

  • book.jpg

WITB in 2018
Driver: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura SIX Tour Spec X
3 Wood: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Blue 7X
Hybrid: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (18.5 degrees)
Shaft: KBS 95 Prototype S
Irons: TaylorMade P-770 (4-PW)
Shafts: UST Mamiya Recoil Prototype 110 F4 +1/4"
Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52-09, 58-13),
Callaway Mack Daddy 2 64*
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S-400
Putter:
TaylorMade Spider Tour Black Slant Neck with a T-line 34"
Grip: Golf Pride Classic Putter Grip
Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5X

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#33 Galanga

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Posted 05 May 2018 - 06:10 PM

6 cap and 56 yo.  Seeking a more repetitive swing that I can use as I get older.  Have arthritis so the big rotational swing is causing me difficulty - can't always get the rotation.

Read this and other threads on Ballard and watched a bunch of Ballard videos on YT.  Tried it warming up - stance, connection, getting into right side and left elbow down were my main focuses. Hit it well with warm up bucket.  Took it to the course.  Had one of my better iron days in a while.  Only driver was iffy.  Shot a 78 with three birds on back which is about 1 below my handicap on first go with very little practice.  Connection setup helped my putting too. Biggest difficulty for me was not turning the hips and not doing tray position at top (cupped right wrist).  Going to try to get club more toe down tomorrow at top while doing all the other keys.

Very promising.  Thanks 97Speedster!

Have the above book and Annika's book coming - digging in.

Edited by Galanga, 05 May 2018 - 06:11 PM.

  • Driver: Ping G400 Max 10.5 with Ping Tour 65 Stiff at 45.25"; D6; alt shaft: Nippon NS Pro Regio Formula 65X
  • 3 wood: Ping G400 14.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 43"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • 5 wood: Ping G400 17.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 42.5"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • Hybrid: Ping G400 19 and 22 with KBS Tour Hybrid Proto 85 stiff; D2-3 (22 subs for 4i when 4i is in timeout)
  • Irons: Ping i210, PW through 4i, stock lofts, black dot, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 X100; D1-D2.5
  • Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth 52SS and 54/58 ES, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 S400, 52/54 black dot, 58 red dot; D5-D6.5 - can only carry 52 or 54
  • Putter: Argolf Pendragon at 34.5/70*

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#34 Galanga

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Posted 06 May 2018 - 04:14 PM

Played again using what I know of Ballard.  Hit wedges through 3 wood well.  Driver was about 50% good.  Misses were blocks.  I am pretty sure the blocks are either not getting into my right leg enough - Ballard's six inch move of left knee and shoulder getting back six inches, or, I am dragging the handle through impact with elbow pointing to target.  My guess for biggest culprit is the second option - gotta keep the left elbow pointing down.  I like the method very much so far - improved my iron striking immensely.  And, I think the more I use the big muscles and the less the hands and arms the better.  Thumbs up.
  • Driver: Ping G400 Max 10.5 with Ping Tour 65 Stiff at 45.25"; D6; alt shaft: Nippon NS Pro Regio Formula 65X
  • 3 wood: Ping G400 14.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 43"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • 5 wood: Ping G400 17.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 42.5"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • Hybrid: Ping G400 19 and 22 with KBS Tour Hybrid Proto 85 stiff; D2-3 (22 subs for 4i when 4i is in timeout)
  • Irons: Ping i210, PW through 4i, stock lofts, black dot, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 X100; D1-D2.5
  • Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth 52SS and 54/58 ES, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 S400, 52/54 black dot, 58 red dot; D5-D6.5 - can only carry 52 or 54
  • Putter: Argolf Pendragon at 34.5/70*

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#35 Marks23

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Posted 06 May 2018 - 06:19 PM

97speedster, can you educate those of us who don’t know what you mean when referring to “springing the shaft”?


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#36 97speedster

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Posted 07 May 2018 - 05:19 AM

View PostMarks23, on 06 May 2018 - 06:19 PM, said:

97speedster, can you educate those of us who don't know what you mean when referring to "springing the shaft"?

It's easier to understand visually.... springing the shaft is done through the correct sequence from the top of the backswing to impact where the shaft actually bends then unleashes its stored power right before impact. Imagine the club shaft is a rope with a golf head tied to it, it's essentially the same thing the Orange Whip does for golfers. If you block or wipe it, you won't get this stored energy to release in your swing and shaft.

Attached Thumbnails

  • 2.jpg
  • 1.jpg

Edited by 97speedster, 07 May 2018 - 05:30 AM.

WITB in 2018
Driver: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura SIX Tour Spec X
3 Wood: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Blue 7X
Hybrid: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (18.5 degrees)
Shaft: KBS 95 Prototype S
Irons: TaylorMade P-770 (4-PW)
Shafts: UST Mamiya Recoil Prototype 110 F4 +1/4"
Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52-09, 58-13),
Callaway Mack Daddy 2 64*
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S-400
Putter:
TaylorMade Spider Tour Black Slant Neck with a T-line 34"
Grip: Golf Pride Classic Putter Grip
Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5X

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#37 97speedster

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Posted 07 May 2018 - 05:29 AM

View PostGalanga, on 06 May 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

Played again using what I know of Ballard.  Hit wedges through 3 wood well.  Driver was about 50% good.  Misses were blocks.  I am pretty sure the blocks are either not getting into my right leg enough - Ballard's six inch move of left knee and shoulder getting back six inches, or, I am dragging the handle through impact with elbow pointing to target.  My guess for biggest culprit is the second option - gotta keep the left elbow pointing down.  I like the method very much so far - improved my iron striking immensely.  And, I think the more I use the big muscles and the less the hands and arms the better.  Thumbs up.

Keep both elbows pointing down and make sure you are not starting your downswing by opening your shoulders which will bring the club too steep on the downswing. With the driver, this can happen when you try to hit the ball instead of swing the club.
WITB in 2018
Driver: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura SIX Tour Spec X
3 Wood: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Blue 7X
Hybrid: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (18.5 degrees)
Shaft: KBS 95 Prototype S
Irons: TaylorMade P-770 (4-PW)
Shafts: UST Mamiya Recoil Prototype 110 F4 +1/4"
Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52-09, 58-13),
Callaway Mack Daddy 2 64*
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S-400
Putter:
TaylorMade Spider Tour Black Slant Neck with a T-line 34"
Grip: Golf Pride Classic Putter Grip
Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5X

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#38 Galanga

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Posted 07 May 2018 - 09:49 PM

Thanks, Speedster for the recommendation.  Will do.
  • Driver: Ping G400 Max 10.5 with Ping Tour 65 Stiff at 45.25"; D6; alt shaft: Nippon NS Pro Regio Formula 65X
  • 3 wood: Ping G400 14.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 43"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • 5 wood: Ping G400 17.5 with Ping Tour 75 Stiff at 42.5"; D3.5; alt shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 75X
  • Hybrid: Ping G400 19 and 22 with KBS Tour Hybrid Proto 85 stiff; D2-3 (22 subs for 4i when 4i is in timeout)
  • Irons: Ping i210, PW through 4i, stock lofts, black dot, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 X100; D1-D2.5
  • Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth 52SS and 54/58 ES, 1/2 over with DG TI 120 S400, 52/54 black dot, 58 red dot; D5-D6.5 - can only carry 52 or 54
  • Putter: Argolf Pendragon at 34.5/70*

8

#39 golfer07840

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

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#40 JDFish

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 01:48 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


I don't know where that criticism of the Ballard Method comes from.  I'm a 9 hcp. (mid-high 7 index) and began my swing change to this method in January and am driving the ball far straighter and as long, if not longer, than before (though I did also install a new shaft in my driver that has given me the lower, piercing ball flight I've been looking for since I got my Epic driver a few years ago).  After only 3 lessons I'm a far more consistent ball striker throughout my bag.  I only have to avoid the move where I hang back a bit instead of getting to my left side - if I don't I will either block it, flip and pull/draw/hook it, or hit a fat iron shot.

Callaway Epic 9.0 Fujikura Atmos Black TS 6S
Callaway XR Pro 3 wood
Callaway XR 5 wood
Titleist 913H 21* hybrid
Ping i200 Nippon N.S.Pro Modus3 Tour 105S - 4-UW
Titleist Vokey SM6 54* and 58* S200
Evnroll ER8 33"

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#41 golfer07840

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 01:56 PM

View PostJDFish, on 08 May 2018 - 01:48 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


I don't know where that criticism of the Ballard Method comes from.  I'm a 9 hcp. (mid-high 7 index) and began my swing change to this method in January and am driving the ball far straighter and as long, if not longer, than before (though I did also install a new shaft in my driver that has given me the lower, piercing ball flight I've been looking for since I got my Epic driver a few years ago).  After only 3 lessons I'm a far more consistent ball striker throughout my bag.  I only have to avoid the move where I hang back a bit instead of getting to my left side - if I don't I will either block it, flip and pull/draw/hook it, or hit a fat iron shot.

Maybe it's me. I went from 90 MPH swing speed to 105 with a more, traditional, Modern (Not sure what to call it) swing. The swing just feels too armsy with the driver. Irons and wedges, it's pure gold.

Maybe I can swing both ways? I've always been under the belief that there are 2 different swings, but people keep trying to tell me that isn't true.

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#42 JDFish

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 02:30 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 01:56 PM, said:

View PostJDFish, on 08 May 2018 - 01:48 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


I don't know where that criticism of the Ballard Method comes from.  I'm a 9 hcp. (mid-high 7 index) and began my swing change to this method in January and am driving the ball far straighter and as long, if not longer, than before (though I did also install a new shaft in my driver that has given me the lower, piercing ball flight I've been looking for since I got my Epic driver a few years ago).  After only 3 lessons I'm a far more consistent ball striker throughout my bag.  I only have to avoid the move where I hang back a bit instead of getting to my left side - if I don't I will either block it, flip and pull/draw/hook it, or hit a fat iron shot.

Maybe it's me. I went from 90 MPH swing speed to 105 with a more, traditional, Modern (Not sure what to call it) swing. The swing just feels too armsy with the driver. Irons and wedges, it's pure gold.

Maybe I can swing both ways? I've always been under the belief that there are 2 different swings, but people keep trying to tell me that isn't true.

I believe that once you develop mechanics that work for you, you will "swing your swing".  I'm sure that my swing doesn't look like Rocco Mediate, Curtis Strange or Hal Sutton.  But working on the attributes of the method - set up turning in my right foot to promote the coil, elbows down, connected left arm, etc. - gave me a great base for my swing.  My friends have been commenting on how "good" it looks (whatever that means).  So if you feel like you have "2 different swings" that work for you consistently, I say go for it!  I forgot to mention the whole reason for my swing change to this method was to preserve my lower back/avoid lower back pain that I've had for the past several years.  And it has been great for that as well :)
Callaway Epic 9.0 Fujikura Atmos Black TS 6S
Callaway XR Pro 3 wood
Callaway XR 5 wood
Titleist 913H 21* hybrid
Ping i200 Nippon N.S.Pro Modus3 Tour 105S - 4-UW
Titleist Vokey SM6 54* and 58* S200
Evnroll ER8 33"

12

#43 97speedster

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!
WITB in 2018
Driver: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura SIX Tour Spec X
3 Wood: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Blue 7X
Hybrid: TaylorMade RBZ Tour Stage 2 (18.5 degrees)
Shaft: KBS 95 Prototype S
Irons: TaylorMade P-770 (4-PW)
Shafts: UST Mamiya Recoil Prototype 110 F4 +1/4"
Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52-09, 58-13),
Callaway Mack Daddy 2 64*
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S-400
Putter:
TaylorMade Spider Tour Black Slant Neck with a T-line 34"
Grip: Golf Pride Classic Putter Grip
Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5X

13

#44 Dbogey

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 09:25 PM

I stumbled on this thread the other night. The head pro at my club worked with Ballard a while ago and I always like learning more about the golf swing.  I saw him Monday before I headed to play in a state 4ball tournament.  We talked about keeping the left elbow down and releasing my eyes early.  I worked on that in my warm up and decided that I would use that as my swing key for the tournament.  Mind you, I have only a few rounds and practice sessions under the belt due to NE weather.....had 2 great ball striker days and a total of 9 birdies on my own ball and my wedges from 100 yds in were ridiculous, plenty of distance with the driver and hit a ton of fairways. We ended up T16 out of 175 teams or so.  I told my pro we will be working more on the Ballard system!!  Thanks 97speeder for posting.

Fairways and greens!

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Ping G400 Tour S  
Ping G400 14.5
Ping G 19*
Ping G 22*
Ping I200 5-P (PXLZ 5.5)
Power spec
Vokey 50,54,58

Odyssey 3T P2 GP Tour Snsr Stright

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#45 golfer07840

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 09:52 PM

View Post97speedster, on 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!

I have a long torso, but short arms. The opposite of Hogan who was 5'6 with a wingspan of a 6' man.

Point being, I don't have a lot of natural width to my swing. The Ballard swing is like swinging with a half left arm.

Doesn't matter how well I hit it (no matter the method) I'll never drive it 285. But I know I can get to 240 with more width and torque. Something I don't get with the Ballard method.

Great method for irons and wedges. It just doesn't give me what I need in the long game.


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#46 torbill

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Posted 08 May 2018 - 11:34 PM

golfer, this is strange, how the method works so well for your irons and not your driver.  

I used to hit a lot of weak fades with the Ballard method, but it was across the board irons and woods. I was hanging back, which is still my tendency.  When we hang back we are prone to chicken wing shots, which come off as weak, blocked fades. We have to get on top of the ball and not hang back, otherwise the spine trends to tip backwards and the lead elbow wants to separate.

The fact that it doesn't occur with irons but happens with the driver makes me think of equipment problems, maybe too stiff a driver shaft, or what not.  But you seem to be a very thorough person, so I suspect that you have already considered that.

In any event, you have hit the wall with this method, and that's too bad.  There really is no problem with this method and good distance, from what I can tell.  I will be 74 years old in a couple of days and I can hit 250 and sometimes more, and I have made no focus on distance, at all, as I have been entirely focused on getting the method right.  Just this week I bought a swing speed radar unit and am going to start focusing on getting more distance and I am absolutely certain that I will be able to get another 10 yards or more, as I have not focused any attention whatsoever one making my swing faster.

In the event that you run into trouble with what you are working on now and think that you might want to re-visit the Ballard method you could always send videos to Jimmy himself.  He will critique your swing for a hundred fifty bucks. Your driver distance problem simply must be some sort of fault in your swing mechanics that Ballard would spot in an instant, or I miss my guess.



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#47 mocokid

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 10:41 AM

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

View Post97speedster, on 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!

I have a long torso, but short arms. The opposite of Hogan who was 5'6 with a wingspan of a 6' man.

Point being, I don't have a lot of natural width to my swing. The Ballard swing is like swinging with a half left arm.

Doesn't matter how well I hit it (no matter the method) I'll never drive it 285. But I know I can get to 240 with more width and torque. Something I don't get with the Ballard method.

Great method for irons and wedges. It just doesn't give me what I need in the long game.

I've often wondered how to create width in the Ballard swing, as most of his best guys do complete a 90* shoulder turn, yet it does not seem Ballard's intention to turn the shoulders, as coiling into the inside right leg seems paramount.  My best guess is that as long as you coil into the right leg, and keep the shoulders level and elbows down, you can get some significant shoulder turn, that will promote the width you want.

As far as the open club face, see Torbill comments, hanging back causes a lot of it, you need to fully release the right side AND right hand and arm down the line (outside rail). Hit some punch shots with irons where the club does not go beyond parallel with the ground on the follow through.  Your right arm should be fully released and the left elbow tucked to the chest (connected) and your body erect, full weight on left side.

Here is a senior Curtis Strange in video.

https://www.youtube....h?v=GQHjogbNFWU

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#48 golfer07840

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 11:29 AM

View Postmocokid, on 09 May 2018 - 10:41 AM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

View Post97speedster, on 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!

I have a long torso, but short arms. The opposite of Hogan who was 5'6 with a wingspan of a 6' man.

Point being, I don't have a lot of natural width to my swing. The Ballard swing is like swinging with a half left arm.

Doesn't matter how well I hit it (no matter the method) I'll never drive it 285. But I know I can get to 240 with more width and torque. Something I don't get with the Ballard method.

Great method for irons and wedges. It just doesn't give me what I need in the long game.

I've often wondered how to create width in the Ballard swing, as most of his best guys do complete a 90* shoulder turn, yet it does not seem Ballard's intention to turn the shoulders, as coiling into the inside right leg seems paramount.  My best guess is that as long as you coil into the right leg, and keep the shoulders level and elbows down, you can get some significant shoulder turn, that will promote the width you want.

As far as the open club face, see Torbill comments, hanging back causes a lot of it, you need to fully release the right side AND right hand and arm down the line (outside rail). Hit some punch shots with irons where the club does not go beyond parallel with the ground on the follow through.  Your right arm should be fully released and the left elbow tucked to the chest (connected) and your body erect, full weight on left side.

Here is a senior Curtis Strange in video.

https://www.youtube....h?v=GQHjogbNFWU

Issue with that video is, that's not Ballard's swing. Curtis left Ballard around 1990 to go work with Leadbetter.

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#49 mocokid

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 12:23 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 09 May 2018 - 11:29 AM, said:

View Postmocokid, on 09 May 2018 - 10:41 AM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

View Post97speedster, on 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!

I have a long torso, but short arms. The opposite of Hogan who was 5'6 with a wingspan of a 6' man.

Point being, I don't have a lot of natural width to my swing. The Ballard swing is like swinging with a half left arm.

Doesn't matter how well I hit it (no matter the method) I'll never drive it 285. But I know I can get to 240 with more width and torque. Something I don't get with the Ballard method.

Great method for irons and wedges. It just doesn't give me what I need in the long game.

I've often wondered how to create width in the Ballard swing, as most of his best guys do complete a 90* shoulder turn, yet it does not seem Ballard's intention to turn the shoulders, as coiling into the inside right leg seems paramount.  My best guess is that as long as you coil into the right leg, and keep the shoulders level and elbows down, you can get some significant shoulder turn, that will promote the width you want.

As far as the open club face, see Torbill comments, hanging back causes a lot of it, you need to fully release the right side AND right hand and arm down the line (outside rail). Hit some punch shots with irons where the club does not go beyond parallel with the ground on the follow through.  Your right arm should be fully released and the left elbow tucked to the chest (connected) and your body erect, full weight on left side.

Here is a senior Curtis Strange in video.

https://www.youtube....h?v=GQHjogbNFWU

Issue with that video is, that's not Ballard's swing. Curtis left Ballard around 1990 to go work with Leadbetter.

Interesting did not know he went with Leadbetter.  He seems to retain the Ballard elements, right foot square, coil into right side, soft left arm, releasing right side.  Interesting.  Then again Leadbetter freely took from Ballard, no?

Edited by mocokid, 09 May 2018 - 12:24 PM.


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#50 mudge

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 12:25 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 09 May 2018 - 11:29 AM, said:

View Postmocokid, on 09 May 2018 - 10:41 AM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

View Post97speedster, on 08 May 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)

Starting doing more "modern" things with my swing and now I'm driving the ball really well. Yet my irons are a little thin and not getting that same sensation I was with the Ballard swing.

Very frustrating.

I'm 50 years old and still hit it 285 yds so I can dispute that, you are obviously missing something that is not enabling you to compress the ball. I hit a draw and move it plenty far enough with my driver. You might want to try using a DST Compressor 8 iron, it will help!

I have a long torso, but short arms. The opposite of Hogan who was 5'6 with a wingspan of a 6' man.

Point being, I don't have a lot of natural width to my swing. The Ballard swing is like swinging with a half left arm.

Doesn't matter how well I hit it (no matter the method) I'll never drive it 285. But I know I can get to 240 with more width and torque. Something I don't get with the Ballard method.

Great method for irons and wedges. It just doesn't give me what I need in the long game.

I've often wondered how to create width in the Ballard swing, as most of his best guys do complete a 90* shoulder turn, yet it does not seem Ballard's intention to turn the shoulders, as coiling into the inside right leg seems paramount.  My best guess is that as long as you coil into the right leg, and keep the shoulders level and elbows down, you can get some significant shoulder turn, that will promote the width you want.

As far as the open club face, see Torbill comments, hanging back causes a lot of it, you need to fully release the right side AND right hand and arm down the line (outside rail). Hit some punch shots with irons where the club does not go beyond parallel with the ground on the follow through.  Your right arm should be fully released and the left elbow tucked to the chest (connected) and your body erect, full weight on left side.

Here is a senior Curtis Strange in video.

https://www.youtube....h?v=GQHjogbNFWU

Issue with that video is, that's not Ballard's swing. Curtis left Ballard around 1990 to go work with Leadbetter.

From what I've found and chosen to believe, Strange left Ballard and claimed to be working with Leadbetter only to get some "kickbacks"; he never actually worked with him.


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#51 torbill

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 05:15 PM

The only thing that jumps out at me with the Strange video is that his weight does not appear to flow to his left toe. Otherwise it appears to me to be pretty reflective of Ballard principles.

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#52 ggpro

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 07:50 PM

View PostDonRSD, on 17 April 2018 - 06:34 AM, said:

I started golfing about 12 months ago and started the Ballard swing 2 months ago from Bill Abrams (what an awesome teacher).

The swing, when I get it to work, it tremendous. Very effortless and powerful.

My issues are....
Getting the weight forward
Sometimes I hit before the ball (fat)
Sometimes I hit on off the toe of the club
Hook shots
Slices (driver only)

Not too many thinned shots since I started using this method. I am about a 22 handicap.

If anyone has any tips, I would appreciate them.

The biggest thing for me consistency wise is to get the left shoulder behind the ball (with the left arm connected and using my body to start the backswing) and also getting to the front toe area. Sometimes I cant get to the toe area and the weight goes to my front heel instead.......Bill told me that will lead to cutting across the ball (hooks & slices with driver). For some reason though - I just cant get that weight consistently to the proper spot.


97speedster - awesome write-up. Everything you wrote applies to me too :)

Bill Abrams is a good friend of mine and he is an awesome teacher. Illinois PGA Professional of the Year in 2016 or 2017 (can't remember lol!)

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#53 ggpro

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Posted 09 May 2018 - 08:23 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


Hmmm...Jim Dent, Art Sellinger, Mike Dunaway, Jesper all hit it pretty long using the Ballard method.....

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#54 golfer07840

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 08:02 AM

View Postggpro, on 09 May 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


Hmmm...Jim Dent, Art Sellinger, Mike Dunaway, Jesper all hit it pretty long using the Ballard method.....

If I recall, all big guys with really long arms that naturally created width.

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#55 torbill

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 10:08 AM

I don’t think that arm length has much of anything to do with what is holding you back.  

I have always believed that these notions of having wider or narrower swing arcs are nonsense, at least as commonly described.  My argument is summarized below, and is based on the simple mechanical principles of physics.  If you don’t like this sort of analysis just skip down to my bottom line.  I will put double brackets around the part that you might want to skip.

My argument:

[[The only arc length that matters, at least in a first-order sense, is the distance between the ball and the torso at address; either I am going to have this distance as my arc length at impact or I am going to miss the ball. Period. The rest is physics. The body is translating and rotating at impact - there is translational and rotational kinetic energy that is available to be imparted to the ball.  Arm length primarily affects the rotational energy component, and this is a “squared” mathematical relationship, in that the rotational energy component varies as the square of the arc.

What is the arc length at address/impact with the Ballard method?  It is not related to the total arm length because the arms rest on the body from the elbows up.  Rather it is more closely related to the forearm length.  And I would argue that the forearm length is not more than an inch or two diffferent for all of us reading this forum. Mine is about 10” from the middle of the elbow joint where it bends to the middle of the wrist joint where it bend, measured along the inside of the forearm.  Does anybody here have a measure that is less than 9” or greater than 11”?

My driver shaft length is 44”.  My address/impact arc is therefore about 54”.  If a player has 9” forearms, his arc is going to be about 53”.  If the body turns at exactly the same rate in both cases, the kinetic energy of 53” player is going to be about 4% less than mine (53/54 squared).

But even this small amount of difference isn’t the end of the story.  The player with the shorter forearms is dealing with a smaller moment of inertia.  This moment of inertia (which is a different moment of inertia from the one that resists clubface twisting on an off center impact) is also a function of the arc, squared.  A lower moment of inertia would in theory allow the player with 9” forearm to swing the club faster, hence overcoming some or all of the 4% loss from above.]]

The bottom line is this - and it is simple physics - that an inch of forearm length difference is negligible in its effect on swing speed, just like shortening a drive an inch has a negligible effect on my swing speed.

Now, we might argue that the size of the arc that is achieved in everything that leads up to impact has an effect.  For example, we might argue that a stiff lead arm creates a wider arc on the backswing than what a Ballard lead arm creates on the backswing, and that this sort of “wider arc” on the backswing somehow results in more kinetic energy at impact.  Good luck with that argument, I would argue that this is creative golf swing mythology that isn’t supportable on the basis of mechanical principles.  My conclusion is that the energy that is available to transfer to the ball at impact is primarily based on the address/impact arc length and how fast my body is translating/shifting toward the target and how fast my torso is turning.

We might also argue that methods other than the Ballard method have a wider address/impact arc, so they are better for hitting the ball far.  I would reply that this is the same thing as me determining my preferred driver shaft length.  If I cut my driver down from 45.5” to 44”, I am going to lose some clubhead speed due to the smaller arc, yes.  But I am going to gain some clubhead speed by having a lower moment of intertia so that I can swing faster.  Within the parameters that we golfers can vary, the net effect is going to be pretty negligible.

The End. Whew...


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#56 ggpro

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 03:35 PM

View Postgolfer07840, on 10 May 2018 - 08:02 AM, said:

View Postggpro, on 09 May 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


Hmmm...Jim Dent, Art Sellinger, Mike Dunaway, Jesper all hit it pretty long using the Ballard method.....

If I recall, all big guys with really long arms that naturally created width.

I'd look at Dent's swing, you probably have more width with your sw than he does with his driver...still hitting it 280 while pushing 80

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#57 golfer07840

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 04:02 PM

View Postggpro, on 10 May 2018 - 03:35 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 10 May 2018 - 08:02 AM, said:

View Postggpro, on 09 May 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


Hmmm...Jim Dent, Art Sellinger, Mike Dunaway, Jesper all hit it pretty long using the Ballard method.....

If I recall, all big guys with really long arms that naturally created width.

I'd look at Dent's swing, you probably have more width with your sw than he does with his driver...still hitting it 280 while pushing 80

Well I'm happy for him.

For ME.. this method doesn't cut it. I've been doing it for 20 years. Have never been able to top 90 MPH swing speed. I go to more rotation and a more "modern" swing, suddenly I'm over 100.

Not saying the method is wrong. It's just not for me. Esp in the long game.

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#58 ggpro

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 06:01 PM

Nice to have you here, I remember your posts from the other site.

Curious....what do you see as the biggest differences between Butch and Jimmy? I've worked with Jimmy and some of his associates since 1988 but also have worked with one of Butch's assistants last year.

Edited by ggpro, 11 May 2018 - 05:02 PM.


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#59 br61

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Posted 10 May 2018 - 06:26 PM

View Post97speedster, on 02 May 2018 - 03:40 AM, said:

Effortless power is a good thing and what you felt was the dog wagging the tail, not the tail wagging the dog.

Keep work on feeling like you're swinging with your big muscles and keep your small twitch muscles quite.... you should buy his book if you are that new to golf so you understand the main principles:

That book brings back old memories, I have that book somewhere. Gotta dig it up!
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#60 97speedster

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Posted 14 May 2018 - 04:15 AM

View Postgolfer07840, on 10 May 2018 - 08:02 AM, said:

View Postggpro, on 09 May 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postgolfer07840, on 08 May 2018 - 11:39 AM, said:

Loved hitting irons and wedges with the Ballard method.

HATE, HATE HATE hitting driver with it. Slice after slice and if it is straight, it's very short. (Right or wrong, the biggest criticism of the Ballard swing is you "can't hit it out of your shadow" off the tee.)


Hmmm...Jim Dent, Art Sellinger, Mike Dunaway, Jesper all hit it pretty long using the Ballard method.....

If I recall, all big guys with really long arms that naturally created width.

I'm 6'3" and my wing span is only 5'11".

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