Monday, April 20, 2009

A Look Into The Poll Question: Sam Snead

Sam Snead has been considered for a long time to have the 'sweetest' golf swing of all time. Snead was a classic 'double shifter' with amazing flexibility and a shoulder turn of 142 degrees in his prime.

This type of swing allowed Snead to generate an inordinate amount of power and make it look effortless.

Mr. Snead's swing helped win him 82 PGA Tour victories and 165 professional wins in total which included seven Major championships. Some contend that he was not that great of a ballstriker as contemporaries of his time such as Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson because he never won the US Open, but Snead finished 2nd in the US Open on five different occasions.

Snead never seemed to be that great at explaining what he did in his golf swing. He often referred to the grip pressure as 'feeling like you're holding a bird with both hands. Strong enough to keep it from flying away, not light enough so you won't kill it.' That was a commonly referenced piece of instruction, but over the years you find more golfers using a tight grip because Mr. Snead failed to mention that he had humongous strong hands.

There's also this video where Mr. Snead talks about over-swinging, despite the video at the top of this post showing that he was way past parallel in his prime.

Mr. Snead could probably be considered the 'creator' of the one-piece takeaway and his swing is very much the model for Mac O'Grady's MORAD swing method. And his finish was very similar to the finish that most S&T golfers use

Snead also had superb footwork in his swing and here's an article I recently found in regards to his thoughts on footwork.

Footwork is more important than most golfers realize. It's the foundation for your balance. I used to work on my footwork fundamentals by practicing barefoot in our backyard. When you swing barefoot, you experience the feeling of your feet anchoring or "rooting" you to the ground. At address, you feel as if your toes are almost up in the air and free. Your weight is established on the balls of your feet and somewhat back toward your heels--never out on the toes.



Anonymous said...

Power and elegance, all in one.

There's a nice print of Sam Snead you can get here:
Golf Plaques and Prints

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