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Mike Austin Golf Swing
Do you know who Mike Austin was? Have you ever heard of the Mike Austin Golf swing? If not, and you want to learn how to hit a golf ball well, then you’re in for a treat. This golf swing method will make you rethink most of what you learned. It’s definitely a revelation.
Mike Austin is still in the Guinness Book of World Records for completing the longest drive in a sanctioned golf event. For Guinness to consider it, the ride has obviously been verified by numerous witnesses. So it’s not a women’s tale. Amazingly, he pulled it off in 1974 at what was called the US Senior Open (now the US Seniors Championship, a major Champions Tour event). Yes, at 64, young Mike was a senior player at the time. His drive traveled an incredible 515 yards! The shot was struck on the fourteenth hole of the Wintergreen Golf Course (now the 5th hole and the course is now called the Desert Rose) in Las Vegas Nevada. The fourteenth hole is a par 4 of 450 yards. Mike had been bombarding the ball all day already hitting over 400 yards. One of his playing partners, Chandler Harper (1950 PGA Championship winner) said to Mike on the way up to the fourteenth tee, something like, “Mike, let’s see you really let one go”. Mike unleashed his epic drive which carried to the front edge of the green on the 450 yard hole.
When they finally found his ball, it was on the next tee, after crossing the green, 65 yards beyond the green, a 515-yard smash. Yes, it was downwind, estimated between 27 and 35 mph according to weather reports that day, and Las Vegas has some elevation (about 2,000 feet). But come on! It’s crazy ! Also consider the fact that he used a khaki (wooden) head driver with 10 degree loft and an extra stiff 43 ½ inch steel shaft, and a 100 compression balata golf ball. These tools are far inferior to today’s longer and lighter graphite rods with the high tech driver heads and long fly balls. So the bottom line is that his training was simply a freak shot. It was estimated that with proper impact and trajectory, a swing speed of between 155 and 160 mph could produce such a shot. Mike claims to have been measured at such swing speeds in the late 1930s under strobe light photography, which can measure speeds accurately. At 75, his swing has been measured at 133 mph, that’s still faster than any player on the tour, Bubba Watson, John Daly, Jack Nicklaus in the past, anyone. Hmmm. For example: so far this year (April 2011) the fastest recorded clubhead speed is 128mph by JB Holmes (his average is 125mph this year). So Mike was out swinging all the current PGA Tour players at 75! Another stat about Mike Austin. As a member of the 350 club (a group of long riders) in 1988, Mike competed in approximately 12 long ride events at the age of 78. At that age, he averaged 307 yards per drive, and even more impressive, HE NEVER MISSED THE GRID! Long AND precise.
In a sense, the story only begins with this record player. Mike Austin wasn’t just a strong guy with a knack for hitting a golf ball. While he was certainly those things too, he was a complete student of the golf swing. He had a background in science and was a student of kinesiology (the study of human movement). He applied all of this knowledge to his study of the golf swing, learning how each part of the body must work in order to produce the most efficient and powerful swing. This swing won’t be hard on the joints or spine either, because you’ll be using the joints the way they were designed. What makes things more perplexing is that what Mike is teaching is quite contrary to what most golf instructors are currently teaching (i.e. the modern swing).
What convinced me that his swing method was worth studying was twofold. First of all, once you look at his swing (Mike Austin golf swing – Young Mike Austin), you will see elegance, grace and balance. It’s not the type of swing normally associated with a long ride. Second, when you consider how differently he understood the swing than most golf instructors, it becomes clear, at least to me, that he was onto something the others just didn’t understand.
So if you too want to hit the ball long and straight, learn everything you can about Mike Austin’s golf swing. There are a few pros who teach his method but there’s a lot of debate about how some of them go about it. People are always trying to reinvent the wheel. Either way, Mike was right. Do yourself a favor and look into Mike Austin’s golf swing. Happy golfing everyone!
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