Tom Watson -- Lousy putting stroke and wrong putter
July 20 2009 at 2:07 AM
sammy (no login) from IP address 220.127.116.11
Poor ol' Tom .. choked on his short putts with a putting stroke that comes across the ball .. as they showed on one close up shot on TV. On the 18th hole putt, he just plain choked and the mallet putter took control pushing the putt to the right.
On short putts, Tom is trying like the dickens to hold his putter lightly and just jab at the ball ... but all this does is allow the backweighted mallet putter to twist his hands around the longitudinal mass axis ... from his hands to the putter head center of gravity/mass behind the shaft.
Poor ol' Tom still hasn't mastered the science of putterhead control for short putts when under extreme stress ... Geoff ... send him yer business card ..!!!
Re: Tom Watson -- Lousy putting stroke and wrong putter
July 21 2009, 7:32 PM
His magnificent past record didn't help him on his simple putt for par on the 18th at Turnberry ... did it ...?!
After tying with Cink by bogeying the 18th, the poor ol' codger just choked and fell apart after that. Painful to watch ... because in competitive golf it ain't "age before beauty" ...LOL
But seriously, I'm sure that Geoff could have modernized ol' Tom's putting stroke and mental strategy using modern neuroscientific knowledge .. that is if that ol' dog wants to learn new tricks ... ya think??!!!!
Apparently Watson was using a Odyssey White Hot XG #7 ... and he sure as hell couldn't control that rube goldberg abortion on shorter putts. Yeah, it's okay on longer putts where you can swing that mallet monstrosity with some confidence, but on shorter putts with a slower or smaller stroke it must jerk the hands around something terrible ...!!!
Re: Tom Watson -- Lousy putting stroke and wrong putter
July 24 2009, 12:55 PM
I guess my point is that his effort was one for the record books, in any sport, and a well done is more appropriate than with a knowledge of neuroscience he could have done better. I maybe ignorant of the facts but don't see too many tour players rushing to get this knowledge. They are a different animal.
(Premier Login aceputt) Forum Owner 18.104.22.168
Tour Players as Model
July 26 2009, 1:34 PM
There seems to be an inconsistency in your thinking about "good golfers" or "great golfers" or whatever, meaning who you think you should use as a model for your personal skills development. Correct me if that is not an accurate statement of your view of the matter.
The inconsistency is: Are Tour players "a different sort of animal" or not? If they ARE a different sort of animal, then why would any golfer who is NOT also a different sort of animal concern himself with Tour performance levels or techniques?
My personal view is that Tour Players have quite a bit of oddities in their physical natures that allow them a free ride in golf to a much larger extent than is true for most people, but the bottom line is that they are STILL humans with two eyes, two hands, two legs, one putter, one ball, on the same green as other golfers play, facing the same putts all golfers face.
You aparently think "Tour Players" (does that include players who lose their cards?) don't need to know about how to get better or cut down on mistakes, whether based on neuroscience plus golf or based on buddy tips in the locker room. Is that your view? And by the way, are you personally "a different sort of animal"? If not, would you like to try some of the stuff I teach or do you think it is BS? Trust me, it doesn't bother me if someone thinks what I teach is BS. What bothers me is people forming opinions without checking trying it out first, which, incidentally, is quite commomn.
Didn't mean to imply that your stuff is BS, don't think that at all. Love your site and have learned a lot, although some of your answers border on answering the time with how the watch is built. However I view that as more me than you. Have also heard you give a clinic, learned a lot but same thing at points overly technical. That's what I ment about tour players, any neuroscience stuff and they will shut you off, at least that's what I have seen.
My original point still stands, Watson's effort should have been treated as just that, a great effort that will probably never be duplicated in golf or any other other sport. Talk of if he knew more about neuroscience he would have done better is riduculous and has no place in talking of that great effort. There is no way of never knowing that.
Touche. Point well taken. No one really wants to think the sort of stuff I teach as "neuroscience" -- just "instinctive" with real meat on it explains it in a way that ought to appeal to any competitive golfer sick of waiting on his swing teacher to help fix a putting problem that has been persisting for years, or waiting for his caddie's latest secret tip of the pros to kick into high gear in a permanent way, or fearing going backwards far more than pursuing improvement to become a real world-beater while risking the status quo and all it's money just keeping a card.
And yes, Watson's effort deserves high praise, and ought not to be denigrated with claims of something he's not skillful about. Nonetheless, if the discussion is a level-headed assessment of Watson's putting, it's fair game to say he ought somewhere along his career learned enough to avoid bad putting. The interesting point is what veteran top pros do NOT ever learn. For example, Tom Kite writes in his book "How to Play Consistent Golf" that he does not believe anyone can possibly teach how to read a putt. I personally have watched Loren Roberts play exactly the same course six times in a row in exactly the same weather and same playing conditions and green speed and go three days with ever improving putting performance to take the lead and then go the final three days with ever decreasing putting performance to drop out of the top 30 by tournament's end. What's up with that?
This being a putting forum, the public performance of golfers paid by the public huge purses week after week are fair game for comment as to their putting skills or breakdowns of skills, in an effort to get a good handle on what they really know. Respect for historical nearly-won, yes, but not the sort that stifles discussion and learning.
Tom Watson crouched over a seven-foot putt on Sunningdale's 18th green on Sunday and made it. "That was more like it," he muttered on his way to the recorders' hut. But his prize was to be merely a share of eighth place in the Senior Open, five adrift of winner Loren Roberts.
By Oliver Brown
Published: 8:01PM BST 26 Jul 2009
When he had been confronted with the same knee-trembling distance to claim the Open proper seven days before, his sureness of touch had vanished. As many a club hacker would readily testify, any idiot can sink a putt the second time around.
The pity was that Watson, no idiot when it comes to the vagaries of putting, purported to have worked out the problem in his stroke. "I figured it out: it's a case of breaking my wrists off the ball, that was my malady," he said. "Here I tried to keep firm and make sure the putter did not go inside the line."
That is all fine and dandy, Tom, but it would have been nice if you had shown such clarity of thought the previous Sunday. With the benefit of his discovery, he was asked to spool back to that critical eight-footer at Turnberry. "I think I would have made a better effort," he conceded, with a grimace.
In a ludicrous piece of scheduling, Watson moves on this week to his third classified 'major' championship in three weeks, the US Seniors Open at Crooked Stick, Indiana. But he leaves behind a fortnight of indelible memories.
The sight of around 100 young autograph-hunters clamouring for his signature outside the clubhouse was one he found "heartwarming".
He explained: "It's amazing what a second-placed finish will do. On the one hand, nothing substitutes for winning, but on the other hand, last week, it was magical for a while. It was a special moment in my life that I'll cherish and take with me. It means as much as some of the wins at this point in my career, it sure does."
Watson regretted, though, that he did not make a better fist of reclaiming the trophy he had won in three of the past six years, dismissing the state of his putting in the Senior event as "pitiful".
This shows me that Tom Watson did not have it "figured out" before Turnberry, and also did not have it "figured out" before Sunningdale either. What's wrong with this picture: One of the most experienced players in golf history is still struggling to figure out cause and effect in the putting stroke? My conclusion is simply that these guys could use some sure-footed help that they have never succeeded yet in running across.
The facts are Watson choked on that putt. Under massive stress, strain ... he lost control of his arms, hands, putter handle and the screwgie mallet putter head overwhelmed his meandering stroke effort and pushed the ball to the right ... badly!!!
Maybe it's the ravages of aging that finally defeated ol' Tom .. but what we saw was a classic collapse under pressure .. and no past performances can erase that blunder .. and that's what it was .. a blunder. Consoling ol' Tom is just the pc thing to do.
He didn't misread the putt .. he poked it right because he disintegrated. If he was more knowledgeable in his old age, he might have done better ... after all ... putting is stupid simple if you know what yer doing ... right, Geoff ..??!!!
Geoff says it well in a response under another post; your words are very harsh, where there are no need for such. Its the sort of thing that the internet allows, where someone can put on a Superman costume and be better that they are under the cover that the internet allows. Giving Watson a bravo for his efforts is not pc, just acknowledging a great effort. Looking for bad in that effort and focusing on that is silly and bully like.
If you're competing in golf, you're only as good as your last stroke/swing ... and if you fail to win because you muffed a simple stupid putt because you choked, well that's it ... yer a goat.
Consoling poor ol' Tom for a great effort and his past record is not how golf is played. If you believe Watson should be commended for his effort or record, he should retire from competitive golf ... instead of making himself look decrepit, particularly in the 3 playoff holes. He broke down physically and mentally before our eyes..!!!
Competitive golf can be cruel .. and you and others are only consoling Watson to placate your own feeelings of respect for the man. Fair enough, but that's not golf ... it's pc emotions.
Very Very easy to pass comment/ judgement sammy from within the armchair, about someone choking , given that the player in question has achieved more in golf than you could probably do even in your own dreamworld.
So he broke down in the playoff - so what - thats life, things happen
Lee Westwood went for a birdie at the last - 3 putted and never made the playoff
i wonder if YOU would have hit any single fairway on any day , any green in regulation or made any putt of note, or even made par on a single hole in the same conditions in such a championship
Your knees would have been knocking so much in any of those situations your teeth and eye balls would probably fall out
so the answer would be a resounding NO
enter the open qualifying next yr and show everyone how its done !
I must say this has generated more comment than I thought and I should probably leave it but... you comment that he missed one stupid little easy 8 foot putt (might have changed slightly, but the gist is there) is absurd. Any putt to win a major is not easy no matter how long and your theme in your posts is something that I have not seen repeated ANYWHERE either in printed media, internet or TV, so you either have keen insight or your a jerk (sorry to the board for the language).
With kindest respect, enough, please. This personalization of comments back and forth is the hallmark of a crappy forum, which this one is not, I hope. Agreed? Yes, the problem is the provocative tone of comments spurring reactions, so I suppose I have to start intervening more decisively when the general discourse proceeds from 'tough substantive comments" to somewhat unnecessary emphasis if not histrionics. A bit more self-policing along this line would be appreciated so the forum has little or no suppression of expression.