Views of the blossoming Azaleas at the Masters is a clear indication that the golf season is in full bloom. What a beautiful site. Golf course parking lots are filling and driving ranges are crawling with anxious golfers practicing their swings hoping to play a few good rounds this season.
I often find myself stopping to watch the flurry of activity and the varieties of golf swings, or the resemblance of what one might call a golf swing. If I watch too long, I usually walk away feeling a bit distressed that most of the people on the range, who care about hitting the ball better, will never know Moe Norman.
Why is this distressing? Because I know first hand how it feels to want to become better and how frustrating it can be. For those of you who don’t know much of my background, in 1991 after returning from the Asian Tour, I moved to Dallas Texas to develop my golf swing with Hank Haney for three years.
Those were a difficult three years. There were times where I thought I would make great progress in my golf swing. These times of great satisfaction were always followed by the defeat of how difficult it was to have a good golf swing.
It was during this time as I recall, in the back of my mind I kept hearing a voice that kept repeating; “there must be an easier way, there must be an easier way”.
I don’t know if you believe in providence, fate or synchronicity, but knowing my story would make it hard for you to deny the possibility. It was the moment I decided to look for an easier way when Moe Norman entered my consciousness. I was ready for Moe and when I was, he simplified my golf and my life.
Now, I won’t bore you with the story of meeting Moe or my time with him, that is not the purpose of my writing here. I am writing this for those who are ready to take their golf game in a new direction this year.
If you are frustrated as I was during my time with Hank Haney, I would like you to consider a few of my discoveries that I can only discuss now that I have the experience to reflect on my time with both the best teacher in the world (Hank Haney now teaches Tiger Woods) and the best ball-striker in the world.
Here are a few things that I now understand about Moe Norman’s golf swing.
1) You have to commit to learning his technique. There is no middle ground.
2) Take nothing he did for granted.
3) Understand that learning anything will take effort.
This is a priority for learning anything. You must be dedicated to the method and the teachers that are helping you learn. There is no partial commitment. In other words, you can’t “try” Moe Norman’s golf swing. If you do you will never experience the full benefit of it’s greatness.
Take nothing Moe did for granted
This was important for me to understand about Moe and his golf swing. When I practiced his golf swing I would make discoveries. I called these my “a-ha” moments. These were moments of awareness of a new feeling and they always matched what I saw in Moe. My practice became nothing more that my own self- discovery of Moe’s feelings.
Understand that learning anything takes effort
I knew that learning Moe’s golf swing would take effort. It took me approximately six months before I could actually play tournaments however, this was still just the beginning of my learning process. Luckily, I loved to hit golf balls and study my golf swing on video. I had learned this from my days with Hank Haney. The more I practiced, the more I understood.
I often get asked why no one on the PGA Tour swings like Moe Norman. Could it be the influence of the best teachers or the best players in the game still do not understand that there is an easier way? Do they care?
While I would like to see a professional golfer take advantage of Moe’s incredible technique, it doesn’t really matter to me anymore. What matters to me is what Moe’s golf swing did for my golf game. It matters to me what learning Moe’s swing can do for those heading to the driving range for the first time this season if they are ready to listen.
For those of you who are excited about a new golf year do me one favor. Ask yourself if you understand that there is an easier way. Ask yourself if you Know Moe.