If you look at the LPGA Tour’s lifetime victories leaderboard, you’ll notice one name at the top: Louise Suggs. From 1946 and 1962, she won 61 times, including 11 majors. She did it with one of the most fluid, powerful swings ever seen on the tour.
Suggs documented her techniques in a book titled “Par Golf for Women.” Ben Hogan wrote the forward, and in it divulged some great marks: “If I were to single out one woman in the world today as a model for any other woman aspiring to ideal golf form, it would be Miss Suggs,” he wrote.
I bought one of the first edition copies of the book on eBay and have been tearing through it at a breakneck pace. There’s a lot of gold in this book, but my favorite portion was on “playing the drive.”
“Remember this: the ills that throw a golf swing out of kilter develop in the course of the backswing,” she writes at one point. “If the backswing is faulty, it is impossible to hit the ball consistently straight and far. Any good results obtained under these circumstances are purely accidental.”
Suggs claims that one of these flaws is the way golfers turn on the backswing. Because of a “entirely wrong notion of what the head is supposed to do,” she adds, some golfers fail to produce a big, free turn on the backswing, which costs them power and consistency.
“They have been warned: ‘Keep your head down. Keep your gaze fixed on the target. Keep your head still.’ This leads them to keep it in a fixed position which is completely unnatural.”
Your head should TURN, not MOVE
Suggs writes that she encourages golfers to create the biggest backswing rotation possible while not shifting their heads too much from side to side. She also wants you to retain your sight on the ball on the backswing, but this might be difficult for golfers who aren’t flexible: “It is humanly impossible to turn your shoulders … and still keep your face pointed straight down at the ground. In doing this, you would disastrously restrict the backswing.”
To avoid this and yet obtain the benefits of a forceful turn, Suggs recommends turning your head away from the target on your backswing as you turn.
“It is true you must not move your head. You must not turn it because it is false. It helps you to understand the head in relation to the rest of the golf swing if you think of it as the hub around which revolves the spokes (which are in this case the arms),” she says.
It was a key to Suggs’ easy power, and one of those basic hints that can only be discovered by going back into the archives.
Original article posted on Golf