Todd Hamilton Pro Golfer, Swing Sequence (Video)
Todd Hamilton Pro Golfer, Swing Sequence (Video)

Definitely the peak of Todd Hamilton’s career so far is going to be his 2004 open championship victory. Now it’s not only the way he won that major I want to talk to you about but also the conditions he won it and the shots that he played to win that tournament. He's always played a bit of a fade Hamilton, he always hits the ball left to right and I think the thing you could learn from that with your own game is, as long as there is a consistent fade then it’s a sharp shape that you are happy with, aiming down the left side then letting the ball move back in, is okay, as long as you understand the fade finishes on target.

Let's not try and justify the fact that you have a big slice that finishes in the right hand trees and you're just going to say well an open champion played with a fade, so I'm going to win down the left hand side and slice this thing back onto the follow up. That is not what really prescribing, we are talking about a five or ten yard left to right shape and it was Hamilton’s stock shot through most of his career. He was quite happy to aim towards the bunkers down the left side and just let the ball come back into the fair way. So if you’ve got a genuine fade and you are comfortable with it, you can keep playing that stop shot.

The other thing I want to discuss with you is the way Hamilton won that open championship 2004 without really chipping the ball, particularly well. He didn’t take the lob wedge and fly higher in the air like you see Save and Phil Michaels and then Garcia doing. What he did when he played most of his chip shots with his hybrid club. Hybrid club sat that time weren’t all that popular, a few players were starting to introduce them into their bags but Hamilton really had the idea that playing that open golf course very dry, very flat, very firm running, he could adapt his normal chipping technique and adapt the club he was using, and he did it to set this wonderful effect, 20 30 yards off the green, you would often see him pull out his hybrid club.

Some players would go, two options, they would go lob wedge play it very high land it next to the flag and spin it, or some would put it, get it on the floor rolling nicely. Hamilton kind of played the second approach, you get it on the floor rolling it nicely, but just with a bit of loft so it would clearly the fringe in front of him, clear the grass in front of him and then get down and release.

So I've got my five hybrid club here I'm going to show you how he would play that shot. Playing it very slightly ahead of centre, so we are not descending down onto the back of the ball too much, we play it slightly ahead of centre. We grip down nicely on the golf club for a bit of control, and we also lift the club up quite a lot. So we don’t set it down too much like a normal hybrid, we set it up quite high, we change the line angle a little bit, almost like you would do with a putter. So we get a little bit nearer to the golf ball, feet stand like a putter, hand grip is like a putter down on the grip and we get the club sitting a little bit our its toe side, and then is pretty much a putting action, there isn’t a great deal of leg action or body movements in essence, rocking the shoulders backwards and forward.

If we need a little bit more power to hit the longer one, we can just initiate a small wrist hinge or wrist break in the back swing. But it's not much; it's nudging it backwards and forward getting the ball down in the green and getting it scuffling up to the flag at the back. The one thing I'd really want you to appreciate when you're playing this Todd Hamilton hybrid pitch is you look for where you want the ball to land, not where you want the ball to finish. If you look at where you want the ball to finish, the brain gets a bit confused by that and it hits it hard, so it lands up where it should have finished, but obviously with this club, it will scoop right over the back of the green. So I want you to pick a spot on the fringe at the front of the green, land the ball there and get the thing rolling up quite nicely.

Almost imagine if you had the ball in your hand, how I would roll it and think about landing it down and then scuttling it forward. For a 20 yard, 30 yard little bump pin run with a hybrid, I'm probably only looking a couple of feet in front of me, land it a couple of feet in front and then scuttle it forwards. So there we go. Narrow stance, down on the grip, close to the ball, little bump forwards, land it a couple of feet in front of me and run it nicely all the way up to the back of the green.

The one thing you could learn from Todd Hamilton, allow the ball to move left or right if that's your stop shot if you are confident and don’t be afraid of adapting your clubs to the condition of the golf course.

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2013-07-08

Definitely the peak of Todd Hamilton’s career so far is going to be his 2004 open championship victory. Now it’s not only the way he won that major I want to talk to you about but also the conditions he won it and the shots that he played to win that tournament. He's always played a bit of a fade Hamilton, he always hits the ball left to right and I think the thing you could learn from that with your own game is, as long as there is a consistent fade then it’s a sharp shape that you are happy with, aiming down the left side then letting the ball move back in, is okay, as long as you understand the fade finishes on target.

Let's not try and justify the fact that you have a big slice that finishes in the right hand trees and you're just going to say well an open champion played with a fade, so I'm going to win down the left hand side and slice this thing back onto the follow up. That is not what really prescribing, we are talking about a five or ten yard left to right shape and it was Hamilton’s stock shot through most of his career. He was quite happy to aim towards the bunkers down the left side and just let the ball come back into the fair way. So if you’ve got a genuine fade and you are comfortable with it, you can keep playing that stop shot.

The other thing I want to discuss with you is the way Hamilton won that open championship 2004 without really chipping the ball, particularly well. He didn’t take the lob wedge and fly higher in the air like you see Save and Phil Michaels and then Garcia doing. What he did when he played most of his chip shots with his hybrid club. Hybrid club sat that time weren’t all that popular, a few players were starting to introduce them into their bags but Hamilton really had the idea that playing that open golf course very dry, very flat, very firm running, he could adapt his normal chipping technique and adapt the club he was using, and he did it to set this wonderful effect, 20 30 yards off the green, you would often see him pull out his hybrid club.

Some players would go, two options, they would go lob wedge play it very high land it next to the flag and spin it, or some would put it, get it on the floor rolling nicely. Hamilton kind of played the second approach, you get it on the floor rolling it nicely, but just with a bit of loft so it would clearly the fringe in front of him, clear the grass in front of him and then get down and release.

So I've got my five hybrid club here I'm going to show you how he would play that shot. Playing it very slightly ahead of centre, so we are not descending down onto the back of the ball too much, we play it slightly ahead of centre. We grip down nicely on the golf club for a bit of control, and we also lift the club up quite a lot. So we don’t set it down too much like a normal hybrid, we set it up quite high, we change the line angle a little bit, almost like you would do with a putter. So we get a little bit nearer to the golf ball, feet stand like a putter, hand grip is like a putter down on the grip and we get the club sitting a little bit our its toe side, and then is pretty much a putting action, there isn’t a great deal of leg action or body movements in essence, rocking the shoulders backwards and forward.

If we need a little bit more power to hit the longer one, we can just initiate a small wrist hinge or wrist break in the back swing. But it's not much; it's nudging it backwards and forward getting the ball down in the green and getting it scuffling up to the flag at the back. The one thing I'd really want you to appreciate when you're playing this Todd Hamilton hybrid pitch is you look for where you want the ball to land, not where you want the ball to finish. If you look at where you want the ball to finish, the brain gets a bit confused by that and it hits it hard, so it lands up where it should have finished, but obviously with this club, it will scoop right over the back of the green. So I want you to pick a spot on the fringe at the front of the green, land the ball there and get the thing rolling up quite nicely.

Almost imagine if you had the ball in your hand, how I would roll it and think about landing it down and then scuttling it forward. For a 20 yard, 30 yard little bump pin run with a hybrid, I'm probably only looking a couple of feet in front of me, land it a couple of feet in front and then scuttle it forwards. So there we go. Narrow stance, down on the grip, close to the ball, little bump forwards, land it a couple of feet in front of me and run it nicely all the way up to the back of the green.

The one thing you could learn from Todd Hamilton, allow the ball to move left or right if that's your stop shot if you are confident and don’t be afraid of adapting your clubs to the condition of the golf course.