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Title: The Fundamentals of Hogan
Author: David Leadbetter
Author2: Lorne Rubenstein
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More than a half century after he began his professional career, Ben Hogan is still considered the purest striker of a golf ball in the history of the game. His was a swing honed to perfection, and teaching professionals agree that Hogan's technique is the perfect platform on which golfers of all skill levels can build a fundamental understanding of golf. Unfortunately, photographs of Hogan's full swing and detailed close-ups of his grip and positioning have never been available for analysis. Instructors from around the world have always begun with a serious handicap when explaining to their students how a man of average stature could generate exceptional power and control from tee to green.
Now, thanks to the newly discovered critical photography featured in this book, the mysteries of Ben Hogan's form are revealed.
One vital characteristic of David Leadbetter's teaching philosophy, which has made him the world's #1 teacher, is his ability to translate very difficult swing concepts into easy-to-understand language. When the lost photographs from Hogan's seminal instructional manual, Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf, were discovered by the Hogan estate, David Leadbetter was the immediate and perfect choice to craft the quintessential instruction book for today's golfer, based on the Hogan form. By combining his exceptional skills as a communicator and his encyclopedic knowledge of the mechanics of golf, Leadbetter uses these remarkable images of the master at work to demonstrate the basic techniques of golf.
The result is The Fundamentals of Hogan, the one book that all golfers who dream of breaking 80 need to have in their libraries. Golf's #1 professional instructor translates Ben Hogan's fundamentals for players of all skill levels
In the late 1950s, the great Ben Hogan consolidated his considerable knowledge of the golf swing into a small volume called Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf. Nearly half a century later, it remains the cornerstone of every intrepid hacker's instructional library, and one of the bestselling sports books of all time. But there was always something missing from its pages: photos. As marvelous as artist Anthony Ravielli's accompanying drawings of Hogan were, they weren't the same as seeing the Wee Icemon himself in action.
Surprise! Ravielli modeled those drawings on several rolls of film he took of Hogan, and those photos, recently discovered, are the heart of The Fundamentals of Hogan. For golfers, they are like finding a piece of the true cross; there has never been a more perfect swing than Bantam Ben's. If some of the pictures in Fundamentals are just explanatory poses--Hogan gripping the club, Hogan standing at address--and the majority of the swing sequences are actually not true sequences at all but, given the technology of the time, individually posed photos at appropriate intervals of the swing, no matter. They convey what they need to, providing a closer glimpse of the master's mastery.
Swing guru David Leadbetter tees up the accompanying text, analyzing Hogan's swing, parsing Hogan's swing theories, and adapting what Hogan knew to fit the rest of us. Leadbetter knows most of us can't possibly re-create the effortless power of Hogan's fluidity, but that doesn't mean we can't incorporate bits of Hogan's technique into our own herky-jerky hacks. Like Hogan, Leadbetter is obsessed with golf's mechanics, and while Hogan managed to breeze through Five Lessons with the help of the splendid writer Herbert Warren Wind, Leadbetter often gets mired in the kinds of technicalities that lead to the "paralysis by analysis" that plagues over-thinkers when they step up to the ball. Still, the team of Hogan and Leadbetter makes a twosome you can't help but learn from if you're willing to pay attention. --Jeff Silverman