David vs. Goliath on the lesson tee

 There seems to be a teachng philosophy battle brewing that sounds like David vs. Goliath. On one side, you have Hank Haney, recognized as one of the game’s top teachers who worked for years with the then No. 1 golfer in the world, Tiger Woods. On the other side, it’s not Sean Foley, who now teaches Woods and did have an earlier exchange with Haney. Instead, it’s a relatively unknown Texas teacher Lance McWilliams, known in these parts as the Zoom Boom Guy.

While sitting in Hooters recently with McWilliams, he explained to me how simple the golf swing could be. The man definitely has a simple approach.  He pointed out that golf is currently the only sport that we learn fundamentals first, and then motion. He believes that golf should be taught 180 degrees different than the way it is currently being taught–where golfers are taught motion first and then fundamentals. After talking to him and seeing how simple his approach is, I can’t say that I disagree. 

When I got home and read that Haney said that golf was just a hard game with a difficult learning curve in the announcement about him signing an endorsement with TaylorMade, I picked up the phone and called McWilliams, who had just read the same thing. He was salivating on the other end of the phone. I asked him one little question and his answer might change the way golf is taught from this point on. Why is Haney saying that it is so hard?

McWilliams pointed out he thought Haney was trying to do exactly what he was saying during our meeting, teach a perfect swing rather than the proper motion.  “It is the attempt to learn perfect first that is making the learning of the game so difficult,” McWilliams said.

“Bobby Jones had an over the top move. Ben Hogan said that only three or four shots a round would come off as he had planned.  If these two greats were not able to accomplish perfection, why in world would we attempt to teach someone the swing under the limitations of perfect?”

Who is McWilliams to challenge Haney?  He is someone that has a grasp of the golf swing and an ability to simplify it like few I have met before.  Where did he get this knowledge?  McWilliams has spent the last 15 years studying the “greats” of the game and going to the range to study the “not so greats.”

What he has discovered is that the biggest difference between a great, a good and a bad golfer is how much lag they have and where they release their lag.

 “As you know in life, sometimes it is easier to see the answer when you’re not part of the problem,” McWilliams added.

When I pointed out that Hank had also said there’s not going to be some new way to teach the game of golf that’s all of a sudden going to make it that much easier,

McWilliams yelled out “Hank is wrong,” loud enough that I am sure I could have heard it even if we were not on the phone.

He then said, “I might agree with him 100%, if we continue to teach golf fundamentals first nothing will change.  What would happen if we did a 180 in teaching styles and taught the proper motion first?

“As a child we didn’t learn to run a hundred yard dash first. Heck, we didn’t even learn to walk first.  What we learned first was not to fall down.  We did that through trial and error with a bunch of failures along the way.  Then we learned to walk, then run.  Once we were running some coach came along and showed us the proper technique.” 

While admitting that Haney probably knew much more about golf and how to play the game, McWilliams believes he doesn’t have to take a back seat to anyone when it comes to making learning the golf swing much easier with his 15 Minute Golf system and his Zoom Boom training aid, doing exactly what Haney said can not be done.

“The biggest difference between a pro golfer and the weekend duffer is the quality of the swing,” McWilliams said.  “The fastest way to improve your game is to improve your swing.  The fastest way to improve your swing is to learn how to release the club.

“YES, there is a new way of learning the golf swing and it is easy.

“I have developed a system that based on teaching motion first.  The Zoom Boom www.zoomboomgolf.com is a counter balanced training aide that emulates the feel of what a golf swing should feel like and helps the golfer learn the proper motion.  The results are truly amazing.  One of the coolest benefits is that golfers get to discover what works for them and what doesn’t along the way.”

While I certainly hold Haney in high regard and think he has helped a lot of students and shared his knowledge with fellow teachers, I now wonder if McWilliams’ system might be a better answer for many golfers, especially the weekend golfer and those who do not have a lot of time to spend on the driving range.

I could feel the winds of change that day and thought that the proverbial torch just might be switching hands.

Go to www.zoomboomgolf.com to see more about McWilliams’ system and the training aid, which doubles as a great warm up tool, or give him a call at 817 368-1000.

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