Legendary Golf Instruction
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Best Selling Author, Speaker,
Legendary Golf... A New Beginning
I am on a mission...
A mission to bring to the golf world, the swing insights and swing feelings involved with Ben Hogan and his golf swing.
John Schlee spent 5 years with Mr. Hogan from 1969-74 and Mr. Hogan instructed him on every facet of the golf swing he was working on since he published "The Modern Fundamentals of Golf" in 1957.
I, Tom Bertrand, spent 7 years with Mr. Schlee from 1985-91 and Mr. Schlee taught me everything Mr. Hogan taught him.
Hogan didn't want to share his knowledge...
Schlee couldn't share the knowledge while Mr. Hogan was alive...
I am now ready to share that knowledge...
Before we get to explaining The Legendary Golf System, I want to answer a few questions you may have.
Why am I bringing to light Ben Hogan’s mastery of striking a golf ball?
Simply put... Hogan didn’t want to and nobody else truly has. Actually, I had been waiting to see if someone would explain, in detail, Ben’s entire discoveries about the golf swing after his passing. but with the addition of two new Hogan books in 2004, and neither one about instructional insight, I decided it was time to gather my notes and go to work revealing what Hogan knew about the golf swing, up until the early 70’s.
I’m sure Ben Hogan learned even more about the mental and physical aspects of swinging a golf club in the years following, but who knows what else he would have given the world had Golf Digest only ponied up back in 1985, for Ben Hogan to do a “tell all” article.
I also realize that John Schlee wasn’t the only tour player Ben helped with their golf game (Ben wouldn’t work with anyone who wasn’t totally committed), but maybe John was the only player he fully explained the entire workings of the swing.
Hogan believed there are 3 classes of individuals who wish to learn how to play golf:1) The player willing to work, take the proper instruction, and carry out the advice given him by a teaching professional, 2) The player who is fairly good , but won’t do the necessary work to improve, and 3)The weekend trick player, who comes out to the practice tee to pick up a few fast tricks so that he can play at least passable golf on that particular Saturday afternoon. Hogan stated that he honestly was disinterested in the the second two. Ben carried a secret torch of understanding for so many years and handed it to John, and John in turn, eventually left it with me. Ben and John’s influence and understanding of the golf swing need to be passed on and that’s my mission until the time comes when I must find someone else to carry on.
So, I’m picking up where they both left off. It is my turn.
Even though his book, Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf, is still one of the leading sellers in instructional golf, instructors and teachers the world over are compromising their way around many of his proven fundamentals. There are too many inadequate explanations for what Hogan said and what Hogan did.
Ben didn’t want to share all his secrets but now I want everyone to enjoy the fruits of Ben’s labor. He gave his heart and soul to John Schlee and John handed everything down to me.
What’s so different about my Ben Hogan teachings?
I am a unique descendant in the Ben Hogan lineage. I was not only handed down swing mechanics but his very thoughts and ideas about a variety of aspects related to how we play the game of golf.
Ben Hogan was an individual who liked few people in his younger days, but if you were one of the lucky ones, you knew it. John Schlee was one of those few. John said Ben enjoyed their time together because John wasn’t out to exploit the man or his discoveries. Ben was always cautious with tour players because he didn’t want or need their approval. . If he helped someone to understand all his discovered secrets he felt they would profit from it in book form or even later in teaching form.
If they were looking for his help he often felt it was only for their selfish ambition.
”I’ll be damned if I’m going to give them the golf swing on a silver platter without them sweating on the practice tee, searching for the proper movements, like I did.”
Most teachers or swing coaches in this day and age look for the golden egg so they can hatch a successful tour pro. They in turn will benefit from their relationship with this pro by receiving national recognition and huge sums from private lessons or golf schools touting there remarkable abilities to transform anyone’s swing who wants to pay out.
Ben didn’t want any part of that and John said that Ben wrote the books so people would stop asking him the same questions over and over again. Instead he could reply, “Read the books, I didn’t put anything in there that’s baloney.”
He decided he could better mold and shape golf clubs that would do exactly what he wanted them to do than try and shape human beings who have a will of their own.
If Ben didn’t like teaching tour players because it was no benefit to him, why did he spend the time with Schlee? He genuinely liked him and John could putt. They enjoyed each others company and John truly wanted to learn. John said Hogan never asked him about his putting but when they went out to play, John said he could feel Hogan watching intently when John was on the greens. How good of a putter was John? He said he documented the years of 1973 and 1974 with only one 3-putt. He had extremely good touch around the greens for a man over 6 feet tall.
John said the “clubhouse chats” he had with Hogan involved five principles to developing a better mind set for golf.
1. The first principle is to be your own best friend and not your worst enemy. If you hit a bad shot forgive and forget. Remember not to dwell on past misfortunes because you will have plenty of opportunities on the golf course to hit better shots.
2. The second principle is to be courageous and bold. Have the courage to try and succeed, not to settle for failure on the golf course.
3. The third principle is to follow procedures for understanding and consistent shot making.
4. The fourth principle is to relax the body to allow it to function to the best of its ability.
5. The fifth and final principle is to hit every shot to a target, even on the practice range. You can not consistently gauge how you are doing unless you know where you are at the present time.
These principles help to shape your golf game in any developmental stage.
Hogan believed that concentration was something that was a developed skill. The ability to concentrate on the golf course is a direct result of your ability to concentrate on the practice tee. Hogan went off to practice in his special little areas at Shady Oaks, not because he became distracted with people around him, but because people would interfere with his practice of concentration. He needed the solitude to learn how to better concentrate. Hogan believed in using his procedure on the practice tee exactly as he would on the golf course and he began building familiarity by engraining the movements with procedural repetitions. A perfect segway .........into The Legendary Golf System
Inside Legendary Golf
I have combined the essentials of Hogan’s swing secrets and key points from Maximum Golf, into what I call The Legendary Golf System. I consider it a complete and final summation of all the key elements of Hogan’s golf swing, arranged in a simple format that the average golfer can understand, use and enjoy.
I’ve worked to make the Legendary Golf System very easy to learn. It is based on a unique and highly effective method of practicing Hogan’s fundamentals by using slow swing motions indifferent phases of the golf swing. Martial artists know it is essential to practice their moves in precise, deliberate movements on a regular basis. With consistent training, their moves flow automatically in competition where there is no time to think, only act and react at flash speed.
That training is what we’re looking for in developing a legendary golf swing, but where do we begin?
Ben Hogan was a firm believer in training the lower body before you perfect the upper body motions. Let’s investigate one of his comments about the left side and the left foot . Ben Hogan stated in his book, Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf, “ The left leg breaks resiliently to the left, and the bulk of the weight rides forward to the left side of the left foot, the leg bows out toward the target.”
It is very important to allow the weight, on the downswing, to be transferred to the outside of the left foot. Many golfers do not allow the left foot to roll properly. The weight gets transferred to the left side, but once it gets to the left foot, the left knee begins to straighten and the torso begins to raise up instead of continued rotation. Problems are hitting the ball thin at first, then the mind tries to fix the problem by releasing early with the hands and many begin to hit the ball fat.
Developing proper footwork is essential to a repeating golf swing and the only true way is with slow swing motions so your body can identify positions and movements. I now invite each and every one of you to join with me on an educational journey that will give you solid understanding of how the proper golf swing works. We will tackle how to develop a proper lower body movement, establish a powerful coil, load the right elbow, unload through the impact zone, and come to a complete and balanced finish. The Legendary Golf System will teach you how to swing the golf club the Ben Hogan way. Not partially Hogan, but completely Hogan.