"The Timeless Swing" by Tom Watson and Nick Seitz
In the realm of golf swing self-improvement, there are literally thousands of different books, magazines, and other literature that have been published over the years to help John Q. Public with his swing. Most of these publications have one or two “memorable” golf tips that the reader will focus on throughout their quest to fix a slice, hook, or other swing maladies on the driving range. Should such a publication be authored by a Hall of Fame player, it seems more attention is paid to what is inscribed on the book’s pages just as one would expect from work by an “authoritative source”. In his latest effort The Timeless Swing, golfing legend Tom Watson throws his hat in the ring of golfing greatness letting the general public in on his golf swing secrets.Perhaps the most fundamentally sound golf swing on an annual basis (and well into his sixties), Watson’s new book details his set-up, swing thoughts, numerous drills and more in a high-gloss, full-color publication authored with the assistance of golf writer Nick Seitz. Over his extraordinary career, Watson has managed to not only replicate his success on a year-to-year basis, but he has done so by maintain a “timeless swing” by following the instruction and guidance he learned as a young man from his father and later in his career from the likes of Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, collaborations with Jack Nicklaus, and other masters of the game. Timeless reads as how a personal golf lesson with Watson himself would probably go on any driving range. The reader is introduced to the bare fundamentals of the game right from the start, including chapters on the three basic grip types, understanding the idea of a swing plane, and establishing the bottom of one’s swing arc for solid iron contact. From there, Watson works from the ground up and touches on almost every aspect of one’s game while offering his own personal swing thoughts and tips he has perfected over the years.
Perhaps the most ingenious aspect of Timeless is the inclusion of Microsoft Meta Tags for each chapter. These tags, or barcodes, allow any reader with a smartphone to scan the icon and immediately receive a brief instructional video demonstration on his or her phone. In each video, Watson himself demonstrates each respective tip in the current chapter to better assist the reader with understanding a new method or practice drill. This is truly an innovative and incredibly helpful tool that is sure to find its way into future golf instruction publications in the very near future.
In terms of overall content, however, Timeless seems to fall slightly on the wayside in terms of offering the reader “new” information in the area of golf instruction. Most of what Watson addresses in Timeless can be found in numerous previous magazines and/or books by other authors in one form or another. Tips such as holding a golf club across one’s shoulders to stretch and increase swing rotation is certainly not a “new” tip by any means and has been taught on driving ranges across the globe for years. Furthermore, the actual amount of authored content is minimal, thus leaving more room for large photographs and diagrams of a swing tip as opposed to a narrative. However, this is perhaps the whole underlying point of Timeless: these tried and true methods are what Watson himself has used in his career, proving that if it works for him it can work for you.
All-in-all, The Timeless Swing is a good reference tool for seasoned golfers who are looking for a swing tips or fundamental refreshers by one of the game’s all-time greats. Newer students to the game may also benefit greatly from the information presented in the book, especially in the areas of establishing an appropriate grip or practicing one of the many drills in the book’s later pages. If you are looking for a complete swing overhaul or an “Ah ha!” moment, however, this instructional book is probably not for you.
The Timeless Swing by Tom Watson and Nick Seitz is published by Atria as a hardcover publication (224 pages). It can be purchased at all major booksellers or online at Amazon.com.