The lessons I’ve learned And what you can learn from them COVER STORY INCONSISTENCY LEAVING IT IN BUNKERS 3-PUTTING TIGER WOODS Golf Digest Playing Editor, Pete McDaniel JIM MORIARTY When I joined the PGA Tour in 1996, I was a pretty good player and managed to win a couple of tournaments early on. But I knew I still had a lot to learn. That was fine with me. Part of the fun is building on your strengths, erasing your weak- nesses, learning new shots and improving your course man- agement and mental control. In the last four years, with my coach, Butch Harmon, I’ve worked long and hard to make myself a better golfer. I’ve learned a lot—on and off the course—and plan to keep learning. Here’s some of what I’ve learned, and what you might learn from my experience. More control off the tee: Don’t overswing When I turned pro, my swing was much looser, and I had a definite control problem. I could lose it both left and right off the tee. The reason I became so adept at hitting escape shots is that I occasionally hit it where no human ever had. Now my swing is much tighter, so I have fewer loose swings and wayward drives. The biggest adjustment I had to I make was to take a shorter back- swing. Notice in this photo that the club at the top of my backswing is short of parallel, while my left shoub der is under my chin—an indi- cation that I’ve still made a full shoulder turn but limited my wrist cock. I’ve sacrificed a few yards for more accuracy. Believe me, the game is a lot easier when your tee shots consistently find the short grass. The lesson for you: For more control, shorten your backswing.