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Old-time speed training

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hayes959 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 29 September 2008 at 9:39am

I am doing a re-read of a book about Bill Melhorn, professional golfer in the early 1900's.  Mr. Melhorn repeatedly instructed how the golfswing should be a nutural movement, much like walking, combing your hair, skipping a rock, or throwing a ball.  No muscle tension, "I like muscles and joints at ease in their movements."  "Be loose, not hard, don't harden one muscle."  ......"I understand you can chin yourself 50 to 100 times.  Quit it.  Push ups; I understand you can do as much as you want, Quit it.  Work your muscles, work your ligaments.  Keep them working the rest of your life, but loose.  Those muscles will harden, don't you try to harden them."  Those were the instructions given to Melhorn in 1918-19 by a trainer by the name of Major Waddell, who was  the trainer at West Point for 25 years and then LSU for 20 years.

Q.  What are some of the exercises you would tell people to do?

A.  Well, one, in exercising your legs-get on your back and put your hands under your rump and pump your legs the same as you would pump a bicycle.  Stay loose.  That's number one.  Now you can pump the arms out and back in front of you, staying as loose as possibel.  Or, you can swing your arms loosely like a windmill; one arm and then the other.  You can touch the floor, swing up and down, but don't keep your legs straight.  Let your knees bend.  YOu can swing your body from one side to the other with your arms raised and as loose as possible.  Now create a little speed with the actions.  Now swing your raised arms down between your legs.  Come back up and arch back over a little,then go down again.  Let your knees bend.  Go through your legs as far as you can. 

Mr. Melhorn was not a believer in movement restrictions, or big X-factor.  "  They say the upper part of the body has a twisting action, which they call torque.  That's when you begin to hurt yourself.  Now I agree your shoulders should turn as far as you can, but you don't do it with the shoulders, your hips should do it."  In his day the hips and shoulders turned 90*.  A quote from one of his students, who saw marked improvement after a lesson, "Why didn't anyone show me that before?  Everybody told me at my age, I couldn't turn as far.  The trouble is everybody tried to get me to turn from the waist on up, instead of from the hips on down."

Just thought I would share the ideas from a "bomber" from about 70-80 years ago. 

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Chuck Quinton View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chuck Quinton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2008 at 11:01am
While I agree to some degree with these statements, I strongly disagree with most of it. Completely different equipment, especially shafts in those days which didn't respond real well to quick and aggressive movements or heavy stress loading because the rebound rates weren't there. Torque is a GOOD thing for both controlling the length of the backswing and STRESSING the shaft which is also a good thing with today's equipment. Biomechanics experts can easily demonstrate that the proper loading and unloading of muscles is what creates maximum power and torque is a key component to this.
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hayes959 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hayes959 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2008 at 12:02pm
Not an endorsement, or necessarily in agreement.  Just offering up an interesting read from a bygone era.

Edited by hayes959 - 29 September 2008 at 12:03pm
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