This was Gene Sarazen’s ‘secret’ for keeping his swing ‘young and healthy’ — and he used to do it every day
I fell down a pretty deep golf swing rabbit hole recently — something I do all too often — and on this occasion remerged with a 1965 annual edition of GOLF Magazine. “A guide to everything the golfer should know,” it sported on the cover, with an additional “24 pointers by golf’s big four.”
Sounded good enough for me!
As I began piecing through the pages, I came across an article by seven-time major winner: “The Squire” Gene Sarazen. 63 at the time of writing, Sarazen penned a two-page article sharing his advice for senior golfers looking to recapture their youth. It’s full of great stuff, but my favorite nugget comes at the very end of the article.
“I will let you in on a small secret,” Sarazen writes. “I do have one swing recipe for keeping your swing young and healthy that has, I think, been responsible for much of the success I’ve had in recent years.”
High praise! SO WHAT’S THE SECRET?!
“I swing a 22-ounce driver when I’m not playing,” Sarazan writes.
In case you were wondering, a 22-ounce driver is heavy, even in the days of persimmon and steel. Most amateurs swing drivers nowadays that weigh-in at about 310 grams, the equivalent of just over 10 ounces. So a 22-ounce driver is the equivalent of swinging two modern-day drivers. Take a few swings and you’ll see it’s not easy, but Sarazen used to swing that weight around every day, well into his 60s.
“I find this keeps my hands and wrists strung and in-tune,” Sarazen writes. “I don’t play nearly as much as I used to, but keeping the hands and golfing muscles in shape helps immensely in maintaining timing and clubhead feel. Not a day goes by that I don’t swing my heavy driver.”
Sarazen used a training club (if you’re looking for one I’d recommend the Orange Whip, a modern-day equivalent that weighs about 28 ounces), but he says if you don’t have one of those, you can use a sand wedge. Something with “plenty of head weight” will do the job, he says.
Just a few swings with a heavy club on the days you don’t play will keep your muscles strong and limber. A simple-enough formula that golfers of all ages should take on board, with The Squire’s blessing.
If you want to read the full article for yourself, I took a picture of it below.
To add more pop to your swing, get a driver fitting from the experts at our sister company, True Spec Golf.