Swing Sequence: Harris English
March 19, 2014
Keeping it smooth, and still averaging 299.8 yardsYou're looking at the swing of one of the game's emerging stars. At 24, Harris English already has two PGA Tour wins. And he started this season making eight straight cuts. His coach, Mike Taylor, attributes English's success to improvements in his short game and the fact that he averages 4.94 birdies a round (third on tour).But not to be overlooked is his blend of power and accuracy off the tee. His preferred drive is slightly left to right on a low trajectory. "It's a controlled cut. I'm only swinging at 85 or 90 percent," says English, who stands 6-foot-3. Still, he averages just under 300 yards off the tee, which puts him in the top 25 on tour. And he hits three out of four greens in regulation (10th on tour), a testament to the quality of those drives.Taylor says it's all about rhythm. "He's very smooth. Amateurs can learn a lot from that. Swing at 80 miles per hour and hit it in the center of the face instead of 100 mph and off the toe."— Ron Kaspriske
PRE-SET THE BACKSWING"I set up with the ball in line with my left thigh," English says. "Any farther back, and I leave shots out to the right. I also sole the clubhead a few inches back from the ball. This helps me load up behind it."
THE FADE, PART 1"I tee the ball lower to launch it lower for control," he says. "I like to hit a slight fade, and rarely hit a draw with my driver." Says swing coach Mike Taylor: "He definitely does not like seeing his ball go left."
DON'T OVERDO IT"If I get long and loose at the top, I lose accuracy," English says. "I like when the club stays short of parallel." Adds Taylor, "He doesn't need his backswing to be any longer. He's making a full turn here."
START DOWN SMOOTH"Harris swings with great rhythm. When you do that, you control the club and the ball," Taylor says. Adds English: "I try not to rush down from the top. If my transition is fast, I'll tend to miss the fairway right."
THE FADE, PART 2"He plays a cut, but he doesn't make a big out-to-in swing," Taylor says. "He aims the face at the target and feels like he holds it there through impact as his hands swing to the left. That produces a little fade."
FINISH WITH A TURN"The body doesn't have to turn fast, but it does have to keep turning," Taylor says. "Harris' chest is facing well left of the target at the finish. You know he stayed smooth because he's totally in balance."