My name is Reed Howard. I have have been working with Todd for over a year and now feel close enough to my end result to talk about the swing and the process I’ve gone through without leading people down an incorrect path. I am a professional golfer and ever since I became a true student of the game I became obsessed with obtaining a single plane swing.
While all of you know that the foundation of the single plane fundamentals are based on Moe Norman’s swing, Moe Norman is not the only golfer in history to be able to have the same angle of attack at impact as you have at address. The others are Ben Hogan, Lee Trevino, Joe Durant, young Gary Player and while its done in a unique way even Sergio Garcia. It is a rare quality that very few have, but all of the players including Moe Norman that have a single plane swing have one very important similarity; they are masters of ball striking and they dominate ball striking statistics.
Through studying swings I saw this rare similarity between all of these great ball strikers and decided that if I was going to make it as a professional golfer at the highest level, I would need to acquire this advantage. So I did what many great golfers have done in the past; I experimented without a clue of what I was doing. I was first trying to emulate the great Ben Hogan. I worked very hard and was able to get aspects similar but that key position, through impact, wasn’t even close. I tried to emulate aspects of Lee Trevino. Failed. And of course as a final try I attempted to emulate Moe Norman. While I was able to get the club to return to the original plane I was severely delofting the club and couldn’t hit it properly. I literally gave up on the idea I had spent 4 years working on and returned working with a great coach on the conventional golf swing.
While I did play better I wasn’t about to make the PGA tour and I still knew that the single plane swing had led to the most dominant ball strikers in the world. One day I saw a video of Todd Graves’s golf swing and his swing had all the key aspects that I had been trying to acquire for 4 years.
In my history, every person who had these aspects had them naturally without learning to change there impact positions. Eventually I called Todd and “interrogated” him on his swing and the different results he had gotten. Eventually I was on a plane to OKC. I learned within 1 hour why my attempts in the past had failed and what I needed to do in order to achieve a functional single plane swing. While I felt good about what I needed to do, executing change is a difficult and sometimes creative task. Todd had changed himself into a single plane swing golfer. While we are a similar build and size my swing was different from his swing which means that even though we understood the destination, the journey to a functional single plane swing was different for me than it was for him. Certain things I may have picked up quickly and others felt more foreign than swinging a baseball bat.
It has been a 1 1/2 years and I have finally gotten to a functional single plane swing. My tournaments of late have been good. I have made about half of my cuts. My ball striking goes in streaks of being very dominant and then something gets off and I’ll struggle. Over the last few months I have learned how to hold the more dominant stretches for longer and believe that I have or will very shortly achieve a place where I hardly ever hit a bad shot. It will be either decent or great depending on my judgment of distance, wind, and strike of the ball.
If I do get there, which I believe I am almost there, it will be difficult for anyone to beat me over 18 holes let alone 72. I just wanted to write this to explain my story and introduce myself to everybody. Todd has given me permission to tell my story and give updates as I go through tournaments and to work my way to the PGA tour. I hope this little entry wasn’t to boring for anybody. I am playing a little 1 day event in Chino, CA on Thursday which I will be prepped for and have a few 3 day tournaments coming up over the coming weeks. I will be making periodic updates with the things I am working on, with hopefully some good results.
All the best,