The Ernest Jones Method – This is how I teach golf – Tom Good
Ernest Jones’s was one of Great Britain’s top young players. During World War I, Ernest lost one of his legs, ending his tournament career. He then turned his focus to teaching, becoming the most sought after teacher in golfing history. From 1924 to 1960, he taught in theUnited Statesas a Professional at Women’s National Golf Club on Long Island and then worked out of an indoor studio in Manhattan. It is well known that he gave over 3000 lessons a year and created over a dozen major championship winners in numerous club and regional champions. Ernest was honored when introduced into the world golf Hall of Fame and was voted “… top teachers of all time.” (Golf Magazine, Feb. 1998)
Ernest’s teaching genius was based on universal laws of science and simple logic. Galileo’s discovery of isochronisms of the pendulum laid the foundation. Leonardo da Vinci’s work on force was all Jones needed to put a true golf swing into place.
Galileo’s work teaches us: it takes the same time to complete a small arc as a large one, providing you use this same length of shaft. Accordingly they will have the same feel. Da Vinci said: “a blow is the son of motion, a grandson of force, whilst their mutual ancestor is weight.” Translation – a blow is striking a golf ball; the motion is a swinging motion; force is centrifugal force; and the weight is the clubhead.
Jones realized you couldn’t have a swing unless you have the motion of a swing in the clubhead. Furthermore you couldn’t dissect motion into parts and still have motion: therefore it is impossible to take a swing apart and still have a swing. The great Bobby Jones (no relation to Ernest) endorsed Ernest and said: “… we in the PGA picture tend to take a swing apart and divided it into parts, but we know you can’t teach it that way.” You see, a swing is one continuous to and fro motion which repeats between the same place. Watch the pendulum in a grandfather clock, or a child swinging in a park, and you’ll see a to and fro motion.
Ernest taught the feel of a true swinging motion, sensing it through the hands – that correct mechanics follow automatically. In his own words: “the hands are the medium which controls the swing, with body parts – arms, legs, shoulders and such – performing as admirable followers.” Today, golf instruction is poor at best, based on swing mechanics, rather than the feel of a true swing. All professionals play by feel, but that’s not how they teach! Some teach pure mechanics, while others combine mechanics and motion. Neither approach works effectively. “In the last 25 years the handicap of the average golfer has remained the same.” (National Golf Foundation) The Jones method must be taught in its pure form, because it is based on Universal Laws. These laws are absolute; you cannot change or make them better. To reiterate: you simply cannot change the feel or the laws that apply to a true swinging motion.
Chances are, if you don’t swing the clubhead, a body part or position will go wrong. If you correct the body part or position, you are correcting the symptom, not the disease – correcting the effect, not the cause. Gary Player stated: “for every fundamental in golf, I will show you a superstar, and I don’t use that word lightly, who doesn’t do it.” It is sad, but with the exception of my brother, Arnie Frankel, I have yet to meet a professional that teaches the one and only thing that counts in a golf swing:
THE MOTION IN THE CLUBHEAD AND THE FEEL OF A TRUE SWING.
Tour players do not understand a true swinging motion. It’s what every great golfer does but can explain. Ben Hogan has this to say: “I never know why I hit the ball well. I just know when I’m doing it. Top players have the motion because of the countless hours of practice they put in, but when they lose the feel, they often go into major slumps. Many times, world-class golfers are never heard of again! This is truly one of golf’s great tragedies.
Golfers at every level, are blaming themselves instead of instruction that is not up to par. A golfer must be given the correct key to unlock golf’s great mystery. “Golf’s One Motion” gives you that key and stops the insanity of constant contradiction, positions and mechanical quick fixes that are here today and gone tomorrow.
By producing a swinging motion with the clubhead you will have:
- Rhythm and timing
- Maximum acceleration at the bottom of the arc
- A repeating arc = Accuracy
- Centrifugal force = Distance
What else can a golfer want? But in order to swing, you must accept the simplicity of the swing and learn to practice it properly. Bobby Jones had it right when he said: “the one idea for a golfer to always keep in mind is that, when playing a shot, his only job is to swing the clubhead. If he does this, striking the ball will take care of itself.”
The Ernest Jones method produces a natural, easier way to swing – reducing physical and mental strain – you only have to think of one thing when you’re over a golf ball. Whether beginner or expert, you are guaranteed to benefit from this common sense approach. It’s been said, “common sense is not so common.” I pray this is not a true statement.
So go to it! SWING THE CLUBHEAD! Enjoy the greatest game the world has ever known – Ron Frankel, Director of the Frankel Golf Academy
Brought to you by Tom Good, PGA Class “A” Golf Professional and Instructor Teaching this method since 1972.