Former Golf magazine editor Andrisani (The Tiger Woods Way, not reviewed) provides a no-frills, straightforward introduction to the golf phenom’s professional growth.
Ex–Green Beret Earl Woods had his son swinging a club at ten months and playing the Naval Golf Course at two. By age four, Tiger not only knew the proper setup and swing for the game but could use mental images to make his shots. His dad also taught him how to play “extreme golf”—handling “dirty” opponents who would distract him with noise or tricks. Tiger’s first coach outside the family, Southern California’s Rudy Duran, worked with him from ages four to ten, helping him with his balance and making certain that he had successes on the course, like his two Junior ten-and-under titles. His next coach, John Anselmo, developed further mental imagery to help his student. To encourage a rhythmic swing, for example, he had Tiger visualize a mother swinging a baby in her arms. Dr. Jay Brunza, a Navy psychologist, trained Tiger to use self-hypnosis in order to find a relaxed confidence during stressful competition. Tiger’s Buddhist mom, Tida, led him to a form of meditation called Shamatha, which depends on concentrated focus on some physical object (like a golf ball). Since they began working together in 1993, Butch Harman has coached Tiger to the pinnacle of the golf world. First, he adjusted Tiger’s stance, backswing, and hip rotation; then, he added the cutting-edge blend of mental preparation, videotape review, and strategically applied practice sessions that have helped Tiger sustain his success. The two final chapters show Tiger’s preparations for a big tournament and the specific techniques he uses for different shots, such as a Medium Iron Stop-Shot and a Rocket Fade.
As blandly informative as a technical manual.