“You’re Not A Dinosaur Batting the Ball With Your Ear”

I decided to do a quick clip on my own in response to questions about the pivot and on the lack of precision hitting experienced by some viewers. If you don’t take the proper measurements at address and don’t keep the head steady, problems with precision may creep in. Actual clips from Mike are to come but this will provide you with some critical foundation.

Hope that helps!

Copyright llenroc enterprises LLC November 3, 2010

50 thoughts on ““You’re Not A Dinosaur Batting the Ball With Your Ear”

  1. Hi Chuck,

    Hope to be the first poster of 2018 in wishing you a very Happy New Year. Been about 7 years now since this post / video was uploaded – so let’s keep it alive and strong.

    Have just found your site after having had a lesson with a French lady professional golfer who is quite well versed on the Mike Austin swing via Dan Shauger’s teaching. Great resource to say the least – have seen pretty much all videos 2 / 3 times, and would like to very much see / experience any additional footage you may have (should that be the case).

    During your lessons – did you ever clock your swing speed with a driver / 6iron? Not that it’s important, but more so as a basis of comparison from a before and after perspective, as I also subscribe to the notion that a freewheeling release / pendulum hand action pre and post impact does positively impact acceleration.

    I am also interested in your ambitions as an Amateur player – eye on Club Champs? Top level Amateur competitions? — Just trying to get to know your “player” side a little more. Grooving this motion as well as you have, would like to get a sense of how this motion helped you play under the gun / under pressure.

    I oscillate between 4-7hdcp year-round and play a fairly lengthy course at approx. 7000yds. Without applying the Austinology principles / motion, I swing between 107-110mph with a driver. Perhaps there are a few extra mph in there with the motion, however additional speed / distance would be a welcome addition to a free flowing motion – which is what I am truly seeking.

    In this rather long post, would like to say thanks for making this awesome resource. So great that you had a chance to work with the man himself during the last / finishing stretch of his teaching career. If you ever find yourself in the Gulf (Dubai / Abu Dhabi) would happily host a game!


  2. He certainly emphasized it and the video’s of Mike Austin himself are limited.
    Perhaps it was a goal. Mike mentions on one of his swings that his head was shifting more than he wanted because he was long-driving.
    Mike also taught until he was 90. Perhaps he recognized the importance of the stationery head later in his teaching.
    To Mike’s credit he was always thinking of the swing and trying to improve on it.
    That’s my take on it.

  3. hi i am just starting out remodelling my swing ala Mike Austin method, your vid is a great description of the pivot with a stable head, i think im begining to understand that now as I am led to believe the compound pivot is at eh heat of the MA philosophy
    cheers Ian

  4. On some of the tapes of Mike Austin swinging, he actually says that for extra power he let’s his head move but otherwise would keep it still.

  5. Hello,

    I’ve been looking at all the Mike austin swing videos that I could find on youtube , as well as Mike dunaway videos. I did not find one where they actually keep their head still.

    Why would he teach something he is not actually doing ?

    Thanks for your take on it.


  6. Hey Chuck,
    Why would ones c7 fall to the left in the back swing? Close to the top of the back swing, my swing center moves left which really takes a toll on my swing.

  7. Chuck, Great video, I don’t know what your profession is but it should be something involving your voice!

  8. My apologies. I attempted once and thought I was successful. I have been traveling much but will try to remedy as soon as I return.

  9. Hi Chuck!:=)

    This videoclip is not possible to run from my pc.
    Can you pls try to remove and put it back?

    Very important to get this one correct.

    Thanks in advantage!

    Regards Staale, the Austin fan in Norway!

  10. Ron,
    I actually have a clip where Mike Austin and I were working on the tilt and then turning of the hips on the through swing.
    I commented that my toe of the back leg actually dragged to the front leg. He stated that it would do so. Bottom line is that he didn’t make a big deal of it, but I do think that it is an indication that you are making an aggressive tilt and then turn. I totally agree with your comment on the head movement. If I have a stable swing circle center then everything else goes smoothly and the toe drags.
    I really advocate doing pivots in front of your reflection, especially where there is some reference to show where you neck and head is positioned throughout the swing. Best, Chuck

  11. I have noticed that my right foot drags towards the left foot on full swing shots; I don’t do this intentionally and noticed this in videos of Mike.

    I noticed that when my right foot doesn’t drag towards the left on full swing shots, it is due to my head not having stayed steady.

    What was Mike Austin’s take on the right foot dragging towards the left at the end of the downswing?

  12. Merry Christmas Chuck~~ it will be wonderful ringing in the new year with your continued musings of Mike Austin. I especially loved this part on the pivot with you actually explaining it in person. You have a gift and we are all the beneficiaries. I will be very interested as you continue to evolve this site …. with the proper knowledge, we can all be winners .. it would be great if you could benefit as much as we. Thank you again and Happy New Year.


  13. Thank You for your follow-up. I had the chance to hit several balls with a eight iron today.
    The balance issue seemed to disappear with a slightly slower swing speed.
    The exciting thing is that there appeared to be distance increase.
    I will try to ingrain your instructions.
    Looking forward to learning more.
    Thanks again

  14. John,
    You are more than welcome. Glad to hear of your increased feel of speed. And note, we haven’t even added the hand action which creates the pendulum motion of the clubhead adding even more speed. Paying attention to the specifics of the pivot will pay dividends. it’s the foundation of the swing. In fact, once a student had it down, Mike Austin would have him/her hit balls with just the pivot, with the arms going for a ride with the motion and no hand action. Mike would later add the hands. On your question, you should be able to do it even in slow motion and maintain balance. On the down and through swing your right butt check will push down and at a 45 degrees angle towards the ball.
    At the same time your right knee and ankle flex. Your left hip shifts to the left, parallel to the target line. Your left shoulder will come up. Right shoulder down. Now the rotation forces come in. As you come toward the ball your right ankle raises (detaches from the ground) and the back/posterior part of the ankle will rotate out toward the target line. That detachment from the ground and rotational motion allows the whole right side to powerfully hit the ball. (If you have enough force the right foot will rotate out and might also drag toward your front foot.) At the end, virtually all of the weight is on the front foot and you can almost pick up your back foot. Do it in slow motion first. Hope this helps. Let me know. Best.

  15. Many thanks for your generous enlightenment of the MA swing.
    After some swings in my yard at home there is no doubt that my swing speed is much faster.
    I like the feel!
    I did find it hard to finish on the left foot, without my right foot being pulled forward to keep my balance.
    Is this a improper spine angle issue or is it necessary to swing less than full speed to maintain balance?

  16. Mike,
    You are more than welcome. That video appears to work from this end.
    Kindly let me know otherwise and I’ll be glad to investigate further.
    We are receiving tremendous interest in a dvd. I hope to put one together with everyone’s continued support.
    Thanks for your interest.

  17. Chuck – Thanks for sharing all of this great info. I’m unable to view the video of you on PivotLive3. Don’t know why it won’t run for me. I’m able to view all of the other videos you’ve posted.
    I too would be interested in seeing all of this put together and made available on a DVD.

  18. Thanks for the reply. “Arcs and circles” sounds just like what I’ve read of Mike. Looking forward to more good stuff to come.

  19. Hi Chuck,
    It was a beautiful day on the course.. scored average for me-74. lots of experimenting but with mostly good results. It is going to take some time to get use to the new address stance. I think for most of the day I was bending the right knee at address but maybe keeping my weight too much on the left and not getting the same effortless pivot I felt on the range. I worked on it after the round and got the feeling back by letting my weight get back to my right side a little more as I set up. Today, even though I felt insecure with such a new action, I was always suprised with the outcome- differences I have noticed so far are: better balance; good-looking shallow divots; higher ball flight with similar distance; less effort.
    I didn’t notice much difference in driver distance until I got on the range and started letting the right hand go again- the ball looked to be going a good bit farther than usual and higher.

  20. Very good. Thanks Chuck! I’m off to utilize my new action on the course! I’ll report my experiences for anyone interested.

  21. Rick,
    Thanks for your comments. Great to hear of your success. Despite all the discussion of Mike’s power, balance and tempo were keys to Austinology.
    Mike Austin taught that same leg position for even chips. He put a little more weight on his left side on smaller chips and pitch shots there was little weight shift. He also put more weight on the left side for punches. The one place where he did not use that address was on some uneven lies. Contrary to some popular approaches, Mike did not try to conform his body to the slope. Instead, he advocated utilizing the legs on uneven lies so that you get close to having an even lie. For example, on an uphill lie, Mike would flex his lead leg thereby leveling out his overall posture.
    Hope that helps! Best.

  22. Hi Chuck,

    Just wanted to say thanks for putting together all of your great information on the MA swing. I am an assistant golf professional who has always struggled with proper hip, leg movement. After stumbling onto and reviewing some of the MA basics I went out and hit half a bucket with the best balance and tempo I’ve ever felt! Really amazing how easy I could put what I just read an hour earlier into practice! It also seemed like I could throw my right hand as hard as possible with no problems just more power! In my ‘old’ swing I always felt like balance came and went easily and like you mentioned before you began with mike, my tempo was always getting too quick. I’m obviously very excited.
    One question: Did Mike teach the lead leg straight, back leg bent for all shots- ex. pitch shots.

    Thanks again. Rick

  23. David,
    Thanks for the email.
    I might focus on balance rather than a large shift of weight. Practice in front of that mirror and see the extent to which you can shift and turn with you head staying centered.
    Also, the majority of power comes from the free release of the hands which you should have little problem with.
    If you’d like to send a video so I can see what you are dealing with please feel free to do so at llenrocenterprisesllc@gmail.com

  24. Thanks tomba.
    Mike didn’t push the club outside the hands. The angle may be misleading or else we were working on something else and that gave it the look you describe.
    He wanted the clubhead to circle the body. The only line you had is at the set up which was relative to the target line. After that, the swing was arcs and circles. No lines.
    Mike did not, for instance, want the clubhead to go straight back (yet alone pushed out). The club face stayed squared to the points of the circle.
    Also, I do intend to go through the entire swing.

  25. Chuck,
    Love the website and appreciate the help you’re giving us. Been studying Mike’s swing awhile — he was the real deal. The ‘dinosaur’ video is great. We fans of Mike’s swing are convinced of the superiority of his mechanics, and want to replicate them, so the more explanations you give the better! Two quick q’s: On the driver vid from oblique angle, looks like the clubhead stays outside the hands on the backswing, almost like it’s ‘pushed’ out there. Is that so? And, will you do a vid taking us through the full swing with explanations as you go? Thanks again!

  26. Hey Chuck,
    Great website, love the MA swing theory but I have some physical limitations which may prevent me from pivoting, was wondering if you could offer some advice which may enable me to use the MA swing but perhaps not at it’s full potential. I have a muscular disease which affects my lower extremities, mostly my feet and ankles. I have very weak ankles, my left being the weaker of the two. The best way I can explain it is pretend you are walking on the outer edges of your feet (ankles turned outward) and try to swing a club, that’s what I’m working with lol. Any tips or ideas?

  27. Glad to hear of your improvement.
    Remember to practice the pivot in front of your reflection with a reference point behind your head.
    You can also use your shadow while practicing or playing.

  28. Yeah, lately I had been shifting my head back with my weight. Today I kept my head more in place while still shifting to my right foot. Definitely helped my ball striking today. Had much better contact with my irons. Thanks for the vid. I was doing the pivot like that earlier in the year and one of my play partners kept saying I was reverse pivoting a bit. I gotta’ stop listening to other people that aren’t familiar with this swing method.

  29. In a “reverse pivot” you wouldn’t be able to stand one legged on your trailing leg.
    In addition, your head would normally bob toward the target, although it would feel steady.

  30. Thx Chuck
    When you clarify a fundamental like this it gives me confidence when practicing. I like to know that Mike wasn’t just speaking casually about this aspect of the swing. It requires focus. Camera angle was perfect for me. Love to see the face on view . Love to see your full swing and address position from this angle also.
    Great Stuff

  31. Great explanation Chuck. Good to see your face finally too! 😛

    I just got back from REMAX…nearly 200 players and the only player even close to the Mike Austin pivot was Domenic Mazza. He’s actually kind of a little guy and looked like he was barely hitting 300…but he was hitting over 400! Talk about efficiency! Every other player was either turning their hips or locking them and trying to wind the upper spine against the lower.

  32. Nice video. Whenever I tried to keep my head still like that I always felt like I was reverse pivoting or at least what most people would call a reverse pivot. Even though I did have my weight on my right side instead of my left. What’s the difference? I’m still working “modern” swing tendencies and ideas out of my swing.

  33. I believe that the audio issue is cleared up. Kindly let me know if that is not the case.
    Thanks for your input.
    To meet the request of the multitude of varied viewer requests i hope to provide clips directly from lessons together with explanatory pieces.
    Unfortunately, there is an ever increasing amount of misinformation out there about what Mike Austin actually taught which is having a negative impact on learning curves.
    Mike Austin was very, very particular about building a proper foundation a major component of which was the foundation. “You don’t put a damn roof on before you have a proper foundation”, was one of Mike’s refrains.

  34. I have to agree with Steward, I couldnt hear it. But seemed to me a lot of talk …I’d rather prefer a short 10sec precise instruction incl. a “how to do it right” demonstration. But thats just my thoughts on that.
    Sorry for being to straight!

  35. My sincere apologies.
    Sorry about that. The recording on my web view is crystal clear.
    I will try to rectify it.

  36. recorded to low – i couldn’t hear it – after turning as many volume switches up as much as i could

  37. LOL. As you pointed out, Mike would be yelling, “arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis and lots of other ‘-itises”.
    Glad you enjoyed the video.

  38. well done Chuck, it will be a good vehicle to fill in the gaps and perhaps expand on a point made by Mike in the archival footage. Perhaps the camera a bit closer
    would be my only suggestion.

  39. Thanks, that was great. I needed the tune up. Google offered an add attached to your blog and the “perfect” address position that was going to lead to the Secret of the “Perfect Swing” showed a drawing with the golfer’s chin nearly on his chest and his spine above the shoulders with a pronounced curve in it. I can hear Mike yelling No! Ronnie No! You’ll get arthritis in your spine.

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