Hosung Choi – What a Swinger

Korean Hosung Choi a New Craze in the West With Unusual Swing

One of these days, I’m going to take a few hours to total up the refund I want from all the golf lessons I took back in yesteryear. I was assured that unless my swing was sculpted into this or that, I would never play well. I ended up with a swing that was somewhat better than average (meaning that it looked better than I played) and still didn’t play all that well. However, I kept the faith, and went through the years defending the perfection of Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson, for whom the perfect golf robot was even built – Iron Byron. My belief in the poetic, geometrically perfect swing was confirmed again and again, as I witnessed out-of-control shots on the course and television. Charles Barkley was proof positive that you can’t play good golf without a blue blood swing. And then, I saw Hosung Choi.

Hosung Choi swings a golf club the way I always intended to at the age of eight. That was before everyone tried to talk me out of it. Family members wouldn’t play with me unless I promised not to embarrass them – so, I complied. Choi won’t satisfy my condescending criticism of errant swings. I guess that he starts to take it back all right, and seems to be all lined up at impact.  However, in between and after the shot, he goes places never seen by a golfer. In the follow-through, he almost needs a spotter to avoid ending up in the pond.

Callaway Golf Preowned

From Korea, Hosung Choi is in his mid-forties. He didn’t play golf until his twenties. He spent a couple of decades plus as a fisherman, and lacks half a thumb from an “oops” while doing that. At some point, he worked for a golf course, and the employer wanted his people to play the game, so they would understand their clients’ experience on the course. He did, and despite no swing instruction, he was good at it. That’s the point. His swing rivals Charles Barkley’s in its ‘uniqueness,’ except that he’s won twice, once on the Japan Tour and the other in Korea. Now, he’s playing at Pebble Beach, and westerners are getting their first look at him. His ranking has moved up to 194, and it appears to be rising.

Here’s the explanation from the man with the swing. Choi is not a big guy, and needed to respond to today’s distance. So, he knocks the cover off the ball by not caring where his follow-through takes him. In Korea, he goes by the name of “Fisherman,” and his technique is called a “Fisherman Swing.” In the U.S., a bad swing is referred to as a “Caddie Swing.” Well, whatever you call it, he’s got one, and with a little more good play, it might land him in the Open at Caroustie. As the new rage among imperfect golfers (virtually all of us), just imagine what the TV ratings might do if Hosung Choi gets to play in the Open.

Responses on the comment portion of golf sites is stirring – “my new favorite golfer” seems to be a theme. Rory McIlroy isn’t convinced, calling the swing “too extreme.” He adds that a golf shot shouldn’t mean that much to you. That caught my attention. Why would a pro golfer who puts huge money on the line for every shot say a thing like that? Choi reminds us that his swing was a lot wilder in the old days, and that this version is by comparison, well-disciplined. To the gallery’s further delight, he even putts that way.

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I don’t know, Rory. I’m starting to think that Hosung Choi is going to be my new favorite golfer, too

 

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