Golf's Heretic: Mo Norman
The Mad Heretic of Golf Moe Norman Preaches A Revolutionary Swing Technique Known As "Natural Golf"
From the Print Edition:
Demi Moore, Autumn 96
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While I enjoyed a few uplifting moments, particularly on the par-3s where I nailed several irons close to the pin, Fox and Imperial were Moe Norman Revisited. Over the course of this day and the next, their drives were invariably finding that holy ground known as the fairway.
In his own zone, Graves was even more exciting to watch. While Natural Golf's critics say the "hammer" move backswing is too abbreviated to generate maximum club head speed and results in a loss of distance, the five-foot-nine-inch, 160-pound Graves repeatedly put that argument to rest with 275-yard missiles.
Woefully struggling at times, I could only stare at his drives with envy and wonder if I would ever reach such nirvana. It didn't happen at this camp, for Natural Golf is not miracle-working. As with conventional teaching, Natural Golf demands at least a year's commitment and practice, practice, practice.
"Beginners really get it; we're programming guys coming to the game fresh," says Fox. "More experienced players will also dramatically improve. They just have to give it time, have the faith to buy the clubs and to work at it. There are no instant cures."
Also be prepared for sore muscles--and more than a few moments of skepticism. It's not easy switching faiths, experiencing golf's version of Catholics turning to Hinduism. Fortunately, the luxurious Registry with all its amenities will help smooth that transition.
And then there's Heaven. Late that first night, we visited this snappy new cigar emporium; an enormous walk-in humidor complements a warren of private rooms studded with case after case of $125-a-glass wines, microbrewed beers, caviar and chocolates. With so much to feast on, it was difficult to pay attention to a video explaining the science behind Natural Golf.
But as I sat there enjoying an Avo, I did catch one snippet, a reference to Ben Hogan calling Moe Norman's mammoth drives "an accident." Hogan would later recant, urging Moe "to keep hitting those accidents." He apparently realized that golfers would feel blessed to be so accident-prone.
(Natural Golf clinics are staged at The Registry and at various sites across the country with certified teachers. For further information, call 800/219-7307 or Peter Fox at The Registry, 800/891-3258.)
Florida-based writer Edward Kiersh writes frequently for Cigar Aficionado.
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