Evolution is built upon the advancement of form. Form allows us to quantify something and compare it to what has gone before - to separate out the good and move it forward. I was taught by a concert pianist to perform from a relaxed, highly-disciplined state. The words he used and the ideas he presented were a refinement of many great minds and talents who had influenced him. I, in turn, molded the Dandy putter and putting methodology from scientific evidence and performance disciplines presented by evolved mentors, who continue to influence me. Several played golf. Bobby Jones was one of those people. An extremely evolved soul, who understood physics and kinesiology. We are fortunate to have witnessed his genious and that it was important to him to share some of his thoughts with us. I've underlined a few points to emphasize their importance.
"This is a Service Station. There's no greater purpose than service to others." from Way of the Peaceful Warrior.
"I want to see if I can help you."
"No man ever had golf so much under his thumb that he could be certain of hitting every shot perfectly. Even the best players make their share of mistakes. The only thing we can strive for is an understanding of the fundamentals of the swing, which will enable us to correct our faults when they make their appearance."
"You can't expect to play better unless you learn the fundamentals of the swing."
"If there is a watchword or slogan that a golfer should always remember is to avoid tension. His first position should be as natural and comfortable as he can possibly make it."
"In addressing the ball, the body is held fairly erect, and the arms hanging down naturally from the shoulders; not extended too much nor cramped in against the side of the body. The weight should be about evenly distributed on the balls of the two feet, the knees should be slightly bent, and the whole attitude should be one of a lightness, of which easy movement in any direction is possible."
"Relaxed muscles can move quickly and easily. Taught muscles can not. The golf swing requires quick muscular responses in order to produce a smooth flow of movement and to assure a perfect balance of the body even when the action becomes very rapid. It seems a little thing but it's a fact that the player's approach to the ball can assist him greatly in falling comfortably into a relaxed posture. Continued movement allows no time for the muscles to set."
"It's easier to continue a movement once begun than it is to make the beginning."
"The club must be swung back and not merely picked up by the hands and arms. And the thing, which makes it a swing, is a push backward by the left side and arm."
"Bill your trouble, like most average golfers, is that you don't use your body properly. You don't get enough power out of the muscles in your back. You try and turn your hips and body but it is plain that you don't quite understand how to convert the body turn into club head speed. Obviously Bill, the immediate cause of your trouble is the way in which you swing the club through, that is in the way you hit the ball. But it's useless to try and correct that until we're certain it is all right."
"The average golfer argues that the back-swing makes little difference because he does not hit the ball with his back-swing. But the answer is easy that he can't swing through correctly, unless his swing-back brings him into correct posture.
"Good form in golf means efficiency, the art or science of expending upon the ball all the energy of the swing without waste. In order to accomplish this ideal, it is necessary that every movement of the swing contributes its bit toward accelerating the club head. The swing can never be entirely efficient unless all parts are working together."
"The function of the back-swing is to wind up the mechanism to store up power and to do it in such a way that the transition from up-swing to down-swing can be accomplished smoothly without interruption. It is the business of the down-swing to use this stored up energy in the most effective way possible in turning it into a well-directed, well-timed blow."
"The critical part of the swing takes place in that fraction of a second during which the club and ball are in contact. If everything is all right then the shot will be good. The only reason we bother with form and the correct swing, is to find the best way of consistently bringing about the proper set of conditions at impact."
"By starting the downswing with the movement of the hips, and by dropping the right elbow back to the side of the body, the correct swing keeps the club well inside the line of play. This is the only position from which it is possible to swing through straight towards to the hole."
"What happens after the ball has been struck is merely the result of what has gone before."
"Consistency in golf depends directly upon form, an unsound swing may work well enough on occasion, but soundness of method is the only key to reliable performance."
"I have always thought that if a game was worth playing at all, it was worth making some effort to play it correctly."
"Allow the left wrist and arm to move in a forward line as the ball is struck. That I regard as the most necessary movement in the whole business of putting."
"I don't try to putt with my body, but I never try to keep my body still. I'd like it to be free so it can move if the stroke demands it. The whole idea, it seems to me, is to do the thing in the simplest and most natural way."
Walter J. Travis, the grand old man of golf remarked - after first seeing young Bobby Jones at Merion in his first major championship - that Jones "would never improve on his shot-making and his putting method was faulty. Jones changed his putting method after getting a verbal (somewhat pointed) putting lesson from Walter Travis in 1924. Travis told young Jones to visualize a tack stuck into the back of the ball and drive that tack straight through the ball at impact. From 1924 to 1930 Bobby Jones wrote the History Books!