By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today
OXFORD – A wiry, senior golfer made his way onto the tee and stared down the wide fairway laid out in front of him. At the proper moment, he unfurled a smooth, fluid swing and sent the ball well past every one of his younger playing partners.
Glennon Bazzle will be 71 in nine days, but his golf swing was as fresh and uncomplicated as any of the best ball strikers on tour. It’s the product of a lifetime of study – not only of the swing, but the mechanics that go into it.
He regularly sent his drives 235-240 yards in Monday’s stroke play round of the Masters Games of Alabama at Cider Ridge Golf Course, an outcome much younger players would envy. He says there’s no reason recreation players his age can’t be swing as smoothly.
“What I know is no one can swing like anyone else and that’s where the problem is: Most people are trying to do like somebody else,” he said. “That’s why instructors run into a whole lot of problems, because they want to go by the book and if you’re not doing it this way then the student feels as though they are failing and they lose interest, and that’s not going to work.
“Most people want to hit a golf ball, they don’t want to swing a golf club. When I realized it’s a swing and not a hit, then that’s what I do.”
Chances are you haven’t heard of Bazzle, but some of the biggest names in the game have. His theories on the swing grew out of his days as a master masseur at some of the most prestigious hotel resorts and country clubs in the country. It was through that experience he discovered a correlation between improper swing mechanics and the injuries he was seeing on his table.
In time he wrote a best-selling book – Anatomy of the Perfect Golf Swing. Oddly enough, it started out as a coloring book for children, but now has been printed in four languages and is on the shelves of some of the most famous personalities – teachers, pros and players — in the game.
Steve Akers, a starter at Cider Ridge, recognized Bazzle and regaled him with a story about buying a book from the author personally at Highland Park. “It had some good stuff in it,” he said.
Some believers didn’t have to read the book to know the New Orleans native was on to something.
“We were playing in a tournament one day,” Bazzle said. “I’m taking a practice swing – it wasn’t even my turn – and this guy was sitting on a cart about two groups behind me, he jumps up and says, ‘Oh man, that’s what I’ve been looking for. That’s what I want.’ He knew it when he saw it.”
Now, the younger guys he plays with believe he’s taking advantage of them playing a forward tee. On Monday he shot 85 to finish second in his age division.
“They tell me you can’t play up there; they want me to go back to the blues or the whites,” Bazzle says with a laugh. “I tell them when you get old enough you can come up here with me.”