La Quinta, Calif.
Am I crazy or what? Please don’t answer that.
Okay, here goes: Teaching professional Chris Walkey has invented a marvelous little swing aid that can help many golfers — skilled or not-so-skilled — and I am about to pronounce this simple device to be the most effective training aid in a very crowded marketplace.
His invention is called the Power Package. Ardent golfers immediately will notice the connection to Homer Kelley’s famous book, The Golfing Machine, because the brainy Kelley liberally used the term.
To practice with Walkey’s swing aid, golfers are advised to start with a short iron, then work their way up. The Power Package fits over the bottom of the grip. Then it is tightened so it doesn’t move or twist.
It includes two arms or appendages that stick up in the air. Each arm has a cup or receptacle attached to the end. The idea is to swing the club (begin with half swings) while keeping the forearms secured against the cups.
If swung properly, the Power Package virtually ensures that a golfer’s swing will remain on plane. This should lead to a square clubface at impact, which is one of the foundations of Walkey’s instructional method.
Walkey, known in Southern California as “kind of the quiet guy in the corner” (his words), has been teaching for 25 years but has never designed or even endorsed a swing aid.
People in this part of the world are paying attention to Walkey’s new creation because of his reputation as a very serious, very competent golf instructor. The Power Package represents his attempt to create a training aid that leaves each golfer with a particular feeling that can be replicated during the swing.
Sure, there’s more to it than that, but Walkey has tried (and succeeded, I believe) to simplify his beliefs about the golf swing.
Walkey taught for several years at the Jim McLean Golf School at PGA West. Now he is director of instruction at The Palms Golf Club here in La Quinta. The Palms and Walkey are a perfect combination, because both are utterly devoted to good golf.
The Palms, widely known for its emphasis on fast play, boasts about 50 golf professionals as dues-paying members. Many of the amateur members play regularly in tournaments. There are few clubs with this many excellent golfers.
Tom Pernice practiced with the Power Package, then raved that it helped him set his wrists more consistently than ever before. Armed with the feeling that was fostered by the Power Package, he promptly won the PowerShares QQQ Championship on the PGA Tour Champions.
At the PGA Merchandise Show (Jan. 24-28 in Orlando, Fla.) Pernice will appear at Walkey’s booth (# 3617).
There have been somewhat similar training aids in the past, but nothing that recreates the feeling of swinging powerfully with both the hands and arms in the right place. At least that’s my interpretation.
“i tried to build something that would help the masses swing the club better and understand the golf swing better,” Walkey said.
Mission accomplished. The Power Package sells for $79.99 (powerpackagegolf.com)
Jim Achenbach, Senior Golf Insider firstname.lastname@example.org