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The Fringe: Tom Watson DVD Review

Tom Watson is like the E.F. Hutton of golf. When he speaks, people listen. Or at least they should.

After all, the dude nearly won the British Open at the age of 59, and he just made the cut at the brutal 2010 U.S. Open in Pebble Beach, which sent numerous young guns like Rory McIlroy packing for the weekend. ‘Nuff said.

Well, now Watson is speaking like never before in his new “Lessons of A Lifetime” instructional DVD set, which spans two discs and nearly three hours of rock-solid advice on everything from playing uphill bunker shots to hitting with hybrids.

How often do you get to spend time with a golfing legend who is sharing the tips and tricks that make his game tick? Exactly. So listen up…

Under The Hood
Watson says, “It’s very important that golfers—whether they are beginners or have played for 50 years—learn and understand the fundamentals. These are the building blocks every golfer needs to have in order to play up to their potential but, more importantly, to have fun.”

-Two disc DVD set totaling two hours and 43 minutes
-Included booklet features 44 lessons
-A portion of the proceeds from all sales will be contributed to the Bruce Edwards Foundation for ALS Research.

Why It Rocks
Who couldn’t watch Watson’s miracle chip on the 17th hole at Pebble Beach again and again…and again? Well, happily, here is that highlight, leading off the second disc, after which Watson shares exactly what he did on the shot that essentially clinched the 1982 U.S. Open title.

Not surprisingly, the ensuing segments on chipping are brilliant, with practical tips clearly explained in Watson’s homespun cadence. Each segment—such as basic chip shot, chipping out of heavy rough, chipping out of uneven lies, etc.—wraps with a review of the fundamentals discussed in that segment, making it easy to take notes on what you just watched. The same goes for all of the lessons in the set.

There’s a bit of a retro vibe to the presentation, right down to the occasional background disco music. But it’s retro in a good way. It’s called “Lessons of A Lifetime,” after all. It’s not about some newfangled swing fad. It’s about teaching the timeless fundamentals in a way that the average recreational golfer will be able to understand and apply.

The segments on putting are solid, but, as with all things related to putting, they should be viewed with an open mind. For example, Watson, like many top instructors and professionals, says to get your eyes directly over the line of the putt. The conundrum is that other top instructors and professionals say that your eyes should be slightly inside the line. Ahh, such is the wonderful world of putting.

At $49, this DVD set is not cheap, but it’s worth the investment if you really want to apply yourself and consume the nearly three hours of content. By comparison, Phil Mickelson’s DVD set carries the same price tag for just 105 minutes of content.

The Final Word
Tom Watson’s “Lessons of A Lifetime” is an immediate instructional classic, offering timeless insights that will raise your game.

About Sean Weir

Sean Weir is the founder and editor of PutterZone.com, and the author of Putter Perfection, the definitive guide to putter fitting. Profile: Google+

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