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Michael Vanmeerbeek, long term technical coach to Nicolas Colsaerts, offers his in depth, Nicolas Colsaerts swing anaysis
Michael Vanmeerbeek, long term technical coach to Nicolas Colsaerts, offers his in depth, Nicolas Colsaerts swing analysis. Nicolas and I have worked together since he was eight years old and we focus a lot on what I call the ‘engine’, that is finding the best power source to hit it far. We try to make as little effort as possible to get the biggest possible return, the biggest transmission of energy into the ball. Nicolas can carry the ball around 275 metres with his driver (around 302 yards). And depending on what happens afterwards, it can go very far.
Nicolas has a strong grip, and that is a big feature of his game because it allows him to have what I call a ‘triple lag’ in the swing. Most players have one lag as they begin the downswing, but most lose a little bit of that lag and energy after the transition. Nicolas is actually able to increase it halfway down when he hits the long ones – so he lags it a first time and a second time.
Then, because of the strong grip, he has a wrist action that keeps the lag a little bit longer than most people. When he’s finely tuned and he’s got those three lags spot on, it goes quite a long way with a seemingly effortless action.
We try to have the least amount of energy returning into the body. You’ve got big differences between the pros that hit it long and those that don’t. The guys who don’t hit it very long – they’re very good golfers – but they have more energy going back to them through the impact zone. There’s a certain point when Nicolas’ body stops moving just before impact. Every time you move through the zone of impact you get energy going back into the body. We move before and after, but never through the impact zone. That gives you the whipping through of the club, and that delivers genuine speed.
Nicolas’ accuracy comes from the way we’ve worked ever since he was young. He practises hitting it high and low and shaping it so he has a good sense of swing path and clubhead speed that’s inherent. That has given him a sense of swing plane, clubface position and everything that fits in with the traditional positions.
In his current role, Neil is responsible for testing drivers and golf balls. Having been a part of the Golf Monthly team for over 15 years and playing off a handicap of 3, he has the experience to compare performance between models, brands and generations. For 2022 he thinks the main trend in drivers is: "In a word, consistency. Whilst all the brands are talking about ball speed (and the new drivers are certainly long), my biggest finding has been how much more consistent the ball flights are. Mishits don't seem to be causing the same level of drop-off or increase in the spin numbers. This means that more shots seem to be flying the way you want them to!" As far as golf balls are concerned the biggest development is in the, "three piece, non-Tour, urethane-covered section. For regular golfers, these models offer superb performance at both ends of the bag without denting your wallet quite as much as the premium Tour-played options."
Originally working with the best coaches in the UK to produce instruction content, he is now the brand's Digital Editor and covers everything from Tour player interviews to gear reviews. In his time at Golf Monthly, he has covered equipment launches that date back well over a decade. He clearly remembers the launch of the Callaway and Nike square drivers as well as the white TaylorMade driver families, such as the RocketBallz! If you take a look at the Golf Monthly YouTube channel, you'll see his equipment videos dating back over a decade! He has also conducted 'What's In The Bag' interviews with many of the game's best players like Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm. Over the years, Neil has tested a vast array of products in each category and at drastically different price-points.
Neil is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade Stealth Plus Fairway Wood: Titleist TSi2 Hybrid: Titleist TS3 Irons (4-9): Mizuno JPX 919 Forged Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 46˚, 50˚, 54˚, 60˚ Putter: Odyssey Triple Track Ten Ball: Titleist Pro V1X
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