Top 100 Most Popular Golf Instructors

A list with a twist! The crew at recently came up with a novel way to rank golf instructors by using advanced Google analytics to analyze over 600 coaches to see which of them were most sought after by the golfing public. Which teachers are being watched and read online more than any other?

Mark Crossfield

Mark Crossfield

Here are the Top 50 from the list:

43rd Josh Zander, James Sieckmann, Jeff Ritter, Maggie Noel, Pia Nilsson, Mike Malaska, Bill Harmon, Gary Gilchrist

38th Suzy Whaley, Grant Waite, Claude Harmon III, Ben Doyle, Mark Blackburn

35th Mac O'Grady, Darrell Klassen, Mike Adams

30th Stan Utley, Brian Manzella, Pete Cowen, Chuck Cook, Zach Allen, 

25th Bob Toski, Kelvin Miyahira, Meredith Kirk, Jim Hardy, Bobby Clampett

21st Andrew Rice, Peter Kostis, Wayne Defrancesco, Manuel De La Torre

18th Doug Tewell, Dave Stockton, Martin Chuck

16th Monte Scheinblum, Todd Graves

12th Dave Pelz, Michael Breed, Mike Bender, Jimmy Ballard

9th Jim McLean, Martin Hall, Shawn Clement

8th Todd Anderson

7th David Leadbetter

6th Paul Wilson

5th Chris Como

3rd Hank Haney, Sean Foley

2nd Butch Harmon

1st Mark Crossfield

(Article and full list HERE)

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods

An interesting list that is bound to raise a few eyebrows. A few points to note:

  • All the teachers in the Top 5, except Mark Crossfield, have at some point coached Tiger Woods.
  • Faculty from  Revolution Golf are nicely represented with Sean Foley (3rd), Jim McLean (9th), Martin Chuck (18th) and yours truly (21st).
  • Both Berkeley Hall teachers were in the Top 100 with Krista Dunton coming in 82nd.

I was honored to be recognized by you, the golfing public, and I am fully committed to upgrade the quality of the information I share with you on a daily basis. My philosophy is this - I want to communicate the most accurate information available in a manner that is easily understood by all golfers.

Thanks for reading and for your support!

Sean Foley Golfer Stats

Here are some interesting stats gathered from regarding Sean Foley's top students. The moral of the story appears to be - it's not easy to make great golfers better! It'll be interesting to see how Tiger's statistics change over the next few years.

(Please note, this information has been compiled by a golf professional other than myself)

PARKER MCLACHLIN                            
In 2008 McLachlin won on tour and did not work with Foley, 2009-2010 with Foley              
      2008 Tour Rank   2009 Tour Rank   2010 Tour Rank          
Driving Distance   286yds 105th   279yds 157th   269yds 191st          
Driving Accuracy   58% 157th   54% 173rd   54% 180th          
Greens in Regulation   62.50% 159th   58% 182nd   53% 194th          
Total Driving   176th 176th   184th 184th   193rd 193rd          
Ball Striking   178th 178th   183rd 183rd   193rd 193rd          
Proximity to Hole   36ft  154th   39ft 182nd   41ft 194th          
HUNTER MAHAN                             
Mahan did not work with Foley in 2008 during the PGA Tour season; started in the 2009 season      
      2008 Tour Rank   2009 Tour Rank   2010 Tour Rank        
Driving Distance   290yds 75th   297yds 28th   291yds 56th          
Driving Accuracy   66% 62nd   65% 74th   68% 34th          
Greens in Regulation   69% 7th   68% 19th   68% 33rd          
Total Driving    23rd 23rd   7th 7th   2nd 2nd          
Ball Striking   8th 8th   4th 4th   11th 11th          
Proximity to Hole   34ft  48th   34ft 55th   36ft 142nd          
SEAN O'HAIR                             
Sean began working with Foley at the Canadian Open in 2008.                  
      2007 Tour Rank   2008 Tour Rank   2009 Tour Rank   2010 Tour Rank    
Driving Distance   296yds 34th   291yds 69th   293yds 46th   288yds 84th    
Driving Accuracy   64% 79th   60% 138th   61% 123rd   64% 74th    
Greens in Regulation   67% 23rd   64.40% 113th   67% 27th   67% 59th    
Total Driving   8th 8th   112th 112th   66th 66th   51st 51st    
Ball Striking   9th 9th   111th 111th   42nd 42nd   48th 48th    
Proximity to Hole   35ft 68th   34ft 48th   34ft 55th   35ft 109th    
JUSTIN ROSE                             
Justin began working with Foley mid 2009                        
He currently ranks 6th in total putting 2010; 2009 ranked 143rd and 2008 ranked 186th. He works with Dave Stockton on putting,  
      2007 Tour Rank   2008 Tour Rank   2009 Tour Rank   2010 Tour Rank    
Driving Distance   288yds 96th   286yds 103rd   288yds 90th   286yds 104th    
Driving Accuracy   63.90% 95th   64% 90th   64.8 79th   66% 57th    
Greens in Regulation   65.70% 58th   61% 170th   66% 83rd   66% 88th    
Total Driving   89th 89th   197th 197th   66th 66th   58th 58th    
Ball Striking    63rd 63rd   197th 197th   71st 71st   70th 70th    
Proximity to Hole   34ft 33rd   34ft 60th   35ft 92nd   33ft 26th    
STEPHEN AMES                             
Began with Foley in November 2006                        
      2003 Tour Rank   2006 Tour Rank   2007 Tour Rank   2008 Tour Rank    
Driving Distance   285yds 99th   289yds 88th   282yds 154th   283yds 133rd    
Driving Accuracy   66% 109th   62% 101st   67% 47th   62.70% 103rd    
Greens in Regulation   68% 34th   66% 58th   64% 86th   65% 96th    
Total Driving   125th 125th   87th 87th   107th 107th   160th 160th    
Ball Striking   82nd 82nd   68th 68th   94th 94th   134th 134th    
Proximity to Hole   33ft 21st   34ft 44th   34ft 49th   32ft 6th    
      2009 Tour Rank   2010 Tour Rank                
      287yds 94th   282yds 138th                
      65% 73rd   66% 57th                
      67% 30th   67% 66th                
      62nd 62nd   107th 107th                
      40th 40th   84th 84th                
      35ft 77th   35ft 100th                

To read more on Sean Foley and Tiger Woods click HERE

Tiger Woods and Sean Foley

Here is an excellent article that I came across that explains a little more about Sean Foley and his relationship with Tiger Woods and Stack and Tilt's Bennett and Plummer:

(Robert Lusetich/Fox Sports)

Sean Foley has "no interest" in getting Tiger Woods to swing as he did in 2000, when the world No. 1 had arguably the greatest year in the history of golf.

"That was how he learned to swing, and he had great success with it but it was penal on the body and dependent on timing," said Foley, who's working with Woods this week at the Deutsche Bank tournament outside of Boston. "It was pretty looking, but it just wasn't the most efficient way to swing."

Woods won four straight majors from the middle of 2000 to April, 2001, but it came at a cost.

The way he snapped his left leg on the downswing, Foley and Woods agree, caused serious damage to the knee, which had to be reconstructed in 2008.

"This is nothing against Butch (Harmon, who was Woods' coach at the time) but trying to go back to that would be a huge mistake," Foley said. "Plus, he can't rotate like he did when he was an elastic kid. He's nearly 35, he doesn't have that body anymore."

Instead, Foley has Woods more centerd over the ball throughout his swing, putting less stress on his body and, judging by the jump in fairways and greens hit last week at The Barclays, leading to improved ball-striking.

Woods has stopped shy of anointing Foley as his new coach, but on Thursday he again spoke glowingly of how much better he was playing since starting to work with the 35-year-old Canadian three weeks ago.

"I'm hitting the ball much better, hence I have more confidence," Woods said. "I'm driving the ball much straighter, hitting the ball a little bit farther, especially with my irons, and those are all positive signs.

"It's just a matter of, as I said, making it a little bit more natural, and that's just reps."

Although Woods has been careful not to criticize the unorthodox teaching methods of his previous coach, Hank Haney -- he made a point last week to note that they won six majors together -- Foley isn't as diplomatic.

"Let's be honest about this, it's not like he was flushing it with Hank," Foley said. "I think he hasn't been happy with how he's hit it for a very long time."

Indeed, Foley has spent much of their time on the range together ridding Woods of what he calls "counter-intuitive moves introduced in order to offset something else that didn't need to be there."

What Foley, who is enjoying the challenge of taking on golf's most recognizable name, has in common with Haney is that they both quickly became aware that Woods is a lightning rod.

Foley's teaching philosophy wasn't of particular interest to anyone outside the small world of golf swing nerds until he started working with Woods.

Now, he's at the center of a whisper campaign that accuses him of stealing his ideas from two colleagues, Andy Plummer and Mike Bennett.

Plummer and Bennett developed a system of hitting a golf ball called Stack and Tilt, which calls for players to keep their weight on their front leg throughout the swing.

Though hailed as revolutionary, it was met with derisive condemnation by the teaching establishment. Nonetheless, several players who switched to Stack and Tilt won on the PGA Tour, giving the method legitimacy.

Foley admits that he enjoyed discussing the intricacies of the swing with Plummer and Bennett, whom he likes and respects, but ultimately, he credits them with "maybe 5 percent" of the inspiration behind his own, very similar, swing ideas.

"Andy and Mike are very bright guys, but how much of what they teach is Mac O'Grady?" Foley said of golf's Bobby Fisher, a tortured genius who's spent years breaking down the secrets of golf.

"And how much did they take from (Sam) Snead and (Ben) Hogan? And how much of it is taken from (Isaac) Newton?"

Foley says his swing ideas were developed over 15 years. He said he learned when still a teenager trying to copy the swing of Curtis Strange -- who swayed off the ball on his backswing -- that keeping the weight more centred worked better.

He then studied the swings of great players in history and noticed they didn't make dramatic weight shifts away from the ball either.

"Mike and Andy aren't reinventing the wheel," Foley said. "Like me, they watched old school players hit it good and realized there was something to what they were doing, but they didn't invent the 1950 golf move."

The most obvious difference between Stack and Tilt and Foley is that all the players taught by Plummer and Bennett swing very much alike.

Foley's three highest-profile students (before Woods), Sean O'Hair, Hunter Mahan and Justin Rose, don't swing anything alike.

"Stack and Tilt is one method of swinging," Foley said. "If it's such a great system, then why are people coming for a 'watered-down version' from me?"

Foley finds it amusing to hear that he's being derided as the "flavor of the month" on the Tour practice range.

"If I'm flavor of the month then I've been flavor of the month for ten years," he said. "I'm doing what I was supposed to do, I really believe that.

"There's a sense that this was what I was meant to do, and here I am. But this is not fixing world hunger, this is getting people who are already very good to hit a golf ball better.

"I suppose my point is that I'm not a guru, and I'm not some guy who (BS'd) his way to the top. I'm just who I am."

Very interesting!

To learn more about better ball striking visit

To see how Sean Foley's other students have fared click HERE

The 2010 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits

Here are a few of my thoughts after witnessing the PGA Championship:

  • Martin Kaymer played like a champion and he thoroughly deserved the title. Don't forget the up and down on the 72nd hole he had, not to mention the stunning two he made at 17 in the playoff. I love to see talented, hard working youngsters breaking through. Well done Martin, Louis and Graeme!
  • You would think the PGA of America could have one of their 28,000 members to follow the final group so as to avoid what happened on the 72nd hole. I do not blame anybody for the incident and it is certainly Dustin Johnson's responsibility to know where he is playing from, but let's have a little foresight here....

  • Whistling Straits has more bunkers than all the courses in Africa (not a true statement, but it just might!) and it needs to get pushed off the edge of Wisconsin and into the lake! In fact while they're at it they can push another future PGA site, The Ocean Course at Kiawah into the ocean too. The last time I checked golf was meant to be fun and you couldn't pay me enough to play those two courses in particular. They are both horrible!

  • How about this picture posted at of some kids building sand castles in a bunker! How many majors will this ever happen at? I guess that's what happens when you have 1000 too many bunkers.

  • Poor Nick Watney - what started as such a promising day turned into a demoralizing experience. I hope he can come back from this.
  • Dustin Johnson is a tough kid and I believe his 72nd hole nightmare will only steel his attitude towards greater heights. I firmly believe he will come back better than ever from this.
  • I like the way Bubba played the playoff, but he simply must opt to miss long on the final hole versus a shot that has the potential to be short - especially since Kaymer had a poor lie in the rough.
  • For all the focus on Tiger I don't believe he seems to be swinging any better YET. Every time I saw him on day 4 he finished with his right shoulder high from the clubhead being trapped behind him and seemed as wild as ever. I do think his change to Sean Foley is an excellent choice and he will get better under his guidance. And no Sean Foley is not a Stack and Tilter, just an instructor who understands that all swings are unique unto the individual and everything in the swing should be directed around impact.

  • A little insider info is that Tiger called up Foley right after he and Hank parted ways and asked Foley to drop all his other students (notably Mahan and O'Hair) and start teaching only him. Foley said, "Thanks, but no thanks!"
  • I'm sure it's just me, but the PGA Championship is really starting to feel like the fifth major - and there are only four! It just does not appeal to me in the unique manner each of the other three majors do. Anybody up for starting a petition for only three majors?