Padraig Harrington is the master of the Happy Gilmore swing. There’s no one better at it on the planet.
However, the three-time major champion doesn’t just use the swing as a range trick to catch some gawking eyes or in the PGA Championship long-drive contest. He actually uses it, in conjunction with a band around his thighs, to help a swing flaw.
“If I hit a bad shot, my right shoulder stops. It stops because of a mental error but it stops all the same,” Harrington said Saturday. “When I do a Happy Gilmore it doesn’t stop. So I’m trying to correct a mental error with a physical thing. It just means that I don’t have to think too much.”
Harrington is seeking out his first PGA Tour win since the 2008 PGA Championship, his second consecutive major and third in a 14-month span. However, after those wins, the Irishman went on a quixotic quest in search of an even better swing. It’s led to a tumble down the world ranking. He now sits at 297th in the world.
Perhaps if he had simply adopted the swing of Adam Sandler’s iconic character, he never would have fallen so far.
“If I could swing like Happy Gilmore, I’d be very happy,” Harrington said. “It’s technically much better for me.”