Moe Norman's 
'Swing Thoughts':

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The World of Golf and Canada lost a special person with the passing of golfing great Moe Norman in 2004 at the age of 75.  Moe was a regular at the Canadian Open each year and would always give the golf pro's on the range an exhibition of his great ball striking skills.  I recall when I was at the Canadian Open a couple years ago Moe took Jonathan Byrd's X shafted driver (stiff as a telephone pole) and at the age of 73 striped 270 yard drives on a string to the awe of everyone present.  In the 1990's when Moe would hit shots for the top player's with Nick Price and Fred Couples standing by watching in awe and Moe chiming:  "Nope, never missed a fairway, never hit a bad shot".
Moe Norman's life was difficult and controversial.  Moe had a traumatic brain injury due to an accident as a child which was believed to have resulted in autism.  Many people feel that Moe was actually an Autistic Savant - a rare condition in which an otherwise autistic person portrays the ability to play the piano or portray some other high level of skill without any previous formal training in it.  It's as if they were 'born' with it.  Moe certainly seemed to have been born with a 'Chopin like' ability to hit the golf ball!

In his early playing days, Moe would often hitch hike to tournaments around Canada and win one then would hitch back home, often 'hocking' the trophy for something he liked better.  If he liked the 3rd place prize over the top two, he'd manage to finish the tournament right on that spot as well.  It has been said that once he had a three shot lead in a tournament and with that margin intentionally knocked his third into a bunker by the 18th green then got it up and down to win by one!  

Moe grew up autistic in an era when there was not a lot of understanding about the behavioral problems of autism - which resulted in many who jeered or made fun of him in public.  That all contributed to Moe's shy and reclusive personality and quite possibly drove Moe into the virtual solemnity the game of golf could provide.   In later life the Titleist golf company sponsored Moe who then often traveled and lived out of his new Cadillac -most of the 1990's wintering in West Palm Beach (rumor has it with a lot of cash in the trunk) -where one of his favorite things was to  listen to self help tapes.  

You can see the amazing skills of Moe Norman via film and tape portraying his Natural Golf Method which is based upon the way Moe Norman swings the golf club and is taught to millions of golfers today.  Books and tapes featuring Moe and his golf swing are available today and Canadian television recently did a two hour biography about his life as well.  

We are all saddened by his passing yet inspired by his life story.  In 2001 I was lucky enough to get a copy of Moe's swing thoughts from his side kick and lifelong friend who told me 'Don't let Moe know!'  (At the time they were filming the story of Moe's life for Canadian television).  Moe was particular and he often gave personal copies of his 'Thoughts' to those he trusted and liked - often telling them it was their personal secret.    
It's been said that learning to play the game of golf will also help us to be successful in life.  Moe certainly was.  And you can certainly apply any of Moe's thoughts in your life to be successful as well.  Many of these thoughts reflect what all the greats of golf from the past would probably tell while others indicate the kind of struggles Moe had to deal with in his personal life as well as in the game of golf.  With all due respect to Moe Norman and in Tribute to his Life I share with you that special personal copy of Moe's 'Main Thoughts': 





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