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The Big Miss: My Years Coaching Tiger Woods [Hardcover]

Hank Haney
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 27 2012

The Big Miss is Hank Haney’s candid and surprisingly insightful account of his tumultuous six-year journey with Tiger Woods, during which the supremely gifted golfer collected six major championships and rewrote golf history. Hank was one of the very few people allowed behind the curtain. He was with Tiger 110 days a year, spoke to him over 200 days a year, and stayed at his home up to 30 days a year, observing him in nearly every circumstance: at tournaments, on the practice range, over meals, with his wife, Elin, and relaxing with friends.
 
The relationship between the two men began in March 2004 when Hank received a call from Tiger in which the golf champion asked him to be his coach. It was a call that would change both men’s lives.
 
Tiger—only 28 at the time—was by then already an icon, judged by the sporting press as not only one of the best golfers ever, but possibly the best athlete ever. Already he was among the world’s highest paid celebrities. There was an air of mystery surrounding him, an aura of invincibility. Unique among athletes, Tiger seemed to be able to shrug off any level of pressure and find a way to win.
 
But Tiger was always looking to improve, and he wanted Hank’s help.
 
What Hank soon came to appreciate was that Tiger was one of the most complicated individuals he’d ever met, let alone coached. Although Hank had worked with hundreds of elite golfers and was not easily impressed, there were days watching Tiger on the range when Hank couldn’t believe what he was witnessing. On those days, it was impossible to imagine another human playing golf so perfectly.
 
And yet Tiger is human—and Hank’s expert eye was adept at spotting where Tiger’s perfection ended and an opportunity for improvement existed. Always haunting Tiger was his fear of “the big miss”—the wildly inaccurate golf shot that can ruin an otherwise solid round—and it was because that type of blunder was sometimes part of Tiger’s game that Hank carefully redesigned his swing mechanics.
 
Hank’s most formidable coaching challenge, though, would be solving the riddle of Tiger’s personality. Wary of the emotional distractions that might diminish his game and put him further from his goals, Tiger had developed a variety of tactics to keep people from getting too close, and not even Hank—or Tiger’s family and friends, for that matter—was spared “the treatment.”
 
Toward the end of Tiger and Hank’s time together, the champion’s laser-like focus began to blur and he became less willing to put in punishing hours practicing—a disappointment to Hank, who saw in Tiger’s behavior signs that his pupil had developed a conflicted relationship with the game. Hints that Tiger hungered to reinvent himself were present in his bizarre infatuation with elite military training, and—in a development Hank didn’t see coming—in the scandal that would make headlines in late 2009. It all added up to a big miss that Hank, try as he might, couldn’t save Tiger from.
 
There’s never been a book about Tiger Woods that is as intimate and revealing—or one so wise about what it takes to coach a superstar athlete.


Frequently Bought Together

The Big Miss: My Years Coaching Tiger Woods + How I Play Golf + Ben Hogan's Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf
Price For All Three: CDN$ 50.98


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Review

“Insightful...Advance coverage of The Big Miss focused on the sensational...but those revelations misrepresent the primary focus of the book, which is to convey the experience of working with Woods as an instructor and to dissect what makes Tiger Tiger...Golf fans will put the book down feeling as if they were an eyewitness to history, and glad for the experience.”
--Wall Street Journal
 
“An alarming look at an athlete whose public glories masked a day-to-day existence of profound superficiality…Even more revealing than the swing material is evidence of Woods’ emotional blank wall: his indifference to people around him, his inability to empathize, and an obsession with military training and the Navy SEALs that, according to Haney, probably led to the leg injuries which have hampered Woods’ golf career.”
--Golfweek
 
“I learned more about Tiger in The Big Miss than I have in eleven years of covering him on the PGA Tour…
I actually thought the book was very fair, it was honest.”
--Damon Hack, Senior Writer, Sports Illustrated

“While The Big Miss is many things -- a coach’s story; an account of a collapse; a deep dive into the swing mechanics and the art of golf – it also offers a welcome and unvarnished look inside.  Books about major athletes are often authorized pabulum or arm’s-length agglomerations.  Haney’s recollections are his own, and subject to dispute, but this is a rich and compelling rendering of a complicated athlete undone less by embarrassing details than by a self-inflicted, unsustainable myth.”
--Jason Gay, The Wall Street Journal
 
“Offers fascinating insights…The biggest strength of The Big Miss is the breadth of its insider view of the Tiger Woods phenomenon, a scrutiny previously unavailable to the public.”
--Kansas City Star

“Incredibly interesting—especially if you play golf...Haney does a great job of simply telling it like it is...The "why" behind the mystery of Tiger's perplexing personality weaves its way through the entire book.”
-David G. Kindervater, Featured Columnist, Bleacher Report
 
“After flying through this 247-page, mostly breezy and fascinating look into the life of a champion, I suspect most readers will ultimately have a newfound respect for Woods. I know I do....For the first time in the history of golf literature, we get a behind-the-scenes look at how an all-time great works. Many times the details are not pretty, but most of the journey Haney takes us on reveals a relentless passion to thrive in an era when so many professionals appear content to occasionally contend and collect healthy checks.  If I were asked to recommend a book for an aspiring young golfer, The Big Miss would be the first title I’d select if for no other reason than most of today’s Tiger-wannabes will be motivated to work much harder than they currently do.”
--GeoffShackelford.com

“Thoughtful…Haney makes his case fairly and honestly, emerging not as a self-serving, tell-all author but as a man who has devoted his working life to the intricacies of the golf swing and who, finally, remains thankful to have spent six years with the best golfer on the planet.”
--Booklist

"The Big Miss is the most extensive and interesting portrait of Woods you're ever likely to read...[it] shines a light on the most opaque celebrity in sports. For that reason alone, it's a can't-miss."
--Orange County Register

About the Author

HANK HANEY coached Tiger Woods from early 2004 to the spring of 2010 and is considered by many to be the world’s number one golf instructor. He has tutored more than 200 touring professionals and runs several teaching facilities around the world. In addition to hosting the top-rated Golf Channel show The Haney Project, Hank also contributes to numerous publications and has appeared on the cover of Golf Digest seven times. 

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Haney gets up and down for par April 21 2012
By Murph
Format:Hardcover
Got to hand it to Hank Haney. I was very skeptical when I picked up The Big Miss: My Years Coaching Tiger Woods, but it delivered some entertainment. Don't get fooled, this is not a biography of Tiger Woods, and you'll leave this book probably just as puzzled about the man as you did before picking it up. You probably won't learn anything that will help your golf swing either. What you will get is an inside look into the Life of a very good golf instructor as he tries to cope with the pressure of being the best player in the worlds coach.

Hank's book does disclose some interesting information about key tournaments that Tiger played in. Hank also goes into Tigers obsessions with some interesting training routines off the course and how they would later effect his career.

Bottom line, if you enjoy golf and want to sit down and learn a bit more about Tigers tour experience you will enjoy this one sitting book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spellbinding March 28 2012
By Luc
Format:Hardcover
A must-read. I couldn't put it down. Not a trash-job to Tiger by any means. Simply a coach relating his experiences. I loved it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars got it as a gift July 14 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
got it as a fathers day gift, my dad seemed to like it. so i ould reccomend it.

-Ryder Cast
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3.0 out of 5 stars Haney is honest and direct May 30 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Hank Haney may have been as close to Tiger as anyone other than his parents. He fills in a few important gaps in the Tiger Woods story although it seems to turn out that the Tiger Woods story is not that interesting after all.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tiger May 4 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am sure that Tiger would not have read this book and if he did then Hank would not have been invited to his BBQ but who gives a s***!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good read May 2 2013
By Steve
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I liked it. It has a lot of insight into the progression of Tigers golf swing, as well as a behind the scenes look at what tiger is really like when the cameras aren't on him (but it's mostly about his golf swing). I would recommend this book to anyone interested in finding out a little more, than they already knew about Tiger.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A bit slow Dec 14 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The book is a bit slow. Very interesting though to have an inside look at one of the world's most competitive people.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Keep notes Dec 7 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Hank's book details his career with Tiger not so much incidental as his record or diary of trips to Orlando and communications electronically. It also details Tiger's protection of his privacy which is understandable. What I found most informative how non communicative he was with the people around him. The handling of Haney's resigning as his coach was eye opening. An informative narrative on one of golf's all time great players.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling read on a troubled genius
Anyone who is interested in psychology, genius, and/or sports will enjoy this book about one of the most talented and successful athletes in history. Read more
Published 21 months ago by bisbee
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor read.
I was very disappointed in this book. It gives little insight to Tiger himself and looks to me like Tiger had too much say in it, blocking anything he didn't like.
Published 21 months ago by J. Blair
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT INSIGHT INTO THE LIFE OF A TIGER.
i LOVE IT, COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN , YOU WILL LEARN ABOUT ONE OF THE GREATEST ATLETE THE WORL HAS EVER KNOWN, PUT A REAL SENSE TO THE SAYING THAT NICE GUYS FINISH LAST. Read more
Published on Aug. 16 2012 by supercat38
4.0 out of 5 stars The Big Miss - A Good Read
When I received The Big Miss: My Years Coaching Tiger Woods, by post, I was slightly apprehensive it would be written from the perspective of a 'doting fan' or; alternatively,... Read more
Published on June 19 2012 by Frank L.
1.0 out of 5 stars Slanderous, libelous and betrayal of confidence by Hank
Poor Hank Haney. He appears to be a great coach and teacher? I learned much about different golf instruction techniques for various shots in various chapters. Read more
Published on May 5 2012 by Billyboy
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Biography Out There
This is the best biography I have read. For those that appreciate the disection of greatness you cannot get any better. Read more
Published on April 6 2012 by Bach
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