'The Efficient Golfer' by Robert Anthony Pritchard

By: Dr. John Wagner

According to Pritchard, we now have a new cause of all our golfing woes: the formation of microfibers in our bodies. Indeed, we may all soon suffer from microfiberitis. The author purports he possesses the only way to help golfers. Simply put, our problems are due to the build-up of microfibers around our muscles which makes us stiffen up as we age.

Based on Pritchard's list of things that cause microfibers to form around our muscles, we should all be in a wheelchair by age 50. If he's correct, John Brodie should never have been able to play golf, alleging he - and Sam Snead no less - are genetically unable to form microfibers. By the way, these mysterious microfibers cannot be found on MRIs, yet he insists they exist.

The first part of the book deals with range of motion and how it affects your distance off the tee. Nothing new here. If you can't create a good arc on your swing, you can't generate enough club-head speed and the ball won't travel very far. So what's new? Nothing I could learn about after looking at all the angles and diagrams Pritchard includes in his book. So, to me, this section was a waste of time.

The author also claims all other golf instructors are wrong and that only he has the method to help: which is, of course, through microfiber reduction. This can only be done by his trained people, who will be more than happy to get on an airplane to visit you if you can't get to wherever they are. According to the author, his system helped an LPGA player who, the last I checked, is 92nd on the money list. She underwent the microfiber-reduction treatment in 2004.

Pritchard has a few items he'd like to sell you. Is that surprising? The book is a lot of fluff and no meat. I would have been impressed with his methods had he studied 100 Tour pros - men and women, as well as Champion Tour players. He could do all the work-up on them, measuring their angles, driving distance, etc., and then put them under a microfiber reduction program.

For the sake of science, he could re-check these measurables and follow up over a five-year period to see if the treatment worked and actually improved their performance. After that, he could let readers know how much all of it costs to see if there is a real lasting benefit. If all of this took place, maybe then he'd have a program that meant something.

The author's credentials are not listed and he provides no method for determining how much reduction you get from his program. Interestingly, only his people are trained for how to reduce microfibers in the body.

Not surprisingly, the whole book reads like an infomercial and reminds me of the people who used to sell snake oil out of their wagons. The main difference is that the old snake oil salesmen had more than one product.

"The Efficient Golfer" by Robert Anthony Pritchard; Published by Somax Sports Corporation, 4 Tara Hill Road, Tiburon, CA 94920; ISBN 10:0-9792102-0-8 and ISBN -13:978-0-9792102-0-4.

Dr. John Wagner has been a Seattle dentist for 37 years. He's been published in several dental journals as well as had several articles appear in the turf magazine for Pacific Northwest golf course superintendents. John has served as a guest lecturer at the University of Washington Business School for several years and as a guest lecturer for several dental societies. Dr. Wagner is the co-designer (with Steve Shea of the Berger Partnership) of a golf course in Japan that cost over $120 million and was built by Wadsworth Golf Construction. He's a Past President of the Washington State Golf Association and a Trustee of the Pacific Coast Golf Association. John is currently a Member of the USGA Green Section and a Director of the WSGA.