The Amazing Ben Hogan Golf Story: 5 Lessons to Inspire You

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Ben Hogan is one of the most admired golfers of all time. Let’s explore further his history, golf swing, famous quotes, and more!

Who is Ben Hogan? 

Ben Hogan Golf: photo in a parade waving at the audience.
Ben Hogan Golf & seeing his fans

Born, William Benjamin Hogan in 1912 he grew up poor with humble beginnings in Texas. The family hardship grew more troubling when his father committed suicide in 1922. It was noted that his quiet demeanor and introverted personality stemmed from witnessing his father’s death.

To help with the family finances, he began his career in golf as a caddy. By the 1940s and 1950s, he scaled to new heights in the golfing world.

Having won just one event during his first 10 years as a pro, Hogan went on to win 53 PGA Tour events between 1940 and 1950. At his retirement in 1959, he had racked up 64 wins. He is the fourth most successful PGA Tour golfer of all time. 

Our 5 Favorite Ben Hogan Quotes

Ben Hogan had a way with words. In modern day, his quotes continue to stand the test of time leaving you feeling inspired, motivated, or even adding a smile to your face.

1. “The most important shot in golf is the next one.”

2. “May thy ball lie in green pastures, and not in still waters.”

3. “I play golf with friends sometimes, but there are never friendly games.”

4. “The average golfer is entirely capable of building a repeating swing and breaking 80.”

5. “As you walk down the fairway of life you must smell the roses, for you only get to play one round.”

Ben Hogan Golf Story of Success

During a glittering career, Ben Hogan enjoyed plenty of success in golf’s most revered competitions, winning no fewer than 9 major titles. In addition, he clinched 4 US Opens, 2 Masters tournaments, 2 PGA Tour Championships, and 1 Open Championship. 

No player in the game’s history has won more US Opens than Ben Hogan, who with four victories is joined in the record books by fellow greats Jack Nicklaus, Bobby Jones, and Willie Anderson. The man nicknamed The Hawk is also one of only 5 players in the history of golf to win all four majors. At the same time, only three golfers have clinched more major titles, making Hogan a truly remarkable whose name will live on forever. 

Ben Hogan Accident 

Ben Hogan’s golfing career was nearly cut short in 1949 when he and his wife suffered an almost fatal car accident. How did this happen? While driving back from a PGA tournament, the pair collided with one of America’s famed Greyhound buses. 

In the immediate aftermath, it was thought that Hogan’s golfing days were over. He’d suffered multiple injuries, including two fractures to the pelvis. His injuries caused numerous blood clots, so serious that doctors weren’t sure that the golfer would survive. Fortunately, he did. 

Ben Hogan Comeback

Not only did he survive, but as history tells us, he made a full recovery, and somewhat miraculously, just nine months after the accident, Hogan returned to the course. In early 1950, his PGA Tour career resumed at the Los Angeles Open. One of the game’s greatest players was back, and boy did he make his presence felt. 

During his return season, the golfing hero won the coveted US Open at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pennsylvania. Three years after his comeback, Ben Hogan became the first golfer to win three majors in a single season, a feat that remained unmatched until modern-day great Tiger Woods did so in 2000. 

Ben Hogan Death

Ben Hogan died in 1997 at age 84 in Forth Worth, Texas. He was buried at the Greenwood Memorial Park cemetery in Fort Worth.

Hogan is still talked about to this day and is considered one of the finest players ever to play the game of golf. 

Ben Hogan Golf Swing: The Greatest Ball Striker of All Time

Many players have significant swings, but few, if any, are talked about in the same breath as Ben Hogan. The Ben Hogan golf swing, set up, and grip is still among the gold standard.  

Early in his career, Hogan was plagued by a severe hook, which was one reason his first decade as a professional golfer had almost no success. No stranger to working on his game, though, the nine-time major winner eventually got it right. 

Hogan is considered to be one of the first players to practice intensely, which allowed him to experiment and fine-tune his golf swing, changing it many times before arriving at his preferred method. This method ultimately paved the way for near-unprecedented success. 

Ben Hogan Setup

Ben Hogan Stance shows where is foot is placed when using a driver and irons.
Ben Hogan Setup

The simple and easy-to-understand basics are what Ben Hogan’s style is all about. Ben Hogan’s secret to golf is knowing that Golf is 70% between the ears, meaning that a lot of it is a mental game. But you do need to get the fundamentals of swinging down to truly advance your game.

Ben Hogan Interview: The Secret

Ben Hogan is interviewed by Father Kelly on the secret to golf. Nothing quite explains it, like Ben Hogan.

Ben Hogan Golf Books

There are numerous books written, but the two books written by him are Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons and Power Golf. These books cover the fundamentals of golf and championship secrets from the legend himself.

Ben Hogan Five Lessons

In this book published in 1957, Ben Hogan presented the essential elements of an ideal golf swing. He condensed five key areas which are grip, stance, backswing, downswing, and lastly the summary of the swing process. To this day, golf instructors still use these lessons in their teaching methods.

Ben Hogan claimed that his swing, which took many years to perfect and be completely controlled, is simple. The lower part of the body is key to moving first and then the shoulders should follow. Hogan explains the fundamentals in the short video and shows players what to do below:

Ben Hogan Golf Gear

Such was Hogan’s standing in the game of golf, the Ben Hogan Golf Equipment Company was formed in 1953. In 1954, the company began manufacturing golf clubs that were of a premium nature, designed with the talented golfer in mind.

Ben Hogan Golf Clubs 

In the years that followed, Ben Hogan golf clubs became very sought after, with players worldwide looking to get their hands on a set of clubs branded with the name of a golfing king. 

First, in 1960, Hogan’s golf company was sold several times, but the branding remained the same, and people bought Ben Hogan golf clubs because of the man’s iconic status. 

Into the 21st century, the status of Ben Hogan as a golf equipment brand slipped down the pecking order with the rise of golf equipment giants such as Titleist, TaylorMade, Ping, and Callaway. However, even now, golfers worldwide continue to tee off with Ben Hogan clubs. 

Unfortunately, as of 2022, the company ceased trading, which means that although there will continue to be plenty of Ben Hogan clubs in circulation, no new clubs will be released. 

Ben Hogan Golf Shirts, Shorts, and Hats

Despite Ben Hogan’s equipment no longer being distributed, the clothing line remains very popular today. There is an excellent variety of golf shirts, shorts, and hats available for sale on Amazon.

What is the Ben Hogan Foundation? 

The Ben Hogan Foundation was formed to celebrate a true golfing champion’s life and achievements and preserve his legacy. According to the foundation, those in charge of making decisions always ask themselves, “what would Mr. Hogan have done?”.

Essentially the Ben Hogan Foundation, through Ben Hogan Learning Centers and Ben Hogan Scholarships, exists to promote the game of golf in the way that Hogan himself did during and after his illustrious career. He strongly believed in nurturing the well-being of children, supporting education, and encouraging them to golf.

Final Thoughts on Ben Hogan

Ben Hogan was one of the most likable and successful golfers of all time. He set numerous records, and his golf swing is still studied by players and coaches today. His legacy lives on today through his books, as well as the Ben Hogan Foundation that continues to better the world.

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AUTHOR

Erin has spent over 17 years as a healthcare executive working with seniors in nursing homes, skilled nursing, assisted living, and independent living communities. She also holds a Masters Degree in Social Work and other advanced degrees related to seniors.

Erin grew up playing golf in a family of golf fanatics. She started this site to help others add more enjoyment to the game of life through golf.

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