Now he has the body to go with it.
As McIlroy rose in the past 4 years from skinny teenager (below) to U.S. Open champ to the world No. 1 ranking -- thanks to Sunday’s heart-pounding victory over Tiger Woods at the Honda Classic -- his body and bearing changed as well (right).
His secret: bringing modern science to bear on the ancient game, and working on his legs and core muscles so he wouldn’t mess too much with a classical swing that Jack Nicklaus calls “the most natural motion in the game today.”
That, plus some inspiration from his girlfriend, No. 2 ranked tennis star Caroline Wozniacki. McIlroy found the way professional tennis players practice almost humbling.
“They work so hard,” says McIlroy, who good-naturedly joined Caroline and Maria Sharapova on the court at Madison Square Garden during an exhibition match Monday night. “That sort of made me realize that I could probably work harder, and gave me a little bit more motivation to go in the gym and hit more balls. It’s definitely paid off.”
After more than 15 years of domination by the hard-sculpted, hard-swinging Woods, the golf world is accustomed to fit golfers. McIlroy, by comparison, presents a slightly more approachable image: 5-foot-10, 160 pounds -- but with muscles that only began appearing in early 2011.
His posture and physique changed under the direction of Steve McGregor, Ph.D., a British trainer who previously worked with the burly-yet-trim Lee Westwood, no. 3 in the world. (Speaking of great physiques, make sure to check out the 12 Sexiest Female Golfers.)
McIlroy made it clear in an interview with Men’s Health that his new body is the foundation for his success. For visual proof, look no further than the recent photos of McIlroy in the gym in this article.Full Story >>