David Leadbetter was born on this day in 1952. A leading golf instructor, originally from Worthing in England. He began his career on the European and Southern African tours, but had little success as a player.
Having an interest in the techniques, mechanics and psychology of the sport he soon moved into instruction and came to wide notice in the 1980s when he rebuilt the swing of Nick Faldo, who then went on to win six major championships.
Leadbetter now runs an international chain of golf academies headquartered at the ChampionsGate Golf Club in Davenport, Florida, U.S. which has 36 holes designed by Greg Norman. There are also branches elsewhere in North America and in Europe and Asia. Leadbetter himself concentrates on teaching tour professionals and on instructing other coaches in his methods, who then teach his ideas at his academies. Apart from Faldo his students include Nick Price, Charles Howell III, Michelle Wie, and many other well-known players on the leading tours. Pros who formerly worked with Leadbetter included: Nick Faldo (1984-1998), Greg Norman (1997), and Ernie Els (1990-2008). He was ranked second to Butch Harmon on the 2005-2006 edition of Golf Digest’s list of the “50 Greatest Teachers” in the United States.
Leadbetter has published several books and produced numerous instructional videos and DVDs.
Leadbetter and his wife, Kelly (an LPGA Tour professional), their sons Andy and James and their daughter Hally, live at Lake Nona, in Orlando, Florida. He is also an endorser/spokesman for SAP, Callaway, JoS. A. Bank Clothiers, Rolex, and Golf Pride grips.