You don’t have to be a gamer to watch Bryson DeChambeau’s Twitch channel, but it certainly helps.
DeChambeau has followed a similar routine to many of his fellow PGA Tour mates during this extended coronavirus-induced break — tinkering with his golf swing and improving his physique.
But in typical DeChambeau style, he’s gone bigger. The workouts have been daily, as he’s told anyone who watches on twitch.tv/thebadone23. The training sessions have included sweat sessions with swing coach Chris Como (from Como’s living room lab) and intense work with muscle activation guru Greg Roskopf.
And much of it has been there for the world to see, as DeChambeau is a consistent contributor on Twitch, often including lengthy episodes in which he simply plays video games and answers questions from viewers. The moments can be candid, like this one where he nearly missed on a drive in Como’s lab.
For those who don’t follow, Twitch is a streaming platform where members can simply open a stream, allowing others to watch. In most cases, that means watching someone play video games. Non-gamers often don’t see the value of the platform, but those who do are obsessive about it.
DeChambeau’s Twitch channel isn’t huge by any means — he has more than 3,000 followers but often only a few dozen people take in each stream — but he’s stayed true to the platform with regular installments.
“What do you guys wanna know today?” he asked during a recent session from Como’s gym, which looks like something from an Olympic training ground, complete with high-tech gadgetry, old-fashioned weights and a basketball court.
He insists the sessions will only improve once the PGA Tour returns next week at Colonial Country Club, and he’s mentioned that he’ll discuss his rounds while playing games.
And he’s opened up on some interesting topics, including some advice that Tiger Woods gave him when DeChambeau was worried he’d lost control of his swing.
“He’s like. ‘Bryson, you don’t need my advice, You pretty much figured it out for the most part.’ I’m like … there’s no way I’ve figured it out and I just thought of these wayward shots. He’s like, ‘Bryson can you give it five more years, you’re going to figure something out. It’s going to be really cool.’” DeChambeau said, detailing his exchange with Woods.
“That, to me, was a really cool moment that just assured me, it’s him saying that you know, I’m going the right direction. I was kind of freaking out at that moment because I was struggling like also anybody, And so that was probably the most inspiring thing to me.”
DeChambeau is the world No. 13, according to the Official World Golf Ranking, but he’s dangerously close to slipping out of the top 30 in the Golfweek/Sagarin ranking.
Still, many believe he’s trending in the right direction, and this break might help push him to new heights. In the most recent BetMGM.com update before the Charles Schwab Challenge, DeChambeau has the fifth-best odds of winning the event in Fort Worth, behind Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas and Webb Simpson.
And those around the golf world are curious to see how this plays out. For example, 11-time PGA Tour winner John Cook said on the Golf Channel that he’s been impressed with DeChambeau’s transformation.
“Bryson is all about experimenting. He’s all about physics. He’s all about science, and there’s nothing wrong with that. We’ve seen players lose weight and not work out so well because their body types just didn’t support that weight loss, then we’ve seen those players gain the weight back and go on and play pretty well,” Cook said. “In Bryson’s case, he felt like he needed more distance and, to his credit, he’s gained that muscle mass. It looks like he’s maintained his flexibility and his mobility which is ultra important. I mean you can see it in the driving distance.”
The numbers don’t lie — DeChambeau has jumped ahead of the field in driving distance this season, and is third in shots gained off the tee. But he isn’t done yet. He says he’ll continue to tinker with his swing and mobility, and he’s hoping to keep packing on muscle.
That’s where many are still skeptical.
“We’re going to see how this experiment goes — so far, it’s so good. But I want to see how his stamina is going to hold up,” Cook said. “When you’re carrying that much weight and you’re going to go around Muirfield Village now two weeks in a row — one of the tougher walking golf courses, everything is uphill and downhill — let’s see how his stamina holds up.”