MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Former world number one Jason Day has been impressed with the power of Bryson DeChambeau but he doubts whether the bulked-up American’s body can handle the stress over the long term.
DeChambeau has been the talk of the golf world since the PGA Tour’s June resumption, bringing an extra 20 pounds of muscle and impressing rivals with startling distance off the tee.
“I had a quick chat to him about his body and his swing,” the Ohio-based Australian told reporters on a teleconference on Wednesday.
“In the short-term I think it’s going to be fine. Mid-to-long-term I don’t think it’s going to be. I don’t think his body can handle the amount of stress that he’s putting on it because not only did he add a lot of weight quickly, he’s added a lot of speed very quickly, too.”
Day, 32, said his own experience of beefing up in the gym a few years ago had harmed his swing and aggravated long-standing back problems.
“I’m not 21 anymore,” he added.
“I understand where I’m at in my career in regards to my body, so if I want to add any more years to my career, I have to put in the work.
“I may eat my words and Bryson may be out here for 20, 30 more years and still do the exact same thing. But going through what I’ve done, it can be very difficult to add that weight and try and add that speed very quickly.”
DeChambeau has complete faith in his muscular game, crediting it for victory at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in July.
The 26-year-old recorded his first top-five finish at a major at the PGA Championship two weeks ago and said the result validated the path he had taken.
Day said DeChambeau was a “friend and a competitor” and he wished him well.
“He’s a guy that everyone is talking about right now. It makes the game exciting.”
(Reporting by Ian Ransom; Editing by Peter Rutherford)