Tiger Talks About His Return
By Torleif Sorenson on 6/24/14

Earlier this morning, Tiger Woods answered questions from the gathered press at this week's PGA Tour stop in Washington DC, the Quicken Loans National. Among Tiger's comments and answers to questions were these:

"I'm probably ahead of schedule. I healed fast." Woods also credited his physios and athletic trainers for his fast return, along with avoiding foods that cause inflammation.

Asked if he has made any changes with his coach, Sean Foley, Woods said, "We may have made a few tweaks here and there, but nothing major."

After that, one reporter asked how Woods feels about how the current spate of young and talented golfers who saw Tiger as an inspiration, and mentioned that the talent of these young golfers could actually be making it more difficult for Woods to win on tour.

Tiger's half-joking response: "I feel old."

Woods was asked about Tianlang Guan, the young talent from China who made his Masters debut at age 14. "He was born after I won that tournament. That's not cool," Woods joked.

One reporter was smart enough to ask if Tiger would be playing this week if he were not the "host" of the tournament, Tiger admitted: "If this wasn't for the foundation... I probably would not." Wood then said his original target date for returning was July 17 at the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool.

"I have learned, stubbornly," said Tiger, to listen to his body. Late in the conference, Woods said that whenever he encountered back pain, knee pain, or other discomfort, his modus operandi was to work even harder than ever and, just "magically," the pain would go away.

But when he began suffering back spasms before The Barclays last August, he had to cut back on his normal practice routine.

"The least [sic] problem I had was driving the golf ball," but that he could not practice his short game. Now, Woods reports, he is back to his normal practice regimen — and that doctors were shocked to find no arthritic changes in his back.

When a reporter asked how long it has been since he felt as good as he does now, Woods said: "It's been a very long time — probably two years — since I felt this way."

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Photograph by Torleif Sorenson

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