Bryson DeChambeau loses weight, gains more distance in return to Augusta
Compared to the 2020 Masters, Bryson DeChambeau is feeling much better these days.
In November, DeChambeau shared top billing with defending champion Tiger Woods heading into the tournament. The Big Man from Big D had won the U.S. Open two months prior, blasting venerable Winged Foot in winning by six shots.
His scientific approach to the game – like his single-length irons and his takes on brain training and breathing exercises – was captivating. His protein shake-fueled body transformation – he added 40-50 pounds – was stunning. And his power – he was driving par 4s with 3-woods, hitting 8-irons 210 yards – caught everyone’s eye.
As the first round of the Masters neared, the buzz centered on what the pre-tournament favorite was going to do to poor, old Augusta National, especially after he said his par for the course was 67, not 72.
But the DeChambeau Show turned out to be a dud.
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He made double bogey on his fourth hole of the tournament, lost a ball en route to a triple bogey in the second round on the third hole to end his assault on the leaderboard, made the cut on the number, and was bettered by two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer, 36 years his senior, by two shots in the final round. He finished at 2 under for his 72 holes – 18 shots behind winner Dustin Johnson.
“At the beginning of the week I felt like I could have a great chance to win the tournament if I just played my game,” he said. “I made way too many mistakes. I mishit a lot of shots that usually are pretty easy for me.
“It was one of those things, one of those weeks.”
Well, one thing he dealt with were bouts of dizziness and stomach pains and he said at times his brain got disoriented and he was “super” uncomfortable. After the Masters, he visited multiple doctors, had ear and eye tests, did ultrasounds on his heart and neck. He later determined the frontal lobe of his brain was working too hard during the Masters and in turn caused his symptoms.
So he’s learned to relax his brain and developed a good sleep schedule.
And dealt with, as he called it, his gut health, saying his weight gain had caused stomach inflammation. Hence, he’s lost 10 pounds.
“I'm absolutely sure it was a part of it,” DeChambeau said of his ailments during the Masters. “I wouldn't say it was the full bit. The stress of the tournament, just the spotlight, the whole thing, it all took a toll.”
As he makes his fifth Masters start – he was the low amateur in 2016 – he has a better understanding of his body and swing. And he’s continued to play great golf after the calendar turned to 2021, winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational for his eighth PGA Tour title and finishing in a tie for third in The Players Championship.
He again will be a favorite to win the green jacket but has learned to better embrace the pressure and spotlight. And he’s very much looking forward to the challenge of Augusta National and the Masters with his ultra-power game.
“I'm definitely hitting it a lot further than I was in November,” he said. “So there are some places that I will look at taking that are going to be a little different than last time probably.
“My goal is to have a driver in hand that can support the 200 mile-an-hour ball speeds and if I'm able to do that, that's going to be a good sign to play well that week. Just got to get my wedging dialed in.”