It's funny because Dave's clinic hasn't even started yet and I already made a "stunning" technique observation just looking at the pictures of Dave's drives on his Driving School flyer. Don't want to get off topic but there is not a technique thread here and it does apply to Dave's Driving School since he will be addressing this in his clinic.
This is an observation that I have never really heard anyone really talk about so I will appreciate anyone who wants to chime in and elaborate, especially the higher rated players who browse this thread. For all intents and purposes I will call it the "Backhand Axis Alignment Angle" or "Power Tilt."
It appears that there is a stunning similarity amongst the 990 and higher rated backhand players we all observe in the region. There are probably also many 980 and above that share this trait as well, but I would say generally this is a trait you see amongst the 990 and above backhand throwers.
Take a look at the attached image and you will see that I first drew a line from head to toe down Dave Feldberg's body demonstrating the proper alignment, right after the snap. Dave's throwing arm is parallel with his shoulders and you can see the disc has just popped out of his hand. Look how he's lined up from his NOSE to BELLY BUTTON to KNEE to TOE.
What you see is that he positions his body at an approximate 20 degree tilt, which forces all his body weight to lean into the release, thereby generating effortless power and control. This angle is actually similar to the Earth's axis which is not perfectly straight vertical. Earth's axis is actually 23.4 degrees.
What I did next was copy and paste that exact same 20 degree line and pasted it over Tyler Christensen's body where he is throwing a practice roller at hole 1 at Pier Park (2008 Rose City Open Finals.) Tyler's throwing arm is a little earlier than Dave's position but what you see is that the 20 degree angle is identical. Most of us must contort out body to get the disc to land at the correct roller angle, but Tyler accomplishes this with understable disc selection, and throws his roller with a hyzer release angle. If you then watch the YouTube video of Tyler during the actual finals, he is the only one who actually got a roller to stand up correctly and leave himself a putt.
Then I copy and pasted the same line over Brody Miller's drive from the lead card of the 2004 Beaver State Fling showcase final 9. Brody's photo is a little later than Dave's drive, as his throwing arm is already in the back position and his head has already followed through but you can clearly see his body is entirely locked into the 20 degree angle.
Then compare these guys with the 2004 Eugene Celebration Hole 15 random player throwing photos gallery of random card carrying PDGA members from random divisions including Pro Open. This is not to make fun of anybody's form but the point of the idea was to shoot as many peoples drives to see the similarities and differences between random players form and technique.
What can be observed from this? The majority of players around 990 and above have that 20 degree "axis alignment angle" locked down, while most of the rest of us are zig zag, hunched over, mickey mouse, humpty dumpty, and all over the place except on that nice clean 20 degree line.
It appears that most of us mortal humans are releasing the disc either too straight up and down or too hunched over the plant foot which then negates and throws away getting our body weight into leaning into the disc. Essentially, lost distance and control. The other thing clearly apparent between the average golfers and the 990+ golfers is that the 990+ golfers knees stay very close together (that 20 degree line) and the average golfers legs seem to separate and come apart. the 990+ golfers left knee is bent but both thighs are aligned. Everyone who wishes to improve their technique, should get their disc buddies to shoot a photo of their release from the front of the tee with their cell phones and see how they are lining it up.
The other observation to take into account is that all these photos are taken in FRONT of the tee pad, all with a long zoom lens far enough away to not be a distraction. This alignment is not as easy to see behind the tee pad. So people who are even playing with 1000 rated players would likely not even notice this from behind the tee pad. Disc golf etiquette dictates that you stand behind the person throwing, and so therefore this is easy to overlook.
Hopefully Dave will have a lot to say about the proper footwork to get set up like this, and it will be very interesting to see before / after photos of players who are willing to work on fixing these issues.
Also wondering if the same angle applies to forehand drives?