Can a golfer control the club face after impact?
Most networks that cover major golf tournaments have a high-speed camera that shows slow-motion replays of golfer’s swings — mainly impact — during the broadcast. It shows the clubface opening and closing after impact. At the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club last weekend, Johnny Miller insisted on NBC that the player is responsible for the closing and opening of the clubface through impact. This is simply not right.
The opening and closing is caused by the impact point on the face. A hit near the the toe opens the face and a hit near the heel closes it. I’m not sure why or how they feel the player is responsible. This just cant be done. The “no twist” point on the face has to be struck for the face to uh, not twist. One way or the other. It matters not how strong the player is, you cannot hold the face square if there is an off center contact. Science tells us so.
This is a good lesson for everybody. When the ball is hit near the toe (for a right-handed golfer) the face opens but horizontal gear effect spins it back to the left. A lot of right to left hooks are hit this way. When the ball is hit near the heel the face closes but gear effect spins it right. A lot of left to right slices are hit this way. It is very difficult to draw it off the heel or fade it off the toe. If you remember my last article, I discussed the idea of “Raising your golf IQ.” This is precisely the type of information I was referring to.
We know that in order to draw the ball we need a path inside where the face is pointed at impact; and just the opposite for a fade. But here’s the catch. When the path is coming from the inside out, it is easier to hit near the heel. And when the path is ouside in it is easier to hit near the toe. Both of these impact points are the exact opposite of what we need for the that desried shot. Tough game this golf!
A great idea is to spray a little Dr. Scholl’s foot spray on your club face. You will find out quite quickly where you are striking it on the face. And you’ll find out why you may not be getting the shape of shot you want even if your face/path relationship is the desired one.