Posted 20 February 2009 - 08:49 PM
Higher swing speeds will undoubtedly produce more carry, but there is no scientific relationship between clubhead speed and shaft reaction, at least in the way the industry uses it. If you start with the basic understanding that the golf shaft is a spring, then depending on the stiffness of that spring, it takes a certain amount of time for it to recover from a deflected position. So based on simple spring mechanics, the stiffer the spring, the shorter the time of recovery. By applying those same principles to the natural frequency of a golf club shaft, we find that it's the same mechanism that drives the shaft back to straight upon release. Therefore, the earlier the release in a golfer's swing, the softer the shaft required to drive it back to straight. This fundamental concept goes against traditional fitting technology in that it scientifically proves that shaft selection has absolutely nothing to do with the way the industry has utilized clubhead speed. In fact, if two players have the same swing timing, the one with the higher swing speed actually needs a softer shaft. This is exactly the opposite of what most custom club-fitters would recommend. But, if you consider the fact that clubhead speed-induced force is helping the spring action through centrifugal force, then the spring action (natural frequency of the shaft) must be reduced to accomodate the correct timing for returning the shaft back to straight and square at impact. Therefore, the lower clubhead speed player who gets very little help from the centrifugal force created by swing speed, would actually require a shaft with a higher natural frequency. Likewise, the higher clubhead speed player gets more help from clubhead speed, so he would need a shaft with a lower natural frequency.
Sorry to ramble on, but it's a lot to swallow.