Fundamentals of Ball Flight Series

One of the most fundamental things to improve your ball flight is understanding the relationship between face and path. Ultimately, those are the only two things that dictate the direction your ball will fly. There other factors such as angle of attack, lie angles of your club and external things like slope that can effect ball flight but even in those cases it still finds its way back to face and path.

The initial start direction of your ball will always be where the club face is pointing and curve based on the path of your swing relative to that club face. One of the most counter intuitive concepts in golf is that in order to hit a draw your club face must be slightly open relative to your target, and conversely in order to hit a fade your club face must be slightly closed relative to your target. Now, some of you may be thinking, how can this be?

Let’s think about the intent of the shot for a second. If we want the ball to curve from right to left and land at our target our ball needs to start right of our target so it can move curve back to it. If the ball had started directly at our target and then curves to the left it will be finishing away from our target.

Now returning to the premise of the article, in order to start the ball to the right our club face needs to be pointing slightly  to the right of the target, getting it to curve back to the left means that our swing path is moving further right than our club face in order to impart side spin.

To take this out on the course just remember, club face determines start direction, the path that we swing the club on whether it is out to the right or across to the left determines curvature. Think about these two things and get back to me with any questions on Twitter @Fab_colon or colongolf@pga.com!

 

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