Friday, January 20, 2012

Last April: After 35 years, I finally realized a problem in my swing (only one?). I was set to go out on Tuesday at GolfTodayMagazine‘s tournament in Napa, Calif. at Eagle Vines golf club, so decided to hit a few balls at the range.

For 10 years I’ve had a pad of faceplate-shaped carbon-paper adhesive sheets called LongShot Maximum Distance System that you put on the faceplate of the club matching the sweetspot and grooves. It was a lazy day, so I decided to try them again. I’ve usually only used one faceplate and didn’t really learn much. This day, however, I settled down to really try to plumb my swing.

When you hit a ball, the impact of ball against face leaves an impression of the dimple pattern in the carbon-paper sheet (illustrated at right) so you can see where on the club you’re hitting the ball. Obviously, you want to hit it right in the sweet spot. If you’re always up, down, left or right, you can adjust your swing. These are impact recorders, in short.

Is this a clue to consistent shots?

I suddenly realized my pattern was toward the hosel side of the club…every shot. I was standing too close to the ball! So I started to move back. I put the club on the ground, then adjusted my stance so the handle was against my leg, then moved back so I could put my fist between leg and handle. I used up five faceplates worth, but by the time I was done experimenting, I was hitting on the sweet spot and the ball was consistent and straight. Well, sorta straight.

It was such an exciting development, I had to share it.

See ya. Lemme at the course.

(Added 1/20/2012): It was a good idea, and I did hit a few shots better, but I really need to get out a lot more.

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