Originally Posted by saevel25
First, if your hitting the ball first, then your not hitting heel first, your clubface is still closed, and if its a pull then your swing path is still from outside in.
If your hitting the ground before the ball you could catch the heel and the toe will turn over and the ball will start off left and should curve left, since your swing path is inside out. It shouldn't really cause your swing path to shift that much, it will effect your club face angle more.
It's hard to tell on these types of shots when I practice because they're off forgiving mats or soft driving range soil, so it's possible for these shots with the unexpected divots I'm hitting the ground first just barely. Originally I thought maybe my lie was too upright and it was combined with catching some ground before impact, but I think iacas was onto something with his explanation.
I should try that technique to get a gauge for whether my lie is too upright or not, though.
Tangentially related to this topic:
If you view the clubhead arc traced out on a flat plane viewed from above, the clubhead has a point where it's moving away from the body, an apex, and then back in towards the body. I'm curious what the optimal point is for the low point of the swing to occur along that arc. From watching pros, it looks like they generally hit the low point just before they the clubhead is the farthest from their body from that overhead view, but I would think that it would depend partially on whether the goal was a fade or a draw.
I was thinking that, for these unexpected divots, the clubhead was hitting it's lowest point after it had started to come back in on that arc. Kind of like if I were trying to hit down on the ball to hit a fade, but catching it too far back in the swing. Because it's not like the divots were pointed a little bit out and then a little bit in, like the diagram in iacas's link, they were all completely left. And I continue to see these patterns in my practice. No divot portion going right, just divot going left.
So it makes me wonder if the apex of that overhead arc is occurring just before or at the ball and then the low point is happening just after that. But that almost sounds like it would require I hold lag too long, which I find hard to believe.
Anyway, any thoughts on the low point of the swing compared to where it is on the arc "going out" vs "coming in"? Should I be aiming for it to occur at the apex, catching the ball before the low point (if I'm trying to play a draw)?