The Simple Physics of Your Slice

The physics of ball flight are simple: your slice may not be a matter of swing path, but an open clubface.

A lot of people worry and wonder about their slices (or hooks). It’s very easy to get caught up into thinking that your slice is caused by one particular thing, such as an over the top move.

Guess what? You can buy the Inside Approach swing aid, come down the line or even slightly from the inside, and still hit a big honkin’ slice. How? Your clubface is open, stupid.

The physics of hitting a golf ball are relatively simple. If the angle of approach is not perpendicular to the angle of the clubface throughout impact, your ball will curve in the direction of the clubface. Slicers who come over the top and square the clubface hit a slice. If their clubface is square to their swingpath, they pull the ball. If their clubface is somewhere in between, the ball starts to the left and fades back to center.

Changing the angle of the clubface at impact is often a far easier solution than changing your swing to accommodate a new path of attack. Have an observer stand behind you and tell you exactly where the ball starts out off the clubface. If it’s dramatically right of your swing path, your clubface is open.

It’s simple physics.

2 thoughts on “The Simple Physics of Your Slice”

  1. I have to agree with Erik here; I had a nasty slice for a few years, and worked hard on changing my swing. It’d take for a few months, but then if I took any time off, I fell back into my old slice-inducing habits.

    But, this year I decided to close my clubface at address. Now, I’m hitting the ball straight, and only have to worry about making sure I line up properly. Doesn’t help me get over my tendency to try to line up to compensate for my now nearly non-existent slice, but it’s a start.

  2. I would like to add one thing to this post. Make sure your not rotating the hands on the backswing. If you do this it will be much more difficult to get the club back to square at impact causing a nasty slice or hook. Thanks for the tips! Keep up the good work!

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