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# Ball Flight Laws, PGA of America and Dr. Gary Wiren

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Originally Posted by johnthejoiner

The two shots mentioned are only achievable if the shot is hit with a zero degree angle of attack, which is not a good thing to be doing with an iron. Now here's the strange bit, when we start adding a negative angle of attack to both shots, the old ball flight example becomes correct and the new ball flight example becomes lets say Ouch

Angle of attack was factored in when the article talked about "club path." 6° out might be 4° out with an angle of attack of -4° adding the extra 2°. Second of all, no, there's no "ouch" because the "old examples" don't "become correct."

It sounds like you're trying to talk about the D-Plane, but the HSP is not the "club path" except at 0° AoA.

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Originally Posted by Tiger90

That video is totally wrong.  Those ball flight laws are correct in every single way.  I have used those laws to teach myself how to hit draws and fades of all shapes and sizes.  The most highly rated golf instructor in the US, among many other amazing golf coaches.  Those rules dont just come into their heads and the best players in the worlds for no reason.

If the club is swung on an inside to outswing path, the force of the club going in that direction is much strong than that of the face slightly closed (to hit a draw), eventually the draw spin over powers the push and the ball draws back.  I dont understand how this guy can say those rules are wrong.  Where is his logic.

In fact, i used those exact rules to teach a friend of mine, today, how to hit a draw and a fade....soooooooo i dont understand

Technology like Trackman and high speed cameras confirm "path start direction" is wrong.  Also wrong because it defies the laws of physics

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Originally Posted by Harmonious

We have been told so many times in this forum that the PGA Manual was wrong, and that only recently have the "new" ball flight laws been developed.  Thanks to Mr. Graham for clearing up that bit of misinformation.

Question to Mr. Graham:  You said in the article that, although the PGA Manual in the early 90's was essentially correct, you were actually taught differently in the Apprentice class.  From your experience, you then state that thousands of other PGA Apprentices were likewise taught the wrong information. I have no way of disputing this contention, but it does seem odd to me that so many PGA instructors around the world would give out information at odds with the PGA Manual. How did you come up with your number of "wrongly-taught" PGA pros?

Anyway, it's a good article. I would encourage everyone to read it, as well as the PGA article referenced.

Honestly, in my discussions with outgoing Apprentices over the last 15 years, they have confirmed to me that this practice has continued. I'm hoping it has changed but i have my doubts. I was also reminded by others that many other National PGA's based their teaching on the information presented by the PGA of America not the PGA Teaching Manual. Around the world, I'm sure I have listed the amount of professionals that have received the wrong information too low.

I also agree it is odd. I don't know why it happened. Very odd indeed.

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I went back and reread the blog post on another computer where the images were all visible. After a re-read I think I might be getting it. The original 5, yeah those make sense (albeit skewed on which end of the clubhead speed spectrum has more face angle bias) but those other 9 laws? What the . . . ?

Basically having missed some vital information the first time through, and having no first hand experience with the PGA of America apprenticeship program, I didn't fully grasp (or empathize with) John's frustration.  Kudos for having the patience to keep at it Mr. Graham. I can't imagine what it would be like to initiate this discussion with someone who isn't open minded - someone who was fully indoctrinated with those 9 shot shape related ball flight laws. I've also since learned there aren't any good recipes for preparing crow - opportunity?

The source of my own personal bias and lack of empathy? Having started this game on my own in the mid 80s copying players on television, good players in person, then using the odd short game article Golf Magazine (great stuff from Curtis Strange, Ray Floyd, etc) and books on the full swing from the early 1970s and up to about 1980 (used book stores and the library) there was never an issue of initial ball flight. Especially when you started with short irons and worked your way toward the driver eventually. The initial direction wasn't really discussed, in the old books (at least the ones I saw) and if you followed the basic steps you'd figure it out.  I feel sorry for people who were given much more detailed ball flight information later on and are now just finding out it was bass ackwards. How they must have struggled with a slice. Tragic really when you think about it - so I won't.

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Originally Posted by mvmac

As many of you Sandtrappers know a majority of students are taught the wrong ball flight laws because their instructors operates under the assumption that the ball start in the direction of the club path.  Check this out for the correct information on the Ball Flight Laws.

I wanted to share a great article here from John Graham about the PGA Ball Flight Laws and Dr. Gary Wiren.  John posts a lot of good information and I would recommend subscribing to his blog.

The PGA of America has to do something about this, spreading incorrect information to thousands of apprentices is irresponsible (to say the least).  Not only for actually trying to play shots but for problem solving.

PS. And sorry to Mike for not reading your first post a little better - it outlines the specific issue very clearly.

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Originally Posted by iacas

What video? Please tell us which one you mean.

Which laws? The ball starts where the path of the club is traveling and curves to where the face was pointing?

Sorry... Butch Harmon is wrong. It's silly that he keeps saying it, but he's wrong.

Here's a video for you.

Here's a URL for you: http://thesandtrap.com/b/playing_tips/ball_flight_laws .

His logic is physics. What's yours?

You think you did. You did not. I think you have some reading to do. Go ahead. We'll wait. :-)

That is the video i was talking about and it doesnt prove anything, all it does is show two guys talking about what they believe to be right and wrong.  And the test they do for these laws are with machines, and like jointhejoiner said, the angle of attack affects the ball flight also, so how can that machine be the judgement of what all golfers swing angle is.

I dont know what all those that HSP, or dplane is, but i do know how to hit a draw and fade, and i know what i do and dont do.  So it really doesnt matter what you or these machines tell us.  I would really like you to go to the range ASAP, bring a video camera, and try to hit a draw, by swinging on an inside to out swing path with an open club face.  You are a scratch golfer and should be able to do that no problem, i mean, you have physics on your side. I am very curious to see if you dont hit a push slice and nail a car driving on the road

Please test this out, you should have nothing to be afraid of.......Go ahead. I'll wait :-)

Originally Posted by sk golf

Originally Posted by iacas

Angle of attack was factored in when the article talked about "club path." 6° out might be 4° out with an angle of attack of -4° adding the extra 2°. Second of all, no, there's no "ouch" because the "old examples" don't "become correct."

It sounds like you're trying to talk about the D-Plane, but the HSP is not the "club path" except at 0° AoA.

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^^^

i dont know how you can watch that last video posted there, and not come to the understanding that the clubface is the main determinant of the balls inital flight.  if you dont grasp that from watching high speed camera video of a ball being hit, then you might be a hopeless case.

also, i cannot tell you how many trees i hit smack dab in the middle of the trunk thinking that i should point the club at the ending target (on the other side of the tree) and then swinging in or out to fade or draw around the tree.

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Originally Posted by Tiger90

That is the video i was talking about and it doesnt prove anything, all it does is show two guys talking about what they believe to be right and wrong.  And the test they do for these laws are with machines, and like jointhejoiner said, the angle of attack affects the ball flight also, so how can that machine be the judgement of what all golfers swing angle is.

First off Trackman does measure all of that and more. http://trackman.dk/  Doppler radar technology

I dont know what all those that HSP, or dplane is, but i do know how to hit a draw and fade, and i know what i do and dont do.  So it really doesnt matter what you or these machines tell us.  I would really like you to go to the range ASAP, bring a video camera, and try to hit a draw, by swinging on an inside to out swing path with an open club face.  You are a scratch golfer and should be able to do that no problem, i mean, you have physics on your side. I am very curious to see if you dont hit a push slice and nail a car driving on the road

Please test this out, you should have nothing to be afraid of.......Go ahead. I'll wait :-)

We did, all these balls drew.  You should try it, weight forward, hands forward, hit the ball keeping the hands forward like below and ball is going to draw, it has to.  You're arguing against science, this is getting ridiculous

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Sean,

Thank you for taking the time to reread the post and write that reply.

Crow is never needed, in my book, for those that go the extra step and do what you did.

It's a tribute to your character.

JG

BTW-My life has basically been about learning by crow. =)

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Quote:
I would really like you to go to the range ASAP, bring a video camera, and try to hit a draw, by swinging on an inside to out swing path with an open club face.

I've just recently learned the correct ball flight laws myself and at first i had problems visualizing it. Where I think you are having a problem is the perception of the clubface being wide open compared to your swing path, it's not.  I think it's suppose to be open to the target line and closed to your swing path. Depending how you setup and swing inside to out, the clubface may actually look square or a bit closed to you at setup, but it is still open to the target line. So in theory telling people to close the clubface and swing right will produce a draw but not push draws...pull or straight draws. Maybe this is the confusion? Or maybe I'm confused...

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Originally Posted by colin007

^^^

i dont know how you can watch that last video posted there, and not come to the understanding that the clubface is the main determinant of the balls inital flight.  if you dont grasp that from watching high speed camera video of a ball being hit, then you might be a hopeless case.

also, i cannot tell you how many trees i hit smack dab in the middle of the trunk thinking that i should point the club at the ending target (on the other side of the tree) and then swinging in or out to fade or draw around the tree.

If you watch the video closely it shows the club face is contributing 100% to the initial ball flight, this flies in the face of the correct ball flight laws and the physics behind them

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I would really like you to go to the range ASAP, bring a video camera, and try to hit a draw, by swinging on an inside to out swing path with an open club face.

Clubface open to the path, FWIW, not the target.

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I would like to thank everyone who is getting these "new" ball flight laws out there to us weekend hackers. My normal shot has always been a large fade or huge banana ball that started straight off the club and then would go 90 degrees right once it got 150 yards out. And due to watching tv, reading golf books and obviously wrong information in magazines, I always thought my slice was due to an open club face at impact with an in to straight swing path. So I have spent money on lessons, draw biased clubs, and tried a very strong grip to help this but nothing helped and with these new laws it makes perfect sense. My divots always pointed left and the ball always went right. Which made no sense to me if the old ball flight laws applied. According to the old laws the ball should have started left. After video taping myself its very obvious I have an out to in swing. I am very excited to know the cause of my slice and now armed with the knowledge of these new laws I am hoping to cure it learn how to work the ball. Goodbye draw biased clubs!!!

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Originally Posted by johnthejoiner

If you watch the video closely it shows the club face is contributing 100% to the initial ball flight, this flies in the face of the correct ball flight laws and the physics behind them

Yes, that's exactly what the correct ball flight laws are saying/proving.

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Gary Wiren has always been a leader in golf instructional aids etc. but a good friend of mine attended a seminar given by him and asked him twice what he thought of Moe Norman's swing and he refused to answer....my opinion of him decreased dramatically

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Originally Posted by Tiger90

That is the video i was talking about and it doesnt prove anything, all it does is show two guys talking about what they believe to be right and wrong.  And the test they do for these laws are with machines, and like jointhejoiner said, the angle of attack affects the ball flight also, so how can that machine be the judgement of what all golfers swing angle is.

I don't know any other way to say this beyond "you're wrong" because you are. You're wrong. The ball's initial start direction is determined primarily by where the face is pointing - typically 85% or so - and then the ball curves away from the path unless they're perpendicular (face and path).

That much HAS been proven countless times and in rigorous scientific tests.

While the video Dave and I shot doesn't "prove" anything alone, it's "proof" and part of a greater body of "proofs" that do "prove" the ball flight laws are correct.

Originally Posted by Tiger90

I dont know what all those that HSP, or dplane is, but i do know how to hit a draw and fade, and i know what i do and dont do.  So it really doesnt matter what you or these machines tell us. I would really like you to go to the range ASAP, bring a video camera, and try to hit a draw, by swinging on an inside to out swing path with an open club face. You are a scratch golfer and should be able to do that no problem, i mean, you have physics on your side. I am very curious to see if you dont hit a push slice and nail a car driving on the road

The best draws are hit with a face pointing right of the target at impact. The best fades are hit with a clubface pointing left of the target at impact. If the clubface is pointing at the target at impact, and the ball curves left or right, it will miss the target.

Originally Posted by Tiger90

Please test this out, you should have nothing to be afraid of.......Go ahead. I'll wait :-)

Uhm, no offense, but we have. Including filming that video. And a lot of people who are likely a whole lot smarter than you have done it, too. Someone linked to it above, but go to trackman.dk and read. Go anywhere and read.

Originally Posted by johnthejoiner

If you watch the video closely it shows the club face is contributing 100% to the initial ball flight, this flies in the face of the correct ball flight laws and the physics behind them

I am not sure how to answer that one John. It doesn't show 100%. It might show 90, or 85 or 95, but it doesn't show 100.

The correct ball flight laws have been stated many times here. We don't need to go over them. You only ever provoke and quote players saying things, never with any real "proof." You're vague and argumentative. What are the "correct" ball flight laws in your mind? Because 100% clubface is closer to the truth than "100% path."

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Quote:

I am not sure how to answer that one John. It doesn't show 100%. It might show 90, or 85 or 95, but it doesn't show 100.

Just to clarify my earlier post, I wasn't saying the ball flight laws prove initial direction is 100% determined by face angle, just that face angle has a greater influence than path.

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Originally Posted by johnthejoiner

If you watch the video closely it shows the club face is contributing 100% to the initial ball flight, this flies in the face of the correct ball flight laws and the physics behind them

not 100% - but closer to that than the opposite.  why do you disagree with what i said???

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